Saturday, February 1, 2014

Once upon a time.... I went to Broadway


wait. WHAT?!?!

Yep. I probably sound like a country hick... you'd think it wouldn't be that big of a deal... after all, Chicago isn't that far away from me! :) But going to New York City was a magical experience!

This was my 20th birthday gift from my parents. They knew that I was pretty much obsessed with this musical ever since I first saw the Tony Awards video. First I was obsessed with the costumes, then I got obsessed with Laura Osnes and Santino Fontana, and then just got obsessed with Cinderella in general. I've always liked Cinderella, I loved watching the version with Brandy and Whitney Houston growing up (as in, I wanted to watch it at least once a week!), but hearing Laura Osnes sing the songs made them so much more magical and beautiful and sweet!

So that's what they gave me! A two day trip to New York City and tickets to see Cinderella on Broadway!

(Can someone say... best birthday gift ever??) :)

We planned to go on the 21st, and after we got all the tickets we found out that most of the leads in the cast were performing their last night on the 26th! Phew, what a relief!! :)

BUT.... most of you know.... the 21st was that major snow storm out in NY! We were at the airport all morning trying to get on a flight out there, but EVERYTHING got cancelled! The people at the airport were super nice, and did everything they could to get us on flights (at one point we were actually on a plane ready to take off, when it got cancelled), but planes don't fly through huge storms, even if you have tickets to a Broadway show! :)
Needless to say, I was horribly disappointed. I had been SO looking forward to this trip, and it looked like it was gone to pieces.

That was a crazy crazy morning.

But my mother spent the entire afternoon on the phone to get our tickets switched to the 23rd instead, and she was successful! And not only that, but the non-refundable hotel gave us a refund, the airlines gave us back our miles, and the new hotel that we got was even cheaper and closer to the theater than the original one! The Lord is so good to us - He always throws in more blessings!!

Thursday morning saw us up at 3:45am to hop on a plane and make our way (finally!!!) to New York!!

 Freshened up after the plane ride and ready to hit the city!!! (and Dad has two sets of teeth....)

And I'm excited.... just a wee bit....
er, ok, A LOT!

(most of the photos were taken with our phone, fyi)
First stop... Times Square!

And then... getting ready for the show!!!!!

On our way to dinner, we ran into Ann Harada, who plays Charlotte, one of the stepsisters! So we stopped her and took a photo! :) It made me even more excited than I already was... which is saying a lot. :)

"A lovely night, a lovely night,
A finer night you know you'll never see."
^I did a happy dance when I first saw this^

Cinderella was more amazing than I ever dreamed it could be! The theater itself was pretty small - smaller than I expected, so I wasn't quite sure if it would live up to my hopes when we first walked into the theater, but it did mean that we had better seats than I thought we would! But then the music started, and I went in the clouds!  

The sets were incredible and switched scenes seamlessly! From the forest, to the outside of the cottage, to the inside of the cottage, to the inside of the palace, to the outside of the palace, to the town, to the wedding scene.... I was blown away! Here's the promotional video to give you a little taste of it! :) It doesn't do it justice! :)

 Inside the theater!

 During the intermission we took some photos on the staircase. For those wondering... no, I didn't make my dress. 

Dress: Eshakti
Clutch: Charming Charlies
Wrap: don't remember
Shoes: ModCloth
Braclet: Eshakti
Belt: Kohls

Yep, I like store bought outfits too. I don't sew everything! :)

Mirror shot!

Cinderella's glass slippers. *drooling*

For those interested in reading the sign. 5,000 Swarovski crystals. Yes, oh please, yes.

After the show, we stood in line in the freeeezing cold to get autographs and pictures with the leads! 
Victoria Clark, the Fairy Godmother!

Santino Fontana, the Prince! He was so great in this role! He added so much character to it... usually when I think of the prince in Cinderella he kind of comes across as spineless, boring, and dumb. But Santino's version was so comical, loveable, and adorable! :)
(for those who don't know, Santino Fontana also is the voice of Prince Hans in the new Disney animated movie "Frozen").

Aaaaaaannnnndddd... there she is! Laura Osnes! The best Cinderella ever! She sings with so much enthusiasm, and just captures the role! So so so glad we got to see her!

Cinderella had glass slippers... I had gold ones! :)

"You say goodbye, away you fly, but on your lips you keep a kiss, all your life you'll dream of this lovely, lovely night."

