The story for tonight

Tonight, I keep it extremely short:

Lin-Manuel Miranda, I thank you – you have given the world such wonder and love and beautiful creativity and expression, and we, the people, are grateful. 😉

And for all of it – you are a gift, and you have shared your treasure with the world at large… for that, and for following your passion and love, you have helped to make the world a better place on both a personal and a global level.

Thank you.

Post-a-day 2020

Take it off

I found out yesterday that The Full Monty is not just a film, but also a stage play and a stage musical.

(!!!)

Did you see that???

The Full Monty

!!!!!!

And I kind of really want to see a production of it now….

No, I have never really been interested in any Chippendales activities (though I did have a blast* with both Magic Mike films, it wasn’t really for the reasons one might expect).

But, I think the fact that this film (and show, I guess – it wouldn’t be that different, right?) is about a group of goofy married (I think most of them are married, anyway) men who decide they can outdo and outshine (or at least end up comparable enough to earn some cash) traditional fit and sexy Chippendales performers… somehow…., and they go through this whole development and growth and transformation of outlook and spirit of life…., and it is just a lovely and totally silly and fun story, following these guys and feeling their emotions with them, and, especially, joining in their delighted terror and triumph as they actually pull themselves together and perform their show… just wow…

So, yeah, I want to be cheering on those guys in life.

I think it would be a really funny and silly and fun and empowering and inspiring show to see… because live is a whole ‘nother experience from a Hollywood film. 😀

No editing available on a live stage, so you can feel the extra layer of struggle within the actors, in addition to the struggle within the characters the actors play.

So good…, if it is done well, that is… and I hope it is done well… 🙂

*The first was amazing, because I went on a new friend date with a guy from my dormitory where I had just moved in Germany… we had agreed we both wanted to go see a film in the theatre to practice our German, and Magic Mike was almost finished showing in theatres in Germany, so I kind of wanted to see what the fuss had been all about back in the US while I suddenly had the chance again… so, I asked him if that film was okay, because it was playing in 45 minutes at the theatre in town… there was a hit of back-and-forth about ‘Why this movie’, and I believe I convinced him with the fact that it was likely to have less difficult dialogue to follow, combined with the fact that it was just plain crazy for us to go see that film in particular… to practice our German…, as two disinterested-in-dating opposite-gendered people… So, that was great – I understood maybe 5-15% of the actual words said, though I still got the gist of the story.

The second time, I was at a girlfriend’s apartment while her best friend was in town to visit… they discovered that I hadn’t seen the second film, and declared that I must see it now…, so we put it on, and they whooped and hollered, and I giggled along with them…, but, what I noticed most, and what delighted me most, was the dancing… I could hardly wait to see the dancing, and just the opening dance scene in the workshop blew my mind happy – the creativity of the dance, as well as all the other dances in that film, due to their creativity and smooth execution, were just mind-blowingly fabulous…. such a great film… and I kind of understood the plot of it, too, like the first film.

Plus, I have always had a crush on Channing Tatum, so it was lovely to see him working through struggles as a smart, extremely capable man in both films…, and it was even cooler that he was a man who had true rhythm and could dance… and then even cooler cooler that it was all based out of his own story of being smart in life… just awesome, man. ❤

Post-a-day 2020

Two things about music

The first:

It is funny, the things that get us, that get to us… I have been mostly totally fine with all of the splatters of chaos going on in the world around me these past weeks (the past one especially), and my life has been rather normal-ish… I have been bummed for many a people who have had work closed (and, therefore, no pay) or canceled (performers who, of course, now will not be paid for unperformed shows), but that is it… I have been bummed about it.

Today, as I read the lovely e-mail from Houston Grand Opera, stating clearly and beautifully that they are cancelling their remaining shows, both paid and free to the public, of the season (four altogether, with many performances of each) and that they are still paying 50% to all workers and performers who were hired to work on the shows, and, if we would like, we could ‘click here’ to donate our ticket prices to help them do this (instead of being refunded or having it apply to next season or something), I found myself full on crying… tears overflowing, body shaking slightly, a feeling of failed, helpless distress filling me…

Perhaps it was the first thing that 100% affected me directly, and not merely indirectly…, and perhaps it was that they were doing it all so kindly, handling it so well for the performers and workers they knew would be out of income probably entirely until the public returns to a life that includes theatres and performances and people…, whatever the case, it helped me to experience all the feelings I had been avoiding inside myself about all of this… I am terrified for my friends, these people I love, who work in these industries that have closed, and I am distraught for my performer friends, the people who light up my life for me with their every moment of work – their entire job serves the higher good in my life, lifts my spirits, heals my soul… how can I tell them that everything will be okay, when it very possibly will be quite terrible for them for a while?

I cannot…, but I can love them and value them nonetheless for all that they do, for all that they are, both in the world as a whole and in my life specifically…

I don’t know how I would be in life without them and all that they do and are committed to doing…, perhaps that is why it is so hard for me to know and accept the current absolute halt of their work… they mean more to me and my life than they ever could know or understand.

