Thursday, April 13, 2006

Rent - Now And Forever

Oh wait that was Cats, not Rent.

Well, we went to see Rent the other evening. It wasn't part of the Broadway Series but The Boyfriend really wanted me to see it.

Rent has never impressed me....I don't know why? Perhaps by the time it came out (1995) I was past my "broadway crush" phase. My Broadway Crush was Phantom of the Opera (I loved that show). I never ever felt the same way about Rent or Miss Saigon, don't ask me, I guess the material just didn't hit me.

I think also that the time it came out I was long way from Broadway and knew I wouldn't be back for quite sometime so it just didn't interest me. Well for whatever reason, I never saw it and I never really listened to the soundtrack, the only song I knew was "Seasons of Love" which I'm sorry to say is one of the most annoying songs ever...I know yell at me, scream at me...I just don't get it.

Regardless, we did see the movie this past December, I enjoyed it, but again I didn't love it. I guess I never "connected" with the characters. Now don't get me wrong I enjoyed the show, I always find it interesting to see how things are "staged" plus you do get a lot more out of the show when you see the acting/staging/coreography all works together.

The Boyfriend and I met up with his Best Friend and his Boyfriend for an early dinner before the show (I felt so cosmopolitan telling the waitress "oh we're going to the show" this evening, yeah the restaurant is literally attached to the theater so I'm sure it's the first time she heard that one, LOL!) But we had a really nice Italian dinner with the boys and prepped ourselves for the show.

The Boyfriend got these tickets from work so the seats were pretty good....not great....but pretty good and at a good price.

Well, this production of Rent seemed like a High School production where the director told the actors, "now sing out loud boys and girls because you've got to hit the back of the auditorium" and then forgets to tell the kids they're going to be mic'ed as they end up screaming into their microphones. Many times during the show I was totally lost because I couldn't tell what they were singing, it felt as though they were competing with the orchestra (which was on stage with them, not in the pit out front).

The actors were ok, the show is mostly signing so there's very little acting involved they just sing everything to each other. Plus I felt it was difficult to understand the plot because you never quite knew exactly what was going on.

The one thing it did make me want to do was go out and buy the movie...I wasn't planning on buying it, but seeing this poor version made me want to see the good version again.

That wasn't the best part of the evening though, if you can believe that.

After the show we walked to the car and The Best Friend's Boyfriend pulled the parking ticket out of his wallet and 'stuck' it in the dashboard, a place where he's stuck tickets like this for quite sometime. After we get all buckled up and on our way he looks down and says "Where did the ticket go?" Well come to find out that the ticket slide into the dashboard under the radio, oh fuck!

20 minutes go buy where several people end up with their arms stuck up inside the center console of the front dash searching for the ticket.

Finally the Boyfriend saved the day and was able to wedge the ticket from it's hiding place and into his hand. Not only is he goregous, he's "handy"

And that was our adventure going to see Rent.


Karen said...

Even if the play wasn't so good, it sounds like a funny and adventurous evening nevertheless :-)

I loved "Phantom" too - flew to Detroit to see it way back when as it wasn't playing in Chicago. Breathtaking. It's the best ever, I think :-)

Rob7534 said...

I didn't know Rent was back in town. But I don't think I'll go see it if it sounds like a high school production.

I saw it back in the early 90's... I liked it. I loved "Seasons of Love" though. I don't like how they sing all raw and rough in that show however, and I remember talking to Marnie Nickson who teaches voice privately in New York I think. She was telling me how lots of singers come to her to learn how to "belt" so they can perform in rock musicals like Rent. And how those musicals have such high turnover rate, they recycle singers like crazy.

Mrs. TBF said...

TBF and I saw Ms Saigon when it was in Chicago. We signed up for it thru NU (where we met and fell in love...awwww shucks) and it included a lecture from an NU prof who's a Vietnam expert and dinner. Who were we kidding???? We got all dressed up and ventured into the city from the 'burbs and then had our socks/stockings bored off of us by the professor. Needless to say the show was a welcome relief. We both enjoyed it and were impressed by the helicopter in the theater...but after going to London and seeing "We Will Rock You" a couple of years ago...boy have the theater effects advanced since Ms Saigon! I think TBF can deal with one show every two to three years and I may have spent my most recent credit at the opera in Vienna. Oh well.
Regarding your Rent adventure...I was laughing out loud at the parking ticket incident. Nice job Boyfriend!

Andi said...

Is that Art looking up under that hood?

Michael said...

Rob - You're totally right. Rent is like the Junior/Senior Play, and it was about that quality as well. Looking at the bio's in program they read sort of like:

So-and-So is a child of the streets who's musical prowess has been honed by one of the...blah blah blah.

Mrs. TBF
Or So-and-So was always interested in the arts such as acting, signing and dancing (well hello, if you say "the arts why do you have to list them? Oh that's right otherwise your bio would be 7 words long)

And you now how they'll list their credits for prior shows, most of the shows we've seen this past year have had actors with film/tv credits pretty well known. Well some of these credits included "Goddess, Wheel", "Zippergrin" and "Cowboy Mouth" yeah those are all shows I'm initimately familiar with.

Mrs. TBF - I agree the grandeur of the theater is unsurpassed, the Helicopter in Miss Saigon, the Chandalier in Phantom, the Living Room in Sunset. We went and saw "The Woman in White" in London 2 years ago, now that was a technical marvel.

Andi - You know it is!