Spontaneous I am not when it comes to making plans. I rarely go to movies without coming to the decision a day or two ahead, checking the times and giving myself a chance to back out. I almost never go to a play or concert without tickets in hand weeks before. I can't even remember the last time I was a walkup customer at any event. That's why today was unusual.
Naturally, I nearly backed out at the last minute. Mom was out of town the last two days, so I thought our last chance to see "The Pirates of Penzance" had passed. I was only a little disappointed. She got back late last night from her two-day bus trip, and I was sure she'd be too tired to go to the matinee today. I was almost sure I'd be too tired as well.
On the other hand, when backed into a corner I cave. Mom assumed I wanted to go, and I assumed she wanted to go, so we went. It didn't matter who was tired and who wasn't. It didn't matter who needed to get some work done and had a busy week of catching up ahead and should have spent the day doing spreadsheets. And who needn't, hadn't and shouldn't.
As usual, it turned out to be a good move. When forced out of the house, I rarely regret it. This was the local community theater version of Gilbert and Sullivan that I've been half avoiding, because this company's last couple of musical productions have been, well, disappointing. Maybe it helps to have lowered expectations, but I wasn't disappointed today.
This is the same production Bev wrote about a week ago, and I have little to add. The choreography was brilliantly engaging, and the singing was spotty. Some very good, some pretty bad. Most of the singers could act, which can be a rarity in itself. I do believe if you're going to do "Pirates," the very least qualification for the role of the Major-General is the ability to pronounce the word "model." It's a real accomplishment to know all the words, but you have to be able to say them.
On the other hand, an announcement was made before the show that some of the players were performing despite battling an illness that's been going through the company. I choose to attribute any lapses to that fact.
The Luther Burbank Center was hugely crowded today, which must be very satisfying to a struggling theater company. It would have been more satisfying to me if the tallest person in the tri-county area hadn't been sitting in front of us. That's another chance you take when you see a play on the local level, especially when you buy two of the last tickets available.
But the nearly-full house was enthusiastic, laughing and applauding in the right places and fully appreciative of the effort being made to entertain us.