As promised, here’s the continuation post to “No Biz like Show Biz, pt. 1.” Below, I review the next three shows that I was fortunate enough to see when I studied abroad in London.
The fourth show (and second non-musical) that I saw was the very funny and very British play, “The Audience.” This play fictitiously chronicled the Queen’s weekly, private audiences with her prime ministers through the years. I’d have to say that this was definitely the most high-brow play I saw in London and I was worried that my lack of knowledge of British politics would prevent me from understanding and enjoying the play. Fortunately, I had nothing to worry about. I loved it! Best of all, I got to see the fantabulous Dame Helen Mirren play the role of Queen Elizabeth II. Even from the very last row of the theatre, I was starstruck.
Who’da thunk that I’d get to see an American musical classic like “Singin’ in the Rain“ while I was abroad? I sure didn’t, but I did. I knew the title song and I’d seen the clip of Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor, and Debbie Reynolds singing and dancing to “Good Morning,” though I had no idea what the movie was really about, so I resolved to see the play. It was the hilarious and sweet love story of a film star and a theatre actress at the time when film was transitioning from silent to talkies. The singing and dancing was great, but the most awe-inspiring thing for me was the rain. Yes, it rained in the theatre.
As I had written in my intro to part 1 of this post, my time in London afforded me the opportunity to see my very first ballet. The one I got to see was the English National Ballet’s Ecstasy and Death. (Do I know how to pick ’em or what?) It was a very passionate and engaging ballet, separated into three individual parts. I had the misfortune of pulling an all-nighter the night before, so I dozed off for a little bit.Though, everything I managed to see was absolutely amazing. More than anything, the delicate balance of power and grace that each dancer showed was hypnotic. They were utilizing muscles that I doubt I even have. All in all, it was my first, but definitely not my last ballet.