Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Watching the World Cup with Your Kids

Now that theater's biggest night of the year has passed (Congratulations to all of the Tony Award winners and nominees!), it's time to focus our competitive spirits on the world's biggest sporting event: the 2014 FIFA World Cup! The soccer tournament begins this week in Brazil and it's causing lots of chatter around the New Vic offices: we've got a handful of USA supporters ready to cheer on the red, white and blue plus, in our own department, an England fan and a proud Brazilian ready to root her team on to another victory!

We're sure your family is excited, too, to see your favorite team compete for the cup, so we've put together this list of ideas to help you plan your family's World Cup celebration, whatever that might look like. Oggy, oggy, oggy!

1. Out of the 30 teams competing in this year's tournament, 18 of those countries have also been represented on stage at the New Victory! Performers from Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, Cote d'Ivoire, England, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, South Korea, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Uruguay and the United States have presented on the New Vic stage. Have you recently seen a show on our stage? Remind your kids of the show and talk about the culture of that nation. Then, keep an eye out for the appropriate flag when you watch the games!

2. If you're looking to watch the games in NYC with a crowd that supports the country you're rooting for, the New York Times has put together this nifty, interactive map. That said, if you're looking for a kid-friendly spot, we love Petit Abeille. The Belgian restaurant has three convenient locations in Manhattan, tasty food and is screening all matches live. (Reservations may be required.)

3. Did you know that NYC will get its very own football club this fall? Recent polls indicate that soccer is more popular than ever in the USA, so it's about time! Major League Soccer, which has been expanding steadily and growing a huge fan base on the West Coast, will build on the success of the New York Red Bulls and add another local team to their roster. Season tickets for the NYCFC's first season (which will be played on the turf at Yankee Stadium) are now on sale and global football stars have already been signed to the team.

4. The World Cup can be a very educational tool when talking to kids. With the entire world uniting, it's the perfect opportunity to introduce your kids to some global issues, perhaps beginning with a chat about the emerging economy of Brazil and some of the controversy behind Brazil's hosting of the tournament.

5. Don't forget to also share the stories and talk about the legends that sportscasters will constantly reference. Begin by enticing your kids with facts they'll get excited about like, "Did you know that Brazil has won the World Cup more than any other country?" Or, tell them the story behind Maradona's controversial "Hand of God" goal!

Looking for more talking points? FIFA has shared 100 World Cup facts leading up to the opening ceremony! And if you have a family full of theater-loving athletes, check out 360 Allstars, coming to the New Vic in November as part of our 2014-15 season (which we've just announced-- click here to read the full line-up!). The show combines street dance, hip hop music and athletic stunts including a BMX biker and Basketball Man!

Photo via GTS Blog



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  5. I'd recommend not screaming and jumping over a small table as Rodriguez scores that stunning goal against Uruguay, hitting the edge of the table and almost knocking yourself out, whilst at the same time looking after a collection of four and five year olds. Makes them a little teary for some reason.