Tara has always been more of the musical fanatic that I am; I grew up with musicals so I still really enjoy them, but I don't quite obsess to the level that she does. :-) Rogers & Hammerstein's Cinderella, however, has consistently been one of my favorites. It has great songs and seriously... you just can't beat the story of Cinderella. It's the ultimate fairy tale. So I was pretty excited about the trip, along with the chance to see New York City!
It very nearly didn't happen, because we showed up at the airport (after a drive that took twice as long as anticipated due to bad roads), running to meet our flight, only to find it had been cancelled. Long story short, we nearly got out on 4 different flights, and even were on a plane at one point, ready to pull out, when it too got cancelled. A winter storm in New York was the trouble. Nothing to do but load up again and go home. Our mom spent the entire afternoon on the phone to switch our Broadway tickets, and get everything else in order to leave two days later. Though it was depressing to get all geared up only to turn around and come home, God always has the best in mind. If we'd succeeded in flying out, we would have sat in our hotel room for 2 days because the weather was so bad! Instead, we had sun both days and were able to traipse about the city and see the sights.
New York City itself was bustling... if I ever lived in the city the biggest change would definitely be the nonstop flow of PEOPLE! We saw Times Square, took the Staten Island Ferry to see the Statue of Liberty (we were told it's the best way to see the statue for free :-), the 9/11 Memorial, Central Park and 5th Avenue. My favorites were the last two; Times Square was neat to be there, but it was crazy and slightly overstimulating. :-) Central Park was just lovely - an oasis of calm in the midst of a busy city. And had so many darling bridges! And 5th Avenue was an enjoyable walk... lots of pretty buildings there and upscale stores.
All that said, I don't recommend going just to see NYC in January. We were there for the show, and saw the city while we were there so it was fine, but it was FREEZING. As in, my toes were ice blocks. Go in spring or fall if you want to just experience New York. :-)
A few of these photos are phone snaps... I decided to travel light and only brought my 50mm, so the phone acted as my wide angle lens if I wanted a wider shot!
Ready to hit the city - first up was Times Square.
Skyline from the ferry
(which my dad informed me is actually the New Jersey skyline... oh well. What do I know, I'm a hick from Illinois!)
That shot on the right? Yeah. I felt like I was on the Titanic or something.
Brooklyn Bridge... didn't get to go on it, unfortunately. Next time!
A rainbow in the mist at the 9/11 Memorial
We had lunch at a fabulous restaurant called "Robert" on the 9th floor of the museum of art and design. Super fun, eclectic decor and overlooking Central Park! The food was AMAZING.
This was the darlingest thing! Sweet little girl in perfect stance hoping one of those birdies would eat out of her hand. *melt*
The Lindt store on 5th Avenue! :-)
And then, of course, the reason we were even there... Cinderella. I don't think I'm exaggerating if I say that it was one of the most magical nights I've ever experienced. I expected a good show, but it was 10 times better than I even thought it would be! Tara & I had "stalked" the show for a while since finding out we were going, and so it was amazing to be sitting in the audience and actually watching it - seeing Laura Osnes & Santino Fontana and the rest of the stellar cast in real life! It was witty, hilarious, and beautifully staged with incredible costumes (transformation gowns! Ahhhh!). I've always been a very girly girl (let's just say that "tomboy" is not a word anyone has ever used to describe me), and I was just thrilling to the tips of my toes. It was SOOOO good. If you have the chance, go see Cinderella on Broadway. Sadly, many of the original cast members have left the show now and moved on (we caught it right at the end of their run!), so while I'm loyal especially to Laura and firmly believe nobody will perform it as perfectly as she did, it's still a phenomenal production and well worth seeing! (Support family friendly shows on Broadway! :-).
It pays to stalk the show before hand. We ran into Ann Harada, who plays one of the stepsisters, as we were going to dinner, and we recognized her since we'd seen interviews of her not in stepsister attire. She was gracious to stop for a picture!
Theatre prettiness! (And sister prettiness).
Cinderella's Stuart Weitzman glass slippers encrusted in 5,000 Swarovski crystals.
These would make a great birthday present, in my opinion.
After the show we got autographs and photos with the cast! My photo with Santino is a bit blurry, but it's the memory that counts. :-)
And here we are with the beautiful, incomparable Laura Osnes! She acted and sang Cinderella to absolute perfection. In short, she is amazing.
Cheesecake after the show overlooking Times Square (lots of fun restaurants in New York several floors up with great views!).
One last shot of skyline from inside Central Park. New York is a beautiful city!
P.S. Here's a secret: Cinderella is officially my very favorite musical. :-) I know, big surprise, right?