Saturday, April 28, 2007
Alright. So on Monday me and Brianna have auditions for Once Upon A Mattress. We're trying out for the lead role, and I know you're thinking, two friends trying out for the same role?! Well, three people are being casted for each role. So it's no problemo. Although we could very easily get called back for any role. They are giving us our callback that same day so everythings quick and easy. Then, on Tuesday, we are trying out for the dance team, which some lead roles require, and also because you're better safe then sorry. Let me clear things up, the dance team is like the intense ensemble, but once again some lead roles require it, so we are doing a lot to make this audition process easy. They teach you a dance, and then you perform it. Exactly the same as in Grease YTOTIW when all contestants were taught Tears on My Pillow and sang it for David Ian and he tapped you on the shoulder if you did not make it.
I am signing Jesus Christ Superstar(!) and Brianna is singing the Hercules song she always sings.
The end, battery is low.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
So here's the thing, we had to write an essay for G Dawg about one of the characters and three personality traits that made them admirable or non admirable based on these traits. I chose Mr. Frank because he is one of my heroes. And I started this essay and 1:p.m.and finished at 3:10 p.m. all to produce one of the most beautiful, six paged pieces of literature to be known in this world. I will post it for you here. I un-MLA'd it for your pleasure.
The Oh-So-Admirable Mr. Frank, Who Can Teach You a Thing or Two About Tomato Growing Season
Inspirational, Patient, Tolerant
Whispering. Tip-toeing. Cautiousness. Such is the manner and atmosphere of the Secret Annex, where eight innocent people are in hiding, unable to use the toilet, make any unnecessary noise, or walk without their shoes on between the hours of eight in the morning to six in the evening. These poor innocent people are all Jewish, considered lower than dogs by the Nazi and Anti-Semite society all because of their religion and beliefs, regardless of whether they are wholesome and good people or not. The man responsible: Adolf Hitler, powerful dictator of almost all of Europe to whom all of the blame should be thrust upon for the oppression and murder of almost the entire Jewish population, which was merely only a minority to begin with. In The Diary of Anne Frank, a play based on 13-year-old Anne Frank’s real diary, Anne, her family, and another family in addition are all hiding in the Secret Annex, living every day of their new lifestyle in fear of the Gestapo and being caught. Written by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, this story takes place during the Holocaust, and is a tragic story of these two families, striving for love and courage despite their harsh conditions. Mr. Frank, Anne’s father, maintains his good character throughout the entire play, and because of this, becomes successful with keeping an acceptable level of peace, tranquility and optimism alive in the Secret Annex. Because he is inspirational, tolerant, and patient, Mr. Frank is by far one of the most admirable characters in the play.
It would be a crime to say that Mr. Frank is not an inspiration to society. He demonstrates this amazing quality by bringing together two families with the sole purpose of protecting them from the Jew-hating world around them. He could easily be risking the lives of his own family by just living a normal life, but no, not only did he protect his own family, but the Van Daans as well. Plus, later on, he takes in another man, Albert Dussel, and this is inspiring because it shows his compassion for not only wanting to protect his own family, but to make good by protecting another family and a stranger as well. A second inspirational thing about Mr. Frank is how he held his daughter above him after she died. At the end of the play, Mr. Frank is reading a passage from Anne’s diary aloud to Miep Gies, which states: “In spite of everything, I still believe people are really good at heart.” Mr. Frank responds to this by saying, “She puts me to shame” (p. 281). What Mr. Frank means is that after all that happened within the Annex, he no longer believed people were good at heart, and thus making Anne more forgiving than him. A man like Mr. Frank holding his 15 year old daughter superior to himself is truly inspirational because he is being respectful to the spirit of Anne, whose name would later be a common household name all over the world.
Mr. Frank is the most patient person in the entire play. There were many instances when the other occupants of the Annex were about to blow their top, but Mr. Frank remained patient through thick and thin. One of these instances was when the office below the Annex was being broken into during a Hanukkah celebration. The Franks, the Van Daans and Dussel are all extremely frantic and worried as they stay motionless. Mr. Frank takes charge and claims he was going down to check things out, which was unquestionable in the others’ minds. When Mr. Frank comes back up, Anne is in a state of terror and Mr. Frank calmly assures her, “The danger has passed. Don’t be so terrified, Anne. We’re safe” (p. 255). Mr. Frank was being extremely patient during the whole break in scene; because the burglars could have been thieves, or they could have been the Gestapo coming to take everyone away. Mr. Frank calmly waits and does not show is he is scared, fidgety or frantic during an extremely tense time. Instead, he lets his inner Buddha shine through which helps the other Annex personas to follow his example. Another time he maintains patience is during all meal times. During dinnertime, Mr. Frank wants everyone to help themselves to food before him, and must observe that everyone is served and content before he serves himself to eat. In addition to making sure everyone is satisfied, he must endure Mr. Van Daan’s greed as he appears to take an excess amount of time to give himself excess of portions of their already scarce and minimal food. Mr. Frank chooses to remain patient through all mealtimes when Mr. Van Daan’s greediness is consistent and tedious. Why doesn’t Mr. Frank upturn the table and form a tirade? Because he is a premium man and looks down on such impatient behavior.
