Beauty and the Beast- Song

Today, we have another Disney song. Just like A Whole New World, it has that same kind of feeling. What is it about them? They seem to carry this special kind of nature about them. They have this sort of innocence and magic- you can easily become attached to them. Just like A Whole New World, I was drawn to the song since childhood. It is my favorite song from the musical, Beauty and the Beast.

Live action film of Beauty and the Beast- Beauty and the Beast Song: Beast (Dan Stevens) and Belle (Emma Watson)
Beauty and the Beast

In simple terms, Beast is a prince disguised as a Beast and Belle is prisoner in his castle after taking her father’s place. The spell at the castle can only be broken if the Beast falls in love and be loved in return. It took some time, but eventually Belle and Beast fall in love- “Something There” was when you start to notice they do have feelings for each. It is officially at “Beauty and the Beast” where you know for a fact that they have fallen in love. There is something about the combo of song and the dance that makes it so magical to watch- the past couple of times, I saw the live action film, I found myself crying during “Beauty and the Beast”. I usually do not tear up during happy numbers- but this one did- truly a wonderful moment to witness.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Yesterday, I saw Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. I wanted to watch this movie because I was a fan of Harry Potter growing up. I knew that this movie was part of the Harry Potter world and was looking forward to meeting the new characters and the new creatures. I even was looking forward to finding Harry Potter references throughout the film. I was even familiar with one of the actors, who was Eddie Redmayne, who played the main character, Newt.

I first saw Eddie Redmayne as Marius in the 2012 movie of Les Mis. I enjoyed him as Marius and could not wait to see his portrayal of Newt. The plot of Fantastic Beasts is as follows: Newt, a wizard with a suitcase full of magical creatures, goes to America when darkness is in the air. The dark and powerful wizard, Grindelwald has created chaos in America and at the time, magical creatures are not allowed to be let loose in America. By accident, some of Newt’s creatures are let loose and it is Newt’s job and his allies to recapture them. There are a lot of tensions set between witches and wizards and muggles.

Newt is this British wizard who carries around a suitcase full of magical creatures. He truly cares about every single one of them. I think Newt is a wonderful character. He is very caring, kind, and gentle when it comes to other humans and his wonderful magical creature collection.

Another major character is Jacob, a muggle from America. In America, non-magical humans are not known as muggles, but instead known as no-mag. He sort of is the reason why some of Newt’s creatures were released in New York City. Both Newt and Jacob have a matching suitcase and Jacob accidentally brought Newt’s suitcase home with him. Due to that incident, some of the creatures became loose. He eventually had to team up with Newt to recapture all of the creatures.

Queenie and and Tina, two sister witches are so close to each other and become an important part of the story. They each become valuable to Newt and help him recapture creatures. Tina thought that Newt purposely let the creatures loose and was trying to turn him in, but Newt still always defended that. So Newt, Queenie, Jacob, and Tina become this sort of team.

Overall, I loved the movie and I thought the cast was amazing. I loved being able to pick up on Harry Potter references throughout the film. You saw the necklace with the deathly hallows symbol, the Lestrange family was mentioned, and even Hogwarts and Dumbledore were mentioned. If I did not grow up watching Harry Potter, those references would not have been noticeable. You do not need former knowledge of the Harry Potter series in order to understand this film. It can work as a stand-alone film. It was fun discovering the new characters along with creatures. This time the powerful Grindelwald is like the Voldemort of Harry Potter.

So, if you are a former Harry Potter fan, I would recommend this movie. It can get dark at times. But overall, it is a very magical film with a lot of humor, which was created through Newt, Jacob, Queenie, and Tina. It takes place seventy years before Harry Potter and it was interesting seeing the wizard world through America and I loved seeing how different it was.

Metaphor of Being Green

Today during my stage makeup class, I was applying green eye shadow for a practice round of the next project. While doing that, the green reminded me of the musical character, Elphaba. She was born green and understands what it is like to be different.

To me, green is a metaphor for being different. This is shown through the character of Elphaba. She is treated as an outcast because she was born green. She is also different because she was born with magical powers, but she has no idea how to control them. She constantly is getting misunderstood by others including her family. Her father hates her and blames her for the reason why her sister is disabled and why her mother is dead, but it wasn’t even her fault. Elphaba has a close bond with her sister, but in the second act, her sister completely betrays her.

She believes that once she starts Shiz, she will stop being discriminated against, but she finds out that even the students dislike her. She reluctantly rooms with Galinda (AKA Glinda). Glinda and Elphaba start out as enemies who loathe each other and they learned to accept each other’s differences and become the best of friends. It was at the school dance where Galinda is able to finally befriend Elphaba. From the dance on, the two girls become the best of friends. Every once in a while they find conflict, but they always make up. The first conflict happens when Elphaba and Glinda both fall in love with Fiyero. This creates a fascinating love triangle, which adds this wonderful texture to the storyline.

images

Elphaba is way more then what society paints her out to be. She is so determined and smart. She cares about what is happening around her. She has this big heart and stands up for what she believes in. She wants to give equality to all despite how everyone treats her. The wizard uses her to his advantage and makes the public believe that she is wicked. She is an incredible wonderful women and she never lets society define who she really is. She constantly tries to save the lives of others.