The next day we took the subway over to the Stanton Island Ferry to see the Statue of Liberty,

The Twin Towers 9/11 Memorial.

Then back up the subway for lunch at a neat upscale restaurant called "Robert"...
I felt so classy! :)

 It had a grand piano in the restaurant... which means it scores big point in my estimation. :)

Oreo cheesecake with some sort of fruity jelly stuff. (real descriptive, I know.) It was delicious!!
The restaurant is 9 stories up, and provides a view of...

.... Central Park!

Next we popped over to the Metropolitan Opera House. Given that I sing a lot of opera, it was a really neat stop, even though we didn't take any tours! Still, now I can say I've been to the Met! :)

Julliard School is located right by the Met.... so look! I've been to Julliard School. Now I have an easy answer to the question "What college did you go to?" :P

 Central Park has so many neat stone bridges. I loved this one!

We cut through Central Park to go to 5th Avenue. It was so calming to stroll through the park after the craziness of the city streets! Like a little bit of country side in the middle of the city! We were thankful that the sun was shining so bright that it made it feel almost warm! (emphasis on "almost")

You can see some ice-skaters in the bottom of this picture. This is the one of the views from Central Park! Such a beautiful city!

And our final walk in the city... down 5th Avenue, then back up Broadway to our hotel, then back to the airport as the sun set...

Goodbye, New York. I loved every second of you!

So that was my trip to New York. Thank you, Mom and Dad, for such a fabulous birthday gift! It meant the world to me! :)

"...and I like it so well, that for all I can tell, I may never come down to earth again...."


  1. Oh my gosh! I'm so excited for you! New York is one of my dream trips, to go see all the exciting shows. And I love Laura Osnes. :)

    1. Thanks, Lisa! I know - Laura Osnes is just so great! :)

  2. Glad you did this post. Must have been SO fun! I'd have totaly felt like a country kid in the big city. :) Thanks for sharing on here.

  3. oh my goodness, what an AMAZING trip!!! I'm so glad you were still able to make it despite the weather. I'm a huge fan of Cinderella, as well. :)

    1. Thanks! I don't know how anyone couldn't like Cinderella - what's not to love about such a sweet character and fun poofy dresses!? :)

  4. Oh my goodness, that whole trip sounds incredible! Getting to see Laura and Santino perform must have been amazing. I love that musical so much!

    NYC looks so pretty! Even though I'm not a city person, I think it would be fantastic to visit New York City someday (and hopefully see a Broadway show!)

    1. It was rather surreal when Laura first walked on stage for me to realize that I was actually watching them perform live! :) I never thought of myself as much of a city girl either, but NYC was incredible!

  5. My sister and I SO want to go and see Cinderella! I'm happy you got to experience it. :) Looks like you had loads of fun!!!

    1. It's definitely worth seeing! :) Thanks for commenting!

  6. Yay!!! Pictures! The hotel shot of the 3 of you is hilarious. :-) Love it. And I really like that picture of the 2 of you in Central Park! :-)

    1. Thanks, Lily!! That shot cracks me up too! :)

  7. Oh Tara, it looks like you had an amazingly magical time in New York! I'm so jealous of your adventures but thank you SO much posting pictures! Looking through all of them made me feel just a tiny bit of the excitement you must have had the whole time! :D

    Love ya!

    1. I wish I could have taken all my friends with me to NYC! Thanks for being excited for me though - it means a lot to have all my friends so enthusiastic about my adventures! :) Love you, too!! :) (and I miss you... I need to see you again soon!!!)

  8. Looks like a fun and exciting trip! Glad you and your family were able to go. :)

  9. OH MY GOODNESSS!!! I like NEVER, ever comment on blogs. . .but I read this post. . .and saw you met Laura and Santino. I admit I squealed. Loudly. Lucky, lucky, lucky girl! Eeeep. This post made me happy!! Thank you for sharing. :)

    1. Awww, well then I'm honored that you chose to comment on my post! ;) I admit, I did a fair amount of squealing myself! :) It was really awesome to get to meet them, however briefly!

    2. By the way, we're still squealing! :)

  10. Oh Tara! What a delightful birthday gift, your family knows you well;)

    It looks like you all had a wonderful time.

