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Traveler

Really? The world is coming to this?

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On 6/30/2019 at 3:15 PM, Traveler said:

Once in a while Mrs. Traveler and myself like to explorer new horizons.    Out of the blue we decided to take in a Broadway (actually off Broadway) Play for a date night.   We choose a popular musical called “Rent”.  Some of you may be saying to yourself that we should of done some research – if you are thinking this way – I think you are right.  But we are talking about the Echols theater in SLC in the middle of our church culture.  Why not adventure into the Arts?

The Traveler

If you got confused over "Rent" for heaven sake stay away from a Broadway show called "Kinky Boots"... The wife drug me out to that one when they performed it here.

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On 7/5/2019 at 10:23 PM, person0 said:

I'd be willing to bet a large sum that if they were to make a full length Rocky musical, I probably would rather watch the movie; the whole thing couldn't possibly be as amazing as that cliff notes musical!

You're not the only one. It didn't last long.

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On 7/4/2019 at 3:08 PM, Vort said:

 As it happens, I just saw Wicked on Tuesday evening with my wife. I didn't hate it; on the contrary, it was quite entertaining. But I didn't exactly like it, either.

A lot of it had to do with the open or thinly veiled political correctness garbage that always takes place in such venues. But even more than that, taking an established story with innocent characters and turning it on its head, making the characters evil, tends to irritate me. I think of Jim Carey's Grinch, one of the most horrific remakes in cinematic history. Wicked was like that, though admittedly much more entertaining.

 And when Elphaba confessed her love for Galinda's boyfriend by saying that it made her feel "wicked", well, that pretty much sealed my distaste for much of the production. Talk about profaning sacred things...

This is based on memories of an event a decade in the past.

What I like about Wicked (story-wise) is the politics at play. The Wizard plays the people with sophistry (in the old film he admits to being a phony who can bestow honors but no real substance). The wicked witch is the enemy of the establishment (it's mutual). When she accepts that she's the "bad guy" in the official narrative, her actions only go toward feeding that narrative even more. The good witch is a social climber who has reservations about the power structure she's ascending. She seems to think the best way to change the system is from within that system. We the audience see how the propaganda get formed and spread, but the average Ozian does not. Scarecrow is the unheeded prophet challenging people to wrestle with the narratives they're taught.

I left the theater with the discussion questions (that nobody wanted to discuss) of: How is the average Ozian supposed to sort out the facts from the propaganda? Glinda seems to think she can change the system from the inside, but doesn't rising through the ranks just trap her in the system she wants changed? She got to where she is by playing a character, won't going against that character cost her her position and leave her outside? Elphaba (for most of the play) thinks the system has to be broken, but the efforts she takes seem to have no effect (I don't remember any change coming from her actions, but again I'm relying on dated memory) - and instead unites Ozians against her and her ideas by creating a common enemy. What should she have done instead? In the end she decides it's better to fake her death and stop fighting the fight, is this really going to give her the happy ending she's hoping for?

Lyrically, I like the little plays nodding to the old film (my memory is failing me on some examples) and the "For good' wordplay (don't know if I'm changed for better, but I'm changed for good). I will admit that the Oz/was rhyme got tiresome quick.

And musically (and thematically), Defying Gravity generates such excitement in me that, although I could easily see how the flying effect was achieved, I did not care in the least.

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On 7/4/2019 at 6:34 PM, The Folk Prophet said:

;)

Come on. Lot's of straight guys like Les Miz and Hamilton.

The last tour of Les Miz I saw they decided to make it "grittier" which was great with the galley scene, but not-so-good (for me) in the Thenardier house. I probably won't watch it again unless I know it won't be as sexually explicit.

Hamilton was a mixed bag for me. Theatrically, there's just too much exposition. The final duel is a great effect deserving of high praise, achieved in large part because of the donut-rotation, but I feel like they needlessly forced the use of the stage spinner in other scenes simply because they had it. And I could have done without the profanity. I went in knowing about it, but learned that hearing it live affects me differently than hearing it canned.

I'm looking forward to Hadestown and secretly hoping for another Sunset Boulevard revival (do those still count as manly?)

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Just now, mordorbund said:

...  I probably won't watch it again unless I know it won't be as sexually explicit.

... And I could have done without the profanity. I went in knowing about it, but learned that hearing it live affects me differently than hearing it canned.

On this subject, does anyone know of something similar to IMDB's Parent's Guide for theater? Broadway.com rates PG-13 differently than MPAA.

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9 hours ago, mordorbund said:

The last tour of Les Miz I saw they decided to make it "grittier" which was great with the galley scene, but not-so-good (for me) in the Thenardier house. I probably won't watch it again unless I know it won't be as sexually explicit.

Yeah. I hate that.*

9 hours ago, mordorbund said:

Hamilton was a mixed bag for me.

For the most part, I despise Hamilton.

9 hours ago, mordorbund said:

Hadestown and secretly hoping for another Sunset Boulevard revival (do those still count as manly?)

I am unfamiliar with Hadestown. But Sunset Boulevard is kind of secretly my favorite musical at times. I feel like a movie version of it (which I've heard rumors of) would work very well...perhaps better than the stage.

