Measured in Love

I have been waiting 2,628,000 minutes to see Rent. It was so worth the wait and exceeded my expectations. So today I will be reviewing Rent and waiting five years was worth it and I needed it yesterday.

So what is Rent about? Rent is about a group of friends and their life in a year in the midst of the HIV and AIDS epidemic. You have filmmaker and narrator Mark, HIV positive and musician Roger, HIV positive and dancer Mimi, HIV positive Collins, HIV positive and compassionate Angel, crazy and performance artist Maureen, lawyer Joanne and landlord Benny. There are three couples in this musical, who are Roger and Mimi, Collins and Angel and Maureen and Joanne. They discover throughout the musical that you should measure your lives in love and live in the moment. There is so much fear, uncertainty, but also a lot of love because the relationship between this friends is like a family.

In this cast, I had Kaleb Wells as Roger, Sammy Ferber as Mark, Aaron Harrington as Collins, Marcus John as Benny, Jasmine Easler as Joanne, Aarong Alcaraz as Angel, Skyler Volpe as Mimi and Lyndie Moe as Maureen. I did not have a single understudy last night.

Possible Spoilers:

I found the entire cast to be amazing including the ensemble. Kaleb Wells played a wonderful Roger. Throughout “One Song Glory”, I could feel the heartbreaking nature of the song and this was the first time I got emotional during the song. I could see his unwillingness to enter into a relationship with Mimi despite the fact that he loves her. “Your Eyes” is a song that I always get emotional during, but still he portrayed that song incredibly.

Sammy Ferber really brought out the narrator side of Mark. I started to believe in him when he began the show. It makes sense that Mark is the narrator because he is a filmmaker. He is Roger’s best friend

Skyler Volpe played a good Mimi. She made a good match to Kaleb Well’s Roger. Throughout “Light My Candle”, I could tell they felt an attachment to each other. “I Should Tell” made me emotional and usually during love duets, I usually don’t get that emotional, but that song did. Throughout Roger and Mimi’s relationship, you can easily see their fighting and the anger throughout those as well. Roger and Mimi are my favorite couple even though they fight a lot, but you see Mimi so badly wanting to enter a relationship with Roger and who wants to live in the moment.  “Without You” is another one of those emotional moments and I did feel the emotion as well.

Aarong Alacaraz played a very sweet and energetic Angel. “Today For You” was the most energetic moment of his performance. He was a nice match to Aaron Harrington’s Collins. They are the only couple where there is no fighting. Because they both know they each have HIV, they live in the moment. Collins looks after Angel when Angel is dying of AIDS so they have a lovely relationship with each and their portrayals of the characters really shows.

Lyndie Moe was incredible as Maureen. I always knew Maureen was quite crazy. Lyndie Moe was able to bring out her crazy side but also brought out her sweet side because Maureen is both but mainly crazy. Her “Over the Moon” performance was quite hilarious and crazy, which is perfect for Maureen. I feel like Maureen and Joanne fight the most when it comes to their relationship especially because Maureen is always flirting with other guys.

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Jasmine Easler really made you feel how annoyed she can get when it comes to Maureen. Throughout “Tango Maureen”, Joanne and Mark talk about how Maureen can drive them nuts.

This entire group of friends is wonderful. During “Goodbye Love”, you could really feel it. They spent a lot of the song being angry with each other. This all happened soon after Angel died. But they eventually come to the conclusion that the best life to live is one filled with love.

Marcus John played Benny, one of my least favorite characters. I wish I could say some things about him, but I can’t seem to. Benny is their landlord and marries for money even though he eventually warms up and begins to rejoin the group of friends.

As for the small ensemble, they were wonderful. Each of the life support meetings got me emotional especially during “Will I”, which is quite a powerful song got me emotional and the song is only three lines repeated over and over with some overlap. Even the opening song, “Rent”, got me somewhat emotional. The two soloists in “Seasons of Love” were incredible. Rent is such a meaningful musical to me and glad I finally got to see it live. The finale of the show is one of the best ways to end a musical.

As for my seats, I had such a wonderful set. You could see the entire set and that was perfect and we were near the center of the Mezzanine. I loved the set. I have seen the final Broadway cast film, but never noticed there was an actual moon in the set. You can easily tell it starts on Christmas Eve because eventually this thing of junk lights up with Christmas light and later you can see it beginning to snow.  It looks like the East Village. You can actually see Mark’s video that he made during the second act.

I knew coming in I would be an emotional wreck, but wasn’t expecting to be as emotional as I got. Rent is a sad musical, but at the same time inspiring because it teaches you about the preciousness of life and why it is important to live in love and in the moment. At the time period that Rent takes place, there is a lot of fear and uncertainty because if you end up with HIV, it was basically a death sentence and they all measure their lives in love. No Day But Today.

