Dinner at UNO’s with Quintin was loaded with good humor, and great food. I love eating at UNO’s prior to a show at The Victoria Theatre, or The Schuster Center, because there is that familiar electricity in the air that is not only energizing, but comforting, as well. I absolutely love that feeling I get before a production begins.
Quintin’s eyes devoured the expansive, imposing lobby of the Schuster Center. While at the ticket center, I personally met someone who had just written me that morning about my posts on Facebook. It was such a nice surprise.
We took our seats – four apart – and the families began pouring into the auditorium. Yes, it looked like a sea of young sprouts ready to watch Disney On Ice, but I love seeing the little peeps at the theatre, or in concerts. Seated next to me was a plump little thing not older than 8 years, who had no control over her body, whatsoever. Within a few minutes I had dubbed her Princess Bounce A Lot!
We were up in the upper balcony, and could not see the incredible dome which, to me, is one of the most gorgeous memorials to The Wright Brothers. The dome is the constellation’s configuration above Dayton the night before the Wright Brother’s first flew at Kitty Hawk in 1903. Every time I see it I am quite touched.
I don’t believe I have ever attended a production where giraffes simply walking across the stage received an ovation; however, I don’t think I’ve ever seen giraffes on stage… well, perhaps in some productions of Children of Eden. The opening number continued to build, and build, and build until there was this enormous wall of sound, and a scenic moment of set, costumes, lighting that was breathtaking. I kept thinking how famous scenic & lighting designer, Jo Mielziner would have reacted to this moment – and the many more that were to follow.
I had thoroughly enjoyed the animated motion picture, The Lion King, when it first appeared on the scene years ago, tonight the story’s line came to life in a much richer expanse. I love the themes where the protagonist has no idea when it is his time to step up the role for which he is truly intended. I saw some Hamlet peek through, but more of Moses and Lincoln. Good always triumphs over evil.
Several times I looked down the row to see how Quintin was taking in this epic experience. I know I probably teared up a little as I watched him bounce to the music, his head toss back with laughter, and a smile remain on his face. Following intermission, Princess Bounce A Lot and her mother were escorted to different seats, so Quintin joined me. I could tell he was loving every minute. After the show we walked over to Riverscape, and he cheerfully pointed out his favorite moments.
As I sit here, several hours following the production’s close, I cannot decide if I watched true musical theatre, or something beyond legitimate musical theatre. At times, the beauty on stage seemed to be living scenery choreographed to music. And, it truly does not matter. All that matters is that I was fortunate to share this experience with a new son.