October 2021 Show Recap

Y’ALL. WE ARE BACK TO MONTHLY SHOW RECAPS. I’m so excited to be seeing live performances regularly again, and I’m even more thrilled that most venues have some kind of safety measures in place (outdoors, masks required, and/or vaccinations/testing required). It gives me hope that all my friends in the theatre industry will be able to work safely for a long time without worrying about another nearly two-year unemployment stint. Let’s dive right in to the shows I saw in October.

On October 8th, I went to my school’s fall showcase of shows. Over that weekend, they performed 4 plays total, but three on each day. On the day I went, I saw A Monster Calls, Holes, and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. Some of the seating was on the stage (where I opted to sit) and the overflow was in the traditional theatre seats. It was so great to see my students back in their element. I really enjoyed all three shows and felt super proud to work with these amazing young people.

I was fortunate enough to squeeze in a short 3-night trip to NYC with my mom this month (more on that in another post soon), and we saw a few shows, naturally. First up, on October 16th we went to the 5pm show of Freestyle Love Supreme at the Booth Theatre. If you are unfamiliar, this is a completely improvised freestyle show; they have a set format for the show, but the content, the words, the music are all made up on the spot at each performance. Unlike when I saw the show in January of 2020, there were no yondr pouches for phones – not really very practical for sanitizing in pandemic times. We submitted words via google form instead of handwriting them on index cards. Christopher Jackson hopped into the cast for this show and he does what CJack does and makes people cry with his smooth tones and touching insights. The show was hilarious as usual. I LOVED every minute of it and it was the perfect first Broadway show for my mom. If anything, it makes me jealous of those who live near enough to take advantage of rush and lottery options to see each nightly version of this show.

After a quick dinner, we went to the re-opening night of Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations at the Imperial Theatre at 8pm. The house was packed and frenzied with the excitement of the reopening. The show was incredible (my first time seeing it) and Nik Walker led the show as Otis Williams brilliantly. After the bows, they called up the real Otis Williams onstage and had us all sing Happy Birthday to him as he was celebrating his 80th birthday. If you haven’t seen this show, DO IT – either on Broadway or in the upcoming national tour.

The next evening, October 17, we headed over to Ambassador Theatre to see Chicago. I love the music of this show, but I had only ever seen the movie version before now. If you’re expecting the splashy costuming of the movie, you’re gonna be disappointed – but I was not. I love the sleek black, the band onstage, and the iconic Bob Fosse choreography. Lillias White killed as Mama Morton and I’m glad we got to see the show during her run. This one is a classic for a reason!

Our last Broadway show was on October 18, Six at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre. You may remember me sharing my first experience at Six during their pre-Broadway run in Chicago in the summer of 2021. The queens are on Broadway now and the costumes got an upgrade for the affair. The show is still as cheeky and captivating as it ever was and I love seeing the actresses’ incredible vocal and dance talents showcased in such a skillful way. I am not able to pick a favorite queen/actress – they are all phenomenal in their own right. This one is a lot of fun!

In addition to theatre, I also threw a concert in the mix in October. I was able to take my 11 year old son to his first ever concert – the Jonas Brothers’ Remember This Tour – on October 22. This tour was held exclusively at outdoor venues and required either proof of vaccination or a negative test to enter, which made me feel better since 11 year-olds still cannot be vaccinated (though it will be soon! maybe within a week!). The JoBros put on a great show as always, and it was so fun to watch Aiden jam out and sing along. It was a night to remember for us both!

And finally, I went to see my friend Gayla as Alice Beineke in The Addams Family at Repertory Company Theatre. I went with my friends Lynette and Lila. I’d seen a high school production of this show before, but it’s always elevated when someone you know is in the play. It’s such a fun and funny show, and I love being able to support and spend time with friends after the last two years we’ve had.

That’s it for October! It was A LOT! But I wouldn’t trade the busyness of the past month for the world. I’m just so excited to be back at it. Stay tuned for November, when I return to my favorite past-time: seeing Hamilton!

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