Elton & Billys

02Mar11

Theater Review

Last night I got a chance to attend the gala opening of “Billy Elliot” the musical at Canon Theater. When my friend M.R. called me several days ago asking whether I would be interested in seeing the play, I didn’t have to think twice to say “YES”. Looking back at the evening, the presence of the “Billy Elliot” composer, Sir Elton John, did add to the importance of the event. However, it was the little Billys and other child actors who stole the night. Throughout the musical, standing ovations and extended applauses were heard, bringing the whole theater onto its feet several times. I even got chills watching a couple of scenes and witnessing the talent of so many kids on the stage, especially of Cesar Corrales, the young Billy.

Sir Elton John and the cast of "Billy Elliot" in tutus

Once the final applause quieted, M.R. and I found ourselves in the back alley of Canon Theater boarding a yellow school bus and heading to the after party. The bus was full of kids, and the tween shrieking and excitement intensified each moment, subduing even one’s deepest internal thoughts. I felt like we were going to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory where cotton candy and caramelized apples waited for us. By the time we met most of the cast, trying to figure out who was who without their costumes and make-up, Elton John was about to leave the after party. We managed to get into the VIP as Sir Elton was leaving, but neither my friend nor I were disappointed by not meeting him personally. The night went on with little Billys putting up another show on the dance floor and busting their moves. Eventually all of us ended on the dance floor and some of my last memories were of twirling around “the boss’ daughter”, a Mirvish heiress. After one o’clock in the morning, the party was closing down, little Billys were heading to bed, and I went outside to clear my head with some fresh air thinking how this Tuesday night in Toronto was not too shabby at all.

Sir Elton John and the Kids of "Billy Elliot" at the After Party

Please go and see “Billy Elliot” the musical if you get a chance. Apparently, the Toronto cast is much better than the Broadway one, and could be compared to the London cast. Fun times will be guaranteed, and you won’t be disappointed! 

Big thanks to M.R. for taking me to the gala, and to Nicholas Torres for providing us with all the tickets, making the evening so memorable. Good luck with the show, Nic!

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