Okay, so one of the highlights of my trip was definitely going to a bunch of Broadway shows in New York!!! Since the Tony award nominations were announced yesterday, what better time to blog about the shows I saw!?
Let's start off with the worst of the bunch.
Wonderland is the musical adaptation/re-telling of the Alice in Wonderland story. I'm a sucker for Alice, so that's why I insisted on going to see this, despite my better judgment. But I really should've known better. The first Act was the typical Alice storyline, but the second Act was completely out of nowhere and was quite frankly, stupid. The songs were not memorable at all, the set was lame (considering what they could've done with the world of Wonderland at their hands!) and the story didn't engage me.
Some good points: I quite enjoyed the White Knight and his posse of do-gooders who performed in the style of a boy band. This alone saved the entire night for me.
The pimped out Cheshire Cat and his fellow party cats were cute, and I liked the smooth stylings of the Caterpillar and his sexy legs (played by a group of gorgeous female dancers). The new Mad Hatter was an evil dominatrix, played by the same woman who originated the role of Vivian in Legally Blonde. Let's just say I prefer her at Harvard law school than I did brandishing a whip at a mad tea party.
Overall though, if you're in New York and get a chance to see a show, SKIP THIS.
The next day I hit up two shows. For my matinee, I opted for Sister Act, which I had very low expectations for.
Oh, rejoice!!! This was a fantastically fun time!! And, the show picked up a bunch of nominations yesterday as well, including lead actress Patina Miller who originated the role of Sister Mary Clarence in the West End production in London. Congrats, and well deserved! A super fun musical, that's for sure! Will it win Best Musical? It could, but my bet is on something else even more divine....
That night I caught Daniel Radcliffe in How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
This tells the story of a young lad climbing his way up the corporate ladder. It was funny and entertaining, and who knew that Harry Potter could sing and dance?! Great job! I was in the front row for this, so Daniel literally rose up from the stage mere metres away from me! Crazy! Oh I love New York!!
Next up was Catch Me If You Can, starring Aaron Tveit and Kerry Butler, both of whom I saw in the Seattle pre-Broadway run of this show. I think they made some tweaks and changes to the show, and I don't know if it was for the better. I kinda preferred the show I saw in Seattle than the one they ultimately brought to Broadway. But still, it's a treat to watch Kerry's solo number, "Fly, Fly Away", which I told her was the song that made the show when I met her afterwards. Without it, I don't know if I would have gone back to see this for a second time.
Of course there's Aaron Tveit, who got snubbed by the Tonys despite doing an amazing job as the lead character in the production. And yes, I waited for him after the show, since the last time I tried to meet him (after seeing him Next To Normal, he wouldn't come out because he was busy filming Gossip Girl at the time). Anyhow, he came out this time, signed playbills, and even posed for photos which literally made my trip!!!! Aaron, please come home with me and sing to me EVERY NIGHT OF MY LIFE!!!!
The last show I saw in New York took me two nights to get into. It's currently the darling of Broadway, getting rave reviews, and tickets for it are sold out well into July. The only seat they had available was for a Saturday matinee and it was for a partial view. I was not willing to pay $140 to have my view blocked. Even though I was really really desperate to see the much talked about and critically acclaimed new original musical, The Book of Mormon.
Written by Matt Stone and Trey Parker from Southpark fame, you know this is going to be one hilarious and offensive show. And oh heavenly father, did it deliver!! The story revolves around two mormon boys who are sent on their "mission" to Uganda, to spread the word of God. It had the entire theatre rolling in the aisles, cheering and just having a great time. This is THE show to see on Broadway right now. Spider-who?
Despite being sold out, they do have a Lottery system, where you can put your name in for a draw 2.5 hours before the show begins. I did this two nights in a row and got nowhere. I discovered that they had a separate line though, for Standing Room only tickets. I lined up for about 90 minutes to get a ticket, since there are only 20 or so standing room spots available. I managed to be one of the last people to get in, nabbing a $26 ticket to the hottest show in town. Sure, I had to stand for 3 more hours, but yes, yes it was completely worth it. If you're going to New York, this is the show you need to see, and you need to buy your ticket for it NOW.
Going in with 14 nominations, The Book of Mormon is going to win Best Musical at the Tonys, mark my words!!
Thank You Broadway for a wonderful and magical time!!!