And I believe they might be feeling entirely useless and stupid and helpless right now…, I want the to know that they are not – they are as amazing as ever, and will be even more so amazing when we move forward through all of this, and they stick to doing what they do so spectacularly, both for themselves and for the world around them.

::big siiiigggghhhhh…

Second thing:

I discovered today that one of my absolute favorite places to sing is in a parking garage… I have turned unconsciously to singing this past week, and unabashedly so.

Walking through the parking garage today, I couldn’t help but marvel at how spectacular my voice sounded, reverberating so majestically around the concrete and air that surrounded me… it was beautiful.

And I am not exactly a fancy or trained singer or anything – very much an average, so far as people who understand and play at least some music go.

It was just so amazing a space for singing, it made my own singing sound worthy of being on a soundtrack…

Crazy, right?

Anyway, I look forward to gathering with friends for music dates in the future, in which we feel not so unlike drug dealers, when we meet up in various parking garages at all hours, like it is totally normal. 😛

Post-a-day 2020

Lost in the story

Do you ever find yourself so engrossed in, so invested in, so infatuated and obsessed with the fairy tale story that you choose it over your real life, the book or the movie or show instead of living the lovely parts of your own real life?

I think I sometimes grow scared of my life becoming a letdown, such that I cling to something else – another story, that is, and usually a created one – for a while instead, and dream about and long for that life, or something like it, for myself…

I unrealistically throw as much possible time as I can into reading the book further, and reading further into the series, if it is one, changing and informing planing and intended activities just so I can spend more time in the world of the book…

Until, that is, I reach the point that I notice the new infatuation interfering too much with real life – when I typically would be delighted at the prospect of spending the day with my brother, and doing photos and sports, nonetheless, but find myself longing instead to stay home alone to continue this new story in which I have mentally thrown myself.

You see, I don’t want to be like Kathleen Kelly in the first half of “You’ve Got Mail”, where she feels like all of her best life moments have been ones read in books… I want mine to be real, more like Kathleen Kelly at the end of the film…

And so, that point is when I acknowledge fully that my interest is bordering on scary, and that I would do best to look at what is behind it all – Why do I long for this other story so?

Do I want their money or love or friends or lifestyle or passion or any number of other things?

Usually, that is it exactly, and, by my acknowledging that, I can find a way to move forward powerfully within my own life, altering something that helps me in the area I found most lacking and which had drawn me so strongly and painfully to the created story…

Say I love their looks and their love story.

Then, I resolve to have my own love story…, and, seeing as how I was rather bummed the other day at the consideration of my search being at its end, I acknowledge that I perhaps do not want the love of my life to be settled yet… and so would prefer not to have Matthew Crawley become the love of my life after all, but would rather wait for the actual real and perfect man for me (because who wants to live in the age of corsets anyhow?)…

Just as an example… 😛

Post-a-day 2019

For Tonight

I love theatre, especially the musical kind.

Tonight, after much work on the part of many people, we finally got to sit down and watch an official, real, full performance of the world premier of the musical “For Tonight“.

Throughout its preparation and rehearsal time, I had learned all about the story of the show, and didn’t think anything super special about it…

Upon my actually sitting in one of the final run-throughs to do notes, I heard, for the first time, the music, the songs…

And I spent a good portion of the show, to varying degrees, in tears – it was that wonderful and beautiful.

Tonight, after seeing the whole show, with everything mostly polished and actually in order, I fell even more in love with this show and its music.

Let’s be real here: I want a CD right now, so I can listen to those voices singing those songs over and over (and over) again, until the words ride within me on their own… at the moment, I can feel the music inside me, swirling around, whooshing to the various rhythms and beats…, I just don’t have all the words in there, nor any sort of organization going from one song to another…

After tonight, I have my mental fingers crossed like crazy to have an album recorded, which would be totally awesome, using this cast of voices – I love these voices, both individually and as a whole cast.

Yumm… that’s how wonderful the Romani and all the others sound – you just want to eat them up, but savor them, too, like your favorite food/dessert.

Post-a-day 2019

Friends in action

There is a bit of a tizzy going on amongst those sitting in the director’s circle, just after my friend begins her solo song. I hear something like an ‘I don’t Know,’ from the circle as Blue Sweater turns ’round, shaking his head intensely with an air of sighing disbelief.

“Are you talking about the rag that was left behind?” I ask, since she had just had to step over a dropped white rag from the previous scene.

“What?”

I repeat.

“No. HER,” he says, somewhat dramatically, tipping his head toward the girl on stage, toward my friend. “She’s …perfection. She’s… she’s just perfection,” he says, hands flying with something like exasperation.

‘Oh.’ I agree… a few moments of silent awe follow, as everyone watches her on stage.

