Sunday, November 22, 2009

It's In The DNA

Ask anyone. We're the theater family. My kids were going to theater long before any of their friends. They, in turn, have dragged their friends into that wonderful fray, and even some family. Our daughter’s sweet sixteen birthday was a “Beauty and The Beast” (the musical) extravaganza!

The first time we met our soon-to-be-son-in-law, we dragged him to his very first musical, "Wicked!", which was premiering in San Francisco (where our daughter lived at the time) before making its run to Broadway. We saw the original cast.

It was awesome. That was a good start. Our future son-in-law left the theater a little dazed by it all, unsure what he'd just gotten himself into. He was a musical virgin no more. Since then, he's even become enthusiastic about going when we drag him along. It's pretty cute.

My husband grew up in a family of actors. His parents were part of the original Pasadena Playhouse, stage actors and film actors, too. So, his transition into that world was almost a foregone conclusion. He became an actor, for many years, then a sit-com writer, finally a talent agent.

One of the [few] perks of this job is HOUSE SEATS, BABY!! That means the cast has a certain amount of tickets they give out [or sell] to family, friends, agents... that are usually somewhere around 6th row center.

We're totally spoiled. Even on Broadway, we can mostly get these choice seats. If we are ever forced to buy from the box office and sit in the balcony [what??], we whine a little bit. Because, we're...ya know, a little dramatic.

It's in the DNA.

Last weekend's "Big River" was an example of this whole [free] house seat thing, with the actor playing Jim hoping to go with my husband's talent agency. A kind of audition. He liked him!

Last weekend, too, we went to the red carpet opening to see this guy!

It’s the Christmas season and what’s that without a little Dr. Seuss? Of course, they don’t let you take pictures inside the theater, but you can see a bit of this monument to Art Deco in the background of this shot. It’s amazing. The Grinch was great. Fun for everyone and the cast, amazing.

But this weekend, we went to see this gem! Mary Poppins!

Oh, that plucky Mary Poppins! It was much of the original cast from both London and Broadway, including Mary herself and Bert, [who happens to be married to one of the other cast members, who is my husband's client!] So we got to schmooze backstage afterward with him. He’s totally British and is digging the California Sunshine! So adorable.

I’ve seen a lot of musicals, but Mary Poppins has to be one of my all-time faves. There’s this moment, when she’s singing this song, “Anything can happen if you let it!” and she sprinkles this sparkly light out over the audience, as if she’s giving us that gift. It was, well, magical.

Now, close your eyes, say those words to yourself three times, imagine some twinkly lights tripping over you. And let some of Mary Poppins magic rub off on you, too.

Because, "Anything can happen, if you let it."

Be kind to yourself, Barbara


Snap said...


Wonderful post -- so *light and twinkly*. We are stage fans ourselves. Too much fun! I once had 6 row center seats for Titanic on Broadway. Will never forget it.

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

What a delightful post Barbara! I think the key word in Mary Poppins exhortation is "let". So many of us are filled with unconscious resistance to receiving, to our own good. Sometimes we have to make a conscious decision and effort to 'let it in'! Thanks so much for the reminder.

BTW, Thank you for your comment on my post. Thich Nhat Hanh is a buddhist monk who has written many simple, helpful books on how to decrease suffering and increase compassion and peace in your life.

clairedulalune said...

You know what Barbara, I have never been to a broadway show, ever. I really want to see a show now, there should be something magical on since its christmas time! I wil let you know when I go and see one. Mary poppins sounds fantastic!

Renee said...

Oh Barbara I love this post.

And oh my God I love being entertained.

I have to tell you I laughed because you could have been talking for me, that family of idiots and the hot air balloon, I saw them on wifeswap and all I could think is those kids should be taken away from those losers. The kids were little brats and the parents were monsters.

Love Renee xoxo

Debra She Who Seeks said...

How wonderful! I've always adored Mary Poppins.

Chatty Crone said...

Oh my gosh you lucky lucky (did I say lucky) girl - woman! I love the theater myself. It is wonderful and just transports you to another place for just a little while. Sandie

rxBambi said...

We split season tickets at the Fox Theater in St. Louis with a man that works with my husband. Front row center for Broadway Series shows! It's amazing, we have seen so many great shows (and a couple bad ones). The problem comes when we want to see a show and don't have those seats, we totally whine! Well, I whine, hubby copes better.
Hey, email me, I will answer your blogger question :)

stregata said...

After reading this, I can definitely feel the magic! Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm - it has put a smile on my face!

Renee said...

Thank you dear friend.

I love that your daughter married the boy who went to Wicked.


Chatty Crone said...

Thanks for your answer on my blog today - Sarah - that must be your sister? How cool when the family gets together and does this.

Sarah said...

What theater in our betcha!! I used to looove going with Mom to Broadway plays in LA..Oh your sister is wicked green!! I soooooo miss them!! Get in the blood!!
Giggle I love that line..musical virgin..poor guy!! He didn't stand a chance in this family..even Jim has been to Beauty and the Beast..giggle!!
Wonderful memory filled post hon!!
Love you, Sarah

Barbara said...

Snap--Yes, light and twinkly is exactly what Mary Poppins was about! I highly reccomend it if it comes to a town near you!

Barbara said...

Bonnie--Yes, Let is the key word. It really hit me as those lights sparkled all over me that that's exactly what it meant. Doh. I need constant reminders. And I'm gonna go buy some of Hahn's books. I loved your post on him. So enlightening, yet simple.

Barbara said...

Claire!!!! Well, you simply must go! :p) That one must go on your "to-do" list. Not that I'm bossy or anything, but I'm just sayin'. :p) See "Wicked" if it comes anywhere near you. You'll absolutely love it.

Barbara said...

Renee, I'm with you. I love being entertained! Thank God for actors!
xox B

Barbara said...

Debra, Me Too! Funnily, my most memorable MP moment as a kid wasn't the kites or the talking umbrella, but the birdwoman, feeding the birds. She seemed so sad. And the woman playing her (our client) told us she'd felt the same way about that character. Loves playing her.

Barbara said...

Sandie, Yes, me, too. I'm afraid that's what got me into writing novels, getting transported to another place and time. What does that say about me?? Hmmm.

Barbara said...

Stratega, So glad! :p)

Barbara said...

Oops, Sandie again! Yes, Sarah and I are sisters! And Anne, at Aging Lite. She's the other culprit. We talk about each other so much I forget not everyone in our mutual circles knows.

Barbara said...

And speaking of the sister... Thanks Sarah. Yes, I think we all got our love of it from Mom, who's mom used to take her to the actual Broadway for treats. Hope you're doing okay, honey! Talk soon.

Chatty Crone said...

Just wanted to stop by and wish you and your family a nice Thanksgiving tomorrow too.

PS Once in awhile I like to be transported to another place in time. I think that's okay - don't you?