Favorite Fiyero Actor

My favorite Fiyero actor is also from my 4th cast. It is interesting how my favorite Elphaba, Glinda, and Fiyero all come from the same cast. My favorite Fiyero is Ashley Parker Angel.

Possible Spoilers:

The 4th time, I honestly wanted to know why I love Fiyero and why the plot twist in the love triangle even happened.  So the 4th round was more Fiyero-focused than Elphaba and Glinda focused. Fiyero is a character that is quite hard to know. He may not seem complex, but in reality he really is. I played close attention to Fiyero. The way that Ashley Parker Angel played Fiyero in the Lion Cub Scene helped me understand the plot twist. In that scene, the actor played that scene as if he had a crush on Elphaba, but didn’t know it yet. So there are clues in act I that foreshadow that Fiyero will end up with Elphaba.

Ashley had wonderful chemistry with Mary Kate Morissey. While he did have great chemistry with my Elphaba, his chemistry was weaker with the Glinda and I think that is what is supposed to happen. Fiyero actually does have weaker chemistry with Glinda because it helps show that Fiyero and Glinda aren’t meant to be together. Even before Fiyero realized he is in love with Elphaba, he still has incredible chemistry with her, which first shows in the Lion Cub Scene.

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Fiyero is a character who seems to develop the most during spoken scenes. Because I decided to pay close attention to Fiyero, I looked closely at these scenes especially spoken moments. It also made me fall in love with Ashley Parker Angel’s Fiyero.

The fact that Mary Kate Morrisey as Elphaba, Amanda Jane Copper as Glinda, and Ashley Parker Angel as Fiyero were all part of the same cast really shows just how strong this trio is. It is a bit complicated between all of them. Elphaba and Glinda are supposed to have strong chemistry with each other and Fiyero is supposed to have wonderful chemistry with Elphaba, it complicates things a bit. It is just these three together are quite wonderful.

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Favorite Glinda Actress

Next up in this series is my favorite actress who has played Glinda. My favorite Glinda is Amanda Jane Cooper. She was my Glinda at the same time I saw Mary Kate Morrissey as Elphaba. Amanda Jane Cooper was excellent as Glinda and you can see that shine throughout her performance.

Possible Spoilers:

She was hilarious in all of Glinda’s comical moments. She was able to show Glinda’s pain throughout act II. After all in act II, she has to listen to the public spreading rumors about her best friend, discovering that Fiyero does not love her, and having to say goodbye to Elphaba. So she is a character that has a lot of ups and downs in her life. Because both her and Mary Kate Morrissey were excellent, it makes “For Good” such a very powerful moment. That song made me cry last time I saw Wicked because both girls were excellent in their roles and I think had something to do with the fact that I was seeing it with my school, a school that has changed me for good.

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It is just a beautiful and powerful thing when you see Wicked and both Elphaba and Glinda are excellent. They both have to be so the friendship is truly shown because after all, the story revolves around their friendship. Because Mary Kate Morrissey and Amanda Jane Copper were both excellent in their roles, it makes their characters’ relationship so beautiful and powerful.

Favorite Elphaba Actress

In this blog series, I started by saying who my favorite Elphaba is: Mary Kate Morissey. When I saw her on tour January of 2016, she was the standby and just to let you know, this was the 4th time I saw Wicked. I started with Elphaba because she is my all-time favorite musical character.

Possible Spoilers:

Mary Kate embodied everything about Elphaba. She brought out Elphaba’s strength, smarts, and courage and all the other traits that make up who Elphaba is. She brought out everything I had already discovered about Elphaba while still showing a different side to Elphaba. She was quite excellent and had amazing chemistry with Amanda Jane Copper as Glinda and Ashely Parker Angel as Fiyero.

