‘Come From Away’ shares a true story about human kindness

We all need more kindness in this world. As parents, it’s a lesson try to teach our kids throughout their childhood. Sometimes it’s best to teach this quality by sharing stories of kindness and this particular tale is a perfect one to include.

“Come From Away” is certainly a feel-good musical that will tingle your entire family’s heartstrings. On opening night, the genuine reactions throughout the audience is an indication of how this musical will make you laugh, cry and feel inspired. 

Based on a true story, “Come From Away” is set following the September 11 attacks when 38 planes must land in the remote town of Gander in Newfoundland, Canada, due to U.S. airspace closures. The Gander residents house the 7,000 stranded travelers as they deal with the tragic chain of events together. 

What’s incredible about this musical is that so many of the characters are inspired by real people who were part of the events in Gander in 2001. From Beverley Bass, an American aircraft pilot who landed one of the 38 planes, to Claude Elliott, the mayor of Gander at the time, knowing this detail makes the show much more emotional for the audience. 

The cast really brings the power of community and support throughout the show. Each member of the cast acts as more than one character, which is an excellent way to add more voices to the story. This stylistic choice showcases different themes and people affected by the September 11 attacks and how they were dealing with the aftermath. It’s important to see the various experiences portrayed, even in this small Canadian town.  

The beautiful music from “Come From Away” will give you goosebumps and adds even more emotion to the story. Songs like “28 Hours/Wherever We Are” and “Somewhere in the Middle of Nowhere” explain the impact and stress on the travelers, while the spirit of Gander and its compassionate civilians are amplified in songs such as “Welcome to the Rock” and “Screech In.” The best part? The orchestra is on stage throughout the entire show and even interacts with the cast members. 

While you’re wondering about taking your kids along, we recommend the show for ages 10 and up. We all know that they might not have the same perspective as us older generations with September 11, but with no intermission, you’ll be surprised how the time moves fast as you’re captivated from one song to the next. Every family (and individual for that matter) can learn a lot of the good deeds performed by this charming Canadian town and how they brought light to such a tragic event in history.

And who knows, maybe “Come From Away” will inspire you and the kids to pass along your own acts of kindness to the Chicagoland community and beyond. 

If you go

“Come From Away”

Runs through Aug. 18

Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph St., Chicago

Recommended for ages 10 and up

Tickets start at $35

Find more information at broadwayinchicago.com

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Katina Beniaris
Katina Beniaris
As audience development manager, Katina Beniaris digs into data to help the Chicago Parent team learn about our audiences and tailor better content for them. She has more than five years of experience in content creation.
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