“What is the school motto, Miss Honey?” asks barbaric Crunchem Hall Elementary School headmistress Agatha Trunchbull in “Matilda,” a musical adaptation of the children’s novel by Roald Dahl that opens at the Shane Center in Livingston on Friday, Oct. 21.
“Bambinatum est maggitum,” she demands the young teacher repeat. “Children are maggots.”
The Trunchbull, as she is known, enjoys locking misbehaving children in “the chokey,” a small closet lined with sharp objects. Director Russell Lewis is Trunchbull on stage, his tall frame looming over the students of Crunchem Hall during a rehearsal on Sunday.