She did take me off guard at times and that was a good thing. The biggest example was during “No Good Deed”. I always hated the song and never got anything out of the song. The emotions never really stuck and I found no appreciation of the song. But what Mary Kate was able to do was finally make me find some kind of appreciation. I just saw this incredible energy and she made the emotions of that song finally stick. I never actually picked up on the song’s emotions but the fact that I felt anger and frustration during this number really took me off guard. So this was the first time the emotions actually stuck and were remembered and that was a big reason why I loved her Elphaba so much.

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Coming into this time, I knew that something would happen with “I’m Not That Girl”. In between the 3rd time and 4th time, I came to a realization that “I’m Not That Girl” is a heartbreaking song not just a sad song like I once believed. Her version of the song was full of vulnerability and fragility but at same time still was a bit innocent. I focused so much more on what I was feeling due to knowing it was heartbreaking this time around. Her version made me feel sad and lonely so glad this song changed in the way it did.

About “For Good”, she was so excellent and so was Amanda Jane Copper so this song made me cry. That really goes to show just how excellent Mary Kate was as Elphaba. Mary Kate is such a special Elphaba and Elphaba means so much to me. She may have been the standby, but she was my favorite Elphaba I ever saw.

She changed her voice as the show continued. In act I, her voice was very innocent and youthful, but when act II started up she changed Elphaba’s voice to be much more mature so that helps show Elphaba growing up.

Next in the series is my favorite Glinda.

What makes a Musical Character “Believable” (Part 2)

I did a post a couple weeks back about what makes musical character believable. As time went on, I realized I left off a characteristic. So I am doing another post.

Below are the characteristics:

Complex– Musical characters have to be complex. These are the characters that have so many layers. There is a lot to be explored in them. They are the ones who usually face some kind of conflict in their lives. Complex characters range from Jack Kelly, Eponine, Elphaba, Jean Valjean, Beast, Glinda and Marius.

 

Negative Emotions– The characters who express the negative emotions are also “believable”. In real life, we deal with brought times and we do express negative emotions. It all goes back to the idea of complex. Conflict plays a huge impact on the negative emotions. The conflict has to be strong enough in order for the negative emotions to appear. Eponine, Phantom, Fantine, Marius, Jack Kelly, Beast, Nancy, Jean Valjean, and Crutchie all express negative emotions. A character does not have to be tragic to express negative emotions: it just has to do with what happens in their lives. Marius, for instance, faces a lot of trauma at the barricade- he first has to watch Eponine die during “A Little Fall of Rain”, which leaves him devastated, and then he ends up being the only survivor so he is an example of a character who expresses negative emotions and who is not a tragic character.

 

Positive Emotions- Characters who express positive and negative emotions are even more realistic. I know there are characters like Eponine who expresses a lot of negative emotions but are able to experience the positive emotions. Eponine experiences happiness when she is able to die in the arms of Marius. Marius like I already said, experiences a lot of trauma at the barricade, but he does experience positive emotions such as his love for Cosette or the hope he did have for the rebellion.

 

Other characters like Jack and Crutchie, they very easily express positive and negative emotions. Prior to the big fight and “Santa Fe”, Jack expresses the positive emotions and does not express any negative emotion, but when he is upset that his boys are getting hurt and Crutchie gets arrested, he goes through a lot of “inner conflict” from “Santa Fe” all the way to “Something to Believe In”. Crutchie mainly expresses the negative emotions in “Letter from the Refuge”. So you have both tragic and non-tragic characters expressing the positive and negative emotions.

 

Flawed– This is the characteristic I forgot to include last time. Characters have to be flawed. Sometimes it can be hard to notice a character’s flaws. But it is so true. Flaws help a character become even more “believable”. Elphaba for instance can be a bit impulsive. Fiyero starts off as rather rude, but he soon learns to soften a bit and eventually matures. Beast has a hard time controlling his temper but soon learns how to control it.

 

All of these characteristics are part of humanity. We all have our flaws and we all express positive and negative emotions. Plus humans are very complex. There is much to humans. So when a character has all of these characteristics, they feel the most “real” and those characters are more enjoyable to get to know.

Do you agree?

