The Roald Dahl musical which has been a worldwide success opened in Australia haunting back to composer Tim Minchin’s past and the culmination of an artist, a comedian and a musicians trials and triumphs in his life.
The Sky Arts documentary told through the eyes of Minchin’s younger sister Nel Minchin documents Tim Minchin’s life as a boy and the ten years of struggles from Australia to Edinburgh and to the West End.
We first see Tim Minchin as a talent composer who doesn’t know how to write music, he creates musicals on a local level that are really well received. And in a moment that makes you believe in destiny, we’re greeted too a letter than Tim Minchin wrote to Roald Dahl’s estate when he was twenty five, requesting to produce a Matilda music.
It never pans out and Tim realises that he needs to move to Sydney to get any success as a performer. Things don’t work out the way he plans and Tim struggles like every other artist trying to make things work, you feel for him and you empathise with what at that moment must have seemed like a deadend struggle.
The Tim Minchin story is cut between the story of the Matilda musical as it prepares to debut in Australia for the first time. The kids prepare, we witness the rehearsals and the enthusiasm that everyone has for Matilda.
And we see the breakthrough that elevated Tim Minchin to the musical comedian character that he became famous for, his 2005 Edinburgh Festival and the much needed energy that it injected into Minchin’s career.
The duality between Minchin’s fight to have a seat at the theatre table and the fight Matilda has through her story shows that just because you don’t fit into the cookie cutter style of what is supposed to make you successful.