Friday, July 9, 2010

The Lessons of Las Vegas and LOVE

We just returned from a short trip to Las Vegas.

Let me start by saying I never thought I'd like it. I hate crowds and noise, I'm not great in heat, and I find gambling boring.

What was I going to do in Vegas? For four and a half days? In temperatures soaring well about 100 degrees Fahrenheit?

But this was our anniversary trip, and we were going to Vegas, specifically, to see the Cirque du Soleil LOVE show, based on the music of the Beatles. My husband, Dave, is probably the biggest Beatles fan who ever took a breath. (you think I'm kidding...) So, I pinned on a huge smile, said "That sounds great, honey!" and away we went.

Meanwhile, I was searching for other things to do while we were there. Things that didn't involve the glitz and glamour of the strip.

And I found myself actually enjoying our trip to the land of Sex, Sin, and Vice. The city that never sleeps (though we did, quite a bit).

The best part of our trip was, beyond a doubt, the LOVE show, which was BEYOND amazing. We had had a number of people tell us it was great and that we had to see it. So I was expecting great music (hello? The BEATLES? Could it be bad?) and maybe some cool artistic tricks along the way.

I was in no way prepared for the experience we had.

I was.... utterly speechless.

And for me, who prides herself on being able to choose just the right words, being speechless is a rareity.

From the first moment the lights dimmed and the action began, my jaw dropped and stayed that way until about 2/3 of the way through the show. I finally had to close it so I could recover.

Tears formed in my eyes, and were there until the finale.

I had no idea which way to look at any given moment. I was overcome by the emotion and beauty of the work. I was simply awestruck by the abilities and fluidity of the players in the show. To call them "dancers" or mere "acrobats" does not do them justice in any sense of the word. They moved their bodies like no one I have ever seen before. It was beautiful, and was expertly choreographed to the songs of the Beatles.

The most beautifully choreographed piece was "Octopus' Garden," during which they had about a dozen different acrobats and puppets flying through the air, as if they were floating through the depths of the ocean. It was breathtaking.

The show as a whole served as a sort of chronicle of the Liverpool Boys who would become the Beatles. It highlighted their rise to fame, and showcased the most famous characters from their songs. Both highs and lows in their lives were represented, perhaps the most poignant moment being the death of Lennon's mother, to the tune "Hey, Jude."

We laughed, we cried, we were embraced by the work.

We had not known what to expect when we saw the show, but we walked out of the theater with our hearts blown wide open and ready to get back in line to see the second show. That experience will stay with us for a long, long time to come.

Of course, it was made more special because it was our anniversary celebration, too. We were all dressed up, and had excellent seats. And halfway through the show, the cast came out into the audience, and one of them stopped in front of me, took my hand, called me "beautiful lady with the beautiful smile" and kissed my hand. Now THAT was amazing!

The show was well worth fighting the crowds, noise, and decadence of Vegas. I would even go back to Vegas, just to see LOVE a second time.

The immortal words of the Beatles were certainly true for us, in regards to our Vegas trip.... "all you need is LOVE, LOVE, LOVE is all you need." For us, to make it a perfect trip, all we needed were those perfect seats to the perfect show, LOVE.

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