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Analysis of “Seasons of Love”

“Seasons of Love” is the title song from the musical, Rent. To me, this song is about how to measure life. It taught me the preciousness of life. There are only 525,600 minutes in a year as the song says and it talks about how do we measure that amount of time. It talks about living your life in love. There isn’t time in your life to live your life in hate. It is more important to live your life in love, not hate. Rent is all about what do we do with the time that we have. In Rent, it is dealing with the HIV/AIDS epidemic and if you ended up with it, it was literally a death sentence and life is really fragile for them and there is a lot of fear, but they still live their lives in love. “Seasons of Love” still reminds me of how much time we have in life and how short it is. Look at half of the main characters (Roger, Mimi, Collins, Angel): they all have HIV and you don’t know how much longer you have to live. Even in real life, you don’t know how short your life will be and life can be taken from you so quickly. I love Rent for the message that it has and true it is a sad musical, but it has an inspiring message of living in the moment and in love: No Day But Today. Remember love is important in life and it is important to love others.

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Moments so dear
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure – measure a year?
In daylights – in sunsets
In midnights – in cups of coffee
In inches – in miles
In laughter – in strife

In – five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure
A year in the life

How about love?
How about love?
How about love?
Measure in love

Seasons of love
Seasons of love

Soloist number one
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Journeys to plan

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure the life
Of a woman or a man?

Soloist number two
In truths that she learned
Or in times that he cried
In bridges he burned
Or the way that she died

All
It’s time now – to sing out
Tho’ the story never ends
Let’s celebrate
Remember a year in the life of friends

Remember the love
Remember the love
Remember the love
Measure in love

Soloist number one
Measure, measure your life in love

Seasons of love
Seasons of love

 

My Journey With Rent

One of the meaningful musicals of my life is Rent. Rent is based off of the opera, La Bohème, and written by Johnston Larson who tragically died the night before previews. It takes places during the HIV/AIDS epidemic and is dealing with characters from the LGBT community and features a drug addict so Rent is a very adult and mature musical, but its message is so universal.

I first fell in love with it in Fall of 2012. I was listening to the songs through Pandora and I fell in love with them without knowing the plot. At that point, I had not clue I was falling in love with a sad musical. Ever since 2012, I honestly hoped to see the stage show someday despite not knowing the plot. It is crazy falling in love with a musical through songs alone and I already found it becoming meaningful without knowing anything about the plot.

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The following year I finally got around to seeing some version of Rent. In 2008, Rent did a special version of the Broadway production. They put together a film of the final Broadway cast. The musical consists of filmmaker Mark, HIV positive and musician Roger, HIV positive and dancer Mimi, drag queen, gay and HIV positive Angel, gay and HIV positive Collins, bisexual and performance artist Maureen, lesbian and lawyer Joanne and landlord Benny. Mimi and Roger are a couple, Angel and Collins are a couple and Maureen and Joanne are a couple. Mark is the narrater of the musical.

It actually was a really well done cast. They captured the family of the friends really well. The emotion of Rent was brought out nicely and so was the overall message.

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I have two emotional connections to the musicals. One emotional connection I have is found among the relationship between the family found among between all the friends and despite relationship struggles between Mimi and Roger and Maureen and Joanne, the friends still remain a strong family. My other emotional connection is very personal, but I feel like in some way I can relate to some of the struggles some of the characters have. When Angel died, it seemed as if the family would fall apart, but it never did.

The message of this overall message is what to do with the life that you have. It teaches about the preciousness of life. It teaches you to measure your life in love and live in the moment. No Day But Today. Rent it truly inspiring and celebrates life and teaches you the beauty of life. The message is one of the biggest reasons why Rent is meaningful to me.

Les Mis and Rent are the only two meaningful sad musicals of my life. They both go beyond their sadness. They both are quite powerful with wonderful messages. Rent was the first sad musical I feel in love with, but I didn’t know it was sad until after I had already seen the Les Mis movie. Rent is not quite as sad as Les Mis is, but Rent is still sad.

In September, I will be seeing the musical live for the first time.

Do you love Rent? If so, why do you love the musical?

 

Controversial Nature of Rent

One musical that is meaningful to me is Rent and it is one of those musicals that is dealing with controversial and very adult subject matters. This musical is based off of the tragic opera, La Bohème. This musical takes place during the HIV/AIDS epidemic and features a drug addict and members of the LGBT community. Because this is one of my favorite musicals, it shows just how accepting I am as a person. I feel like the meaningful musicals represent who I am as a person.

Possible Spoilers:

The musical centers around filmmaker, Mark, HIV positive and musician, Roger, HIV positive, drug addict, and dancer, Mimi, bisexual and performance artist Maureen, lesbian and lawyer, Joanne, HIV positive, gay and teacher,Collins, and gay, drag queen and HIV positive Angel. True some of these characters belong to the LGBT  community, true some have HIV, and true one is a drug addict, but the characters are way more than that. They are a close kinit group of friends and they are like a family to each other. In the midst of fear, they live in the moment and live life in love.

