Friday, September 26, 2014

A Night at The Opera... House!

Feeling like royalty in 'Siam' for the night. 
For my Mom's birthday this year, I treated her to dinner and a musical at the Sydney Opera House.  We had a sweet little dinner right on the Quay at The Eatery By George.  I definitely recommend the place based on their food -- I had lamb shanks, the special of the day for $22 -- but their service was spotty at best.  At some points we had all the waiters vying for our attention, at other points no one was in sight, leaving me waving madly at them for attention. They're a relatively new restaurant though, so they're probably still working out the kinks. 
The amazing view we had during dinner. 

Still, Mom and I had a really great time enjoying the view and ambiance of the place. Sitting outside as the sun set while watching the ships pass really made us feel like we were enjoying a special night out.  
Blurry (quick!) photo of the stage from our seats. 

After a pretty leisurely dinner, we went in to get our seats for the show.  We were there to watch Rodger and Hammerstein's The King and I.  Being huge fans of this musical duo, Mom and I were super excited to watch the show.  

As we were ushered to our seats I saw 'Thai monks' walking up and down the aisles with incense. Seeing them really helped us get into the mood of the play. 

We were seated in row q in the Joan Sutherland Theatre. Originally I thought it might be a bit far back, but the theatre is actually so small that no matter where you sit, you'll generally have a good view of the stage.  Next time, I go to a show at this theatre, I'll definitely go for the cheaper seats with this in mind. 

Finally the big gong crashed and the show began.  

Each scene was directed with care. It was obvious the amount of work that the cast and crew put in to the beautiful design of the set, the superb choreography of the dances and the great acting by the cast.  Lisa McCune who planned Anna, did a fantastic job as was expected.  

The only thing that irked me was the accent of Teddy Tahu Rhodes who played the King of Siam. I found his version of the King's accent to be too forced and fake. I guess this is expected of an Australian attempting to have a Thai accent, especially since the majority of the cast was of Asian decent.  However, in the original Rodger and Hammerstein's movie, the actor who played the King was Caucasian as well, so they may have been trying to pay homage to his horrible accent too. 

Some could find the movie or production racist, but at the end of the day, my only problem was the accent. Every other part of the production seemed to be culturally sensitive, so I'm not complaining too much. Still, every time the King opened his mouth, I cringed just a bit. 

Overall, I had a great time at the show and a fantastic night hanging out with my mom.  Would I recommend spending hard earned money to watch this production of The King and I? Ehh, probably not. I'd say save your bucks for Les Miserables which is due to come to Sydney this March! 

Have you seen a play recently? I'd love to hear your recommendations! 

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