The Remarkable Performance is Based on a Miraculously True Story.
By: Carlos Glick
“Come From Away” first opened at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theater in Times Square on March 12, 2017. It tells the remarkable true story of the events that took place the week of 9/11 in a small town that welcomed the world.
Due to the events that took place on September 11th, 2001, planes were rerouted. In the small town of Gander, Newfoundland, which is located in Canada, there were approximately 38 planes that seated an estimated 7,000 passengers.
The small Canadian town welcomed 7,000 passengers and those people became friends but more importantly, family, toward one another.
Although the musical is about those 7,000 passengers, 38 planes and 1 story, it mainly focuses on one plane in particular, whose original route was from Paris to Dallas. From there, we are introduced to a main group of passengers, whose stories impact us and create a very touching tale.
Inside this particular plane, we are introduced to one pilot, Captain Beverly Bass, who is the third female captain for American Airlines. Her story, detailing her side of events from that historical day, is quite remarkable.
For her, September 11, 2001, started as a normal day at work. What originally was supposed to be a simple 10-hour flight from Paris to Dallas promptly turned into a 4-day journey with a pitstop in Gander, Newfoundland. The journey turned into the adventure of a lifetime for her.
According to an article from wtsp.com, once they touched down in Gander, Newfoundland and got situated, Bass and her passengers were informed by officials that they could not leave the premises until the following day. Bass says they, “waited on the airplane for 28 hours, not knowing the details of what was happening in New York.”
The morning after that lengthy wait, the sizable plane crews and their passengers were permitted to disembark the aircrafts, “nearly doubling Ganders population of 9,400.” The residents in Gander “were as shocked as anyone by what was unfolding in the news. So, they focused on the situation in front of them, helping these strangers who had come from away.”
The news article went on to recount that “for five days, Gander’s residents not only welcomed passengers and crew members with open arms, but they also showed immense compassion and generosity during one of the darkest times in American history.”
Enough about the history behind the musical. The music is fantastically awesome! The music moves the story along. One song in particular that I absolutely love is entitled “38 Planes (Reprise)/ Somewhere in the Middle of Nowhere.”
The other songs are great too, but “38 Planes (Reprise)/ Somewhere in the Middle of Nowhere” speaks to me and holds a special place in my heart.
Aside from “Come From Away” and the true tale it’s built upon, there are other musicals that are based on true stories. Musicals like “Hamilton”, “1776”, and “The Book of Mormon” (vaguely) are some examples of musicals past and present that are based on true stories.
“Come From Away” is a musical masterpiece that was created by David Hein and Irene Sannkoff. It is a must-see musical for anyone and everyone who likes musical theater. It will make you think back on what you were doing at the time of the 9/11 attacks.
If you haven’t seen “Come From Away”, it’s a story worth watching right away. It is located at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, at 236 West 45th Street in Times Square.
Go see it before it closes. Trust me, you won’t regret it!