This season of 1883 has shown us a lot of change and quickly. Episode 4 and the Brazos River was the point of no return so to speak.
Not only did the big river crossing go down, but during the scene, fans were treated to Elsa on the piano left behind by the immigrants. She says she plays or at least used to play. Then she plays for Ennis and Wade. The music overlayed on top of the river scenes was tragic, heartbreaking, and very moving.
Ennis actor, Eric Nelsen talked to Taste of Country’s Dutton Rules podcast about the scene and more about 1883. While he discussed what it was like to go through the moment over and over again, he says that it made him emotional every take.
“So to have experienced sitting at this piano and having this beautiful, soft, tender moment before so much craziness is about to come up, was very emotional for me,” Nelsen said. “And 9 out of 10 takes I was bawling at the end because I couldn’t help it. Just watching her emotions playing these keys and thinking about what’s to come for these characters. It was so hard for me not to cry.”
The moment on 1883 was powerful. This is basically wrapping up the first part of the season. It is a signifier that the wagon train has gone to a point that they will not come back from. The river crossing and the moment on the piano were major metaphorical moments.
That song was the last one that Elsa will play for a long time, perhaps the rest of her life. The bits and pieces of furniture and keepsakes from Europe, left to the wild as they cross over the river. Not to mention, more death.
Motherly Advice from ‘1883’ Star
Faith Hill has been loving the role of Margaret on 1883. She and Elsa Dutton actress, Isabel May, have been one of the most fun off-screen pairings of the entire cast. This last episode was huge for Elsa. She made the confident decision that she was a cowboy on top of the river crossing drama. As she comes of age, her mother is going to have to adjust.
Hill shared a quick message, from Margaret to Elsa, to hype fans up for Episode 5 this weekend. In a tweet, she said, “The trail is about as free as you’ll ever be. And the only rules you need to follow are the ones in your heart.” Those are wise words for the newly minted cowboy. Fit with a pair of jeans and all.
With 1883 approaching the halfway point in the season, things are only going to get more dramatic. There is a lot of journey left for these travelers. If they can manage to come together they might have a chance to survive. However, that remains to be seen.