Oct. 30th, 2010

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I've been wanting to see Idina in concert since my sister introduced me to her two years ago (I'd heard her on Rent, but never really paid attention to the names of the voices on the soundtrack) and told me how awesome she is live. I missed her in July since I had my daughter that weekend, but when I heard she was coming to DC in October, I was bound and determined I wasn't missing her again!

I'm so glad I stuck to my resolution because last night was phenomenal. The National Symphony Orchestra is amazing and I definitely enjoyed listening to their renditions of broadway musical overtures. The banter onstage between Idina and Marvin Hamlish was hilarious and Idina herself was just breathtaking.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. I had quite a good time overall and I wanted to write about the experience in depth. I decided to go alone to the concert, mainly because when I bought the ticket, I found one in a decent seat for $20 because that was basically all I could afford, and also partly because I knew that Dennis was going to be testing in October so I doubted he could go. After dropping off Denise with her dad, I was on my way to the metro. I made really good time both driving and on the metro considering it was in the middle of the Friday night rush hour. The Kennedy Center has a great service they provide in a free shuttle that takes you from the metro to the building and back again, which saved me from a lot of walking in the cold and in not so comfortable shoes. :)

I decided to just grab a bite at their Cafe, which probably wasn't the best choice. $10 for a sandwich that was mediocre at best kind of sucked, but I got to meet some interesting people along the way. I did feel kind of silly though. Most people I met were there to see the NSO, not Idina. :P There wasn't much in the way of seating, so I sat at a huge round table with an older couple who were waiting for their son.

We didn't speak to each other at first, but eventually we started talking and I learned that they were season tickets holders for the POPS series. I explained my love of Idina and things that she's been in, but they'd never heard of her, or heard her, before. I told them they were in for a treat! I didn't see them after the show, so I hope they enjoyed it. Their son had their tickets and they were slightly annoyed with him since he was running late, but the woman told me her son would be late to his own funeral, so they were good-natured about it. They asked me a lot about Southern Maryland and when their son arrived, they learned that I had metroed it in. I got the usual looks of sympathy/apprehension when I told them I take the green line. Which were even more amusing to me after the Tea Party rally that Rachel Maddow made such fun of on her show regarding their "approved" map of DC for where ralliers would be "safe." :)

After we parted ways, it was time for the show and I was pleased to find that there were quite a few empty seats around my seat. They started the first "half" without Idina, and informed us it would be the shortest first half ever. Marvin came on and said "welcome to winter. Yesterday we had summer, now we're in winter. I'm staying at the Four Seasons, but I'm only getting two." :) I liked him a lot, he had a good sense of humor and was a fun presence on the stage.

The NSO played overtures to things like Gypsy, Annie Get Your Gun, and My Fair Lady. Then they took a break and after the intermission, Idina came out! She looked amazing! She sang a few songs I hadn't heard of, and some songs from her shows, like from Rent. The song she sang from Rent was interesting because it wasn't really "her" song in the show. It was No Day But Today, but she did an amazing job at it. She also sang the song she sang on Glee, Lady Gaga's Poker Face, which was...interesting. It was funny because she interrupted the song in the middle and started explaining about the experience of being on Glee and how this song was supposed to be a reuniting of her character with her character's daughter and how she just couldn't see that from the lyrics. :P She then explained the experience of being on Glee because she was still breastfeeding at the time and she was pumping on set. She said something like "I had to pump my boobs" and after they had been talking for a bit, Marvin goes "well, as long as we're pausing the song, I need to ask something." He then walked over to the signer who was signing everything for the deaf and asked how they signed "pump my boobs." I think that was the funniest moment of the night.

At one point, Idina sang part of "For Good" from Wicked acapello without a mike which was just awesome! You could tell why she was Broadway for so long! Her final song before the encore was "Defying Gravity" and I cried. That song, it was introduced to me at a time in my life when I really needed it. I had come home from NC, broken, still angry and bitter about the end of my marriage and the falling out of a friendship I thought could withstand anything. I was broke, in debt, and not in the best place mentally, and that song helped me to believe that I could do anything if I set my mind to it. That no obstacles could hold me down and that my future is unlimited. It's been one of my favorite songs ever since and I thought the first time I saw it live when I saw Wicked this spring was an experience. That did not compare to how it felt hearing Idina sing it live, especially since it was her voice that I heard when I was in that low point, and hearing it live last night just filled me with so many emotions. Some sad at the memory of that time in my life, but most proud of myself for getting to a point where I could afford to enjoy this moment and that the song is still true as I keep continuing to overcome my obstacles.

After the show, there was a crowd of people trying to catch a glimpse of Idina. I didn't stick around, though my sister did get to meet her once and said she was really nice as she spoke to everyone who was waiting for her on the other side of the gate. I just stood in line for the shuttle and headed back to the metro, and then home. And the ride was completely uneventful...except for some interesting Halloween costumes. :)

I'm really glad I was able to go last night. Glad I had been able to afford the ticket, glad the cold I'm not fighting didn't fully take over last night so I could enjoy the experience, and hell, even glad that the ex was on time to get Denise and didn't back out at the last minute. I loved the show and I hope to see Idina again in the future. Anyway, just wanted to share the experience.



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