Widgets Magazine

Mar 15, 2014

Guest Blog: Les Mis by Prima Donna

Yesterday Princess and her Prince and I went to see Les Miserables at Hale Center Theatre here in Salt Lake City. Around this time last year, I didn't know anything about the show. Boy, that has sure changed!

Around that time, the movie was still pretty recent and I wanted to see it but I couldn't afford to go to the theater so Drama Queen promised me that once it came out on DVD she would buy it and we would watch it together. I agreed, slightly excited but not fully understanding what I was getting myself into. A couple of weeks later with blankets and the tissues I was forewarned I would need, we sat down to watch all three and a half hours of the show. I fell in love.

Something just clicked and so, like the Pinterest addict I am, the first thing I did is go on Pinterest and look up the show, and that's how I discovered the best fandom in theworld. A couple months later Mom fueled the fire by buying me the songbook, so I was playing my clarinet non-stop for a while there. Then for my birthday she got me the movie! Anytime I have a random 3 1/2 hours to kill which sadly isn't that often, I pop it in. Around November, I discovered that one of our local theatres, Hale Centre, was performing it this spring. 

I flipped! I begged, I pleaded I cried. For the last few months there was nothing more in the world I wanted than to see this show. I thought I would get it for Christmas, but it came and went and still no tickets. I thought, maybe New Year's without much hope. The next three months I spent agonizing over the fact that I probably wouldn't get to go. On Valentine's day, when the run started, I checked on their website to see how many shows it had. I was astonished to see there were tons but most were already sold out! 

I was devastated there seemed like no possible way I was ever going to see Les Mis live. On March 1st I overheard Princess and Mom talking. So I casually butted in. Princess was bursting with excitement, "Can we tell her, Mom? Can we tell her?" Mom replied with a sly, "We'll tell her tomorrow." I was on pins and needles the whole next day wondering what Princess could possibly be so excited to tell me. Later that night I asked and you know what their reply was, "You'll have to wait till tomorrow." I was upset.

The next day I was dragged out of bed crazy early for a Saturday (1 pm- yeah, I need to fix some things with my life) and dragged downstairs with the lure of figuring out what it was. They told me the good news. For Princess's and Prince's day activity they were going to go see Les Mis and they wanted me to come! I was as excited as you can be when you were just dragged out of bed and still half asleep. 

The next couple of weeks I was pretty excited but it didn't really settle in until Wednesday night. Then there was a burst of Les Mis joy where I started singing the whole show (because like any good Les Mis fan I had it completely memorized). The weekend before me and Princess had watched the movie because she still hadn't seen it yet, so she was singing right along with me. After countless times of singing "One Day More," Thursday had arrived.

Our show started at 4 and Princess had to do something after school until 3 and the theatre is a half hour a way. Princess assured me the Prince would be there promptly at 3:10. After a 10-minute rant on how you can't show up late to the theatre, he showed up at 3:20. However, by some miracle (cough cough speeding) we made it there on time. Prince had gone with his family to see it a couple weeks before because they have season passes so he led us directly there. The theatre is a kiva-type theatre with the audience sitting on all 4 sides raised above the show. We sat anxiously in our seats and a few moments later the theatre lights dimmed and the first notes started. Princess and I looked at each other and I must have looked like the most excited fangirl on the face of this planet because she just starts laughing at me. 

For the first few minutes of the show we are laughing with the euphoria that only seeing musical theatre can bring. The rest of the show I was on the edge of my seat. I laughed. I
cried (a lot). The characters were portrayed so beautifully, as they were singing the finale I knew I could see this show every single day of its run and still not get enough of it.The show finished and I tried not to PDFG (Public Display of Fan-Girling- Oh yeah, totally coined that term yesterday). 

The smile on my face must have looked absolutely ridiculous as Princess and Prince were laughing at me the whole way out of the theatre. I got to the car and I'm not exactly sure how to explain the noise I made, but it lasted for a good minute and a half followed with screams and cries all over again about how much I loved it. I went back to each scene and discussed my favorite parts, one of them being during "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" during the line "phantom faces at the window, phantom shadows on the floor"  they had all the barricade boys come back out and circle around Marius. Yeah, I lost it.

Or when Jean Valjean finds Cosette in the woods and he sits there and plays with her doll and they sing together and then during the Epilogue while Valjean is dying and he pulls out the same doll and starts playing with it again. So beautiful. So with a lot of screaming and crying and laughing and just plain fan-girling, I expressed my joy in the car. Prince and Princess were just laughing with hints of being worried about my sanity. I was on top of the world for the rest of the day. It was the best day ever and I learned that there are some dreams that can be. That dream I dreamed truly came true yesterday. 


Denise said...

Great post.

Marci said...

WOW! I too love Les Mis. I grew up listening to the music, and for my 12th birthday my parents got tickets for us and my two brothers to go see it when it was playing in Seattle at a super fancy theater. We had 2nd row seats, and oh man did I cry! I too love to watch the movie (whenever I have 3 1/2 hours) and listen to the soundtrack. I'm pretty sure I need to get a les mis piano book next...

I'm so glad you got to see it, Prima Donna!

LeAnn said...

I am so happy that your dream came true. I too love the Les Mis movie and I have read the book. To see the play would have been awesome.
The music is outstanding and I am glad you three enjoyed the moments on this one.
Blessings and hugs!

Natalie Ockey said...

Glad you liked it. You should read the book. That's where all the best stuff is... Spoiler alert: Eponine and Gavroche are actually brother and sister!



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