Wow Wow Wow! I absolutely loved the show. I forgot how much of the score I know and was pleasantly surprised to find myself singing along in my head to a lot of the music.
Our seats were really good, on the floor and I was directly in the center. Besides the fact that I was sitting next to an incredibly rude 60 something British woman (my friend Chris says these are the worst kind esp. at the theatre!) I had a truly great experience at the Queen's Theatre last night.
The music is so powerful and the first scene where they sing "Look Down" really set the mood that the music was the center of the play. The man who played Javert had a good voice and stage presence and everytime he referred to Jean Valjean as "24601" I got the chills!
The art director for the show was brilliant in making the stage revolve in a circle because it made set changes effortless and the effect of people moving from one place to another looked really cool.
The actors themselves were really great as well, my favorite voice belonging to Eponine especially when she sang my favorite song "On My Own". The man and woman who played Mr. and Mrs. Thenardie (the owners of the Inn--and maybe better known to my fam as the couple who sing Master of the House) were fabulous. They were both really funny and engaged the audience as soon as they walked on stage.
The sets really blew me away, they were moved so easily and with a blink of the eye there was an entirely new set to look at and scene already in motion. The barricade set and scene were done flawlessy, I especially liked when everyone in the barricade was killed and they all moved in slow motion. Really cool.
Overall, I absolutely loved the show and am happy that I paid the extra 4 pounds for a program as well. Musicals are so uplifting and I must start going to more on a regular basis.
Congrats to everyone involved in THON this year, $7.4 million dollars raised for the kids is incredible. I watched the last hour or so and it made me miss PSU and all my buds who I know were there cheering on the dancers and kids.
And, well done ATOZTA keeping the Zetau tradition alive for the 14th year in a row. Raising $317,000 is amazing and I can truly say I was blown away when I heard our total.
A McDonald’s chocolate milkshake with vanilla vodka, rimmed with BBQ sauce and garnished with a chicken McNugget.
Vodka and McDonald's- the only way I know these two combined is at about 3 am in Happy Valley when everyone and their mother is at Mickey D's ordering mass amounts of drunk food. But now with this new sure-to-be hit martini, you can combine two of your guilty pleasures into one glass! God Bless the U S of A.
this picture is from thisiswhyyourefat.com check it out, it is at the same time delicious and disgusting
I am currently reading the fourth and final book of the Twilight series, Breaking Dawn. I started reading them because the movie was coming out and everybody was making a fuss out of them and saying it was "better than Harry Potter". Unlike Harry Potter, the Twilight series focuses on a romance between a vampire and a teenage girl and it is pretty much the author talking about how much they love each other the entire time, it's kind of sickening actually. Anyways I'm not really sure why I have wasted this much of my time reading these books but I have to find out the ending now. The comparison to Harry Potter is completely unwarranted and Stephanie Meyer's writing is nowhere on the same level as J.K. Rowling.
I know this post is totally random but it does have a semi-purpose. Can someone give me a good book recommendation?? I need something great I can carry in my purse!!
As soon as we stepped out of the cab we knew we were in the land of dreams because we were immediately greeted by a familiar scent wafting through the air. After checking into the hotel and throwing our bags down we decided to go explore and find a coffeeshop.
Instead of being the smart college educated students that we are and buy a tram ticket to the area we were going, we decided to walk about 25 minutes instead hoping to pass many coffeeshops and cool places on the way.
Before I went to Amsterdam I thought it would be coffeeshops on every corner, everyone smoking all the time, and just general debauchery throughout. I was wrong about this and was dissapointed that we had to actually make some effort to find these places we had been researching.
Once we got by the Red Light District, I realized this is the Amsterdam everyone is talking about. Coffeeshops, sex shops, bars, restaurants, basically anything and everything you want you could get around here.
Near the Red Light District is the Sex Museum which we visited for 3 euro and it was hysterical, frightening, and liberating I would say. Everything is just so open and nothing is considered taboo there which is a major change from the US.
We also visited the Anne Frank House, which was incredibly fascinating and heartbreaking. Part of it is really modern and then other parts are like the actual floor and wood and rooms they lived in, you can still see the pictures on the wall Anne had in her room. So waiting in line for about a half hour in the freezing cold was definitely worth the wait.
Amsterdam as a city is really beautiful with little canals everywhere and cobblestone streets. Everyone rides there bike everywhere, I almost got hit by about 30 bikes because I would be absent mindly standing in the center of the bike lane. There are even parking garages for bikes! It's so cool but everyone looks like Miss Gulch with their baskets on front peddling down the road.
Heineken flows like water and instead of stating what kind of beer you want, when you ask for a beer you get a Heineken either a pint of a half pint. Clearly being from London where we down pints quicker than my mom would like to know, we ordered the proper size beer...a pint.
Another plus about Amsterdam is the food. They definitely take advantage of all of the high tourists coming out of coffeeshops because when you do you can buy food all over the streets. Waffles, pastries, french fries (with mayo, weird?), pizza, anything you want you can find. The waffles were unbelievably delicious covered in strawberries and homemade whipped cream.
Overall, my weekend in Amsterdam was great, complete with Purple Haze, White Widow, Heineken, and more food than I could ever normally consume.
I am extremely excited, I don't really think I can even put it into words. We are planning on seeing everything including the Van Gogh Museum, Anne Frank House, Heineken Museum, and the infamous Sex Museum, which should be interesting I'm sure.
