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books, blabberings, and a life semi-common
This actually happened.
And I was there.
I suppose I should back up and explain this entire situation because it’s more than just today. We’ll rewind to the beginning of American Idiot on Broadway, all the way back to the first preview when I saw tiny Aspen walk out of the stage door with hubby Tony and I nearly knocked over my friends in my need to tell them both I loved them.
Okay, maybe that’s a bit too far back. Let’s move to the day I actually paged through the Playbill and realized that she understudied Extraordinary Girl, which was the role I had already claimed as a favorite. I knew Aspen’s voice from Meatloaf videos and from We Will Rock You in Las Vegas. She is absolutely amazing, talented, and one helluva singer.
It’s important to note here that she’s not the 1st understudy for EG and that she’s deathly afraid of heights. Those two factors made it seem nearly impossible for me to ever see her in the role.
Then it happened.
There was no advance notice.
Every Aspen fan I knew had no idea it was happening and didn’t even realize it had happened a few weeks later.
And I was sick.
So she went on as EG, I didn’t see it, and I wanted to kill myself. Okay, I didn’t really want to kill myself; don’t go thinking you need to call my parents and tell them I’m suicidal. No, I was just very, very upset and I swore that if she ever went on again (something that, in the minds of most people, would never happen), I’d just buy a full-price ticket and be done with it.
I mean, seriously? SERIOUSLY? I was on Telecharge so fast, it was like lightning. Friends and I were texting back and forth, trying to make plans, and then it happened.
Mike and I pulled up Center Orchestra, Row C, Seats 112-113. A premium seat for a regular price. Was this for real? We had to do some finagling and then I had to weave through traffic and spend an exorbitant amount of money for parking, but at 3:00 today, I was in the fifth row of the St. James Theatre and I was practically shaking.
Literally, I was shaking.
Her voice was perfect. She looked adorable and tiny from the start. She rocked the pink sequins. I swear she grew taller in the Army uniform.
Was it perfect? No. Seeing it 36 times means it’s a little easier for me to see little things that others might not notice and there were a few problems.
Did it matter? Hell to the no.
I can’t even describe the emotions that went through me when I finally saw her perform as Extraordinary Girl. You have to understand that I love Christina Sajous and the way she portrays EG. But seeing Aspen in that role has been something I’ve wanted to see for so long and she obviously doesn’t try to do the role exactly as Christina does it. It’s her own take.
I am so, so, SO happy that I went to go see the matinee today. This performance definitely ranks in the Top 5 American Idiot performances I’ve seen. Yes, I can name five performances of the show that have meant more to me than all the others.
Having seen this, I can truly say that I don’t ever need to go back to see the show. I don’t know if I’ll ever want to again and, if I decide not to see it, I’m okay with that. This was a beautiful #36 and I wouldn’t mind it being the end to my Idiot experience.