Monday, November 12, 2012

Once and The Fantasticks

Ever since I saw them perform on television at the Tony Awards (where they walked away with 8 Tonys including Best Musical), I have wanted to see the musical 'Once.' Based on a film, 'Once' tells the story of a Czech girl and an Irish guy who fall in love while making music together. The show is unique in its staging and narrative form, and also in the fact that all of the actors are also musicians who perform live on stage, giving the show an organic feel. It's like going to an open-mic night with acoustic guitars and soulful ballads. Just perfect. The only way I can describe this show is by saying it's magical and moving. It just became my new favorite musical!

So after our matinee we had time for another show. There were many that caught our attention, like 'Evita' or 'War Horse,' but none of them were playing Sunday night so we decided that 'The Fantasticks' off-broadway would be fun to see. It wasn't until we bought our tickets that we realized Aaron Carter was in it! Yep, once the biggest kid in pop music, he is now performing in a tiny off-broadway show. And do you know what? He was actually pretty good in it. Not the greatest singer (far too nasally) but full of energy. I wasn't familiar with the show at all, but it's one of Brian's favorites. It's quirky slap-stick fun with some great tunes.

The only problem seeing this show was a group of women who came stumbling in, drinks in hand, giggling like schoolgirls. They had fits of laughter several times throughout the production and at one point one of them tried getting out of her row. She stumbled over her friends and spilled her drink on them, which caused a loud shriek of "Shit!" and more laughing. It was a small theater so this was definitely distracting. A little funny, but mostly distracting.

Oh, one more thing I want to mention. For lunch yesterday we ate at a yummy little Japanese place called Saporro. I had Katsu-Don and Brian had Miso Ramen. Yummy stuff. At the table next to us was a little family from Brooklyn: Dean, Caroline and their middle-school-aged son Harper. They struck up a conversation and they were so fun to talk to. Dean is a film-maker who once had a movie at the Sundance Film Festival and Caroline studied English like me but then got into landscaping instead after working at a publishing house for a while. Their son is involved with theater in his school and loves it. As you can see we had lots to talk about. Before they left they gave us their number and email, encouraging us to give them a holler next time we were in New York City.

I'm telling you, the people here are the best.

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