Tuesday, August 11, 2009

NYC Trip

Okay, so here's a rough timeline of my NYC Trip:

Train 7:20am-4:58pm.
Get to hotel and get situated 5pm-7:00pm
Dinner at Pizza Place 7pm-8pm
Walk to downtown 8pm-9pm
Bobby Cronin Concert 9:30pm-~midnight

Tuesday: (wake up: 8am)
Greenwich Village, SOHO, Little Italy (lunch), and Chinatown 9am-2pm
Staten Island Ferry 2pm-3pm
Fifth Avenue, Macy's, Public Library 4pm-5:30pm
Dinner at AppleBees 5:30pm-6:15pm
Next to Normal 7pm-10pm
Therapy/Broadway Sessions 11pm-1am

Wednesday: (wake up: 8am)
Rush Little Mermaid 9:15am-10:15am
Find another show to rush/lotto 10:15am-12pm
Lotto 9 to 5 12pm-12:45pm
Find lunch 1pm-2pm
Empire State Building 2pm-2:30pm
Back to hotel 3pm-4:15pm
Dinner at Ellen's Stardust Diner 4:45pm-6pm
Times Square/Theatre District Window Shopping 6pm-7:30pm
Wicked 8pm-10:30pm

Thursday: (wake up: 9am)
Central Park 9:45am-11:30am
Radio City Music Hall 11:45am
Broadway in the Park 12:00pm-1:45pm
Rockefeller Center and lunch 2pm-2:30pm
Developmental Reading at York Theatre 3pm-6pm
Dinner at Goodburger 6pm-6:30pm
Finding ways to waste time 6:30pm-7:30pm
Jersey Boys 8pm-10:30pm

Friday: (wake up: 8:30am)
Train 10:50am-7:45pm

Now, that's the timeline. Here's a description of some of the well-rounded trip...

Theatre Experiences: 9
Bobby Cronin CD Recording: This was absolutely amazing. I had been emailing Natalie Weiss and Ben Cameron about this for a while, and I absolutely loved it. Bobby Cronin, first off, is a composing genius, but more than that, he LOVES music. He played piano for some of the songs, and was literally out of his seat for half of them, loving everything about his music. The performers blew me away. Everything was so perfect. Natalie Weiss did a new song that was really good; Anne Brummel obviously did The Understudy which I loved even more after seeing it live; Kate Paskaldjfaoiwjeawej (Pazakis) blew me away with her voice. Katie Thompson's voice is so...I don't even know how to describe it. Alex Brightman definitely surprised me with how much voice he has in such a little person.

Next to Normal: Definitely the best show I have ever seen. The CD recording doesn't even begin to describe the emotions going on in this show. I was confused about Henry/Natalie's relationship until I saw the show, I was confused about the psychiatrists, I was confused about everything, and now it all makes sense. Everyone was absolutely adorable and fun and perfect for their roles. Alice Ripley blew me away. I wasn't a big fan of her voice on the CD, but it works sooo perfectly for her role. Natalie's piano playing makes so much more sense now that it's more than just one song, plus it helps build her relationship with Henry. I bawled the second Natalie canceled the dance to take her mom to the psychiatrist, because the whole show, she emphasized her dislike of her family, and yet she still loves her mother 100%. I also cried when Robert (Dan) couldn't take it anymore. Guys, I'm not even kidding, GO SEE THIS SHOW. It's absolutely perfect (perfect for you).

Broadway Sessions: Therapy is a 21 and over gay bar, but I emailed the owner, Tom, before our trip and he said we were allowed in. Yay! So, we got a reserved table with free (nonalcoholic) drinks really close to the stage. Everyone was so nice and Ben Cameron ("Ben D") hugged us like 20 billion times. He was just as excited as we were. haha. But literally, the show was hysterical. I couldn't stop laughing. Bets Malone was probably my favorite, but they were all great! If I'm ever in NYC, I definitely want to come back to this.

Rush/Lotto: We attempted to rush/lotto a Wednesday matinee show. We completely failed. But the experience was great. We stood in line for the Little Mermaid, talking to the people in front of us and behind us, just to find out they had no seats available that day. Too bad, but I loved talking to people in line. I think that's what it's all about. We then tried In the Heights, but they don't have a Wednesday matinee, so we went to the Information Center to see what did. We eventually decided upon trying Chicago, but when we went there, they were out of student rush tickets. We could do standing room for $30, but we were exhausted from Tuesday's walking, so there was no way we could stand for a whole show. We decided just to do lotto for 9 to 5. We got there at like 11:55, put our ticket in the bag, and waited until 12:30 for the names to be announced. We talked to the guy directing it, which was cool, because we found out he had never won a lotto before even though he's tried like 20 times. Plus, he is in no way associated with 9 to 5, but a completely different company. We also talked to a girl who lives in NYC and so she sees shows like every day. She won the lotto, we didn't. All in all, 38 people who weren't us won. :-\ Oh well.

