Next to Normal is a musical about how mental illness affects the lives of both those afflicted with it and the people who love them. It feels like a strange thing to be a musical: you certainly won’t leave singing any favourite songs, but overall it works out to being a moving and beautiful piece of theatre.
Diana Goodman has bipolar disorder paired with delusions. She’s married to dutiful husband, Dan, and has an oft-neglected daughter, Natalie. Rounding out the family is Gabe, the son who died eighteen years ago at eight months old and has only grown up to become a young man in Diana’s deluded mind. She’s never been able to let go, and the happy, normal family they all want to believe in continues to get farther away from reality.Read the full review.