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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

LION KING IS THE LARGEST GROSSING BROADWAY SHOW OF ALL TIME

My nearly hundred year old friend, Ed Jurkens, and I now go to one steak dinner and a dinner/show every year.  This past May we ate at Chef Chai's, then crossed the street to the Glenn Miller Orchestra playing at the Neal Blaisdell Arena.  Last night we dined at W Bistro at 1010, former site of Le Guignol, then across the street to Lion King at the Neal Blaisdell Concert Hall.  

W Bistro has not yet officially opened, as they are still experimenting.  The parking is free, and the restaurant is close to the concert hall.

We had a cheap Yali Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile and an expensive (ten times more) Stanford University meritage.  The corkage charge was $10/bottle.  Ed slightly liked the Stanford wine and I leaned towards the Chilean, which was 14 years old, compared to the 2006 Californian.

The staff still lacks polish (but give them time, as they have only been doing this for a few days).  Our waitress, for one, has never yet uncorked a bottle of wine in her life.  Chef Eric has worked at Roy's, 3660 on the Rise and Chai's.

I started with a pork appetizer, and was disappointed that the skin was chewy and not crispy.  I then had a Caesar salad and Tuscan tomato soup for my main meal.  This was not a Caesar and the soup was much too rich.  I suggested a visit to Safeway for their tomato soup, which is excellent.  If Chai's deserves a 7, I would rate W Bistro at a 4 for now.  However, I'll be back, for I like the BYOB option and free parking.

The Lion King first came out as a movie twenty years ago.  For those unfamiliar with the story, it has to do with lions in Africa, but is said to be linked to the biblical Joseph and Moses, plus Shakespeare's Hamlet.  It won two Oscars, one for Best Original Song, Elton John's Can You Feel the Love Tonight.  The stage version was produced in 1997 and is now the largest grossing Broadway show of all time.  Interestingly enough, they also sang in spurts, Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen (an 1800's American spiritual), the Charleston and Wimoweh.  I was wondering how they got away with these, but then saw a lawsuit, where Disney had to pay off the heirs to  the composer of Wimoweh, which was written in 1939, and mentioned yesterday in my eulogy to Pete Seeger (just scroll down to next posting).  Interesting that publications have a copyright of 25 years, while films and other artistic works have a 70 year life.

They take the no photos warning seriously here, for I got scolded by the usher for these two:


This is a show mostly for children, although Ed loved it and I thought it was better than expected.  The production was a joy, for the stilts and general staging were exceptional.

I awoke this morning to yet another rainbow:


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