19 September 2012

Evita: My Broadway Experience!

Have I said to much? There is nothing left that I could say to you!? I'm only joking for those lyrics make up the headlining song 'Don't Cry For Me Argentina' from the musical of 'Evita.' I have been busy recently, going to shows, music concerts and taking Caribbean holidays! For this moment I'm going to look back on my fabulous evening spent at a Broadway theatre show.

From the moment I arrived in New Jersey, USA the idea of going to a Broadway show was at the top of my to do list. This milestone event in my journey finally happened in September of this year and I can say that I waited for a show to remember! Like the London's West End, Broadway has a wide array of shows that definitely capture the eye! Selecting one particular show to be amazed by was simply too easy. The headlining star influenced the choice for sure! I chose 'Evita' a story about the heroine 'Eva Peron' which, tells the troubles and triumphs of her reign as one of Argentina's most inspiring women who captured the hearts of the people of Buenos Aries, Argentina. I must admit that it felt a lot more glamourous attending a Broadway show in the heart of New York City's Theatre-land, being in the centre of Times Square must have something to do with that? Yes, within all the crazy I felt blessed that evening! Go!

Showcasing at the Marquis Theatre in the heart of 'Times Square it did not take a lot of thought to just book my tickets for the show within a second. I will be completely honest I couldn't wait for my Broadway experience for I wanted something different to do with my time in America! I will be frank that I paid through the nose for this specific ticket, but somethings in life are not for free! Settling down in my seat I had chose a really good seat, the Marquis Theatre felt a lot smaller compared to some of the grand Victorian theatres I had been to shows in London, but Broadway was going to be whole new experience for me. Everybody was dressed well, turned out in their best wear it was nice to see because when I have seen shows in England some people really don't care for the occasion. I had worked the early shift so I had trouble waking from nap, getting my life together I ran down Ferry Street to get the PATH train to 33rd St then the NYC subway to Times Square.

The one and only Ricky Martin had the role as 'Che' the narrator, using the medium of song and dance Ricky Martin played a sizzling part throughout the show. I will be honest and say that during some parts of the show Ricky Martin sang better than the leading lady Evita who was played by 'Elena Rogers.' To be honest this role possessed a different quality to something that I have never seen before. Evita proved to be a worthwhile choice for my Broadway selection. I cast my mind back to the beginning of the show, I had heard whispers from the lobby that Ricky Martin wasn't performing, but those whispers were utter rubbish for the pop singer made his cue during the first part of the show. I would have felt cheated if there was going to be a understudy play 'Che!' It was safe to say that ninety percent of the theatre bought their tickets to see Ricky Martin! Puerto Rico's best export after J.Lo! Viva Puerto Rico!

The show itself was broke up into two acts, the same as any 'West End' shows in London but the first act seemed to be shorter than the second half. 'Elena Rogers' played her part magnificently and executed the headlining songs perfectly such as; 'Don't Cry For Me Argentina' and 'You Must Love Me', that were performed beautifully and truly left the audience wanting more! After seeing the musical I really wanted to watch the film of 'Evita' that features Madonna so I can appreciate the headlining songs as she performed them during her 'Sticky and Sweet Tour' in London. You know my views about Ricky Martin but I believe that his performance was out of this world! This show truly helped depicted the struggles and victories of Peron's Argentine rein. Why had I waited until September to see such a show? Broadway doesn't usually wait for anyone but I feel like I was meant to see that show when I did. Evita was probably going to be my only Broadway show, I was on a mission!

A hotel? Yes, this Times Square theatre is placed in the centre of the Marriott Marquis hotel in the heart of Times Square New York City. It was very strange to think that this theatre probably was once a standalone building before the hotel was built around it. The proceedings between acts worked differently compared to the usual West End theatre show in London as the audience did not all leave to have drinks and talk about the show, something I did find quite strange indeed! I think back to this night and I know that I am so lucky to have been to a Broadway Show in New York City! One thing to notice is that the American theatre goers didn't really share the same gusto and appreciation for a show that we British exercise. I believe that its only right to show your appreciation to the cast at the end of the show by cheering and clapping, for the show I saw was really good, however the clapping didn't match! Follow our lead!

Are American casts just not into performing an encore? It's very obvious that us Brits are more familiar with the arts compared to our American counterparts, so we know how to react appropriately during a theatre show. I enjoyed the show and the efforts of Mr. Ricky Martin but after the cast took their final bows they didn't give the audience an encore or even another round of bows to encourage more clapping from the audience. I can now say I have been to theatre shows on both sides of the pond, experiencing Broadway had to be done but I expected more from the atmosphere as everything is so hyped up. Nevertheless, those main numbers impressed me much and the story of Evita will always be a great one to watch for more times to follow. I'm gutted I never got tickets for the Broadway version of Priscilla, but that's just so! After my night at the theatre it was time to leave the glimmering lights of Broadway for my Newark neighbourhood, the show must go on!

Broadway! Broadway! 

Joseph Harrison

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