Thursday, August 6, 2009

Entertainment Thursday: In the Heights

In the Heights

As I said in my previous post, my friend Katie and I decided to start a little Broadway Tradition. Once a year we're going to get in line at TKTS and get tickets to a show together! I'm so psyched about this tradition, you all know how much I love to go to the theater.

This past Sunday was the day. I got to TKTS at 10:20AM about 40 minutes prior to TKTS opening. I was shocked by the line at that time. I read in line and made friends with a guy from Peru (Marco) we swapped theater stories about what we'd seen and liked recently. Katie got there a little before 11AM. I was surprised by how quickly the line moved. I'm not going to lie I was kind of dreading getting in that long line but it flew. We had our tickets by 11:30AM AND we got the show we wanted.

We snagged 2 orchestra seats to In the Heights. We had great seats - Row O, Seat 14 & 16. I was concerned we'd be too far to the side but the center section of the theater was much smaller then in other theaters so we were just slightly right of the center. I didn't really know much about this show other than that it featured some rap music, Latin Music and took place in NYC.

The basic premise is that Nina Rosario comes back to her old neighborhood, Washington Heights, after not doing as well at Stanford as her family & friends had hoped. It explores many people's views on their neighborhood - the relationships formed, the expectations, the people, etc.

It was phenomenal!!!! It was fun & funny - I was dancing in my seat. The music was so great. There were many elements of rap, but also great vocals, specifically from the character Benny (he was amazing!) It was very Latin which I also loved. In the Heights made me realize that what I love best about musicals are the ensemble numbers with all or a large part of the cast. In this play almost every song was sung by numerous people making each song powerful. Each song was better than the next (I can't wait to get the soundtrack!) To get an idea of the music you can click here for their Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade performace.

I also felt that they handled the Spanish language much better in this play then in West Side Story. They did use it in the dialogue but more for small sayings (ie: Bueno, no me diga, caridad, etc). It didn't take away from the show at all only added to it (in my opinion). They did sing a lot in Spanish but every song that was sung in Spanish was also sung in English if that makes sense. They would essentially translate the song for the audience so you never felt you couldn't understand. Granted I'm a little biased in this statement becuase I could for the most part understand the Spanish so it didn't seem that bad to me but I'm not sure what it would be like if you didn't know Spanish, maybe it would take away from the show.

All in all, I would give this show 5 stars. It's one I would see again, and like I said I can't wait to get the soundtrack!!!

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Have you seen In the Heights? What did you think of it?

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