    1. Yes, they do know me well! :) Thanks for commenting!! :) *hugs*

  11. Oh my, I'm super jealous! Always wanted to see the Times Square and Central Park! :) It must have been a crazy adventure for you - so cool you got to see your favorite show and meet all those actors! Trips like that must be a common 20th birthday gift, because my parents came up with almost the same idea and they're taking me to London next month :)

    1. Oh wow! Thats so awesome that you are going to London! That's one of my dream trips too! :) I hope you have a fabulous time!

  12. Hi Tara!
    I just found your blog (I think I found you on pinterest!) and I must say your are amazing! You are so natural and enthousiastic about life...don't change! Oh and keep being a great christian...I think you are an exemple to many!
    Have a beautiful week!
    Christel, from France
    PS: I totally LOVE your skirt on Anne d'Avonlea post. I wish we could wear this type of skirt without looking weird! ♥

  13. That is so amazing!!!! What a best birthday gift!!!! You looked amazingly beautiful!

  14. Did I not comment on this yet? Gee, what a loser sister I am.

    This trip. It was... so... so.... yeah. Words fail. Impossibly wonderful (but was it wonderful because we loved it, or did we love it because it was wonderful?).

    Aren't you glad you now have a musical that I will happily listen to endlessly with you?

    1. No, you aren't a loser, since you gave me a bunch of these pictures to post! ;) Without you, our trip would have not been half as well documented! :)

      I don't know... was it the sweet invention of a lovers dream, or was it really as wonderful as it seemed?

      And yes, I'm super happy you'll listen to Cinderella 3 times every day with me. And you are probably happy that I'm giving you a break from Les Mis. ;)

    2. I never want to listen to Les Mis again (actually I never really did want to in the first place, but that's beside the point). It's Cinderella FOREVER.

  15. I just left a comment on Kathryn's blog. But I thought you needed one too;) Wow! What a trip. I'm so glad you were able to make a flight. Wise we could have tagged along, that restaurant looked AMAZING! Not to forget Cinderella. To tell you the truth I have never seen it before, you have just made me want to watch it!


    1. Esther, you have to watch Cinderella now! It's a classic! ;) And we need to a do a review of Robert for sure (we have a thing for restaurants with the name "Robert" attached to them, don't we?) :) I wish you could have come too! It was delightful!

  16. Tara....what a birthday present!! My goodness. I saw Kathryn's amazing photos...but then I just had to stop by your blog and get YOUR side of the story. NYC is such a dream, but I love seeing other people go and enjoy as well.

    I have a friend who would be green with envy if she knew about you going to see Cinderella....and getting a picture with Laura Osnes. I was so impressed by her when I watched the Tonys. I can only imagine what it was like hearing her live. Cinderella would be my second favorite musical/Broadway play....(Wicked would be first ;) )

    I'm jealous of the food though. Not going to lie ;) I want to go to NCY and eat and see shows and eat some more. In my dreams =P

    Thanks for all the awesome pictures. And you know....I'll be in Illinois in a few months. Would LOVE to see you and your lovely sister. After all, you were kind of fantastic ;)

    1. Ella - I know - it was an incredible birthday gift. I just sat with my mouth open saying "Really?!?" for a long time... then spent the rest of the night jumping around, singing to the soundtrack, and texting my best friend about it! :)
      Laura Osnes is even better live than on any video I've seen of her! It was just amazing hearing her sing (Santino is better live too!) Believe it or not, I've never seen or heard the music from Wicked... must look this up! :)
      You're coming to Illinois!?! We must make this work somehow!! You were all kinds of fabulous too! :)

  17. Uh, totally understandable reaction Tara!! And to enjoy it with your family makes it even better!

    Yep. I'll be in Illinois from April 11-23rd =D

    1. Awesome! I'll definitely try to work something out in April then!! :)

  18. oh my goodness! What an amazing birthday present. I want to see a Broadway show so badly! Have you heard that they are going to put Frozen on Broadway? If its true, I can't wait!
    One more thing, you look so much like Sybil from Downtown Abbey its scary!

    1. I DID hear that they are putting Frozen on Broadway - I can only imagine how spectacular that will be! :)

      Awwww! Thanks so much! To be likened to Lady Sybil is a real compliment! :)

  19. Beautiful photos! Thanks for sharing your NYC trip!

  20. You got to see Santino Fontana and Laura Osnes?!?!?! (Yes, I had a big struggle to prevent myself from writing in all caps). But that's awesome and I'm VERY envious. :)



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