Wicked Victoria Apollo Theatre, London May 2010 - Feb 2011
Wicked Review Matinee Saturday July 17th 2010
Lucy came running up & gave me an enormous hug & it took all of 3 seconds flat for the lift guys to tease us for our matching ‘defying gravity’ tops!
I can’t find words for how excited/nervous I was as my Mum, her friend Y, Y’s
beautiful 9 month old daughter M & I met Lucy at the wheelchair ramp of the Apollo.
Our seats were incredible, the wheelchair balcony on the right as you looked at the stage. Great for Lee spotting & it meant Lucy could stand behind me & hug when I needed ‘holding down’ without impeding anyone else at all.
Hold breath moment number one:
Even though I’d checked the cast online before we left the house & the second thing Lucy said after “SQUEE’ was ‘Don’t worry, I’ve checked the board, he’s on,”
my tummy was still doing cartwheels, so until the cast announcement was played
& Lee wasn’t in it, I couldn't dare believe it was real.
The lights went down & I was like “OMG, I can’t see him; find him, find him!” Lucy spotted him first & FINALLY calmed me down; but she did giggle when she noticed that I was paying no attention WHATSOEVER to a giant flying bubble for goodness sakes! Is that the definition of Meady brain mush, do we think?!
A word here for the girls. I thought Rachel was great all the way through; now can see she would have been wasted with just the two real numbers as Nancy & it was nice to hear some things in what I’d call an ‘Ozian accent’, that didn’t HAVE to be anything.(Note to the MT world: Every character ever written is NOT automatically American! Sorry mini rant over)
LOVED ‘Defying Gravity’. Such a powerful number. That line about being ‘through accepting limits’ gives me a shot in the arm EVERY time. In fact the whole number gives me back my courage when I need it.
One thing both Lucy & I did think though was it’s a shame they can’t ditch the dragon & have Elphie on wires a la the flying monkeys, over the stalls. Oh, we know
WHY they can’t, but reality & health & safety are just such a ‘Bah Humbug’ at times!
I was REALLY impressed with ‘No Good Deed’ which was pretty much just in the show for me until now. The scream of FIYERO at the end gave me chills because I knew exactly how she felt.
‘For Good’ is mine & Lucy’s song anyway, to the point where we’ve performed it together & everything, so we were WOW/sniffle the whole way through.
Both versions of ‘I'm Not That Girl’ were lovely but tough to hear as that song cuts very, very close for me!
‘Popular’; now for some reason, much as I love the song, Louise just didn’t ‘float my bubble’ on that one. I can admire the technique & it was beautifully sung & funny,
but I only found myself wanting to slap Galinda into next Christmas
(just like I do with Dorothy’s shadow at the end of the show).
For me, Louise’s stand out was actually ‘Thank Goodness’. I thought it very heart-felt, a real ‘stop & think’ number, helped along by a certain Prince (of whom MUCH more later.)
And Now For His Royal Highness Prince Fiyero:
A voice like chocolate, cream & silk, curls to die for & the breeches, let’s just say Lucy is now a Lee Fan, she noticed them with absolutely no prompting from me whatsoever! Lee’s voice is stronger than I remember from Joseph; time, practice, training, confidence & concerts have obviously all played into that.
Lee’s first appearance as Fiyero is just WOW! The first thing that dawned on me apart from “WOW! & the above description was the athleticism, something we didn’t see in ‘Jo’. That statue work – Phew! Hold breath moment number two. The dancing was miles better than I expected. I had honestly feared dancing MAY be a weakness, but not a bit of it, I enjoyed every step.
To my eye Lee’s Fiyero doesn’t stay TOTALLY air-headed & flippant for very long at all, by the Ball we’ve already seen him tease Elphie for listening to Galinda showing he can see at least part of what’s really happening & his disgusted reaction at what
Dr Dillamond says & how the teacher is treated. It is, of course, also when we discover that Elphie likes Fiyero despite herself.
The Lion Cub Scene is when they discover that they like each other. Each knows more & cares more about the other than they can admit. A word here for the costume & the curls. Perhaps it shouldn’t have, but it really surprised me how HOT Lee looked in that scene. Guess I'm a sucker for a suit & a sweetheart.
Even at the Oz-Dust Ball watching Nessa & Boq, he seems uncomfortable with what’s happening but shakes himself out of it even though he knows he shouldn’t. Same with when the girl’s dancing stops the Ball. Part of me could feel Fiyero squirming for BOTH of them. Oh & can I just say: Ball – white tie & reddish tails! I quite literally had to hold in a scream (much to Lucy’s amusement!) OMGG!
Again our Prince can’t QUITE keep his flippant mask on when he checks on Galinda. That’s why I think the audience warms to Fiyero as a character, because we know he’s not REALLY just a shallow, self-absorbed twit LONG before he does. Of course Lee’s so good at giving Fieryo light & shade that it makes it all the easier to see. Having said that, the early part of ‘Dancing Through Life’ had a wonderful, youthful, care-free, quality to it.
The Captain of the Guard, what can I say but UNIFORM & rope swings?!
This is where I have to go back to ‘Thank Goodness’. Despite being spitting furious at the set-up, ever the gentleman Prince, Fiyero walks away rather than humiliate Glinda. She feels that herself, it doesn’t come from him; it’s her soul-searching. I love the flash of anger at the crowd, but most of all I love the fact that Fiyero & Glinda get one over on Madame Morrible. Morrible thinks they are hunting Elphie, but what he’s really been doing is searching for his love. The look on his poor face! Sniff! Glinda knows it too of course which is kinda sad.
As Long As You’re Mine: Well, quite frankly, what girl wouldn’t fall head over tumbling heart in love?! I know I did all over again! So tender, sweet & sad yet still hopeful.
I honestly don’t believe there’s a single one of us who wouldn’t, right at that moment, ‘make up for lost time’ if we were in Elphie’s shoes! I KNOW I would! The kiss, I don’t have words for! Bliss! That song will always be a cherished memory for me.
photo credits: ' Wicked the Musical'
Despite what happens in the plot I would have known Lee anywhere!
(Is it just me who is reminded of a bible story as Lee forcibly leaves the stage then? I doubt it!)
The crowd went NUTS, us included! Lee BEAMED as his cheer got louder & louder.
I apologised to the poor misfortunate lady we two gibbering wrecks had been sharing our balcony with but having sussed us during the show, she very graciously said she didn’t mind!
We didn’t manage the stage door this time. To be honest, part of me is glad we didn’t because that means, just for this time...
I get to ‘keep’ Lee as Fiyero ‘my’ fairy-tale Prince.