It's a hard knock life.

June 15, 2009 at 7:14 am Leave a comment

We recently changed over from cable to satellite.  The change brought with it several new channels, including a channel I had never heard of called Ovation.  While feeding Ashley late Thursday night, I was skimming the channel guide when my eye caught the title A Chorus Line on Ovation.  To my delight, I discovered this channel plays a variety of musicals, both old and new.

I love musicals.  Mom took me to see my first musical when I was about ten: a production of Annie at Crown Uptown.  I remember smiling through the whole performance and floating to the car afterwards.  I still have the playbill from that event.

Since then, I’ve experienced many musicals live.  Hello, Dolly at Music Theatre of Wichita.  A Chorus Line at the Lied Center in Lawrence. The most moving production I’ve seen is Les Miserables, when the the touring production hit Wichita in 1995.  The man playing Jean Val Jean had an incredible voice, the kind that created goose bumps and still resonates in my head to this day.  The most disappointing was a production of Rent in Kansas City around 2001 or 2002.  The pacing was frenetic, the cast forgettable.  I had so looked forward to that event, and left feeling unsatisfied.

The oddest production I’ve taken in was a rendition of Hair at the University of Kansas in 1998.  It was odd because the cast included fellow members of the choir I was in, many of whom participated in the infamous “nude scene” included in the musical.  I was in the front row; they were completely naked, both men and women.  The following Monday morning in choir rehearsal, I discovered it’s hard to look someone in the eye when you’ve had an involuntary up-close-and-personal look at their junk.

(On a side note: how do you invite your family and friends to a production like that?  “By the way, Grandma, you’ll be getting a glimpse of me.  All of me.  Be sure to get a good seat!”)

I even auditioned for Music Theatre of Wichita once, when I was about 14.  I knew nothing about auditioning for a show of that caliber, but there was an open call and I decided to go.  Once there, I discovered I was completely, totally, and utterly unprepared.  The other auditioners had prepared songs from well-known shows; I was singing an Amy Grant number.  They all had years of dance training and stage experience; I do a nice step-touch.  They tolerated me for a few bars of my song and sent me on my way.  At least I can say I gave it a go.

Sadly, I haven’t been a production in years, due to various reasons.  Brad and I diverge in our opinions of musical theater: I love it, and he would rather have a root canal without novacaine.  I can’t wait until my girls are old enough to take to shows.  Alissa already displays an interest in anything involving singing and dancing.  The instant any music comes on, she has to stop and dance.  I should get her in dance classes soon, before the white girl shuffle she has already mastered becomes her only dance move.

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Entry filed under: Life in general.

Words I never imagined saying. The Ragland Chronicles

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