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A Hauntingly Beautiful Song About Love, Loss, & Remembrance

Updated: Sep 21, 2020

"I Heard Someone Crying" from The Secret Garden

As part of our RCT Musical Theater Virtual Review Series, we take a look at our 2019 production of The Secret Garden.

The Secret Garden is a musical based on the 1911 novel of the same name by Frances Hodgson Burnett. The musical’s script and lyrics are by Marsha Norman, with music by Lucy Simon. The story is set in the early years of the 20th century where Mary Lennox, a young English girl born and raised in British ruled India, is orphaned by a cholera outbreak when she is ten years old. She is then sent away from India to live in the manor of a brooding uncle she has never met in Yorkshire, England. There, her personality blossoms among the other residents of the manor as they bring new life to the long-neglected garden. 

The musical premiered on Broadway at the St. James Theatre on April 25, 1991 and ran through January 1993, after 709 performances. That production went on to win the 1991 Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical, Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Daisy Eagan as Mary Lennox), and Best Scenic Design. Eagan made history that year by becoming the youngest female recipient of a Tony Award at the age of 11.

Presented by RCT Musical Theater Productions at the Rose Center Theater in Westminster, California, the Orange County production of The Secret Garden ran for three weeks from February 15 through March 3, 2019. That production was lead by the artistic team: Director & Musical Director Tim Nelson, Choreographer Diane Makas, and Production Designer Chris Caputo. The brilliant cast consisted of spectacular voices of accomplished talent and starred Melissa Cook as Lilly, Cat Sacksteder in the role of Mary Lennox, Chris Caputo as Archibald Craven, Vincent Aniceto as Neville Craven, Stephanie Bull and Amanda Jean sharing the role of Martha, and Trevin Stephenson as Dickon. 

In the clip, “I Heard Someone Crying,” Mary Lennox (Sacksteder) first arrives to her uncle’s manor in Yorkshire. The house is haunted by ghosts, notably Lily (Cook), Archibald’s deceased wife. Mary despises her new surroundings and has difficulty sleeping her first night, hearing echoes of crying voices, the ghosts of the manor, as she and her Uncle Archibald (Caputo) both mourn for their respective losses.


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