I’m not the biggest fan of the Disney movie Frozen. I was 25-years old when the movie came out and by no means did I, along with all of my other 30-something year old friends gather around the plasma TV freaking out when Elsa suddenly changed her clothes and then forced my mom to watch the movie with me the following weekend AFTER I had her braid my hair and her ask me during that famous scene, “Is this why you had me braid your hair?” So,
no, I am not the biggest fan of Frozen.
When I heard that Disney was doing a Broadway production of the most popular and wealth-inducing movie they’ve ever produced, I wasn’t itching to get up to New York and watch it. If I was bound to see any Broadway adaptation of a Disney movie, you better believe it’d be the Lion King. Then, one morning as I scrolled through Facebook sipping my raspberry coffee, inevitably staining my Invisalign my dentist told me not to drink coffee while wearing, a video of Caissie Levy popped up on my newsfeed. It was a glimpse into her, as Elsa, singing Let it Go on ABC’s The View. I don’t discriminate when it comes to Disney, so I played the video and without exaggeration, actually became awestruck at this performance. While Caissie Levy is absolutely lyrical, the effects had me going crazy! Elsa’s glove and cape just disappear on stage, while frozen effects turn the entire stage into ice. The entire video left me positively speechless and became the #1 most viewed video in my household that week, with John haphazardly waltzing into our bedroom being like, “Seriously? Again?”
Ever since I lost my mom, I’ve been on the hunt for ways to add more excitement into my waking hours. Grief is hard and it’s necessary to “escape” in order to reintroduce fun times again during my incredible moments of weakness. It’s necessary for healing. I’ve become more adventurous, understanding that life is incredibly short and the best thing I can do is follow those impulses that lead me to somewhere new, someplace where I can find joy again. I purchased the tickets about a month after watching that video, and it just so happened to be on a weekend we were insanely busy!
While most people who follow me on Instagram and other forms of social media may recognize me for my articles and routine travel to far-off places, what a lot of people don’t know is that I’m also a college student. I attend online classes and have been for a little over two years in pursuit of my Bachelor’s in Creative Writing and English. I go to classes consecutively every eight weeks and since enrolling, have maintained a 4.0. Most days of the week are spent logged on to my computer, reading chapter after chapter on Shakespear, Editing, World Mythology and as of late, the study of the English Language and Linguistics. It’s an incredibly hard class and I was up at 5:00am yesterday morning, continuing to work on my paper which is currently analyzing the linguistic principles and differences between Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.
Needless to say, after getting swept up in my paper and having to add only 5 more references before I could call it quits, we were already thirty minutes late. We live about two hours from New York and decided to drive up to Seacacus, New Jersey to hop on the train into the city. The best way to describe our trip is my utilizing the definition of Murphy’s Law: everything that can go wrong, will go wrong.
Our train over to the city was stopped for traffic, leaving us only 20 minutes to get to New York, buy a ticket, navigate the subway systems to 42nd Street, and get to the St. James Theatre. Once we got to the subway, we tried buying tickets, only to discover that it wasn’t working. On to the next booth! We buy tickets, race to the entrance and….can’t get through! We try again, but alas, we still can’t get through. We try again but still, no avail. At this point, we have ten minutes to figure out our ticket dilemma, take the subway, and get to the venue. We stand in line to speak to customer service until I have the grand idea that our ticket says bus transfer so we hop out of line to go buy another ticket only to realize that our ticket wasn’t good for a subway to bus transfer. The line is even longer! I cursed, because that’s what I do in stressful situations and it’s New York, I figure they’ve heard worse.
We finally get the ticket debacle straightened out, walk down to the platform, confused over which train to take before hopping on the 1 to 42nd Street. For as many times as we’ve taken this exact same route, to my internship interview with Mogul, to our photoshoot in Central Park for Tacori Jewelry sponsored by Mogul, to seeing CATS perform on Broadway twice, we’re still consistently baffled when it comes to using the NY-subway system. We sprinted off the train and plummeted ourselves onto the grimy, New York sidewalks, running past tourists and locals who hate that we’re even here. It’s funny, for as many times as I leave my house thinking I look ‘effortlessly New York’ I always turn into a frizzy, sweaty, mess once I’m there.
St. James Theatre was about a seven-minute walk from where we were and halfway through, I’m doubled over on the sidewalk, panting, sweating, and half-convinced my toe is cut off because it’s completely numb inside the Mickey Mouse flats I bought at the Disney Store. We get to the theatre, walk upstairs – four flights – to the balcony where one of the staff hear me say “I’m dying” as I heave up the steps, ready to collapse. We slink down into our seats, our backs dripping against the velvet seat cushions, panting like a dog that’s spent too much time in the heat.
Then the show started. Patti Murin was born to play the gaffed, rambunxious Anna. Caissie Levy captivated the stage like a regal Ice Queen. The ensemble cast, the introduction to new melodies, the unique lighting and stage effects all cultivated and transported me out of my seat and into Arrendale.
Once the play was over, it was the same old stuff: waltzing around Times Square, “accidentally” walking into the two-tiered Disney Store, buying whatever mugs that are only available in New York, squeezing my size-8 foot into a size-7 Cinderella inspired pair of shoes, a bite to eat and then taking the subway (ironically with no issues) home, and quickly finishing my references before hopping into bed and passing out quicker than I have on times I was a child and legitimately exhausted from a day in the Disney Parks!
It’s kind of funny, actually. All my life, I suffered from that ‘writer complex’ idolized by Carrie Bradshaw. Aside from the walk-in closet, which I did actually have while I was a teenager (thanks, dad) I craved a life in an overpriced Brownstone writing about life and love and all the trial and error that permeated those very notions. New York was the end goal – where I’d end up once I graduated college, once I worked up the courage to leave my parents, once I wrote and sold that ‘first great novel!” Then, I traveled to Portland, Oregon and fell in love with the artistic aesthetic of the city. For an entire year since, my mind has been made up that once things fall a bit more into place, then we’d pack our bags – and perhaps, little one – and move there. While I was in Portland, I was like, “New York’s got nothing on here.”
I remembered last night how ridiculous that comparison is. Because once you’re in New York, you realize that there’s no place in the world that’s more spectacular.