Dear Evan Hansen: My New Musical Favorite

I don’t remember how I got to know Dear Evan Hansen, the musical.  Maybe it is because I so love songs from various musicals and I adore Broadway musicals that is why my algorithm just simply popped Dear Evan Hansen on my internet searches in the past.

And since I live half-way around the world away from New York City, I just have to satisfy myself from listening to the beautiful soundtrack of this musical and watch snippets on YouTube of Ben Platt singing the musical’s songs on American TV shows.

where majority of the letters were written…

stole a shot at the end of the show

the cast…

One of my workmates can attest that I am a fan of this musical because when he (Chef Juan Carlos Lima) travelled New York for a short holiday 2 years ago, I actually asked him to buy me a souvenir shirt of Dear Evan Hansen. Chef Juan Carlos when I was showing him the photo of the Dear Evan Hansen shirt looked so puzzled and so funny because he does not have any idea on what I was talking about.

But now that I am in New York, I promised myself that no matter what, I will have to watch this award-winning musical.  And I did not fail myself because last Wednesday I got to actually see it at the Music Box Theatre!

Its an Experience!  Only the stone-hearted will not be moved by this musical.

where it’s running…

Dear Evan Hansen though profoundly contemporary will definitely struck everyone’s inner chord.  Everyone can actually relate to the story and there seem to be like an Evan Hansen in all of us!  And I agree to the popular reviews in past that it will instantly pierce the viewers’ heart and will burrow it through to their consciousness.  I for one was crying.  As in like C.R.Y.I.N.G!  I was like having waterfalls on my freaking face! And I was not the only one who was crying because I can actually see and hear people in the audience sniveling, sobbing and clearing their snot!

May you be a young or an old person, a parent, a person with or without a parent, a student, a worker, a friend, a person with insecurities (which everybody got), a person who feels being like an outsider (who hasn’t?), Dear Evan Hansen definitely is one of the most relatable musicals I have ever seen! Even on the first song, you will already be so hooked because it is way too relatable!  It is as if the musical knows us so much and was written about each and every one of us.

I thought I already saw my favorite musical when I was here in New York four years ago.  Well, I guess that has changed.  And I think it would take a very beautiful masterpiece of a musical to topple Dear Evan Hansen as my favorite.  Dear Evan Hansen is clearly an EXPERIENCE!

my playbill… love it!

#youwillbefound

I only have one wish now that I have seen Dear Evan Hansen.  And that is someday, this great musical arrive the shores of Manila because like what the musical says…‘no one deserves to be forgotten’.  And when it arrives in Manila, I will be one of the first persons to watch it again.

Ang galing! Peyborit!

Olay Broadway Lovers/Haters Test

Here’s some silly theory! 

To test if you’re a fan and love Broadway musicals, you would be able to finish watching and listening to this non-sense of a product face-cleanser commercial. 

But if you just stopped and suddenly scrolled down or continue with web surfing while in the middle of this Olay commercial, it only signifies that watching at least 1 Broadway musical will never be or has never been in your bucket list.

I bet you watched the whole thing! I’ve seen the commercial and finished it 3 times.  And I can’t wait to wash my face!

Kaloka! Nan-sens pero tinapos ko tri tayms!

Disappear: A Song Dedicated to Cupid and Saint Anthony

No one deserves to be forgotten…no one deserves to fade away… 

I totally agree with this song!

I am actually dedicating this song to Cupid who seem to have run out of arrows and have forgotten to strike someone who is supposed to be my mate and life companion.  My goodness! I seem to have disappeared in Cupid’s memory, mind and consciousness! Hahaha!

Let me also dedicate this song to St Anthony, the miracle worker who assists people in finding their true love.  My name must have disappeared from St Anthony’s long and complicated list! That is why I am dedicating this song to him.  Mwahaha!

But seriously, this song is massively inspiring.  It has a very touching sets of lyrics!  I love it for it advocates the value of being valued and remembered

Kelan kaya matatapos ang sumpa?!

For Forever by Ben Platt

The songs and music of Dear Evan Hansen (the musical) is giving me reasons to want to fly and spend another beautiful adventure in the city of New York.  And while I try to find a window on y very busy schedules on the possibility of flying to NYC, I let myself be satisfied on playing and replaying the musical’s soundtracks in my Spotify account.

And when I saw this performance in The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, it further my wanting to fly to NYC.  This I guess is the best performance that this song can possibly be sang!  From the faultless singing to infectious involuntary facial twitches and from the impeccable lyrics to the seamless exhibited raw emotion, his rendition in this video can simply be spelled as P-E-R-F-E-C-T!

I will really be upset in case Ben Platt, nominated for Best Actor in a Musical, will not be awarded the Tony this year!

Kaiyak… Perpek!

Wicked (the musical) In Manila: A Wickedly High-End Run

This will most probably be one of the last write-ups of Wicked: The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz musical as it ends its latest run here in Manila.  Me, my sisters and Nengkoy (of course) had the awesome opportunity to catch and watch the last performance night here in Manila.

We were of course bedazzled and captivated by the sheer magnificence if the costumes, the colors and the music of Wicked.  But I will not write anything about the musical for there has been millions of it in the web.  Instead, let me deliberate on the venue and the people on the night we watched the show here in Manila.

