November 18, 2013

NaBloPoMo Day 18: Priscilla, the Paramount & a Public Proposal

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Image Credit: Joan Marcus
As I wrote about yesterday, we went to see Priscilla, Queen of the Desert last night at the Paramount, and the show was spectacular!  I enjoyed it so much.  The costumes were amazing, it was funny, and the musical numbers were big.  It was just FUN, and the audience was into it, which always makes it better.  There is just something about a show like this with the subject matter and the confrontation of homophobia and misunderstanding that occurs, and knowing you are in a room full of people who are completely accepting and love what they're watching warms your heart.  It was really refreshing after the last show we saw ended up being kind of a lukewarm disappointment in many ways.

It had been long enough since seeing the movie that I didn't remember the main plot point about why the queens were going on their desert trek, so it was nice to rediscover it.  I really want to watch the movie again now too!  After seeing it, one of the things I thought was how someday I wish I could just wear a big, feathery, showy headdress.  Just for a few minutes!

What we didn't know going in was that the show we saw last night was the last show of the U.S. tour.  After the end of the show, the actors stayed on the stage after the curtain call, and Scott Willis, who played Bernadette, began to speak.  He talked about the last 3 years working on this production and the costumes and the big-ness of the show - that it won't tour often because it's such an expensive show to produce, and the bus (which cost nearly a million dollars!) was never meant to leave New York, but they figured out how to do it.  It's a hugely technical show with a lot of lighting and other moving parts on the set, and there were 500 costumes - astronomical for a show where in most scenes, 25 people at most are on stage.  In the program there were some fun facts, one of which was that they used 2 lbs of glitter a month, and so much lipstick!

He talked about how it was so special to be involved in this show at a time when he feels that America is on the precipice of a time of true acceptance.  I feel it getting closer, but there's such a long way to go in so many ways, on so many levels.  It's nice to imagine a day when it will all be true though.  He spoke about the cast and their relationships with each other, he got choked up and so did I - I am kind of an empathetic crier (and a crier in general) then he turned to one of the young actors who played Benji and he was also choked up and it was just crazy and wonderful to be part of their farewell.

Scott turned it over to Wade McCollum, who played Tick/Mitzi, and he spoke about the players involved in the show and how they had made a beautiful tree with crazy colorful leaves and now those leaves would fall and all become part of some other tree.  They mentioned the costume designer and several others, and asked the choreographer to come up onto the stage.  I never noticed when Bryan West (Adam/Felicia) stole offstage to change from his costume into street clothes.  Then it was his turn to talk.

He said that one of the things this show had brought him in the last 3 years was the love of his life, the choreographer for the show, who he'd met and fallen in love with during this production.  Then he got down on one knee and proposed.  What?!  It was awesome.  I have never witnessed a proposal before, and what a perfect end to the night - two men getting a standing ovation for getting engaged at the final show of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert?  Sometimes, the world is just amazing.

NaBloPoMo November 2013

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