This show in all has three different romantic relationships. It has the relationship between Mimi and Roger, which is what the main romance is between. Roger and Mimi do have a struggling relationship especially considering the fact that both have HIV. Roger at first does not want to be involved in any kind of relationship because of what happened to his latest relationship. He learned his former girlfriend, April, discovered that she has HIV and that is how Roger got it and she committed suicide, which left Roger quite depressed. He is also a recovering drug addict and does not want the same struggle to happen between him and Mimi. After learning that Mimi is a heroin addict and that she has HIV, this reminds him of what happened between his last relationship.

It has the always fighting relationship between Maureen and Joanne. They never seem to get along and Joanne has a hard time putting up to Maureen’s craziness. But in a lot of ways, the relationships between Joanne and Maureen and Roger and Mimi do represent what can happen in a relationship sometimes. Sometimes, a couple fights and struggles to stay in a relationship.

It has the relationship between Collins and Angel and their relationship is not as difficult as the other two relationships. They realize that because both have HIV, they decide to make the most of their relationship.

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Even though Rent is dealing with a lot of adult subject matter, it is still such a wonderful musical. It’s message is very universal and reminds you of the preciousness of life and that you shouldn’t waste it. It shows how to live life in the face of fear. They live in the moment and live their lives through love. The plot is really about these group of friends and their life in a year. But the plot is way more complicated than what it appears at first glance. Rent is a sad musical, but the message is why Rent is such an inspiring musical. It shows what happens in life sometimes and shows the importance of having a tight-knot group of friends. They are all way more than their labels and people are always puzzled as to way I love the musical. I love the musical due to its incredible songs, its characters, the plot. My favorite character are Mimi and Roger and have no clue why.

This sounds crazy, but Rent is the first sad musical I ever loved. I fell in love with it by listening to the songs through Pandora Fall of 2012 and at the time didn’t even know the plot and it already became meaningful and I found out Rent was sad after I had already seen the Les Mis movie. I saw that movie of Les Mis in December, which was after I had already fallen in love with Rent.

I have never seen Rent live before, but in September, my parents are finally taking me.

Controversy

Messiness of Life

Life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful

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This is so true. Life is beautiful in so many ways. Everyone goes through these rough and dark times. But those times do help us appreciate the best times in our life even more. Without those rough times, how will we know what the good times are? No one likes feeling the negative emotions or living through darkness, but they are worth it because it is part of life. Life is precious and as result, we need to make the most of every moment even in the darkest times and even when we struggle to see the light. In those dark times, it is good time to learn and try to find something good when those times strike.

A perfect life is nearly impossible. There is no way we can live a life of just light and just positive emotions. It is natural to feel hurt and is beneficial. In those dark times, just look towards the light and don’t think you are moving away from the light. Incredible memories have been part of my life and even bad memories have been part of my life. I do the best I can to live in the moment. What do we do with the short time that we have? The best way is to measure your life in love and live in the moment. The beauty of life comes from experiencing positive and negative emotions because you cannot have one without the others.

Try to learn from your past mistakes instead of running away from them. We all make mistakes. Sometimes you don’t know you made a mistake until later on in life. It is so easy to be close-minded to certain things and is surprising when you learn to love something you thought you would hate. We make mistakes to learn a lesson. I love life because it is so precious and fragile, but so worth it.

Reflection of Life

Some days are better, some days are worse. Look for the blessing instead of the curse. Be positive, stay strong, and get enough rest. You can’t do it all, but you can do your best.

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I feel like this quote perfectly describes life. Some days are better than others. But each day has a blessing. Sometimes what really matters in life are the little things. All you can do is do the best you can. When you are a college student, it is hard to balance out your classes, studying, and assignments. I have been learning the importance of doing things outside of my comfort zone. I have been learning how to be a leader throughout my time in college. Life can literally make you fall sometimes, but you need to learn how to pull yourself up. Never let fear guide your life because it is not the way to live life. It is important to live in the moment and try to find the good no matter what even during dark days. Life is quite fragile, but measuring it in love is so true. Love is the greatest force of all because it is what binds us together and makes us stronger. Stay positive and try not to have a negative attitude. Stay strong in life because everyone is stronger and braver than they think they are.

The Beauty of Life

Life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful

-Unknown

Life is beautiful in so many ways. Life is not perfect, but that is part of what makes life beautiful. Everyone goes through these tough times, but those are times that can help us grow as people. Life is like this gigantic roller coaster with twists and turns and ups and downs and filled with so many emotions. Life is really beautiful now especially because we are in the middle of Christmas season. My life has been filled with many wonderful memories and tonight I will create another. I am seeing Nutcracker and at this production, I cannot wait to see all of the new costumes.

Without the bad times in life, how will we know what the good times in life are. The two are interconnected and rely on each other. It can be hard to understand the messiness and chaos of life at times. I know life is beautiful and I do the best I can to live in the moment. Living in the moment is very difficult. There is so much to life. There are ways you can make life even more beautiful. You can just spend time out in nature to really see the beauty of life. You can make the most of every situation and just spend some time off the computer. You can color if you want or you can just try something new. I may be young, but I understand the beauty of life. Life is what you make of it and is worth it even when the dark times hit.

Enthusiasm