Matthew Caputo in Mary Poppins
I was so thrilled for Matthew Caputo when he got cast as a swing in the UK tour of Mary Poppins: it was such a prestigeous production and such a well-loved show and I just knew he was absolutely perfect for it. I was even more thrilled when I looked up the tour dates and saw there was a show in Manchester on my birthday - when I told Matthew he let me know he was actually going to be on for that night's show and it was just SO perfect I was delighted. I always so look forward to any chance I get to see Matthew perform and to see him in a show like Mary Poppins where I just knew he would be so well suited made me even more excited, I was looking forward to the trip so much it was ridiculous - I don't think I stopped smiling the entire time, especially not suring the show. Matthew was, as I had suspected he would be, utterly charasmatic and so captivating to watch; Matthew is someone who truly lights up when he's performing, there's just something within him which is so warm and bright and people are always drawn to that, and he is also one of the most hardworking and talented people you will ever see who truly is proof of how the theatre is carried on the shoulders of ensembles and swings. It sounds ridiculous to say since I'm not his family so it's almost not my place but I was just so very proud of him - I felt like he just belonged there and deserved it so much, he was wonderful and somehow once he was in Mary Poppins it finally started to hit me that he was really starting to carve out such an important place for himself in the shows he was doing and that he hadn't exactly come a long way since that mid-show appearance where I fell for him in Cats as the talent was always there it was just...finally being recognised far more than it had been that first night I saw him on a stage as an unnanounced mid-show swing I suppose! After beaming my way through the entire performance and truly being so enchanted by Matthew in every ensemble number he was part of, I was probably absurdly giddy when I made my way around to the stage door and was finally able to give him the big hug he deserved and thank him for making my birthday so special; it had been such a treat honestly and I don't think I could ever have expressed how grateful I was. Matthew being the gorgeous soul that he is had actually bought me a birthday card too, and though that may seem like a silly thing to be so deeply touched by I can honestly say it was and still is one of the most precious memories of a stage door to me and I still have the card tucked away in a little stack of theatre momentos and tickets I keep to this day. After having had such a wonderful experience seeing the show in Manchester, it was only natural that I ended up getting tickets for when the show visited one of my favourite theatres the Birmingham Hippodrome, and though it wasn't my birthday I still spent pretty much the whole trip beaming; Matthew is simply golden and he was golden in the show and at stage door once again and it was a real treat to get to watch him perform in a show he was so suited to and then give him all the love and compliments he deserves at stage door afterwards.