Monday, January 1, 2018

Welcome to the Renaissance

A couple of years ago when I was watching the Tony Awards on TV, I saw the cast of "Something Rotten" perform one of their songs from the show, and I said to myself, "I have GOT to see this show when it comes to town!"  The show dates were announced for the Ahmanson Theatre, and I asked Liz if she'd like to join me.  She didn't know about the show, but looked at the subject matter and decided to accept.

We met for dinner at the Music Center and dined at Patina's venue there, Pinot Bar.  The food was pretty good, and the company, as usual, was great. 

Braised short rib with mashed potatoes
I wasn't paying attention to the dates on the sign (above), and wasn't sure if we were there for previews or opening night.  Turns out it was the latter.  I was trying to take a picture of this costume... 

...and suddenly, a woman went behind it to pose with her head on top of it.  I asked Liz, "Is that Joanne Worley?"  Liz said yes.  I don't know why I didn't keep snapping pictures so that I could get her in one.  She still looks great!  Liz took one look at the merchandise and decided that she would like the show. I bought a "Bottoms Up!" shot glass.

Our seats were house left on the mezzanine level.  Liz took this picture of me.

Onward with my thoughts on the show:

  • The show opens with a narrator, and we are introduced to the London Theater scene in Shakespeare's time, where he's the It Boy and our jealous protagonist explains his feelings about Will in "God, I Hate Shakespeare". (This was on one of the shirts in the souvenir kiosk and is what made Liz decide she'd enjoy the show).
  • Rob McClure, who plays said protagonist Nick Bottom, is very funny and has a nice, strong voice.  
  • As soon as Shakespeare entered the stage, the crowd got all excited.  He was awesome.  I wasn't able to read the program and didn't realize that the excitement was due to the fact that he was being played by none other than "RENT"'s Adam Pascal.  Wow.
  • I liked the sweet relationship that developed between Nigel and Portia, despite her father's opposition to it.
  • "A Musical" was everything I remembered from seeing it on TV, and then some.  I mean, cramming all of the musicals we've come to know in one song is a feat in itself, but adding the humor was genius.  Oh, and the choreography!  Yes, this was the big production number of the night, and it did not disappoint in the least.
  • "Sometimes they stay on one note for several words so when the note changes, you notice."  "That sounds miserable." "I believe it's pronounced Miserables."
  • I loved soothsayer Nostradamus' lines the most, because of his reference to the musicals he saw in the future.  At one point, he stands up during the rehearsal for "Omelette", and says, "CATS!  Cats prowling around the audience, singing."  <pause>  "No, that can't be, that's right!"
  • There were some lines that make it worth seeing live theater because you just never know what they're going to add. One actor asks the soothsayer about the Nazis (from The Sound of Music): "These Nazis.  Are they good people or bad people."   Answer: " seems like that would be an important thing to know."  
  • Hilarious use of the big egg in place of Yorick's skull.
  • Oh, all the singing and dancing about eggs.  Hilarious.
During intermission, I asked Liz what she thought so far.  She said, "It's ridiculous, and I love it."  That pretty much sums it up for me, too.  "Something Rotten", for me, was something awesome.

A few days later, one of the cast members (understudy for Shakespeare) posted a video after the curtain call of Adam Pascal singing something from RENT, to request donations for Broadway Cares.  I wish he could have done this the night we were there, because ROGER!  RENT!  Sigh.

No comments:

Post a Comment