Thursday, January 22, 2015

The Show Must Go On

One of the things I have enjoyed about being a grandfather of a slightly older child (Nadia is 9) is taking her to performances of various kinds. The school where I teach has grades 2 through 12 so many shows have children about her age in them. In the past few years I have taken her to a Variety Show, a chorus concert, and two plays put on by the school's Drama Club. Last year was Peter Pan. She and I thoroughly enjoyed that, especially the wire apparatus that allowed for Peter Pan to fly around the stage. Very cool. The student performers had worked very hard and the show was a definite success. It was so good that I wondered if this year's play would suffer by comparison (which is unfair but inevitable.) Well last weekend I found out. I picked up my date for the evening and we went, tickets in hand, to see Beauty and the Beast, a musical.

The music was a sound track, which was fine, but the singing was so-so. I don't think the soloists were miked and they were easily overpowered by the track. But that was the only problem I saw. The costumes were wonderful, over-sized creations that were just right for the size stage we had. The acting was generally quite smart. It was clear that the co-directors had done their jobs, and the student actors as well. I especially enjoyed the performances of Belle, Cogsworth and the Lumiere. Gaston was a great, inflated-ego bully of a man, just what was needed. The makeup for the beast was right on. The fight scene was full of action and great to see. The sets were of high quality for a high school performance. Nadia and I agreed that it was worth coming to see. Congratulations to the Drama Club, the directors, cast and stage hands. Can't wait to see what they do next. (Note: I am not a drama critic.)

On the retirement front, I have started my final semester of teaching. I am down to double digits in school days left to teach. But I am not prepared for it to end just yet. I enjoy my classes too much. AP Computer Science is just getting to the good stuff. Astronomy is wonderful. The students are a terrific lot. I am so glad they took astronomy. I hope they feel the same.

For the next several months, look west after sunset for Venus as the evening star. It is currently getting brighter and higher so it will be easily seen until June.

In the coming weeks and months I will have a big announcement or two that may be of interest to readers. I am working on something to do post retirement. Stay tuned.

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