The weather has decided to conspire against me, I've decided. While I was decently bundled up last night and today I've gone into full "fuck you winter" dress which means uh, if I were to suddenly decide to glom unto a friend's extra rush ticket to a show tonight that yep, I'm so under dressed for Broadway, it's kind of awful.
BUT. I do not want to freeze tonight. Such is life.
Things I find funny and you won't but you have to read this post to find the secret hidden pony anyway so read it:
- it is becoming a thing where the lovely group I went to see How To Succeed with always seem to end up at BBQ style place.
- boozy mint hot chocolate IS the right answer.
- having to walk past the Stage Door of DOOOOOOM almost led to me losing everyone because I tend to barrel ahead when walking in the cold and I had to GO BACK into that nightmare of tittering crazy. The things I do to enjoy the company of people I like.
- I had tater tots for dinner. I'm going to be 29 next month. What am I doing with my life?
Wait I'm doing the best thing: living the life I always wanted. At 22, during my interview for the ex-job, I was asked where I saw myself in 5 years. New York. That was my answer. The city was always the answer. 5 years later, and there I was. More than five years later, and there I want to be. I never went to concerts when I was 22. I never went to plays/musicals because money and the rare times I did as I got older, it was for Big Special Occasions and I freaked out over the money I'd spend.
I still do that: even when I'm planning out vacations that involve shelling out tons of cash, I feel bad about doing that. Saving my money, paying off all my debts, that's how it's supposed to be, maybe a nice small trinket here and there. Never doing something so lavish as going to concerts. Never going to Broadway shows. Sit at home, be content with life.
I wanted to live in New York City. I acknowledged Manhattan was out of price range before I even had a job and knew what my actual price range was going to be. God, I'm a bit of a control freak and so very boring.
I have no great ambitions. I like rooting for other people, I want the best for my friends. I'd rather my own personal happiness than fame; while I make jokes about being famous on the internet (and I'm not, at all), I have no actual desire for it.
(this is not really a segue, it's just a breather, let's all have a nice hot drink if we're in a cold place, or vice-versa.)
Yesterday was something special. Y'see, there was the anticipation. There was the worry. I had the Opening Night sequence from Curb Your Enthusiasm's Producers/Broadway episode stuck in my head all day, yes, even the mental image of Stephen Colbert cursing Larry David's Broadway debut. I didn't want to set any expectations. I'd see Daniel Radcliffe's performances for the Tony Awards and during the Macy's Parade, I'd loved the dancing, his voice wasn't my favorite, and I knew he was fairly popular.
So, an actor jumping in for a three week stint with two weeks of "proper" rehearsal time, man, that's a hell of a thing.
No review, just scattered pieces of things and how I experienced them:
- Spot the fangirl was not a game, it was a way of being. We went over to the theatre around 6:20pm (showtime was 7pm) and the line was already around the block. I spotted pink sunglasses on someone's head without even having to look for them. First reaction: fear.
- I swapped my flats for my ridic heels when we made the corner on line and then became Super Tall. I could see everything. Therefore I was no longer worried. Plus Stef was by my side in judgment.
- Our seats were quite lovely and as the orchestra started, I hoped everyone would behave themselves. Darren's appearance lead to huge applause and well, it was a Moment.
- I...didn't realize how much I loved Anderson Cooper's voice. How did I not know that? Pretty funny to have him be the narrator of the How to Succeed book considering he's a fucking Vanderbilt.
- ...and I just realized if I posted this on Tumblr, someone would ask me what a Vanderbilt is. Does it mean silver fox? Because he's totally that!. (Google is really hard.)
- The audience behaved itself! MOSTLY.
- A girl shouted "I LOVE YOU DARREN!" I heard it and winced. During intermission, I met up with shighola and she revealed the girl was in the mezzanine. She got kicked out. Sweet justice.
