September 2010 Archives

Bloody Bloddy Andrew Jackson

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Won lotto tickets to BBAJ for the matinee today - it's a show that I'd wanted to see since seeing it on the door of the Jacobs theater and reading the excerpt from the NYTimes review of the Public Theater production that they had there.  This is irreverent political satire, but the interesting thing is that most important events in Andrew Jackson's life (our seventh president for all you non-US folks out there) are covered there, from the Battle of New Orleans, to the Creek war, and most importantly, the Indian Removal Act (and Indian removal in general), which is a major component of the show.

This was the first weekend that it's been showing in previews, and it's absolutely incredible. Opening night is October 13. The choice of emo as a musical style to represent this material is simply inspired, it fits the material so well, as it portrays the country's irrational, deeply personal, relationship with our president (one just has to think of say Monica Lewinski to see this). I downloaded the cast recording from iTunes (yes, Fedora friends - I have a Mac, and I actually buy music from iTunes) when I got home - it's really good stuff :)
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[updated with a few more links and content, I was in a rush before]

OK, I don't blog as much as I should I know, and that's simply for lack of time. But there's a few interesting things I've been doing this weekend that I thought folks should know about.

First, I've been reading through the report that Diana Harrelson (used to be Martin) created for us, and corresponding with her on it. I think that it's a fine product, and everyone interested should read it. It will take quite a while to digest, but it's a worthwhile read, and there are some very interesting takeaways from it.

Secondly, I've become addicted to Broadway lotteries, for better or worse. What's a lottery you ask? It works like this. You present yourself at the theater a set amount of time before the show (usually either 2 or 2.5 hours). You then enter your name in the drawing for 1 or 2 (very) reduced price tickets to the show. Popular shows like Wicked draw hundreds for their lottery, and the chances of winning are slim. Other shows are easier, but nearly always someone walks away a loser, and a lot of time, that person is me. My luck has turned this weekend though. I won tickets to three, yes three, shows. On Friday night, I saw Next to Normal, a truly remarkable emotional powerhouse of a show. It's going on a national tour, and I'd highly recommend anyone in a city that it's coming to to see it. I've seen it five times actually, three of them with tickets won from the lottery, and twice with "lottery loser" tickets that some shows sell - if you entered the lottery but did not win, they'll give you discounted "partial view" seating in order to fill the theater. These are generally pretty good seats too, you just miss a little of the action (or alot, depending on where they are)

Today, by some miracle, I won the Wicked lottery for the matinee (this was only my second time entering it!), and now I understand why every show of it sells out. It's an absolutely incredible show - imagine the Wizard of Oz told from the perspective of the Wicked Witch of the West and you have it. After I got out of that show, I decided to try my luck at the American Idiot lottery, which I also won!  This is another show that I've seen multiple times. Unfortunately, the first two were before I knew about the lottery system, so I paid a good deal for those (though still at a discount). But since then, I've haven't had much luck at that lottery, and today is the first time I've won it.

The good thing about these lottery seats (or it could be a bad thing, depending on the theater) is that they're almost always in the front row (my three times winning Next to Normal have been box seats, though - for that show it depends in what order your name is drawn). My seat for Wicked today could not have been better if I tried (BB 107 if anyone knows the theater or cares to look). In some theaters, the stage is raised enough that the front row seats really aren't that great, since you can't see the back of the stage. Not so with the Gershwin, an incredible view for an incredible show.

Now I'm off to see American Idiot!