So overall, I find green a metaphor for being different. I truly understand Elphaba because I personally relate to her. I am a big-hearted, smart, talkative, determined, and unique person. I believe in equality and staying true to myself. Let your green shine through and let others see you for who you really are. Don’t let society define you because all that is doing is painting a false image of who you really are. I never try to fit in and would rather be accepted. Elphaba is such an important part of my life and I love how she has so much courage and strength inside of her.  Elphaba has been part of my life for ten years in all and Wicked is a powerful story about friendship and acceptance. Wicked is the best musical comedy. It just keeps on getting better and better and the emotions constantly are maturing.

My Disney Experience

Over Spring Break, I attended a Disney Leadership Experience to Disney World in Orlando Florida. We attended two leadership classes, which would take us behind the scenes to learn about important leadership skills that will be useful later on. The first class in HollyWood Studios was basically about Leadership Strategies and the second class was in Magic Kingdom and was dealing with the culture of Disney. Each of the classes took up three hours and the rest of the trip, we were free to do what we want at Disney.

The first class, “Leadership Strategies”, was dealing with different kinds of leaders and how communication barriers can get in the way. I learned about four different kinds of leaders and I found that I am more like a visionary and opportunist leader because my dream job is to start a theatre for those living in poverty and below. Theatre is a place where you must be able to see the big picture along with the smaller details and at the same time, you must be willing to take risks. We talked about what can happen if you run into a communication barrier. One time we had to guess what our partner was doing, but the problem was she was not allowed to speak. The same thing happened where we had to design something for a dog company and we all picked one leader. But once again the leader was not told what product was to be made. Seeing that communication barriers can exist in leadership makes me realize that being a leader is harder than it seems and takes a take of experience. One part of this trip was spent walking in a costume section of Disney World, which made me love all the handwork put into the character costumes more and shows me that whenever they make a new costume, it has to be made just right because a kid knows when something is wrong with the costume.

The second class, “Cultural of Excellence”, taught us more about the culture of Disney. The initial question was “are you creating a culture at Gardner Webb?”.  They wanted us to understand how their beliefs/values, standard of excellence, heritage/traditions, and storytelling reflected the culture of Disney. Out of all of these, storytelling is Disney’s strongest. They show storytelling everywhere including on the rides. Walking up to the castle, I had to find elements that represent storytelling with a partner. We both agreed that the castle was the strongest element. The different groups eventually discussed what they found relating to their aspects. Everyone agreed that storytelling is one of Disney’s biggest strengths. As part of the class, everyone was required to ride the Snow White and the Seven Dwarves Mine Train. We had to pay attention to how the ride uses storytelling to get the guests involved in the story. Throughout the ride, you saw the seven dwarves and the different jewels along with Snow White and the Queen. By the end of the class, we had to think about the things we learned in terms of our college. Based on the elements of culture at Disney World, we had to choose the area that Gardner Webb had to improve on the most and the majority said that beliefs and values needed the most work. They use a stop, add, and continue method. It means what will stop, what will replace it, and what will be continued. Everyone agreed about Dimensions and that it needs to be more accessible. We feel as if the topics are sometimes irrelevant.

Most of the trip happened outside of the two three hour Disney Leadership classes. That meant we could truly get a full Disney experience. The classes made me look at Disney differently. It added something to the experience because we got to understand the culture of Disney World. Because I am young at heart and am a fan of Disney, I felt like a five year old kid. We had breakfast with Lilo, Stich, Mickey, and Pluto and dinner with Pooh/ Eyore/Piglet/Tigger, dinner with Mickey/ Pluto/Chip/Dale, dinner with Prince Charming/Cinderella/ Step-Mom/Step-Sisters and dinner with Mulan/Belle/Ariel/ Snow White. Outside of meals, I met Chewy, Tinkerbell, Donald Duck, Anna, and Elsa. Out of all the characters, I loved meeting Anna and Elsa the most because they are my favorite Disney characters and really love Frozen. Thinking of Frozen, I got to attend a Frozen Sing-Along, two parades, and other exciting things. I got to go on the Kilimanjaro Safari, Festival of the Lion King, TeaCups, StarTours and other attractions. Riding on StarTours made up for Soaring being temporarily closed in Epcot. StarTours is basically like riding in one of the StarWars starships. The Festival of the Lion King is like an aerobatic show and the songs from the movie are being sung.I ended up getting a number of souvenirs which are a stuffed Sven, stuffed princess Minnie, stuffed socerer Mickey,  blue “Let it Go” cap, Olaf mug, pink cheetah mouse ears, and a Walt Disney World T-Shirt.

Outside of the classes, I learned other valuable skills such as patience and navigation. Those were the only moments we were not with our chaperones. We are with at least one other student. Miranda and I had to figure out how to navigate the different parks and how to hop from park to park. Sometimes we had to speed race to get somewhere due to the time, but sometimes would get lost on the way. Outside of reading the map, we would also ask for directions. We had to figure out what we wanted to do outside of the fast passes.

Being at Disney shows how much of a Disney fan you are. Disney means a lot to me because I grew up with it. I understand the greatness of the old Disney musical movies and the new Disney musical movies. I still love “Beauty and the Beast”, “Lion King”, and the Pixar films such as “Finding Nemo”, “Lilo and Stich”, and “Monsters INC”, etc. It is hard to believe that the Disney musical movies are part of the origin of my love for musicals. All because of this trip, I realized that I want to see “Lion King” and “Beauty and the Beast” again because I have seen them before, but have no memory of seeing them.