Entries Tagged as 'oriental theatre'

West Side Story at the Oriental Theatre

June 17th, 2013 · 1 Comment

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This year my mom and I were having trouble figuring out a weekend to get together for our annual dinner and a show, so we worked out a way to make it happen during the week. Her schedule finally had two days in a row off, so she drove down on a Monday and left on the Wednesday morning. I worked from home on Monday and Tuesday and it worked out pretty good. Especially since I wanted to see West Side Story and it happened to be in town from June 11 – 16, which was when my mom would be in town.

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West Side Story first came out in 1957, so it’s been a part of American culture for a long time. I knew generally what the story was about, but never looked into the details too much. I also recognized some of the songs that were a part of the musical. I had a good time FINALLY filling in all the blanks and finally getting to know what all the fuss about West Side Story was.

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Before the show we had dinner at Park Grill, which is a nice restaurant inside Millennium Park. We each had seafood: My mom had salmon and I had walleye. Both were light and summery and very good.

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After dinner and before the show we had a few minutes to spare, so we walked around the park a bit. We went to take a look at Cloud Gate (“the bean”) and the Jun Kaneko exhibit of creepy sculptures. Actually, I think they’re kind of cute. But other people have told me they think they’re creepy.

A good couple days overall. It was nice to spend some time with mom! Here are all of the dinner-and-a-show days we’ve done over the years:

2012: Buona Terra & Showboat at the Lyric Opera
2011: Gosu & Beauty and the Beast
2010: El Nandu & Hubbard Street Dance
2009: Rhapsody & Jersey Boys
2008: Landmark & Dead Man’s Cell Phone at the Steppenwolf Theater
2007: Costello’s & Blue Man Group
2005/6: Hillary’s Urban Eatery (HUE) & Wicked
2004: Petterino’s & Mamma Mia
Ze Olde Days (1999?): Riverdance in Milwaukee
Ancient Times (1997?): Lorie Line

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Wicked

December 20th, 2005 · 1 Comment

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Wicked Marquee at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

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Rachelle & Mom, Theater District, Chicago

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Inside the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

Last year my mom came down and we had dinner at Petterino’s, saw the Field’s windows and then went to Mama Mia. This year, we had dinner at HUE, saw the Field’s windows and went to Wicked.

Ana Gasteyer has the lead role, playing Elphaba aka The Wicked Witch of the West. You’re probably familiar with Ana, since she was on SNL for 6 years. She gave an amazing performance, who knew she had such a great singing voice.. especially at the end of the song “Defying Gravity,” right before intermission. People were cheering and crying and going crazy. I think my mom even slipped a curse word or two.

Kate Reinders also gave a great performance as Glinda (The Good Witch), who, in the musical, was way more “Legally Blonde” than I remember her being in the book. I thought her best performance was during the song “Popular.”

Speaking of the book, it was interesting to see how the musical differed from it. Like all book adaptations, a lot of detail was left out and a lot of things happened in the book that were just skipped or changed for the play. To be expected. Both are great works of art in their own seperate ways.

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Mamma Mia!

December 10th, 2004 · 19 Comments

Christkindlmarket, Daley Center, The Loop, Chicago
Christkindlmarket, Daley Center, The Loop, Chicago

Christkindlmarket, Block 37, The Loop, Chicago
Christkindlmarket, Block 37, The Loop, Chicago

Macroons at Petterino's, Theater District, Chicago
Macroons at Petterino’s, Theater District, Chicago

Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago
Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago
Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

Mom & Rachelle :: Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago
Mom & Rachelle :: Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

Mama Mia :: Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago
Mamma Mia :: Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, Theater District, Chicago

For my mom’s birthday in November I got her tickets for Mamma Mia! at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre. Yesterday she came down and we did some shopping on Michigan Avenue, which was all lit up and festive. Then we went up to my office quick for a view of the city. We then strolled over the Chicago River to The Loop and walked through the Christkindlmarket on Block 37 and the Daley Center (the Picasso looks out of place!).

Dinner was at Petterino’s. We shared a bottle of Shiraz, grilled mahi mahi with arugula and lentils, and Cape Cod scallops with an apricot sauce and rice pilaf. That was all very good, but what I’ll remember is the dessert. We had chocolate macaroons with both a caramel and a chocolate sauce for dipping. So moist and good.

After dinner we had some time to kill so we walked around Marshall Field’s to look at the holiday windows (I’ll post more on this later). Then off to the theater for Mamma Mia!. I didn’t think I knew many Abba songs, but there were quite a few I recognized. Even if you didn’t know ANY Abba songs, I think Mamma Mia! would still be a fun time. Lot’s of comedy, lots of songs. At the end, after the encore the cast just had fun and played some Abba songs. Everyone in the theater was standing up and clapping and singing and dancing in the aisles.

ยป Dancing Queen Finale (.mov, 372k)

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