Ellen's Stardust Diner: Waiters sing to you. Like, it's amazing. It's a very antique diner setting, with cute 50s outfits on everyone. They all sang great songs plus waited on people. haha. Our waiter, Nick, was amazing. They were all amazing. I didn't want to leave. The food was good, too, even though the portions were a little small. The milkshake was good, too, though it was WAY expensive. haha. If I could sing, I wouldn't care about getting on Broadway; I'd want to work here! haha.

Wicked: Wicked is my favorite show. It isn't the best show out there, but it's my favorite. And the Gershwin Theatre is a dream come true. Everything was absolutely, stunningly GORGEOUS. The stairway, the timeclock dragon, the set, the people...everything. I honestly could live in the Gershwin Theatre. haha. But seriously, I thought the show was amazing. I wasn't too sure about Alli's performance, especially her interpretation of younger Galinda, but she was still absolutely phenomenal. A lot of people don't like Dee, but other than her distracting hand gestures, I thought she was great. Everyone in this show was great. There are soo many quotable lines from this musical that aren't in the songs, so I'm really glad I got to refresh my memory on some of them, though I really should relook over the script I have to keep it all straight.

Broadway in the Park at Bryant Park: This was great. So, every Thursday, a couple Broadway shows get together and perform ~3 songs from their rep to advertise their shows. We got to see the Marvelous Wonderettes, The Fantasticks, Lion King, Next to Normal, and Burn the floor. I loved the Marvelous Wonderettess- a great juxebox musical from (I think) 50s music...or 60s...or possibly both...haha. They sang five short songs, all of which were soooo cute. I thought all of the girls on stage were adorable. The Lion King was next, and the two people on stage (Simba and Nala, though I couldn't tell you the people's names) were great. Absolutely great. I want to see the Lion King again. haha. The Fantastiks, though a great story line, doesn't interest me musically, but I still think all of the people on stage were talented. Next to Normal was obviously amazing. They used an understudy for Alice's role of Diana. Her voice was smooth, and while amazing, didn't work as well as Alice's. I don't know what this show would be like without Alice. Burn the Floor was great. They were sooo amazing at dancing...and it didn't even seem to affect them physically at all; as if all that movement were natural! I loved their hair, too, because most of them had it dyed. Pink/purple, blue undertones, or red. Loved it so much!

Developmental Reading at the York Theatre: Finding this was impossible. It was in a church! How was I supposed to know that?! haha. But we found it. The reading, Once Upon a Pasttime, wasn't too amazing, but it definitely had strong qualities that I could see turning into something really good. Definitely not Broadway worthy, but not un-offBroadway worthy. haha. But the idea of a reading is sooo coool. They have their scripts in their hands, but it's obviously been rehearsed. They had a narrator to describe the action/scenes that couldn't be displayed without props or whatnot. Definitely something that I'd be willing to go to again.

Jersey Boys: Worst theatre experience I've ever had, but absolutely phenomenal show. The people around us were loud, annoying, tall, and talkative. It made for a really bad experience, but otherwise, the show was amazing. The scenes were really cute and little, the drummer (either they have more than one or he changes shirts wayyy too often in the show) was AWESOME, the characters were perfect- I don't even know how people act that well! Or sing that well. The singing was honestly amazing. The plot moved quickly, but they were covering years of material, so that makes sense. I'm not sure what was fact or fiction, but I believed all of it. I can see why it won Best Musical in 2006.

Repeat Stars:
Ben Cameron- Bobby Cronin's CD recording and Broadway Sessions
Alex Brightman- Bobby Cronin's CD recording and Wicked (Boq)
Bets Malone- Broadway Sessions and Broadway in the Park (Marvelous Wonderettes)

I really need to get ready for work, so this is all I have for now. Keep a look out for more!


Moria said...

sounds like you had an amazing experience in NYC. I'm glad you had fun:)

Tim Parenti said...

Glad you made it to Ellen's, and got to enjoy a lot of the sights of downtown and southern Manhattan!