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At the Gathering... and - SEE THE MUSICAL!!!! - "You didn't hear about the polar bear?"
July 3rd, 2006
10:58 am

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At the Gathering... and - SEE THE MUSICAL!!!!
Sorry I haven't been updating... been working on photos instead! *S*

I'm lucky: not only it Tig here, but a couple of friends I met at the Pittsburgh Symphony production of LOTR (where Billy Boyd sang) who live in Toronto are here - Bernadette and Rhonda. Plus, they have a couple of friends from Cincinnati, Pat and Penny. So, I ran into Bernadette and Rhonda on Saturday, got some lunch (yes, I slept late as usual!), and went to the centerpiece panel, which was several people and how Tolkien inspired them. Great guys - actors, artists, scholars - and I'll talk more about it when I show the photos. Lots of pics of Craig and Bruce, of course, but also a couple of nerdycute guys. *G*. Later I ran into Bernadette, Rhonda, Pat and Penny at dinner, and had a great time. There was a picnic scheduled that night, but I'd stayed in the room working on pics, and it ended up getting pretty rained out. Sunday I went to get photos of Bruce and Craig with Merry and Pippin, during their signings, then went to a great "The Silmarillion for Dummies", and then... "The Lord of the Rings" - the musical!!!

I went in with low expectations, but I was really impressed. Great set to begin with - crisscrossing branches, all around a gold circle, forest glade light over the whole thing. Then you see the hobbits - and they're Tolkien hobbits - happy, curly hair, down to earth, padding about the stomaches and rear ends, dancing. The whole thing was truly based on the book. Frodo was a bit older and not doe-faced, with a country accent, so you really got the impression that he, along with the other hobbits, didn't belong in any epic; yet you also got depth of feelings later with Sam and Frodo facing the difficulties. Frodo and Sam were excellent. Merry and Pippin were country bumpkins with heart. Sam was down to earth, and did have a rather large stomach and rear, but not so "fat" in the face. Anyway, between excellent characterizations, trueness to the books, and a great use of songs and dancing, as well as effective imaginative "special effects" (Shelob, orcs, Black Riders, the Ents), the story moved along - and moved me. It really got back to the storytelling, and the heart of it all.

Of course, parts had to be cut out - but it was done so well! And other parts were there that we missed. For example, they had Frodo singing "The Cow Jumped Over The Moon" and it turned into a "dance-off" between the hobbits and Bree-folk, ala "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers"; it was such fun to watch, with such spirit! As to cutting things out, they very cleverly took the Black Riders coming to Bree - and had them attack Frodo there, when he had the Ring on (after accidentally putting it on while singing the song, just as in the book), with Strider coming in to protect him. Then they were off to Rivendell to get Frodo cured. And it worked! They also pretty much cut out Gondor, so there were only 2 big battles: Rohan, and at the gates of Mordor. So it's before the gates of Mordor that Eowyn (yes, they keep her in - briefly) attacks the Witch King. And... they have the Scouring of the Shire! (yay!) And, again, Frodo and Sam were done so well. They had a walking along (ala "The Road Goes Ever On", but much catchier and better for walking), and a thoughtful song while in Mordor based on the line about "will we ever be in a story" that Sam uses to cheer up Frodo. About the only things I was disappointed in were Gandalf (too "actorly" of a portrayal) and Lothlorien (looked more like an ice palace than a shady grove! *G*). But everything else was so well done. Remember, this is closing in September - so try to see it if you can!!!!

I stayed at the Stage Door for autographs but there are so many actors, and I couldn't tell who was who, and they were just walking by me, so I gave into my stomach and got food. *G* Went to the VIP reception later and got more photos of Craig and Bruce, and saw Tig and Bernadette and Rhonda. Tig and I were going to go to Niagara Falls today, but she's gotten sick, poor thing, so we just took it easy this morning, and I'll go to some sessions this afternoon, and then to the banquet/masquerade tonight.

Expect photos in the future!

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From:catw
Date:July 3rd, 2006 05:31 pm (UTC)
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((((Ros))))

Sounds like you had a great time ;)
You know I love musicals sooooo much and I really would like to see that one. Is the music on CD available?
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:14 pm (UTC)
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Not yet! But I heard they're going to record a cast album during the break after Toronto and before London - probably in London. *G*
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:13 pm (UTC)
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No... but, hey, maybe you'll end up in London!
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From:psyknife
Date:July 3rd, 2006 06:47 pm (UTC)
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The Gathering makes me sick... I got sick last time too!!!!
I need to shake this... it stinks because I've missed the actors session now :-( Ah well... I'm gonna try to drag my butt down to Bruce's New Zealand dance party (though I don't think there will be much dancing nor partying coming out of me at the moment).
Thanks for the water and cookies... dang, those thigs are yummmy (and now they are totally gone!).
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:12 pm (UTC)
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Awwwww... hopefully you had a good time anyway - *S*. Oh, and hey - I had to get rid of my Canadian currency, so I bought 3 of those Coffee Crisps for you and Morgan!
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From:lavendertook
Date:July 3rd, 2006 07:23 pm (UTC)
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Huh. The way they condensed the story sounds really interesting!

Glad you're having fun!
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:11 pm (UTC)
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*ggl* at your SNL icon! *G*
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From:abandonada
Date:July 4th, 2006 04:38 am (UTC)
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Neato! Sounds like fun in Toronto for you and your friends. Except for Tig.
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:07 pm (UTC)
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I think she still managed to have a good time - *S*.
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From:freakspawn
Date:July 4th, 2006 08:13 am (UTC)
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oooh how wonderful, can't wait to see your piccies!:D
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From:anonypooh
Date:July 4th, 2006 09:47 am (UTC)
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yay .. sounds fab (the first part *G*!) ...I skiiiiiped the musical because I don't want spoilers! Not that it is going to be the same when we get it here. Blimey tickets are going on sale this month, if not already done so! - I can't afford to prebook that far in advance though :)
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From:rosamundeb
Date:July 4th, 2006 06:07 pm (UTC)
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*G* I tried not to put much in that's spoilish, but I understand. You'll like that Sam is well-done, though - that's the important part! I hope it does well in London. As you know, it closed early in Toronto. Think it was a bit pricey for the market.
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