With my husband safe in New York again and the sugar taste of candycorn brushed off my teeth, I was again alone to continue rehearsals with Disney and spend more time enjoying Toronto. We did a few runs of “Villains Tonight” and went on to “Disney Dreams,” a lovely (and most popular amongst audiences) pastiche-style musical featuring vignettes of a number of Disney movies. I can’t give away too much of it, but in one sequence I play a Mom catching her young child reading under the covers late at night. Instantly, I was reminded of myself as a young kid, who did the exact same thing. My Mom would knock on my door an hour after bedtime and commandingly say “Sierra…time to go to sleep!”, knowing full well that I was yet again reading an “OZ” book or “Alice in Wonderland” under the covers via flashlight. Rehearsing the scene put me right in my Mother’s shoes, and I thought that as an English Professor and an enthusiast of literature of reading, the term “reap what you sow” was applicable to her way back when. It was easy for me to step into that scene and find the humor in it.
Between rehearsals this past week, I’ve taken advantage of the cultural and creative treasures of Toronto. This city is a great Entertainment capital, and there are Broadway-caliber (and even pre-Broadway runs of) musicals to see. I had missed “Sister Act” in New York, so I was thrilled to see the production here. It was adorable and funny, with great pop-belted singing and 70’s funk. Plus, a lovely collection of character ladies and older women to play for me now and into the future! I also took a morning (I had it off from rehearsals) to visit the Royal Ontario Museum, which is very much like the American Museum of Natural History in New York. The ROM has a great collection of ancient Chinese ceramics, stuffed and mounted creatures, recreations in real scale of a number of plants and animals, skeletons of Dinosaurs and million-year-old mammals, plus a gallery of textiles and gorgeous dresses in a special “Textiles and Costumes” area. One beautiful section contained gems and minerals of the world, including a sheet of copper in its original form, and the gorgeous “Light of the Desert” Crussite Gem. I was excited to be able to see ancient Egyptian mummies, actual gold-leaf circlet crowns from Greece, armor and guns/swords from Europe, a piano from the Elizabethan era, and a fantastic collection of carvings, clothing, and beautiful beaded work from the Canadian First Peoples collection. My iPhone picture gallery and my head was full by the time I left 4 hours later. Here are a few shots I took:
That was on Tuesday morning, November 6th, and by the end of rehearsal in the afternoon I was happy that I had spent the day distracted from my country’s Election Day. I had already sent in my vote via Absentee Ballot (for the first time!) and hunkered down with dinner and CNN on TV to watch the results unfold. In the later hours of the night, I began Skyping with my husband and as the “Daily Show” and “Colbert Report”‘s Live coverage began, he “watched” with me. Suffice it to say, and not to get too political, I was happy with the results, especially with the President, LGBT-equality laws, and the election of so many women to Representative roles.
We have a week left, just a week, before we leave for Houston, TX, for our final training and a tiny Thanksgiving Holiday break. And then, two weeks from yesterday, we will embark on The Magic. We will “shadow” the current cast, tour the ship, get to know the rules and joys of what we have available to us, and I’ll take over completely the role of Vocal Captain. I’ve truly enjoyed the preparation of being the Vocal Captain – sitting in on rehearsals, hearing people’s unique voices and skills and how they morph into each role vocally. It’s been truly an honor to be privy to these rehearsals, which are usually closed to the rest of the cast.
These next coming weeks look to be quite busy too, starting with yet another visit to the CN Tower this afternoon. More to come: O Noir Restaurant, “Jekyll & Hyde,” final rehearsals and final runs, and Thanksgiving in Houston!