Mr. Frank’s tolerance is very much a prestigious trait he must have been born with. Take, for example, the constant times when Dussel makes numerous excursions to the one bathroom that everyone in the Annex shares and proceeds to take a very extensive time while inside. While everyone, particularly the ladies, of the Annex seem to be combating for their time in the bathroom and criticizing each others’ needs for the toilet, Mr. Frank never once complains or engages is bathroom warfare because as indicated before, Otto Frank is a tolerant man who does not mind the time the others consume in the bathroom because he respects their needs and beliefs that the bathroom is a sacred place. Most likely one of the most maximal times when Mr. Frank demonstrates first-rate tolerance is when Mr. Van Daan is caught stealing food late into the night. Mrs. Frank feels strongly that Mr. Van Daan must leave since according to her, he must have been stealing all along since he gets fatter every day. Mr. Frank repeatedly tries to convince Mrs. Frank that no one will be leaving the Annex when finally, he cannot withstand the arguing and makes a profound mini-speech: “For two long years, we have lived here, side by side. We have respected each other’s rights…we have managed to live in peace. Are we now going to throw it all away? I know this will never happen again, will it, Mr. Van Daan?” (p. 273). Mr. Van Daan, of course, replies by saying it will not happen again. The fact that Mr. Frank could forgive such a greedy man after he snuck around to steal food for himself shows that Mr. Frank was probably the most tolerant man on earth at that precise moment. Others, such as Mrs. Frank would probably not had forgiven Mr. Van Daan and kicked him out if they had a say in the matter, even if they were generally good people Mr. Van Daan most likely would have been on the streets long ago. It is a significant thing that Mr. Frank existed during those times, or else there would be no tolerant man to stand apart from others and take a stand.
In conclusion, Mr. Frank is highly admirable because of his inspiration, patience and tolerance. Who knows what life in the Annex could have been like if there were no Mr. Frank to keep things in line? Surely everyone would have killed each other for lack of Mr. Frank’s patience or tolerance. Otto Frank is even more inspiring in addition to the examples mentioned previously, for the reason that he spent a very long time fulfilling his daughter’s dreams of getting her diary becoming published after the war. Perhaps Mr. Frank wanted Anne’s diary to be published for a different reason than Anne wanted; Anne wanted her diary to be published after the war in hopes of becoming a famous writer and thus offering a first hand account of the adventures and perils that occurred in the Secret Annex. However, perhaps Mr. Frank published his daughter’s diary in hopes of keeping her spirit alive for generations and to remind people to be thankful for the health and prosperity they are living amongst, for it could be as bad as having to hide for two years only to be literally shipped off to your death after being liberated in the fresh air for too short a moment. Mr. Frank’s hopes turned into reality: Anne Frank’s diary is now published in numerous editions and read in various different languages all over the world. Otto Frank is the reason that, though Anne Frank may be dead in reality, her spirit forever lives on.
Now, onto a similar matter, Everything is Illuminated. I saw the movie first, and it was truly remarkable. It is about an American guy named Jonathan who hires a translator in Ukraine named Alex who speaks butchered english and a driver, who is Alex's grandpappy, to help him find the woman who saved his own grandfather from the Nazis. It is melancholy, beautiful, ugly, and hilarious all at the same time. Ever since then it became highly regarded on my list of favoritely amazing movies. Only after we started learning about the Holocaust in shallow depth (of that makes sense) in English did I realize this movie related to the subject obviously. Well, I stumbled upon the book at Borders and became truly giddy and was anxious to read it. It was awaiting a very long line since I was reading Wicked, and afterward read Anne Frank and wouldn't read this book until I was done the previous two. Well I started the book on Friday night and I am proud to say that I am more than halfway done. I am savoring every page though, so don't think I am just zooming through it. However I still seem to be zooming through it even though I am drinking in every word of every page. The book is so deep, there are three events happening all at once, one in the past, one in the present, and one in the future. It is phenomenal. The book is also melancholy and beautiful and wonderful and I have laughed a lot, and been filled with sadness a lot. I actually would not trade that book in for 1 million dollars. It is too good for that. Because in the end of the day it's sitting down with a truly wonderful book that matters, not wealth. I advise you to read it. I am truly attached to this book.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Monday, April 16, 2007
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Imagine the feelings associated with finally experiencing an amazing Broadway musical that will forever leave handprints on my heart forever. Let me try to help you visualize the exhilaration I was feeling today.
