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Shannon A.
Sound of Music Weekend 
2nd-Dec-2012 07:17 pm
SOUND OF MUSIC!. Today we finally went to see The Sound of Music at the Berkeley Playhouse. We'd originally had tickets for last Sunday, but Kimberly was still getting very tired at the time, so we swapped them for this weekend – in what turned out to be their penultimate show of the production. It was well-produced and had lots of good actors, as has always been the case at the Playhouse. Maria and the Captain were both great – and those are very challenging roles given the well-known portrayals by Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. I also really loved their Liesl and their Max. We were bemused to see the girl who played Annie in Annie as Brigitta. It's comparatively such a tiny role!

Kimberly & I had never seen the musical before, but we last saw the film just last year at the Castro SIng-A-Long (December 4, 2011, so almost exactly a year ago, practically creating a tradition). So, it was pretty fresh in our heads and we really noticed the differences. I think we were most disturbed by the ordering of some of the songs in this original musical. For example "My Favorite Things" is the third major song in the musical, sung by Maria and the Abbess! Then when the Von Trapp kids are gathered in Maria's room during the storm, she instead sings "The Lonely Goatherd" with them, which seems like a considerably worse choice.

The pacing also surprised us. It's very fast compared to the movie (yet still came in at almost three hours, including intermission). For example, Maria enters the Von Trapp home and is teaching the kids Do-Re-Me within 1 or 2 minutes of her arrival. That's wasting-no-time storytelling there!

There are two songs in the musical that didn't make it into the movie, "How Can Love Survive", a satire about rich people never having love that's told about in stories, and "No Way to Stop It", which is about the Captain's unwillingness to bow to the Nazis. They're both sung by the Captain, Max, and the Baroness, which is probably why they were cut from the movie. Those three just don't seem the sort to sing together except within the confines of a musical. That anti-Nazi song, by the by, was part of a much large larger focus on the German-Austrian problem in the musical — as opposed to the film where it seems to come out of nowhere.

Overall, it was interesting to see this variant of an iconic movie. You can see things they improved for the movie (like that ordering of the songs) and things they made worse (like cutting out most of the politics and instead focusing on romance). And, as I said, it was a fun show all on its own.

RAIN! Beyond that, it was the rainy weekend. In fact, rainy since Wednesday or so. I don't think we got the 7 inches the weathermen were predicting, but I wouldn't be surprised if we got 4-5 over the last five days. I got wet on the way home from Endgame Saturday and stayed in the house on many other days due to rain. There was sun here and there though.

And the forecast says ... more rain starting on Tuesday. Maybe.

FLOODS! When the sun somewhat surprisingly came out amidst totally blue skies following the play I decided to ride up the hill all the way to the Shepherd Canyon Trail while I could. I was surprised to see some pretty severe flooding on the way. Chabot Road had huge pools and mud. It looked like maybe some storm drains had flooded over. It was pretty close to impassable. I also saw some pretty notable flooding on Shepherd Canyon Road (far below the Trail). The Trail itself was fine, though it was clear mud had washed over the corner of it during the rains. Some of the woodland adjoining the trail had also become marshland, and looked pretty severely flooded too. And Trail was quite crowded with people, most of them running out to walk their dogs now that the rain was done.

It got very abruptly cold while I was up there, so I came home after reading for a while.

And now I'm back in my warm(ish), dry home. There's going to be some work on Judges Guild for Designers & Dragons tonight.
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