- I don't know how to feel that people secretly recorded the show. Sort of eh about it. Mostly because I understand the impulse and man, I kicked myself in the face when I saw a bootleg performance of the Sweeney Todd Revival and realized what I'd missed out on (it was the opening number), but like, yeah. I guess my damage is: I'm not going to feel sorry if those people get kicked out of the show for doing that and I would be annoyed on behalf of the actors if it causes disruptions while they're performing. Eternal head tilt, idk.
- I pointed out to Stef that between Darren Criss and Beau Bridges, we had an official Eyebrow Off. Beau Bridges won as I think they tried to de-triangle Darren's eyebrows.
- Actual criticism time! Darren's voice was shaky in the beginning, he's not a belter and I think he tends to hold back instead of going for it when he's unsure of the landing, which musical theater isn't about these days. I guess I was sort of okay about that because I'm forced to listen to wannabe musical theater actors "practice" in my office building stairways and OH GOD, just because you can make a loud sound, doesn't mean that you should be making that noise come out of your mouth. He improved as the show went on but lost it a little during the final number. But his voice is very pleasant to listen to and I think this is something he'll seriously work on - this was a person who over a year ago, had some serious breath control issues and now he can do some crazy dance routines while singing. He just needs to keep developing his voice, he's admitted it's not a Broadway voice but he can do more with it.
- I figured he'd do fine acting, he's a stage actor, that's what he does. Reading up, he apparently jumped a line according to someone who has seen the show several times beforehand, and there was one stammer in the first act and the his big final speech had a couple of stumbles that fit the character he was playing so no awkward fuck ups, but yeah, I think at one point, he actually corrected Beau Bridges on a line, so that was funny considering he's notoriously for fucking up during his own personal concerts. (Usually his own songs.)
- JFC the dancing. Okay, I knew he could dance. I knew he had rhythm in April even if he was doing funny concert dancing. He's done well on Glee with the choreography and while there's the lol shorter of the guys thing he's dealing with, he's always one of the more solid dancers so he tends to get featured spots during big song and dance numbers. He's danced with Harry Shum Jr. and held his own. But. He has crap extension when it comes to his legs. Just. He's such a BOY about it. And the little I knew about H2$ was about the crazy dance numbers. They'd probably ease up on the choreography for him. I mean, he wasn't doing the crazy stuff that most of the ensemble dancers did but god fucking damn. He impressed me.
- The women in this show are the heroes. Big, solid voices, just wonderful at everything, hilarious, and doing a lot with a story that has little in actual story for all the female characters. I loved the actresses so much.
- Christopher J. Hanke stole all the scenes. He was marvelous.
- Fun with meta (besides the obvious): at one point Finch (Darren) jumps and walks along the back of a couch. A neat moment for Glee fans since Blaine/Walking on Furniture OTP.
- I'm curious what other actors did with the Finch role vs. Darren's take on it. It really was a very good role to take on with such an aggressively short schedule as it works off of a lot of what he's done on Glee (the false preppy confidence mixed with a sort of do-gooder personality that makes the audence want to root for him). I bow to him and whoever is helping him make career decisions, this was a solid choice.
- Man, okay, so when everyone's about to take their (rightful) bows for the performance, all of these media crews burst into the theater and start filming it. Serious, big deal media. Media Love Darren is the banner that they would hang over their slumber party to discuss how glorious Darren looked covered in sweat post-dance routines.
- Sweet, sweet meta (I guess?): You see the IRL actor succeeding at tons of stuff and damn he is trying his fucking guts out. (What? It's totally possible.) Plus the dirty little secret is that he actually is a decent sort of guy. Weird.
- Standing waiting to catch up with shighola during intermission and oh hey, there's Chuck Criss walking past me, no big. I found out later the whole Family Criss (and friends) were there for support, and they continue to be IRL adorable human beings. One of the fine ladies I was spending my awesome night with actually got pulled into a conversation with Darren's mom since Mrs. Criss has decided they are friends or something. Hee. Family of sunshine and :D faces.
- That was a damn fine night.