Musicals I Have Seen That I Remember

As many people know, I have seen a lot of shows live. Below I will write a list of each one I remember and will only consist of those by professional companies. do not necessarily have to be all shows that I love. There are actually some musicals I have seen that I didn’t like. I will sort it out based on city.

St. Louis : 

  1. Annie- loved it, have loved it since seeing the 1982 movie. In 2014, I finally got to see it and I saw it with my grandma and we got to sit in the front row.

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Greenville: 

Phantom of the Opera- this was the first musical I saw at the Peace Center and the year was 2014. We were sitting about 19 rows back from the stage. I wanted to see it ever since hearing the songs in 2013. I was spellbound from start to finish and I was choked up.

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Les Mis- I saw it in 2017 with my school. We were sitting up in the balcony and I had an understudy (Talia Simone Robinson) as Eponine and it was the 25th anniversary production. As expected, I loved it and loved the production. The cast was quite powerful and passionate and I was an emotional wreck watching it. This was my 5th time seeing it live and 1st time seeing it on tour.

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Charlotte: 

Wicked- saw it three times in Charlotte: once with my sister and mom, once with my dad and once with my school. Seeing it 3x does show how much I love Wicked. Below picture on the left is from my time with school and picture on the right is time with my dad. I saw it with my dad in 2013 and with my school in 2016.

 

 

Sound of Music- 2015, I have loved it since elementary school. In 2015, I was surprised I got to see it live. Seeing the stage show made me love Sound of Music even more. Edelweiss made me cry and I wasn’t expecting that.

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Pippin- I saw it in 2015 as a date with my mom. It was a musical has that the nature of a circus. Its songs were amazing and at one point we were asked to sing along.

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Rent- I waited since 2012 to see Rent and I finally got to see it September. I love its overall message of living in the moment and in love. Waiting five years was worth it.

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Newsies- I saw this musical about the Newsboy Strike of 1899 in August 2016. It was filled with mind-blowing dance, wonderful songs, and incredible characters with an inspiring story. My favorite Newsies were Jack and Crutchie. Its songs are fun and at times emotional.

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Mamma Mia- I saw it with my family in 2009.

New York: 

Wicked- yes I already mentioned Wicked but this was another time I saw it live. My first time I ever saw the musical was in 2012. I was in NYC with my mom and the two of us went and saw Wicked on Broadway. Little did I know the huge impact it would have on my life. It was the show that sparked my love for musicals and I began to understand the emotional and complex side of musicals. I do remember that at the age of 12 “Popular” was my favorite song. I may not have vivid memories, but the impact cellar shows.

London: 

Les Mis- in 2015, I finally fulfilled my dream of seeing Les Mis in London. Yes I already said Les Mis but this is another time I saw it professionally. It was so much more than expected. I may have had an understudy as Jean Valjean, but I am glad that Adam Bayjou was my Valjean because he was that good- as in so good that I forgot I was even watching an understudy.

 

Now on to the ones I did not like or fully enjoy: all were seen in Charlotte

Porgy and Bess- I do remember seeing it, but honestly did not enjoy it to even own the songs. So this one is not really important.

La Cage- this was one I remembered but was one of those I did not like

Addams Family- I saw this one with my family about October 2011 and did not like it

So you can be a musical fan with not loving every single musical

What Makes me Want to See a Musical

Each time the season comes or you have a dream of seeing a musical or musicals, what makes you want to see that particular musical. This post will talk about why I wanted to see of the musicals I wanted to see. There will be repeats as to what made me want to see them in the first place.

1. The songs- if I knew one or a couple of songs before I have seen the show, they can have a part in why I want to see a musical. I don’t when it was about it was 2013 or 2012 or something like, my mom or dad made me listen to “Corner of the Sky”. Just by listening to that song alone, I automatically thought, I want to see Pippin. someday.

Songs continued- The same thing happened with Phantom of the Opera. When I fell in love with the songs, I automatically wanted to see Phantom of the Opera. The songs from both Music Man and Newsies also encouraged me to want to see them someday. I was enjoyed the Newsies before really falling in love, but I enjoyed them enough to want to see Newsies some day. Plus with Music Man, I was already starting to fall in love with some of the songs before deciding to see it at my school in February of 2015.

