Happy Veterans Day

On November 11th, it is time to honor Veterans. It actually reminds me of the song, “Bring Him Home”, from Les Mis. After all, one of the subplots in the musical focuses on The June Rebellion of the 1832- The Friends of the ABC are the ones planning the uprising, who have a strong hope and passion for it. When does “Bring Him Home” happen?

Possible Spoilers

The song happens during one of the barricade scenes. Valjean decided to be the at the barricades to protect Marius, the student his adopted daughter loves. He cares more about Cosette’s happiness than his own. “Bring Him Home” is sung as a prayer to make sure Marius comes out alive. You don’t realize how heartbreaking the song is until you know the outcome of the uprising- in the end, Marius becomes the only survivor (a result of Valjean saving him)

Boo- Halloween Costumes

Today is October 31st, which is the same day as Halloween. My favorite thing about that day is dressing up. There have been days where I have dressed up prior to Halloween- as in something I would do prior- like something we could do at work and/or at a Halloween event at university. So, what are some of the characters I have been over the years (most notably the ones I made)?

A Newsie

This was the most recent Halloween costume I put together. I got the idea after seeing the hat- it reminded me of a Newsie hat. I knew we could wear a costume for work for the week leading to Halloween. Most the pieces were easy to find, but the jacket was the hardest- good thing a church member decided to make it. Newsies is the most recent Disney musical I fell in love with, a love that started August 2016.

Rizzo

I was her in 2017 and 2021- I actually dressed as this Grease character more than once. Since the homecoming theme was Broadway in 2017, my club went with Grease, and I choose Rizzo. Homecoming, Octoberfest, and eventually at work. I had more fun dressing up as her than I thought- after all, I barely know the character.

Eponine- 2017

Originally dressing as Eponine for a Les Mis party, I had no idea I would eventually choose the same character for Halloween that same year. Unlike Rizzo, Eponine is a meaningful character, who is from a meaningful musical. Plus, she is a character I know very well- I feel like my love for Elphaba might explain where my bond for Eponine might have come from (if you think about it, they are in some ways parallel characters)

Glinda- Winter Formal 2017

True, I wasn’t this meaningful character for Halloween, but I still dressed as her. That was a result of seeing a pink dress in my room on Campus. Reminded me of the “Popular” costume- my suitemates decided to make me look like Glinda in that scene.

Shows I Love That Take Place in France

In my last post, I mentioned that France is a common setting for musicals. However, I wasn’t able to mention ALL the shows I love that take place there. Shows range from ballet, plays, operas, and musicals. One of my favorite french shows is an opera, which is why I am doing this post. So, what are ALL the shows I love that take place in France?

Anastasia

This is the newest musical to enter my life, as I saw it on October 11th. If it wasn’t for falling in love with 5 songs, I may not have wanted to see it. Due to taking place in BOTH Russia and France, it partly counts. Favorite song is “Journey to the Past”.

Beauty and the Beast

Of all Disney princesses, Belle is the classic one I relate to the most. All I have seen are the animated and live action films. I still am waiting to see the stage show. Filled with enchanting, romantic, exciting, and magical songs. It has lots of lovable characters. Set in a fictional town in France, it is about the romance between Belle and Beast. Favorite song is “Beauty and the Beast”

Phantom of the Opera

Spellbinding, haunting, and beautiful are three words to describe this musical. Set in the Paris Opera house set in late 19th century France. It centers on a mysterious, but angelic love triangle. Its songs are both haunting and beautiful.

Les Mis

Obviously, this is my favorite French musical. Epic, passionate, powerful, emotional, and inspiring are just some of the words to describe this 19th century musical. Complex plot and complex characters. Usually in a musical, I can easily pick my favorite song, but not in Les Mis. This is the musical that challenged what I knew about musicals (so, it disproved a number of things).

La Bohème

This opera is a tragic love story between Rodolfo and Mimi set in 19th century France. If it wasn’t for my love for the musical, Rent, most likely never would given this opera a chance. I originally saw La Bohème by a live stream in Cinemas back in 2016 and finally saw it in person in January 2020. At the moment, it is my favorite opera- there is something about Puccini that drives you in.

Musicals I Love that Take Place in France

By this point, it is pretty obvious that I love more than one musical that takes place in France. That country has also become pretty common. I say that because I love 3.5 musicals that take place there. Yes, that sounds a little confusing—–why the 1/2 (well, if one musical you love only partly takes place there you have no choice). So, what are the French musicals I love?

Anastasia

This is the newest musical of my life. It actually takes place in BOTH Russia and France- St. Petersburg and Paris are its two locations. I saw the stage show October 11th, and knew I would probably love it. Already had fallen in love with five of its songs- what I still didn’t know is if I would love the others. It is a beautiful musical.

Favorite Song: Journey to the Past

Beauty and the Beast

This is the Disney musical I still need to see live. All I have seen are the animated and live action film and listened to the Original Broadway Soundtrack. It is enchanting, magical, romantic, and exciting—-that explains the nature of its songs. Filled with lots of memorable characters. It takes place in a fictional town in France.

Favorite Song: Beauty and the Beast

Phantom of the Opera

I loved this musical since listening to the songs in early 2013. It is mysterious, angelic, and beautiful. Taking place in the Paris Opera House, it centers on one of my favorite love triangles- one I call mysterious and angelic. The musical has a wonderful haunting beautiful nature about it.

Les Mis

Of ALL the French musicals, this is my favorite. This is an epic, powerful, passionate, and emotional musical. It is filled with memorable characters and songs. It really challenged everything I thought I knew about musicals. I become an emotional wreck each time I see it. It may be heartbreaking, but is also inspiring and hopeful.

Favorite Musical on Broadway and The West End

There are two major theatre districts. Broadway is in New York City (August 2006) and The West End is in London (July 30, 2015). I fell in love with Wicked in August 2006 and Les Mis in March 2013. So, what is my favorite musical on The West End?

Wicked/ Les Mis

This would be a hard question- I knew I had to pick between Wicked or Les Mis. Those two musicals are tied for my favorite musical. So, I wouldn’t know what to pick. However, I only saw Les Mis in The West End- that was my 4th time. In January 31th, 2023——I am seeing Les Mis a 7th time.

Wicked’s 4th cast was incredible- as in my favorite. As in Mary Kate Morrissey (Standby Elphaba)- you couldn’t realize it was her, Amanda Jane Cooper (Glinda), Ashley Parker Angel (Fiyero). Wicked and Les Mis are tied for my favorite musical- they are BOTH very different. Wicked is a comedy and a fantasy——-plus its’ home to spectacle, dance, and I can relate to characters. Les Mis is actually a tragedy.

Well, can I choose two musicals? Yes, I only saw one musical in The West End, which was Les Mis!! But, choosing between Les Mis and Wicked would be discovering is difficult. Plus, it is difficult because those two are tied for my favorite musical.