One Short Day in The Emerald City

Wicked

It has been a week since the closing performance of the award-winning musical, Wicked, ended. It was an unforgettable experience and until now, I can’t seem to get the songs out of my mind. You see, I have an extreme case of LSS. Even if it has been a while since I last heard the song, I still sing it in my head, and can’t seem to shake it off.

The truth is, I am not a huge fan of Wicked. My friend Sarah is. She even read the book and brought it during the concert. But I know that this musical is critically acclaimed when it started on Broadway in 2003. It was also the play that catapulted Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth as one of the best actors of the stage musicals. The story was not so familiar to me, as well. Dorothy and the Oz was a story that I only read once when I was a kid. I never knew there was an adaptation of that story. I also do not know anything about Jemma Rix, who played as Elphaba and Suzie Mathers who portrayed Glinda.

With all these vague ideas about the production and the play, I went to watch Wicked without any expectations. All I had when I went into the CCP main theater was my interest towards good musical productions and all the praises that other people gave about the show.

I can only compare Wicked to Phantom of the Opera, which I watched a year ago. Both are great international productions with totally different genre. If I pick which of the two I enjoyed watching the most, I’d give my vote to Wicked.

Phantom of the Opera was a great production, but I feel like Wicked is more of me. Wicked is wittier, livelier and more entertaining. The humor was very hilarious. Suzie Mathers has great comedic timing. And she is one of the reasons why Wicked was so entertaining to watch.

Of course the fictional world of Oz won’t be believable without the great lighting and costume. The props (hello Time Dragon!) are really amazing, as well. I like how they integrated the whole clock with the background and the sides of the stage.

There were two parts of the play that I can’t forget. The first is Glinda and Elphalba’s visit to the Emerald City. “One Short Day” is a very catchy song and I like every bit of that part. The song, the dancers, the lights, are all so perfect in my eyes. The second scene was the romantic encounter between Elphalba and Fiyero while singing “As Long As You’re Mine.” The scene is made romantic by the lyrics of the music. I can also feel the passion and emotion while they were singing the song.

The production is based on Gregory Maguire’s book, Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. The play, made me think of reading the book. But I saw Sarah’s copy and it was too long for me. So I’ll pass and just cherish the wickedness of wicked through music and memory.

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Photos by Sarah Sy

I am happy that I had the chance to watch this play. Wicked is worth every peso.

I am sure Concertus Manila is bringing another hit musical play here in Manila. Don’t know which one they’ll choose. I’d love it to be Miss Saigon, but that is impossible. Maybe Les Miserables or Oliver! Or maybe something else. I missed the opportunity to see Cats and Mamma Mia so whatever the play is, I really hope that I get the chance to see it.

Have you seen Wicked, what was your impression? Which part did you like best?

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