I saw my first musical, Annie, when I was four-years-old. I distinctly remember the elaborate stage, adorned with a massive Christmas tree and a winding staircase. I don’t remember the music, just the image and the sensation that I wanted to see more. Thirty years later and I’m still in awe of how profound an experience live theatre is in my life.
Artists known for their musical theatre careers are some of the ones I hold in very high regard. Their musical talent shadows so many other in mainstream music. Their voices reach the back of the house, leaving me moved to tears and utterly impressed. Despite the overwhelming power of their vocal gifts, it is the sheer spiritual experience of being in a theatre during a show that moves me. My soul transports to a dimension filled with artistry, passion, and unwavering purpose when the music swells and the vocal talent pierces the room with their abilities.
Given my passionate affinity for Broadway musicals, I made it a priority to buy a ticket to this year’s Tony Award broadcast on Sunday, June 8th. I had it all planned – watch the nomination announcements online, blog about my thoughts afterward, buy a ticket to the award ceremony, and go to NYC numerous times in May to see the nominated shows.
I got excited as I pictured how amazing it would be to sit in Radio City Music Hall and watch some of the most brilliant talents perform. “Could you imagine,” I’d say to friends, “how awesome it would be to be in that audience when Ramin Karimloo sings with the Les Miserables cast or see Idina Menzel win another Tony?” I expect the chances that both will occur to be high, but I won’t be there to see it; the tickets sold out before I even knew they were on sale. (**Yes, there may have actually been some tears.**)
I’ll still go see the shows on my “must-see” list and will likely go to Times Square and watch the award show live on the massive TV screen – surrounded by my fellow theatre aficionados. It wasn’t Plan A, but perhaps an even more exciting option is around the corner. Now I’ve got the soundtrack to Thoroughly Modern Millie playing in my mind. (Kudos if you understood that musical theatre connection.) Apropos given Sutton Foster’s nomination for VIOLET this year.
Musical theatre may not be your “thing”, but it’s certainly mine. And that’s one role I’m proud to play!
If you have not heard of the musical theatre artists I referenced above, stop reading and go download the cast albums. You’re missing out on incredible talent!!
*DISCLAIMER: No endorsement from any of the above-mentioned artists or corporate entities intended or implied. I seek to share my appreciation of the industry with fellow theatre fans or those who don’t yet know they are one.*