Shaking his head, “I mean, she has to know how perfect she is… she Has to know – I Have to give her the note,” and he flips open and begins writing in a notebook.

Everyone watching the stage is smiling, and they are smiles from deep within.

🙂

Post-a-day 2019

Musicals

“Prince Siddhartha: The Musical”

Go see it – it’s wonderful.

It kind of felt like someone did what the makers of “Urinetown” did, how they took famous bits of other shows and included them in “Urinetown” (e.g. the “Evita” portrait in the mob, or the waving of the flag from “Les Misérables”), but just taking songs from famous musicals…. not that they stole anything – just that they were inspired strongly by those famous songs, especially in terms of the orchestra’s role and notes.

Nonetheless, it was a nice musical, and I kind of want the soundtrack now, so I can sing all the songs. 🙂

Post-a-day 2018

What(-anabe)?!

And, yet again, 渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe has shown up in my life.

I was visiting a friend in her classroom today at lunchtime, and some kids needed instruction and practice on how to do quick-changes for a theatre contest this weekend.  (We won’t discuss how they’re only just learning this skill, despite their not being new to theatre and despite their being enrolled in that particular contest [of many contests] over the weekend.)  I happen to have a rather strong background in the workings of theatre, and so I took over helping them, while my friend worked with other kids on tying knots (No idea, but maybe it connects with lighting in theatre?)

Anyway, as we were about to do a practice run-through of the quick-change I’d set up, using clothing items I’d found around the classroom, one of the kids with me asked, – and somewhat snarkily (though not rudely) I might add – ‘Are there even any shows that actually need this?’ I responded with an immediate affirmative, to which he queried, ‘Like what??’
Again, immediately, and out of seemingly nowhere in my brain stores, I said, “‘The King and I’… Yes.., Yes! ‘The King and I’!”
Somewhat chastened, though still quite happy, he said an, ‘O-kay…’
I had surprised even myself with my immediate response, and wasn’t entirely sure of how I’d found the video of that memory so quickly.  “There’s actually this really great video,” I said, “of a somewhat famous quick-change from it.  I’ll pull it up in just a minute, so you can watch it.  It’s actually really cool.”

And so, I pulled up the video and played it, admiring the quick-change and the whole concept of Broadway and fabulous singing voices and all that jazz, and explaining to the students what was happening and why.  Then, we resumed our practicing.  The video, however, continued on to another video, as YouTube’s auto-play feature does.  It was the same quick-change again, causing us to look briefly at it once more, but with the scenes before and after it included.  I happened to glance up after the quick change finished, and what did I see?

You guessed it: The leading lady dancing in the arms of 渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe.

And I was blown away doubly.  Because, despite the fact that I was remembering this quick-change video from “The King and I” at (I think) the Tony Awards, I had not made the connection from having read 渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe’s Internet info pages the other night that his being the lead in “The King and I” several years ago was the same production.  I’d even told my mom just this weekend about his having been in it, and we talked about it briefly.

But the two pieces of information were stored in such separate cabinets and files that they hadn’t linked up yet in my head.  Until, of course, I saw the video with him in it, and it all clicked.  And then I was actually jumping up and down, declaring that it was ‘渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe, it’s 渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe!’

Boy, I’d really like to interview him.

I wonder how he’ll pop up next into my life.  I can hardly wait to find out. 😀

Post-a-day 2018

Film ties

Sometimes, I see films that have a person as the main focus who struggles with certain situations, specifically socially.  (Current society likely would call them people with autism or asberger’s, or something of that sort.)  When I see these films, follow these people’s lives, I find it all too easy to fall into a similar pattern in my own life immediately after the film.  I think to myself, ‘But I am not like this.’  And yet the feeling is that the behavior is rather easy for me, as though I am at home in the behavior, in the odd habits.  I go back and forth between seeing how I am so comfortably ‘normal’ in the world and how I have intense emotions and ties within myself when I deal with certain OCD-related situations…, meaning I go back and forth between feeling like I am a ‘normal’, sane person and a crazy person.

And I always just end up being unconvinced of either one.

I’m a little bit of both, it seems.  And I think I’m okay with that.  I’m not sure that I like how it is – the OCD stuff can be utterly ridiculous even to me, and those situations are the worst, because they not only are intense feelings of needing to do something specific, but also the anger and frustration and embarrassment that I even have that feeling of need.  I think I might prefer having little “quirks”, instead… kind of like how most people likely think about my OCD stuff already, if they even notice any of it.  Yeah…, because currently, whenever I’m in a low rut, like tonight, after this film, if I think about the future, the feelings worsen.  I struggle to imagine ever finding a partner in life who possibly could accept, let alone embrace certain things that I do, certain things that currently feel as though I cannot not do.  But something in me has faith and trust, and drags me out of that rut… I will be okay.  I will be wonderful.  And I have no idea if this stuff will stay with me forever or not.  But, if they do, then I have many a plan for how to organize my life to minimize the struggle situations.

Post-a-day 2018