Unlike my sisters and Nengkoy, it was my first time seeing a musical show in Solaire Theatre.  I have seen a couple of shows in Broadway, New York but never was I been so stunned and dumbfounded by the high-endedness (is that a word?) of Solaire.  The theater was so modish and dashing there were moments when I doubted being in poverty-stricken Manila.  While waiting for the ushers to allow us inside the actual theater, the well-lighted foyer area was played with chic jazz music.  I never noticed or heard stylish jazz or muzak being played at the measly lobby and waiting areas of New York theaters. In some New York shows, we the audience actually have to queue at the cold and dusty side street.

nengkoy & my wicked sister with her high-end bag! bag lang nya ang high-end sa amin nung gabing yon. hahaha!

pictures muna

me & my sister… defying gravity…

And what further dumbfounded me were the rest of the audience.  Everyone was well-dressed for the night.  Well-dressed, I mean well-dressed.  Gentlemen were in their crisp long sleeve shirts with matching coat and necktie while the ladies were dressed to the nines.  Some ladies were even donning in elegant gown and seem to have been to some pricey beauty saloon prior to the show just to watch Wicked, The Musical.

I was actually so shocked, wearing just a polo shirt and my old dungarees, I could not control my utterances about the theater and the people.  I told my sisters that I have seen a couple of Broadway shows in New York but the atmosphere was never this chic, high-end and elegant.

Buti na lang di ako nag-tsinelas.  Taray… Walang ganyan sa Nyu York!

Japanese Broadway Musical: My New Yearning

This blog is a living proof that I absolutely without any doubt love anything about Japan.  From its food, to its beautiful weather, to its magnificent sites, up to its exquisite culture and gentle people.

This blog also is a testament to the startling fact that I love Broadway musicals.  From its ingenious production designs, to its mind blowing choreographies, to its incredible story plots up to marvellous musical tunes and talents.

Amazingly, the recent Youtube video which I stumbled upon is a surprising mix of both.  This video gives me a reason to again visit Japan and see their unique version and remarkable rendition of western musicals.

wow!

wow!

What is so delightful in watching this video is that I don’t have to have the lyrics translated in a language that I understand.  I already know the story, the uttered lines as well as the music.  The only thing that I got to do is to witness the stunning visuals, hear the pleasing musical tunes and savour the delightful experience.

This is so beautiful…

Now I wonder how my favourite nemesis Ursula is interpreted by this Japanese musical company.

Kakaiba ‘di ba?

Book of Mormons Can Never Be Imported In Pinas

There have been lots of popular musicals that have been imported and graced my beloved homeland.  There were even lots of these musicals in which the West End or Broadway casts were featured.  And there were some musicals in which the company of actors were equally talented local Filipino artists trying their very best to sound and enunciate the American and/or English accent.

agree!

agree!

a nightly long queue at the theater...

a nightly long queue at the theater…

But after seeing The Book of Mormons, I can conclude that this show, though dubbed in America as the “best musical of the century” will never be imported and shown in conservative Philippines.  It is because this musical can be stunningly foul-mouthed, incredibly vulgar and breathtakingly offensive.

It pushes the boundaries of a comedic story by talking/singing about child rape, the clitoris, people with AIDS, female circumcision and even the male scrotum (with maggots).  There was even a vulgar song entitled “Hasa Diga Eebowai” which features a litany of despair and anguish that culminates in the rousing chorus stating that Hasa Diga Eebowai means “F@ck you god”.

A lot of scenes and dialogues were mockeries of true human stories that transpired and continuously happen in society. There was a song in which the continent of Africa was described as definitely not a “Lion King” of a site that one can behold.  And that an Ugandan town (which can represent a lot of places in the planet) is being oppressed and harassed by its leader whose name in the story is General Butt-Fucking Naked.

There was the mockery of innocent people in society which were made to seriously believe on stories that involved putting together snippets of events from the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings.  And that these people were so innocent, they believe that the true paradise is located in Salt Lake City (the song’s sweet rendition actually made me teary-eyed).  There was even a line in one song saying that the Garden of Eden is located in Jackson County, Missouri!

where the hilarious yet smart crudeness happens...

where the hilarious yet smart crudeness happens…

aylavet!!!

aylavet!!!

winner!!!

winner!!!

But what is so amazing about this musical is that these jokes were so smart, refreshing and extremely funny without really sacrificing the kernels of life’s reality that the viewers can ponder about.  And maybe the reason why these jokes and mockeries were so effective is because these were uttered and put across by the sweetest characters that a musical could ever have.

Underneath all these jokes and mockeries, The Book of Mormon is a very moral musical. If truly assessed it has a surprisingly tender core.  It tackles about loyalty to friendship.  It tackles the hope of discovering utopia.  It tackles the beauty of innocence as well as the dangers that comes along with it.  It tackles about finding love and happiness.  It tackles about experiencing victory in the strangest of situations.  And ironic as it may seem, it is about the pureness of the heart.

It is therefore not surprising that this musical won 9 Tony Awards including Best Musical in 2011 and continuous to draw big crowds daily.  Too bad, Philippines won’t be able to see, hear and experience the pureness of the heart contained in The Book of Mormon.

Ito ang myusikal kung saan ang huling linyang sinabi kung Tatagalugin ay … “Ang Betlog Ko Pa Rin Ay May Uod!??