Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The first full day.

Yes, we got in at 8:30 a.m. yesterday, but the first half of that was spent going through customs and getting to our hotel-like little conference center (hereafter "here" or "home").  A little nap, a big dinner, and two blistered heels later, we had familiarized ourselves with the city some and picked up many, many brochures for concerts and shows. I slept well.

The morning and afternoon were spent in class today, with every spare moment being used to see what tickets were available for what, when, and how much.  Most of us got tickets for a play tonight at a small theater about fifteen minutes from here. It didn't have a ton of substance and was surprisingly feministic, but the lead actress was good and there were a few funny moments. More importantly, I learned that you're allowed to bring food and drink into theaters here, which is odd.

We learned at one of our meetings before we left that one of the people who went on this trip two years ago saw a whopping 37 shows. This is ridiculous. I don't know how anyone would have the energy, much less the time, to go to that many. So far, here's my interest list, with the asterisks representing the shows to which I already have tickets:

  • *Filumena, tonight's play
  • Ragtime
  • Jersey Boys
  • The Wizard of Oz (with new songs added by everyone's (least) favorite, Andrew Lloyd Webber) 
  • *Singing in the Rain
  • *Sweeney Todd (with Imelda Staunton, a.k.a. Dolores Umbridge, and Michael Ball, the original Marius in Les Mis, among many other things)
  • The Great Gatsby, which is now a play
  • Noises Off
  • The 39 Steps
  • *War Horse
  • *Les Mis, to which I've gotten tickets because if anything is going to change my mind about that musical, it'll be the London production.
  • Peter Pan
  • *Matilda, which apparently is amazing.
  • any number of Shakespeare plays in foreign languages at the Globe (see note)
  • Company
  • The Lion King
  • Shrek, if I'm desperate (Update 5/10: apparently not that desperate. I saw it today, and I still wonder why Sutton Foster ever chose to be in that musical.)
  • Wicked, if I'm more desperate
  • *Billy Elliot
  • Einstein on the Beach, a Philip Glass opera in case I'm feeling adventurous 

Note: the plays at the Globe are lovely, especially because you can get standing tickets in the yard for five pounds. The bad news: ushers are apparently quite strict about the fact that you will be standing for the duration of the play, no leaning allowed. This might be the sort of thing you do once for the experience, and then never again. Or leave at intermission. That sounds nice too.

But for now, we're in ticket-hunting mode, sleeping and eating when we can. Wish us well.


  1. Billy Elliot is FANTASTIC.

  2. See Company, support Sondheim.