2. Recommendations- sometimes I choose to see a show based on recommendation. That is another reason where Phantom of the Opera comes into play. If my mom never would have recommended Phantom of the Opera to me, I never would have started listening to the songs in the first place.

3. Spectacle/dance- while “Corner of the Sky” was my main step towards wanting to seeing Pippin, spectacle and dance added one more factor to wanting to see Pippin. I did watch the trailer of Pippin and I realized the level of spectacle it would have and I wanted to see Pippin even more because spectacle/dance is one element I want in a musical. The week my parents got tickets to my entire family to see Newsies, my mom told me they show won “Tony Award Choreography” so I know the dance was something special and it made me want to see Newsies even more and I purposely did not look up anybody that showed the dance.

4. Love for a show- That is the exact reason why I love seen both Wicked and Les Mis more than once. When I saw Wicked on Broadway 11 and 1/2 years ago, I never would have imagined I would have seen it seen three other times. My 3rd time comes along and I learned it was touring again and knowing my dad never saw Wicked before, I went for him, so my dad and I had a date and even though he never saw it, I was still given the better seat. Then when I learned my school was taking students to see Wicked in Charlotte, I ended up signing up due to my love for Wicked. Right after I saw the stage show of Les Mis for the first place, I developed a dream for seeing Les Mis in the West End. So those two have seen more than once due to my love for those shows. Than when I knew Les Mis was touring starting last year, I wanted to see it yet again because I really wanted to see the 25th anniversary production and also wanted to be able to see the show on tour at some point.

5. Desire to see a show again- I already touched this on reason four, but in a way this is different. For instance, I want to see both Lion King and Beauty and the Beast. It is just I had seen both of these back in elementary school, but don’t remember seeing them. Beauty and the Beast reentered my life last year. So this desire of seeing shows is again is more like “I saw the show, but don’t remember seeing it so I want to see them again”

I know cast is some reason to want to see a musical, but it isn’t one of mine. That is mostly because I usually don’t know what the cast is until I arrive. I may not even know the names of anyone in the cast until I arrive or might know names of the cast, but may have never heard any of them sing before. Also you never know what cast you are going because of the possibility of an understudy. But the cast has no effect on whether or not I see a musical. I dreamed of seeing Les Mis in the West End in 2013 so there was no way of knowing who was going to playing the main leads or when cast changes or and so on. When I saw Newsies  or each time I saw Wicked, or Pippin or Annie or Phantom of the Opera, I did not even know any of the cast names until I actually went to the musical. While I may have discovered some of the names of Les Mis in the West End, Les Mis on tour, or Rent on tour, that still wasn’t a factor into why I love them: it was all because of other factors. I had seen videos of the Rent and Les Mis recent touring casts rehearsing,  but once again not a factor. With Rent, I wanted to see it since Fall of 2012 so last year I was finally able to get a chance and with Les Mis, it wasn’t the cast either. So cast never has been a factor in what leads me to see a musical.

What reasons draw you to want to see a musical?

Why Elphaba is a Map to what I Want in a Musical Character

Elphaba is my favorite musical character and she is one of the two protagonists from Wicked. I almost feel like she is a map to characteristics I want in a musical character. That is mostly because there are many admirable characteristics that she has. I tend to lean towards complex, strong, brave and big-hearted character and those are characteristics you can find in Elphaba. In addition, I want characters to be flawed, which makes them even more real. Complexity is an important characteristic because there is so much to a character and those characters you end to find something new. In terms of bravery, it shows that they don’t mind risking their life for the sake of others or they truly fight for something they believe in. In terms of big-hearted, it shows how caring and compassionate they are for others and that is such a beautiful characteristic to have. Strong characters, like Elphaba, shows that they can make it through rough and tough situations and that they don’t care what others think of them and they tend to be strong in many ways.

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