owlmoose: (heroes - hiro jump)
I saw Hamilton last night!!!!!

When it was announced that the touring production of Hamilton would open in San Francisco, I decided with some friends that we were not throwing away our shot, and we bought season tickets to guarantee that we'd get to see it. (As it happens, I also got lucky with the general on-sale, and was able to buy tickets to a second show in June.) So we've been going to the theater since last fall, seeing The King and I (which was fun; despite its problematic elements, it's a childhood favorite of mine, so I had quite a bit of nostalgia for it), Finding Neverland (eh -- although it had nice production values), and Into the Woods (which I'd never seen in any format before, so I was pleased to finally have the chance). But it was all about Hamilton, really, so I've been bouncing about this for weeks. I think it's safe to say that the experience was pretty much everything I had hoped for. Even knowing the words nearly by heart, and having seen a few clips and GIFs here and there, there were still quite a few surprises in store, and the energy of the live performance was incredible. The audience was hyped, too -- I don't think I've ever been at a play where the theater erupted into cheers when the lights went down.

I went with an interesting mix of people, as far as their past experience with the show was concerned: two friends who had already seen it twice (once with most of the original cast in New York!), a few who had listened to the cast album a couple of times, and two who went in completely cold. Everyone enjoyed it a lot, and even the folks who were unfamiliar were able to follow along, although at least one commented that they were occasionally confused by the double casting.

Afterward, we happened to walk by the stage door, and we were able to get signatures on our programs from the actors who played Lafayette/Jefferson, Mulligan/Madison, and Hamilton. So that was fun! Although a part of me wishes I had gotten the opportunity to see the original cast, I thought all the touring actors did a fine job. (The only main cast member who rejoined from New York is Rory O'Malley, who plays King George, although some of the leads are played by former members of the chorus.) Some of them were clearly channeling the original actors (especially Joshua Henry as Burr), while others put a bit of their own spin on things (Emmy Raver-Lampman as Angelica, and to a certain extent Michael Luwoye as Hamilton, particularly in Act Two).

Anyway, I am very, very happy I had the opportunity to see this show, and am really looking forward to doing it all again in June. :)
owlmoose: (star wars - han woohoo)
There are many great things about living in San Francisco, and one of them is that the big Broadway shows often launch their touring productions here. I haven't often been able to take advantage of this fact, because said big show launches almost always sell out quickly, mostly to season ticket holders. Usually, I end up catching a show on its second or third time through (that's how I saw Wicked, The Book of Mormon, and Avenue Q), and usually I'm fine with that.

I bet some of you can guess where this is going.

So the local Broadway series recently put season tickets for the 2016-17 season on sale, for six shows, two of which were announced. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime was one. And the other? Is Hamilton.

I have never even thought about buying season tickets for this series before, but I immediately started considering whether it was worth shelling out for it this time. Soon, I discovered that a number of my friends were having similar thoughts, and a couple of days ago, we went for it. So I am now the proud holder of a season pass for the upcoming season, and I will be seeing Hamilton in the Spring of 2017!

I like going to the theater, so there's a good chance that I'll be happy to see whatever the other shows are. (Dare I hope for Fun Home to go on tour next year, too? Now that would be an embarrassment of riches.) And although I don't have strong feelings about Curious Incident -- I have yet to read the book -- it reviews well, so I'm sure I'll go see it. But it's all worth it, just for Hamilton. Sure, it's over a year away. But I'm still really excited. Yay Hamilton!
owlmoose: Picture of a beanie moose and a small brown owl (owlmoose)
I'm making good on my personal threat to attend lots of cons in 2016: I've now registered for FogCon (as always), WisCon (which I've been meaning to attend for a few years now and the stars finally aligned), and WesterCon (SE's suggestion; Scalzi is the guest of honor, and it's in Portland, which is a city I've always meant to spend more time in). So that's the first half of 2016 scheduled up.

I finally watched Daredevil. I'd been meaning to get to it for awhile; wanting to finish before Jessica Jones drops next month finally pushed it up the queue. Overall I enjoyed it, although I also had some issues. Some of the more pressing complaints are detailed in this Tumblr post ('ware major spoilers). I want to write a longer post about it soon.

Instead of other things I'd been meaning to read, I picked up the biography of Alice B. Sheldon (aka James Tiptree Jr.). I've never read any of Tiptree's fiction, but I've heard the bio is excellent, and so far it has delivered.

Finally, just because I haven't posted about it here doesn't mean I'm not caught in the full throes of a Hamilton obsession. If you've been wondering what the heck Hamilton is, or this is somehow the first you've ever heard of it, the short answer is that it's a Broadway musical based on the life of Alexander Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda. The cast album was released a few weeks ago, and made available to listen online shortly before that, and half the Internet has been freaking out over it ever since. Here's a good primer (thanks to [personal profile] umadoshi for the link). If you want a taste of it without committing to the whole album (although it's free on Spotify), check out Miranda's White House performance of an early version of the first song. Warning for highly addictive earworms.

May 2017

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