*My "real" favorite musical (except for the following statement) is Miss Saigon -- except I don't like the sexually explicit stuff -- and the later versions of it decided it would be cooler to throw in a bunch of F-bombs which quite surprised and annoyed me. There's been rumors of a movie version of that too, but I'm torn on whether that might be cool or guaranteed to be even worse on the sex and cussing than ever before. Depends on the marketing folks' idea of what'll work better rating wise. Which is likely to depend on current trends and sales. It wouldn't surprise me to end up with a hard R Miss Saigon, which I'll never see then, or a PG-13 one that cleans things up a bit to get the rating down (which I probably still shouldn't see).

Edited by The Folk Prophet

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9 hours ago, mordorbund said:

I will admit that the Oz/was rhyme got tiresome quick.

I was going to make a comment about the difficulty of good rhymes for Oz and make a joke about schnoz being the only one, but then without hardly trying I came up with cause, pause, and flaws.

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On 7/2/2019 at 2:24 PM, anatess2 said:

I love the recent one with Hugh Jackman although I think Hugh Jackman's singing voice just isn't well suited for Valjean and they should've cast Gerard Butler over Russel Crow for Javert.  Other than those, it was very very well done.

 

I've seen many versions, but I cried numerous times during this particular one.  I thought it was very well done.

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On 7/8/2019 at 7:38 AM, The Folk Prophet said:

I was going to make a comment about the difficulty of good rhymes for Oz and make a joke about schnoz being the only one, but then without hardly trying I came up with cause, pause, and flaws.

I remember the Boz, not because of his flaws,
But the gauze in his schnozz reminds me of Jaws.
There are laws about paws and beasts' filthy maws,
The thought of which gnaws at me, giving me pause
While it pitches and yaws amidst hammers and saws
While your dead, frozen heart only glacially thaws.

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I now challenge Vort to do another. 

Arkansas, debevoise, interpause, kadrmas, madrasahs, menopause, omaha's, panama's, reyataz, santa claus, seriemas, tropopause, vichyssoise, magnetopause, arbitration clause, and bras.

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5 hours ago, mordorbund said:

Racist.

So I was just thinking earlier today about how it doesn't bother me a bit when they cast a black man as Javert  or Lea Salonga as Eponine or Fantine. I wouldn't mind at all if Hamilton was actually color blind.

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17 hours ago, The Folk Prophet said:

So I was just thinking earlier today about how it doesn't bother me a bit when they cast a black man as Javert  or Lea Salonga as Eponine or Fantine. I wouldn't mind at all if Hamilton was actually color blind.

This might be because the play is more about the musical and characterization than the characters themselves.  What I mean by this - Javert's characterization is that of a person who was born in jail (low class) and rose up, through his hardline principles, to become a chief inspector in the 19th century.  This characterization does not veer from historical moorings when played by a black person.  It would be more of a problem if Marius was played by a black person.  So, in my opinion, it is more important to get the singing voice down pat than getting the skin color accurate to Hugo's book and, for me,  Norm Lewis' voice sounds a whole lot more authoritative than Philip Quast's which makes him a better Javert.  Fantine and Eponine is the same - both being characterized as from the lower class.

Now, here's the interesting one - Jonathan Pryce playing the Engineer in Miss Saigon.  But, of course, he was made to look Vietnamese using make-up tricks because he's Vietnamese in the play and not a white dude.  So, I guess that's different.

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10 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

This still wouldn't bother me a bit. Not if it was truly color blind.

Historical settings can’t be “truly color blind” and still be historical.  Especially when you’re depicting a specific cultural reality as the story.

Edited by anatess2

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1 minute ago, anatess2 said:

Historical settings can’t be “truly color blind” and still be historical.  Especially when you’re depicting a specific cultural reality as the story.

Which is entirely irrelevant to whether it would bother me or not.

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On 7/5/2019 at 10:13 AM, dprh said:

I really like the play Wicked.  I couldn't stand the book though.  It was....gross.  

NPH has never tried to convince me of anything.  I feel left out. 😂

I read the book as well, and it was pretty awful. Really kind of amazing that they were able to make a hit Broadway show based on that depressing, dreary book.

Meanwhile, my wife adores Wicked, and my daughter has seen it on Broadway. I'm kind of lukewarm on it, but I do think a few songs are good: Defying Gravity, Popular, and For Good are standouts for me.

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On 6/30/2019 at 8:56 PM, Ironhold said:

According to the Wikipedia article, the play was first staged in 1993 and is allegedly an updated version of the 1890s "La Boheme", which was similarly about a group of ne'er-do-wells. 

Gee, that needed to happen about as much as there needs to be a modern polka remake of Freebird. 

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7 minutes ago, NightSG said:

Gee, that needed to happen about as much as there needs to be a modern polka remake of Freebird. 

Actually, I'm a big fan of Lawrence Welk reruns and I play them in the background all the time when I work.  I think one of their shows ("Salute to Lynyrd Skynyrd") featured Myron Floren on the accordion playing this.  

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