Last night's performance of Wicked (6/10) was the first time since February no understudies were announced in any of the roles. I saw Teal Wicks (right) perform as Elphaba for the first time since February 20th. Her return to the role and the enthusiasm of the crowd, energized the entire ensemble. Teal and Kendra Kassebaum (Glinda, right) were on the top of their game. Though my review of last weeks show was a little harsh, this week my outlook has drastically changed. It's a new show with Teal back in the lead. Teal showed no signs of any medical condition she may have had the past few months as she nailed every scene and song. She was on fire as was Kendra. Lee Wilkof (Wizard) is the best ever performer in the role I have seen. His stage presence as well as singing voice blows away every other Wizard I've seen combined. Deedee Magno Hall (Nessarose) and Eddie Rioseco (Boq) continue to deliver stellar performances. Nicolas Dromard (Fiyero) duet with Teal in As Long As You're Mine was his best performance ever.
Part of the audience (where I sat) was extremely annoying as people were talking, pulling out their cell phones and leaving/returning to their seats throughout the show. I will give them kudos as this was the first time since the Los Angeles production I've seen the audience applauded loudly when Kendra, Teal, Patty Duke (Madame Morrible) and Lee came on stage.
I sat in row Z, seat 125 & 127 with my niece Kaila, her first time (left). The past few times I've sat fairly close to the stage. Since my seat was at the rear of the orchestra, I couldn't see the dragon as the Loge/Mezzanine overhang obscured my view.
I met Fernando and Greg (right Greg, Fernando) radio hosts of a morning show on Energy 92.7 Fm locally owned and based in San Francisco. They are truly down to earth people and extremely friendly. Thanks to Energy 92.7 Fm for the free tickets to Wicked.
The next time I see the show is with my friend Dan on June 27th, matinee, row R seats 101 & 103. He's seen the show 18 times in Los Angeles and is excited to see it in San Francisco. When I see the show on the 27th, it'll be my 13th time in San Francisco, 20th over all.