Last month I had the privilege of taking the girls to their first opera! Honestly, as far as I can remember, it was my first one also. Opera Louisiane hosted its 6th Annual Young People’s Opera Program at First Baptist Church this year. Since 2008, over 17,000 students have seen an opera free of charge through this program. Each year, 4th-6th graders from East Baton Rouge are invited to attend the free school performances. What a great thing for our kids to experience!
On Sunday, I was able to take my daughters to see it. My friends’ daughter was dancing and she gave me one of the two complimentary tickets she received. We were truly blessed by it and this year they performed Conderella by Rossini. It was so much better than the story I’ve always known.
One of my favorite versions of the story is the movie Ever After, but this presentation even beat that film! The story line was filled with values that we can definitely get behind. As the program leaders put it, they wanted to make it more suitable for children and indeed it was.
The two main characters exhibited such virtue. Cinderella was not at all concerned about riches and fame, money or status, but instead she dreamed of receiving love from a kind-hearted man. The prince was also looking for a woman of great virtue and not concerned about his fortune. In the story he was disguised as a servant so he could find out if his bride would be true to him for who he was, but not for his position.
Cinderella chose him while she thought he was a servant, only to be overwhelmed in finding out that he was indeed — the prince. Even better than that, in the end, she chose not vengeance on her family for how they rejected her, but instead forgiveness. She asked the prince that her only revenge be to pardon them.
Perhaps we can learn a lot from this story. Forgiveness is truly a virtue we all can benefit from.