Today, on April 14th 2007, my sister and I woke up to the rustle of sheets between us on the ground; sheets we were so keen on having to ourselves. Every five seconds either of us would yank the single thin sheet to our own side, insisting that we were freezing and that there was no source of warmth. This was the way our morning began, on the floor of Saga's chic L.A. apartment in her family room. Finally to my utmost satisfaction, Her Royal Highness (better known as my sister) gave up the floor-bed and moved to the couch. The minimal blankets were allll miiiine. Only until I woke up completely and pranced around the apartment singing, "We're seeing Wicked, We're seeing Wicked!" I read Anne Frank as I waited for my mommy dearest to finish her shower so I could begin to get ready. Of course, once I started to get ready, there was an extra spring in my step, a brighter smile on my face, and more enthusiasm within me. Donned in my blue dress(with a touch of dressiness added by my mother[pictures to come]) and American Eagle flats (which I finally found after 3 days of searching at Payless next to the Grove!!) I was all ready after finishing my hair and makeup. Saga made us some delicious breakfast salsa egg thing, and we were off to the Pantages by 1:15 p.m.!
It wasn't exactly a journey, seeing as how Saga lives only 15 minutes away, but it was exciting nonetheless. Once we pulled up to the Pantages, we could not contain our excitement: the whole front of the theatre was decked out in WICKEDNESS. Saga dropped us off in front and we made our way to the inner section where employees were selling programs and CD's! My mom so kindly bought one program for us to share and to our delight, the man selling us the program filled us in on a little secret: THE CAST would be SIGNING the PROGRAM AFTER THE SHOW! We were overjoyed. We walked towards the main hall, where our tickets were scanned, and once we got into the lobby, we were in awe. The people all conversing as if we were at a gala event, the employees ecstatic to hand us the Playbills, and best of us all, the numerous stands scattered around entitled Oz Dust Boutique, where none other than quality merchandise was being sold. My sister, my mom and I all got in line at the nearest one and observed how willing people were to drop $65 on an Elphaba charm bracelet, or a whoppin $225 on an Elphaba messenger bag! To start off with, my mom bought us each the same shirt, which we both wanted, ironically the same size, which simply had the WICKED logo on the front in large font and the empowering words defy gravity on the back. We couldn't thank my mom enough. My mom proceeded to buy some treats from the huge and wonderful refreshment stand and we made our way to our precious seats! We were ecstatic. Orchestra seating (the best), Playbills, merch, our Program, and the best view in the world, we settled into our seats and admired the stage design. Person after person came filing through the doors, and even though the show was scheduled to start at 2 pm, we didn't mind waiting the extra five minutes as last minute personas were ushered into their seats.
And Finally, it began!
I was absolutely enthralled by this musical. The songs,the comedy, the drama, the actors, the stage designs, the costumes, the ORCHESTRA! It couldn't have been better. I patiently waited for the uplifting Defying Gravity and it came all too soon and tears welled up in my eyes and gracefully fell as my heart pounded with passion for Elphaba. It was PHENOMENAL, and that even would be a huge understatement. The only way to tell you how incredible it was would be to go have you see it yourself.
One of the funniest things that was NOT supposed to happen was Glinda FARTING during "Popular". Oh yes, a glorious moment, in which Eden (Elphie) and Megan (Glinda) could not stop laughing. They improv-ed it up spectacularly which just made us laugh even harder.
After the final number, we clapped and screamed our hearts out along with our standing ovation. It was marvelous. Afterward, we rushed to our exit so we could meet the cast, which to our convenience, the exit led right to the stage door where they came out!! It was very official, with little Wicked block offs to make a barricade between us and the cast. There weren't all that many people but luckily we snagged the best spots for pictures and autographs. Jenna Leigh Green came out first, after all the AMAZING orchestra of course, she played Nessarose and looked so pretty. We got a picture of her and she autographed our Playbills and program!! The only other person to come out though was Dioni Michelle Collins, who played Madame Morrible. She was young, to play someone so old and she was so sweet. We got the same from her as we did from Jenna Leigh Green. Too bad I forgot to bring the camera cord, or else I'd post all the pictures. We were disappointed that Elphie, Boq, and Fiyero didn't come out, but they had another show and the dressing room manager confirmed that they weren't coming out anytime soon since there were comfy couches. It didn't matter too deeply to me since the whole Wicked experience was just overwhelming enough!
After that whole shindiggitydig, me and my sister decided we wanted more merch, so we each got mugs, plus my sister a keychain and me a magnet. We were finally satisfied. We waited outside for Saga and it was freeeezing cold and then suddenly I saw Adam Wylie a few feet away from me! He plays Boq and I so badly wanted to just embrace him and converse with him and the whole enchilada! But I guess we took too long to contemplate, because his friends whisked him away. Oh well.
We went out to eat which was another experience in itself since a cockroach found its way onto Saga's foot, but you don't need to know that whole drama. And now I am here, typing my heart out, absorbed in WICKEDNESS and getting ready for tomorrow, when I'll be at the American Girl Theatre watching Brianna perform as Samantha. Don't fret my dearies, I will post pictures!
Once I kick off my Broadway career, I'll not let anything stop me from joining the cast of WICKED as Elphaba, I hope. No goal is too big for me to accomplish. But then again the ensemble or any other role would make me just as excited.
As for this uplifting, magical experience, I'll summarize it in a few profound words:
I simply couldn't be HAPPIER!