One of the best presents that a parent can give his or her child is the joy of an entertaining story. In Big Fish, Edward Bloom tells his son Will many tall tales intertwining both truth and fantasy to portray his life’s story. Like the fictional character Will Bloom, many of the cast and crew members of Big Fish, the Poplar Pike Playhouse’s newest production, also remember hearing tall tales of their own when they were children.
“I remember when I was a little girl, my mom would tell me that a stork delivered babies to their parents,” said Raneem Imam, who portrays the clairvoyant witch in Big Fish. “My parents would often tell me these stories, and I think they just did it to support my childhood imagination.”
Imam, however, isn’t the only one who remembers his parent’s vivid stories as a child. Her fellow cast members also had something to say about the tradition of “Big Fish” stories. Bryan Scott, a newcomer to the Poplar Pike Playhouse stage, believes that his tall tale experience was for an entirely different reason.
“My parents told me all these stories that were beyond belief simply to see how I would react to them. But a lot of times they probably just did it to have some fun – I know I would if I had kids.” Said Scott, who had heard a lot of tall tales as a child, but his favorite had to be the one about the monster under his bed. “One of the stories my parents would tell me was that if I didn’t go to sleep before my bedtime, the Boogeyman would come out and scare me in the middle of the night… But I quickly learned they just said that so I would fall asleep earlier.”
Whether they’re told in order to instill a sense of imagination or to encourage good behavior, the stories hold a place in almost everyone’s hearts. At the end of the day, the stories are enjoyable and put a smile on even the youngest of faces. No matter what their opinion is on tall tales, the cast and crew of Big Fish can all agree on one thing: the stories are what make the musical so entertaining.
Edward Bloom is a farmer’s son from Alabama who lived a life full of epic adventures, tall tales and imaginative friends. As Edward’s story draws to a close, his son begins a journey to discover his father’s true identity. Is Edward hiding behind his tales, or by understanding the stories will his son come to truly understand the man? Powerful storytelling, uplifting music and show-stopping numbers give this modern musical the feel of a big, Broadway classic.
Be there when the Poplar Pike Playhouse becomes the first theatre in our region to bring Big Fish home to you February 26 through March 14. Visit ppp.org or call the PPP Box Office at (901) 755-7775 for more information. Follow the PPP on Facebook and Instagram (poplarpikeplayhouse) or Twitter (@ppptheatre) for updates and special coupon codes.
The Poplar Pike Playhouse is the theatre complex located on the campus of Germantown High School.