Hands up who grew up with their nose stuck in an Adrian Mole book? If the answer is hell yes! they you will be as excited as me that a stage production of Sue Townsend’s The Secret Life of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4 has hit London’s West End! And to celebrate, we asked the cast of the much applauded Adrian Mole play to share 9 life lessons we can learn from Adrian Mole and the production. Plus, there’s a chance to win tickets to see the show further down. So are you listening carefully? Then let us begin….
Teenage angst is real
In the Adrian Mole play all the children are going through the peak of their pubescent period, which Adrian portrays as absolute torture and as if he’s the only one going through these changes. Adrian faces worries like spots, girls, school, being bullied and the constant concern about his thing. All teenagers go through this experience but deal with it in different ways. The school disco scene is a prime example of this where all the teenagers are experiencing different teenage angst but at the same time just want to fit in. Charlie Stripp, Aged 12 ½ – Barry
Good friends are hard to come by
Adrian is a very loyal person. Not only is he loyal to his family but also to Bert, his best friend Nigel and most of all his love, Pandora. Generally he cares about everyone around him and is always ready to offer his help. This can sometimes come with some challenges. We see throughout Adrian’s journey that his loyalty can sometimes leave him feeling disheartened but the most important thing is to push through even when the people closest to you push you away or let you down. Ride the waves until you can take control again. Jeremiah Waysome, Aged 12 ⅔ – Nigel
Relationships are messy
Adrian Mole is really a story about different relationships. As we hit our teenage years we start to learn relationships aren’t as simple as they once were. Nigel who is supposed to be Adrian’s best mate stitches him up to win Pandora’s affections. Barry who seems to have no feelings for anyone else thinks smelly Sharon smells like roses and Adrian’s parents hit a rocky patch find affection elsewhere but then realise they are better together. Things will never be simple again. Jack Gale, Aged 12 ½ – Barry
Be grateful always
A recurring theme in Adrian Mole the Musical is Adrian’s complaints about his life… that he has huge spots and his life is just awful… but actually in real life it’s actually normal! However, throughout the show Adrian starts to realise that he is not that different to everyone else. He says at the end “Shouting, fighting every year its worse, that’s just how things are.” So all his complaining didn’t matter and he learns that he should be grateful for what he has. Aaron Gelkoff, Aged 13⅙ – Adrian
Ambition beats genius
In the show Adrian sings a song called ‘Intellectual Boy’ about how he wants his poems to be published, be famous and heard on the BBC. One of the lines in the song is, “I’ll be brave, I’ll be strong, I’ll be friends with Elton John, and my spots will have gone away”. These are some of Adrian’s dreams and ambitions as he looks to the future when he will have gone through this tricky time of adolescence. So in life, if you want to achieve something, all you have to do is put your mind to it and you can! Nicholas Antoniou-Tibbitts, Aged 13¾ – Adrian
Friends come in all shapes and sizes
The friends in Adrian Mole all have their moments being cross with each other but you never forget they are friends too – even Barry the bully. Even though they both fight for Pandora’s attention you can see what good mates they are. Nigel is cool, Adrian isn’t, they are very different but that doesn’t matter because that’s what being a good friend is all about. Michael Hawkins, Aged 12 ¾ – Adrian
Gender equality is a human fight
Pandora fights for equality despite being so young and has a strong understanding of women’s rights in spite of being of school age, she is determined to make a difference in the world. She continues to stand up for equal rights throughout especially in ‘Take a Stand’ and through her reaction to Adrian in Act 2 who suggests that Pandora shouldn’t have a career. Or if she did it should be in a cake shop at the very most. Pandora turns things round as Adrian realises that women should get equal rights and equal pay teaching young people to realise their dreams, become role models for others and to speak their mind. Riya Vyas, Aged 13 – Pandora
Nothing is permanent
Head down, keep the status quo, we’re all just trying to get through another year. But change will come, uninvited as it may be. Whether that’s a new pimple or your wife running off with the neighbour, it’s how you adapt that matters. Change is what shapes us and brings out the best in us all. Andrew Langtree, Aged 42½ – George
Take no day for granted
Most young people are confident and full of ambition as, indeed, Adrian is. I had an idyllic childhood with a large family of six.. I look back and think I was pretty resilient. Sadly, many deaths happened fairly rapidly and the only two left were my mother and myself. Many years after her death I look back with amazement because my first wife died. Adrian gets worried that Burt might die and is relieved that his friend survives. Burt taught him about relationships, no matter how incongruous. I am happily married again but do not take any day for granted. “I don’t know how we got through another year” Ian Talbot, Aged 76 – Burt.
So now that we have turned all of Adrian Mole & co’s angst into learnings, we can all get on our way as better humans. But before you go off on your merry way, don’t forget to try and win some tickets to the Adrian Mole play
The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4…..
***Win tickets to see he new Adrian Mole play: The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4 ***
Picture credits Pamela Raith