Opening Night!!! – September 10, 2009

And so my belated blog continues. Since I’m laid up with a strained neck, I figured I’d make the best of it and continue my blog! We’re still in Tempe, 9 months ago *yikes!* and it’s finally my opening night!

~ ~ ~

LK Trailer with Levi 019LK Trailer with Levi 018Levi left the day before my opening night but my best friend Yadhira was flying in the same day so I didn’t have too much time to be sad when Levi left. My mom had surprised me the day before too, so I was really excited for my opening night!

(Above) Levi trying to capture me jumping in front of our LK Trailer… and not succeeding.


Me capturing Levi jumping in front of the trailer just fine….

Kendra had a surprise care package from my sister for me to open that night (even though I had recognized Cheryl’s handwriting on the package earlier that week! Busted!) I opened it and wassurprised and delighted to see good luck presents from all of my friends in Chicago! It was SO sweet and personalized, like for example, my physical therapist Julie, who worked on me when I sprained my back in 2006, send a tennis ball to roll out my stiff muscles! Or Todd, my photographer friend, who always has Wrigley gum at his studio that I swipe, (he gets it for free for shooting for Wrigley so he has a never-ending supply!) sent me lots of gum! It was SO sweet and I loved every single gift!!

Presents 010Presents 031Presents 041

Me enjoying each of the gifts – I sent these pictures to the people who got me the gifts to let them know how much I liked them- especially that Target gift card, on the left!

My first night on that stage is something I will never forget, yet it is also indescribable. I was extremely nervous, first of all, to be in the right spacing at the right time. There is SO much going on in the show that if you’re in the wrong place, you’re liable to get run over by an elephant or something!  But really, I was mostly excited. It was my Broadway debut! (Well, Broadway Tour Debut, at least) At the end, during our standing-ovation curtain call, it took all my power not to just burst into tears. I even got my own personal standing ovation from my cast mates after the curtain fell! I was so happy to be there, and so relieved to have survived not only the rehearsal process but my first show, it was overwhelming. It was such a privilege to be on stage receiving my first standing ovation for my first Broadway show performance. It’s everything you imagine it would be. Goosebumps and all.

Opening Night 006

My Opening Night/Erynn’s Birthday Party!!

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Us being silly…

Afterwards, a bunch of us went to celebrate and meet my mom and Yadhira. It was a great group of friends, and it was also Erynn’s birthday, so we combined occasions and had a great time. My mom and Yadhira had to leave the next day (such a short visit!) so after sending Yadhira off early, Mom and I had a quick lunch at the closest Vietnamese place we could find. Yum! She also took me grocery shopping, just like kids in college have their parents do because they’re still not sure what they need. I never had that, being in Canada for my first year and then living at home for the rest of my schooling, so I had it now, browsing the Asian market shelves for dried fish flakes for soup and such.

Mom Time 002A yummy lunch with my Mommy!

My last week in Tempe was pretty open, since after my opening I had minimal rehearsals (compared to six days a week earlier in the rehearsal period!) so I took some time to be the professional tourist I planned to be for the remainder of the tour. I went to the Phoenix Zoo, which was extensive and excellent! I spent a lot of time hunting down each animal represented in our show, of course, and had a generally great time roaming around the zoo.

PHX Zoo 023PHX Zoo 056PHX Zoo 057

A cute groundhog ~ A really funny sign next to the bathrooms ~ My cat sleeps like that too!

Also in my last week I wanted to take out my friends that I had made at the Four Points Sheraton where I was staying. The front desk guys were SO sweet the entire time I was there, and not just because it was their jobs! They were just really nice guys. So we went out the night before I left for a little night-cap and snack. They really made my stay in Tempe really nice!!

Four Points Friends 004Me with my Tempe Pals!

Finally, after a four week intensive rehearsal period, a thrilling opening night, and three visits from some of the most important people in my life, I packed up my life and made the move to our next city, Seattle, Washington!!!

Gammage 008Gammage 009Gammage 014

The show’s cast listing ~ My first time on the board!~The Gammage Auditorium

where I had my opening night

and was designed

by Frank Lloyd Wright!!

My First Poster!

Me signing my first autograph on the show poster as a full cast member!

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