Diana, Princess of Wales, has remained a popular topic for documentaries, films and even musicals. While the Broadway musical Diana: The Musical is set to premiere next week, the Dutch-language musical Diana and Sons made its debut just last month in Amsterdam.
Of course, the rest of the family is also there, except for The Queen, whose only appearance comes in the form of a portrait. The Duchess of Cornwall seems to be along for the comedic effect, though she later turns more serious and is the one to convince Meghan to stay with Harry. Prince Charles bemoans his lot in life as forever being stuck in the waiting room, but he too becomes more serious, and during one particular scene with Diana, the entire audience seemed to be sobbing. Naturally, as one of Diana’s sons, William makes appearances as well, although a lot less than Harry, and Harry seems to be surprised that they both still talk to Diana. Catherine even has her own song, and the title roughly translates as ‘beautiful but boring.’ She, too, wishes she could have more of an opinion and her own voice.
It is really Meghan and Harry’s story we follow throughout. They meet in a fish & chips shop, where Harry appears to come on a regular basis as he’s pretty close to one of the workers there. The worker has a fabulous solo song in there as well. Harry and Meghan’s whirlwind romance comes to a crashing halt as Meghan is hounded by the press and vilified on social media. Meghan’s solo with a song called “This is who I am” is quite touching. They even manage to make the comparison to Wallis Simpson as Harry tells her about his family history. While Harry struggles to move on from his mother’s death and being in love with someone who is deemed not appropriate, Diana looks back to where it all began, and we even meet a young Prince Charles and Diana.
This musical was in the works as Harry and Meghan stepped back as senior royals. This is not included in the musical itself, and the story ends with a happily ever after as they finally marry. Overall, I enjoyed the musical a lot more than I thought I would. The singing was perfect and really drew you in. The set could have been a bit more inventive, and they moved around with chairs so much that it was a little distracting.
For now, Diana and Sons is only in the Netherlands, but its producers do have plenty of links to a more global audience, and I suspect that if it does well, it might go international as well. It’s currently playing in Amsterdam, but it will go on tour as well. You can see all the dates here.