A Night at the Theater

22 Oct

I’d like to preface this post by acknowledging the accomplishments of the greatest team in major league baseball: The Philadelphia Phillies.  After many a sleepless night devoted to watching live streaming video of games on mlb.tv anywhere from 3am to 7am, along with the occasional radio broadcast on my iphone should the internet be out, I’m proud to call the Phillies MY team and excited to return to that wacky nocturnal schedule in a week when they begin to defend their World Series Championship!  Gotta love them Phils.

Moving on…

Anyone that knows me at all knows that I love love love musical theater.  Anyone who knows me at all will also know that my all-time favorite movie is the absolutely wonderful and fantastic “Singin’ in the Rain”.  So upon hearing that a stage production of Singin’ in the Rain was to be visiting Athens for a few performances, it should be no surprise to anyone who knows me at all that, of course, I rallied the troops and bought tickets to the show.  Last night began my relationship with the theater world of Athens.  Don’t worry, New York, I haven’t forgotten you.  Quite the opposite, really.  I just need a few good stages to understudy for you while I’m abroad.  I’ll be back, New York, I promise.

I went with a few friends last night to the opening night performance of Singin’ in the Rain, put on by a British theater company (i.e. the production was in English, phew).  The Badminton Theater is new and large, and quite a nice venue to see a performance of any kind.  Throughout the upcoming year, they will have touring productions of Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and Evita, among others.  There was a buzz in the air as we walked in the theater, which was absolutely packed to the brim, and we, having arrived just a few minutes before the 9pm curtain, made our way through the crowd to our seats. On our way, we noticed hoards of cameras.  What’s going on?  A celebrity?  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I experienced my first celebrity sighting, Greek style.  We discovered through the translated grapevine that this man, resembling a Greek Kevin Federline, studded sweatshirt and baseball cap included, was a famous Greek singer (I’m assuming pop star.  He didn’t strike me as the opera or classical type.).  Sarah was pummeled by a cameraman trying to make his way to this singer, who I’ll refer to as Yannis.  His name was not Yannis, but out of my sheer ignorance for Greek celebrities and the fact that Greek men actually have more than one of a handful of names, I figure there’s about a 40% chance it’s Yannis, so why not?  Yannis was enjoying a photo op, getting interviewed and basking in the adoration of his many fans, and we, the oblivious Americans, figured that going to opening night must have been a smart move on our part.

The show started over a half hour late, and as the overture began, the floodgates seemed to finally open and people poured in, trying to scurry to their seats.  The musical was good.  Nothing can compare to the movie and the genius of Gene, Debbie, Donald, and Jean, but there’s really no use in comparing.  The plot was slightly altered (minor details mostly), and two songs were added.  The Don Lockwood character sang the famous lines to “Singin’ in the Rain” in Greek, which got a rowdy applause, and it was cool to see just how world famous this musical is.  One major problem?  These British actors didn’t do such a great job mastering the American accent, and the show was a constant struggle between American/British/Scottish accents.  The Greeks probably didn’t notice, figuring English was English, and it made me realize just how horrible we Americans must sound when we try to impersonate the Brits.

A few cultural differences:

1.  During intermission, there was no line for the bathroom.  Everyone was too busy smoking outside.

2. People started leaving during the curtain call.  I found this to be rude and extremely disrespectful, and it actually made me angry to see these people walk out on hard-working actors who just spent the last 3 hours busting their tap shoes to entertain them.  I’ve come to terms with the casual dress code that the theater has come to accept, but walking out on the curtain call?  What’s next, talking on your cell phone throughout the performance?

All in all, it was an enjoyable night, and I’ll be back at the Badminton as soon as I get a chance.  For now, I have to go.  In just a few short hours I’ll be on a plane to Ireland for the next 6 days.  Not really sure how to say goodbye in Irish speak.  I know it’s not Cheerio, so I’ll just say Lucky Charms instead.

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4 Responses to “A Night at the Theater”

  1. Cousin Mike Goldstein October 23, 2009 at 5:30 pm #

    Hi doll. Completely continue to enjoy your adventures. I never knew you were into Broadway shows. I’m sure I told you my summer camp counsel was Stephen Schwartz (writer of Wicked, Pipin, Godspell). Anyway, I was wondering if the smoking culture was still the main stay of Greek culture. I spent much time with many Greeks in Australia. They smoked constantly. All of them. Have a ball in Ireland. How great. And Green.

  2. Un-cremated Sona October 31, 2009 at 8:54 pm #

    That’s so cool, chica! Did I tell you that I went to see my first EVER Broadway musical this summer (Mary Poppins)? So much fun! The show was FANTASTIC and now I’m hooked. Since then, I’ve also seen: Monty Python’s Spamalot and Manon (which is a French Opera). I’m so jealous 😛 It sounds like you’re having an awesome time in Greece! I loved reading your post too, it was hella entertaining + interesting and SO you.

  3. evelyn & Harry November 4, 2009 at 5:42 pm #

    We are in a cyber cafe in the Caribbean on St. Kitts.
    This is two weeks into our 3 1/2 week cruise. Just read your last two articles. Great to read your adventures. Keep it up. Love you much and kisses and hugs, too.

  4. Jillian Levi June 26, 2011 at 9:37 pm #

    There was a week break in November? cool 🙂

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