Monday, July 11, 2011

Every Moment: RED LETTER!

How many times do we let our expectations run too high?  We imagine something as too amazing to be real, then have to reconcile reality with imagination.

Our weekend in Seattle actually exceeded my expections, including the World Premiere of Disney's new musical, Aladdin.

As we sat in our seats, awaiting the overture, I don't know when I had anticipated a show more.  I had been humming the familiar tunes in my head all day.  I had tried to fathom how they would deal with various parts that were critical to the storyline.  Without the benefit of animation or blue screens, what would they do?  These were real people on a real stage, within certain, very real parameters.

It was magical.  It was breathtaking and mesmerizing.  It was as much fun on stage as any show I've ever seen.  In addition to all the tried and true favorites, the new songs were every bit as compelling.  I had been apprehensive; could these new songs be just as endearing as the old ones?  With the exception of one, they were all just as hummable, just as engaging, just as memorable as the originals.

The casting was superb.  It was delightful to read in the program some of the comments from the cast.  Courtney Reed, playing Jasmine, "is soooooo excited to be playing her favorite Disney princess!!!"  She thanked her parents "for letting her watch Aladdin non-stop as a child."  James Monroe Iglehart felt "so blessed to be living out a childhood dream in playing the role" of Genie.

I don't want to give any spoilers so I won't expound on how they dealt with the challenges, but really, it only took just a little suspending of one's belief to be transported off to that magical place, engaged by engaging characters, and spellbound by beautiful music. 

Before the show, the director of the 5th Avenue Theatre, promised us that one future day as we saw the incredible success of this show, we would be able to boast that we were there in its infancy, helping as the audience, to mold it, to shape it, to aid in its development, as we laughed, as we oohed and aahed, as we cheered.  Our reactions were being taken very seriously.

I bought an Aladdin sweatshirt during intermission.  I just couldn't resist the idea of being one of the very first to own one.

Our hotel was a short walk away from the theatre. 

Our pre-show dinner was just as memorable as the show itself, including the "best steak" Brian has ever had, and a banana bread pudding for dessert that even outshone the key lime pie.

Our self-guided tour of Seattle the following morning was beautiful.

Every moment will be a special memory. Every moment was, indeed, Red Letter!


Laura said...

What an awesome weekend you had! Love your pictures and now I can't wait to see Aladdin!

Kim said...

I love Seattle and I love Aladdin! What a fun weekend you must've had!