I am going with my five best girlfriends from here, Katie, Julie, Nikki, Ronda, and McKenzie. We are flying out at 5 PM on easyjet and land in the holy land around 7. We will be staying four nights, and a bunch of our friends from our program are also going this weekend so it will definitely be a memorable weekend.
I promise to be safe and smart and tell you my stories upon my return Monday morning. Hope everyone has a good weekend and Happy Valentine's/Single Awareness Day!! xoxo
This picture is of a fireman rescuing a koala from the Victoria brushfires. Such a horrible tragedy I can't even imagine, people said it was like hell on earth. Firefighters really are heroes, and this picture makes my heart melt.
Nikki and I outside a Harry Potter display on Regent Street
A few of the official Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince posters were just released online! My goal while I am here in London is to meet either Ron, Harry, or Hermione. Preferrably Harry or Ron so they can fall madly in love with me and take me to the premiere of the movie. But I guess I'll just keep dreaming until then....
Yesterday afternoon, I went to see Complicit at the Old Vic Theatre in Waterloo. It is a play directed by Kevin Spacey and stars Richard Dreyfuss. I was so excited to see the play because it was the start of my London theatre career and I love Kevin Spacey as an actor (American Beauty in particular) so I figured he must be pretty good at being a director too.
Here is a description of the play:
Ben Kritzer, a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist finds himself before a Grand Jury, faced with the decision to behave like a citizen of his country or as a journalist. Having previously written a now infamous opinion piece stating his belief that Americans were too ‘squeamish’ about torture – seemingly opening the doors to water-boarding and sleep deprivation – Ben wrote an all too exposing article on America’s ever-shifting principles and use of torture techniques. Now labelled a traitor and a spy by the American government, Ben must reveal his sources, going against all his political values and belief in freedom of the press, or face 20 years imprisonment.
Much to my dismay, the play lacked to say the least. The coolest thing about it was the stage itself, it was in the round, so people were surrounding the stage. The stage lit up according to moods within the play and underneath the stage were probably 50 flat screen TVs that played different interviews with the main character, and news footage from 9/11 throughout.
With only three actors and little to no scenery or props, you better have a genius script on your hands. While the script was definitely interesting, the writer could have definitely shown us more instead of telling us. We never actually saw him in the court room, just talking to his lawyer on the side. The play was confusing because you didn't get a grasp from the beginning what was actually going on.
I was excited to see Richard Dreyfuss, and being only 4 rows back, I knew I would be able to get a good look at him up close. Up close he looks really old, and even had an ear piece in the entire time because he had trouble remembering his lines. But I would say he is a good actor and seemed to put his all in the performance.
All in all, Complicit was somewhat interesting but definitely not worth your time or 15 pounds to see.
This is going to be my first theatre review out of many over the course of the semester. My class London Theatre in Performance teaches us how to critique plays, so I figure trying it out on my blog will be good practice!
After a four and a half hour train ride, complete with seven extremely loud women celebrating a friend's 40th birthday, we finally arrived in Edinburgh.
Our hostel was right next to the train station, and never staying in a hostel before I was expecting the worst. To my great surprise, it was actually not bad at all. The hostel was called St. Christopher's complete with a restaurant and bar on the first floor. The bar had 2 for 1 beer specials, so all of us were very pleased we wouldn't be draining our wallets during our two day excursion.
I stayed in a room with 14 other girls, yes that's 14 girls showering, drying their hair, getting ready, and sleeping in a room about the size of my living room back home. It ended up working out fine, but I would be lying if I said I wasn't worried in the beginning.
We arrived in Edinburgh at about 3:30 and because it was getting dark and too late to sight see, we decided it was a good idea to start at the bar. We all made fools of ourselves at the bar, being loud and playing American drinking games until about 8 pm when we decided to go on a Ghost Tour.
The Ghost Tour advertises itself as a "phenomenon" and even has a warning for people who are pregnant, have high blood pressure, etc. I am definitely a scaredy cat but I enjoy being frightened so I was ready to see what the tour had in store. Unfortunately, it was not very scary at all and just basically a tour through an old cemetary where our tour guide told us ghost stories.
On the walk home from the Ghost Tour we passed the Elephant House, which I was dying to see. The Elephant House is where J.K. Rowling started writing Harry Potter on napkins, so essentially it is where my good pal Harry James Potter was born!
On Saturday, we went on the Edinburgh Bus Tour and got to see all of the things you would expect to see in Scotland....bagpipes and castles. The castle really blew me away, the sheer size of it is mindblowing and it stands on a huge rocky hill. The grass surrounding the castle is unbelievably green....my dad would probably ask for the secret fertilizing and gardening methods they use because we all know how he loves his Jupiter Drive yard.
After the tour we did some shopping, and then went to the cutest Italian place for dinner. I know I need to step out of my comfort zone and start trying the local food, but in our handy pop up Edinburgh guide book they only pointed us to Thai and Indian places.
Dinner was fabulous, complete with the waiter telling me I had a "sexy deep voice" which I guess is a nice way of saying I sounded like a man. Following dinner we went out on the town in Scotland to a club which we later found out was a gay bar....we aren't the most observant of groups I guess.
All in all, Edinburgh was unbelievably beautiful but I missed London and couldn't wait to get...dare I say it...home.
This might be one of the funniest things I've ever seen.
Here is the description of the video from youtube: This is my 7 year old son who had an extra tooth removed last summer, 2008. I had the camera because he was so nervous before I wanted him to see before and after. He was so out of it after, I had to carry him out of the office. The staff was laughing and I had tears it was so funny.He is doing fine now and the teeth are great.