I've been wanting to see this production for quite some time. Through work, I was able to get "Wicked" tickets - purchased them back in February for myself, a co-worker, her daughter and daughter's boyfriend - and today was the day of the show. Let me tell you, I was so excited! The presentation was for 2pm at the wonderfully restored Oriental theatre in downtown Chicago, so I met my co-worker around 11:30am. These days, people go to plays wearing jeans, but we wanted to dress up and look nice. Before taking our seats, we had a cocktail - I opted for champagne, which gives me a pleasant buzz. I was ready for my theatrical experience.
This was only the second time I've gone to see a show - the other being "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" with Donny Osmond - and I was very impressed with the production. The costumes were gorgeous, the songs were catchy and some were rather moving, and the dialogue was amusing and at times poignant. I loved how the show refers to current events and also to "The Wizard of Oz", because who hasn't seen that classic at least 20 times? Anyway, in a lot of ways, "Wicked" was like a version of your relationship with your best girlfriend. It's definitely about friendship and the bonds between women.
I haven't read the book by Gregory Maguire, but I understand there were quite a few differences between the two versions. I'm not sure now if I want to read the book after seeing the show, but maybe someday I will. I just know that this musical was extremely enjoyable and one I hope everyone gets a chance to see. There's just something about being in a packed theatre and becoming so engrossed in the story that you forget how long the production is. It's over 3 hours long, with only one 10-minute break, which doesn't give you a lot of time to take a bathroom break before you're rushed back into the theatre before the doors are locked. Then and only then did I regret that glass of champagne LOL.
Afterwards, we went out to dinner at Tony Rocco's, an Italian restaurant owned by the mother of someone I work with. From the moment we walked in until the moment we left, the whole experience was excellent. The owner and chef took the time to greet us and came over to visit during the meal to see how we were doing, and the wait staff was attentive and considerate to our needs. The food was wonderful - I had this amazing risotto dish with shrimp, scallops, mushrooms and spinach. The martinis were strong, the chocolate mousse, teramisu and pistacchio ice cream mouth-wateringly divine, and the ambience was inviting and relaxing. So if you're ever in Chicago, look this place up.
All in all, I had a glorious day in the city. Being such a suburbanite, I rarely go downtown, but this was one opportunity I couldn't pass up. I hope to get more chances over the summer now that I've taken the next few months off from my part-time job. So...how was your weekend?