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Sunday, July 17, 2016

Music Circus

It is already half way through the annual six selection Music Circus season. Thus far I have ushered, seated n' greeted four times for three musicals: Legally Blonde, Hello Dolly (twice ushered) and Seussical the Musical.

This is my second year as a full time - as opposed to an usher 'on call' for Sunday nights - so of course this year ALL Sunday night performances were canceled.

Alas, chortle if you will, such is my fate.  But head usher Elliot to the rescue; the Sunday night team were not completely abandoned, but was merged with the
Sunday matinee team.

 All Sunday ushers turned in a list of the season's plays we wanted to usher. I - lucky as per usual - got all the ones I wanted, plus one. No wonder I always celebrate how fortunate a being I am.

Three musicals in, I'd say Legally Blonde (new) and Hello Dolly (beloved oldie), were on the ball for the Music Circus' usual standards of great showmanship and entertainment. Seussical (2nd of 3 new musicals this year) was my 'bonus'.  Really, I had only a minor interest in it because I'd no idea what it was about other than the works of Dr. Seuss, who in my own youth was the J.K.Rowling of my kindergarten peers.

I had mulled over what Sessical would portray the various stories, concluding the show would tell the various stories strung together like the old style disjointed musicals with zero plot line and lots of music. Yes, I'd lots of preconceived notions and, as I have come to expect - I was wrong. The Seusical Matinee was so full up with kids and adults I took a seat on steps next to a main aisle. I was so close to the action that at one point after upending a pail of autumn leaves on poor, forlorn Horton the elephant, the Cat in the Hat upended his pail, dumping the remaining leaves on me!

That brings me back to Horton, with two Dr. Seuess stories to his credit: Horton Hears a Who, and Horton Hatches the Egg. That pair of stories were the centerpiece of 'Seussical'. Spoilers here for those who were never 5 years old - in Horton Hatches the Egg, the sweet pachyderm was roped into baby sitting the single egg of a notoriously lazy bird named Mazie. Poor Horton steadfastly protected someone else's egg through thick & through thin, through storms, through kidnapping and sea-sick ridden ocean voyages, while lazy Mazie gallivanted about. Here's my point - I got all teary. There I was sitting in a massive, dark audience, tears trickling down my cheeks in sympathy with the imaginary Horton the Elephant. Oh yes, nothing like growing up to give one a new perspective on an old tale. I hadn't realized there were so many layers to that simple story. I dried my eyes by the musical's end and cannot believe how much I got out of this 'children's' story, and if you tell anyone, I will deny it.

And for the record... I kept every leaf the Cat in the Hat dumped on my noggin. They'll decorate my home come Autumn, and maybe generate a new tear of remembrance or two. Hey, California can use all the moisture it can get.
Cat in the Hat Leaves of Autumn

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