Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The Sound of Music

I got to see a play finally! Jake & I went to see "The Sound of Music" here in town. Yay! It wasn't fantastic, but hey, it was a PLAY.

There are only a few groups in town that do theatre- FLOT (Fairbanks Light Opera Theatre), FDA (Fairbanks Drama Association) and FST (Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre, which only does summer shows)- well, plus the University. In fact, the last play we saw was up there- "The Taming of the Shrew". One of my very favorite Shakespeare's- okay, that's a little like saying, "my favorite kind of chocolate". Stupid, I just like chocolate. Almost ALL chocolate. I just like Shakespeare. Almost ALL of them. I actually thought they did a very good job, except for Kate's guy... What's his name... Can't remember... Petruchio?? Anyway, he was AWFUL. I could not believe that she would fall in love with him. I couldn't believe she would change for him... It was so AGGRAVATING! The most important part of the play, and they didn't get it!!! He was very shallow, very flat, very unbelievable... Maybe he was the only actor they had. I don't know. Maybe he and the actor playing Kate hated each other... I don't know! Anyway, there was nothing believable about their relationship...

Okay, back to "Sound of Music". I auditioned for this back in September and did a TERRIBLE job on the singing part. Really bad. For some stupid reason I thought, "I know these songs, I'll be fine". Duh! The version we listened to so much growing up was the Julie Andrews version. Very different than the song they wanted me to sing. I did terrible! If I'd been directing it, I wouldn't have cast me as the part I wanted, which was Maria, of course. (Mind you, I kicked butt on the acting part, but here in Fairbanks they cast according to singing, not acting.) They offered me one of the nuns, and I was like, "Are you kidding? I don't have TIME for that!" Jake was going to help me with the kids, and mom was gonna help me, but my girls need me. I would have made the time if I'd been offered a really good part... Maybe I should have taken it. I don't know. Anyway, I decided not to take it...

So, we got to see it, and I enjoyed it. It's such a good tight story that I figured they would at least do okay. I'd give it a B. (for community theater- don't get me wrong, I LIKE community theatre, but I've gotten to see professional actors on stage and it just doesn't compare, you know?) I thought they did a good job. In general, their acting was a little stiff and wooden, but I've seen MUCH worse, and they didn't do any mugging, not even the kids, which drives me crazy... The stage changes were ATROCIOUSLY long- Jake & I could complete entire conversations while they changed the sets... And some of their choices could have just been better, not bad really, just not as good as they could've been...

Their Maria had a BEAUTIFUL voice. My gracious me. It was lovely, so smooth... Very little acting expression in it, mind you. Very much a SINGING performance. But her voice was superb. Her acting was another matter.... Oh, goodness. It was atrocious. Very cardboard. She would put her arms out like she was carrying firewood and lift her arms up from the shoulders when she wanted to emphasize something... You know what I mean. The stick figure acting style. Oh, and she would put one hand on her heart when she said "I" or "me"... But her singing... Definitely why they gave her the part- a shame somebody wasn't around to teach her some decent acting...

Their captain did fine- the part's rather flat to begin with, but he didn't really do much with it. Nice voice. Kind of mumbly, deep and rolling... I kept hoping that some spark or something would show up between him and Maria, but I just never saw it...

Their Max and Elsa were wonderful! It was delightful to see such good acting, plus they did all their songs and both of them had wonderful singing voices. Both were superb and a joy to watch.

The kids did really excellent on everything (acting, singing, dancing) except for "The Sound of Music"... you know what I mean- this great harmony stuff, plus the echo "Ah-ah-ah-ah"... Sad that they do that song so many times in the play!! At least two, I think three, and they SUCKED at it. Pretty sad. Everything else with them was very fun.

Also, they missed a wonderful opportunity- You know when the Nazi's take over? Well, they didn't really do anything in the play to emphasize that... No flags. No soldiers... They brought out two soldiers during the competition (plus Herr Zeller & the admiral)... But, that was it. So sad. And they had about 25 nuns... During the first part, when the nuns sing the alleluia there were enough of them to almost surround the entire audience. Maybe no guys auditioned?? I don't know. I wish they'd just put some flags up or something...

Okay, I had almost as much fun critiquing it as I did seeing it! :) Now that's silly. Oh, well.
Good day, Good day, Good day! I got to see a play! As my husband would say, "Woo-hoo!"

1 comment:

Donna Grayce said...

I have discovered Becca's blog! (How come I didn't get the address when I was in Fairbanks? Perhaps I lost it...) Your voice comes through very clearly. It's interesting to read several months of entries, to see the ark of your struggles with church, winter, etc.
I keep telling people that life is just a lot of pain, with a few happy bits thrown in. It's a vale of tears, my sister! My faith is often expressed with Job--"Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him "--and my life isn't that bad at all!

Here's a quote from Lucy Goodale Thurston, one of the first company of missionaries to Hawaii in 1820, writing to her daughter Persis, whom she's about to leave behind in the Untied States. Persis is going to university, and Lucy back to Hawaii to rejoin her husband. Will they ever meet again in life? (I face that question to a much smaller degree as a modern missionary; it takes me only about two days to get from here to there, but Lucy's voyage to Hawaii took 5 months in a cramped ship, and she didn't make the trip very often. I digress.) Leaving Persis with advice to guide her life as an adult:
"I will not disguise it,--life is replete with anxieties, perplexities, cares, toils, sufferings, and sorrows."

I can agree! Well said. I think that from sorrows to perplexities covers much of life's ground.

Lucy continues:
"Well, let them come. It is a state of probation and of discipline, and all things are so arranged by infinite wisdom and benevolence, that even we may become in a high degree possessors of the rich stores of quiet self-denial, of holy fortitude, of cheerful resignation, and of heaven-born benevolence. We will then travel on in the vale of mortality, in the depths of nothingness, if such be the will of our Lord, until, from exalted heights, we hear a seraphic voice saying: 'Come home to your rest.'" (Thurston, Lucy Goodale. Life and Times of Mrs. Lucy G. Thurston. S.C. Andrews: 1882.)

I do long for heaven, when all this messiness and pain will be resolved.

To absolutely change the subject, have you read Elizabeth Moon?
And, since I've seen you, my cousin Glenn has made me watch all the Firefly episodes, and the movie. How addictive! What characterization! What great television art! What brutality and sin, too. Ugh.