Sunday, April 5, 2009

Wicked in Salt Lake City

As most of you know, Wicked is coming to Salt Lake City starting this week. As I have been asked numerous times if I am going to see it while it is here (even by my Grandma), I will give you the answer: No. Why do you ask would someone who has seen the show 15 times and traveled to numerous cities to see it not see it when it is in her own hometown? There are many reasons but here are a few.

Ticket Availability: I was in Nashville, TN when the tickets went on sale here in Utah for Wicked. I heard that tickets sold out in a matter of hours (maybe less).

Ticket Price: The cheapest tickets I could find were $150 each! Wow, that is expensive! I have sat in the nosebleed section at the Capitol Theatre for various performances and those seats are NOT worth $150! I don't care what show you are seeing. I was able to do my trip to San Francisco last week for less than $90. That includes all transportation, hotel, and food.

Fellow Theatre Attendees: I know living here in Utah that there will be AT LEAST one 14 year old girl sitting within hearing range of me who thinks she is Glinda, Elphaba, or both and sing along the entire show. Then I would have to make a big scene about telling her to shut up because I DID NOT pay $150 to hear her sing the entire show. I paid that ridiculous amount to hear a PROFESSIONAL sing, thank you very much!

Stage Size: The Capitol Theatre is a very beautiful (old) theatre made for and probably by pioneers. Since it was made for pioneers, that means it is SMALL! (Has anyone sat in the wooden pews at the Tabernacle before the recent renovation? You will understand what I mean.) It would be interesting to see how they adapt the set for such a small stage but not $150 interesting.

There you go! For those of you who have tickets to Wicked here in Salt Lake City, that is awesome! I hope you LOVE it as much as I do. I would love to hear your comments (only if they are positive) after you see it.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

California Girls Part I

Mom and I wanted to get out of the snow in Utah so we flew to San Francisco, California last Wednesday morning for a quick overnighter. We rode BART from the San Francisco Airport to downtown San Francisco.

Mom and I walked to Chinatown.

I saw this bench and couldn't resist taking my picture with these fun-lovin' monkeys. I guess I made the fourth monkey on the bench!

There were two men watching Mom and me take this picture. One was the owner of the bronze monkeys and the other was just a guy talking to him. The other guy (not the owner) who I never met before asked if he could have my picture with him. I was like okay, whatever. I didn’t even know who this guy was. I took the picture with my camera and then the man left. I thought if he wanted his picture with me how was he going to get the picture in my camera? Weird, but so San Francisco! My story is that he is the king of Thailand. Does Thailand even have a king??

Mom and I walked all around Chinatown. I bought some souvenirs. After a while, I was done with Chinatown. Mom and I got on the city bus and got dropped off about a block and a half from our hotel. We left our stuff in the hotel and hit the road again. We walked to Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39.

Mom and I ate clam chowder in a bread bowl from Boudin’s Bakery. It tasted delicious! Yum!

We walked around Pier 39. We watched the lazy sea lions basking in the sun. They made a lot of noise when they wanted to. They mostly rolled around on the wood palates. Ah, the life of a sea lion. I’m thinking I might want to be one of them in my next life! There were also seagulls that stood among the sea lions.

We took pictures of Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge. We watched as two huge cargo ships came in to the bay. It was a gorgeous day in San Francisco. It was sunny, blue sky, and quite warm.

We walked to Ghirardelli Square. On our way, we saw a naked man and woman walking down the street. At one point, I saw the man wearing a hat with birthday candles on it so I assumed it was his birthday. Maybe that explains why he was wearing just his birthday suit out in public that day. Only in San Francisco! Mom and I ordered some dessert (or dinner as we like to call it) at Ghirardelli’s. Mom had the midnight reverie sundae while I had a caramel shake. It could have had more caramel! Oh well.

Mom and I walked back to the hotel and got ready to go to Wicked that evening.

We rode a cable car and then walked the rest of the way to the Orpheum Theatre.

We encountered many strange people along the way. One woman was taking her frustrations out on a garbage can while another man was asking a wall to marry him. I firmly believe that San Francisco has the most crazy people, in terms of people and crazy!

Mom and I had to wait a little while for the theatre doors to open so we made friends with the security guard at the stage door. It always pays off to make friends with security at the stage door. They can give you very good perks. We had great seats for Wicked! I loved Wicked! This was the fifteenth time I had seen the show in case you were keeping track. The acting was amazing! Mom and I were a little disappointed that Carol Kane (who played Madame Morrible) left the show the previous week. She was our favorite Madame Morrible. Patty Duke played the role of Madame Morrible instead. She did a good job considering that she was old and it was just her second week in the show. Kendra Kassebaum did an AMAZING job as Glinda! I loved her! She was our favorite Glinda. I was able to get my picture with Kendra after the show.

DeeDee Hall did a great job as NessaRose as well. Here is a picture of me and DeeDee after the show.

I was disappointed in the staging and lighting of the show. During Defying Gravity which was supposed to be the most amazing part of the show where Elphaba flies, the lighting was so bad that we couldn’t even see Elphaba! There was too much smoke and the lights just washed her right out. It was very disappointing. We could hear her but couldn’t see her.

These theatre goers also had a lot to learn in the area of theatre etiquette. While we were waiting for the house doors to open, people kept butting in front of other people. What was that all about?! The seats were already assigned! It wasn’t like your seat was going to be given away to someone else who got in the house earlier! Duh! Then some people didn’t even dress up! Hel-lo! You are going to the theatre not a sporting event! Dress accordingly!

We had the worst theatre goer sitting right in front of us. He was seated in the middle of the row (of course). At the beginning of Defying Gravity, he decides he has to leave the theatre. Are you kidding me?! Seriously, you couldn’t wait for eight minutes until intermission?? To say I told him to sit down would be an understatement.

After the show, Mom and I went to the stage door. We got autographs on our playbills from the people who portrayed Glinda, NessaRose, Madame Morrible, Boq, Fiyero, the Wizard, and Elphaba. It was fun to talk with the actors after the show.

Mom and I got a taxi that took us back to our hotel. Our taxi driver was very nice and friendly. We got his life story on the way back.

Mom wasn’t feeling very well the next day. (I blame it on all the food she ate. She is now blaming it on a cold.) We checked out of the hotel. Mom and I walked to the streetcar that took us to the Embarcadero Station of BART.

We rode BART to the San Francisco Airport. Our plane was number 10 for take off. It was fun to watch the clouds roll in off the bay and over the hills as we waited for our turn to take off. The clouds knew we were leaving so they could come back. The city just wasn't big enough for the clouds AND the Winn girls. Hope you enjoyed the travelogue and pictures. Stay tuned for Part II.