Monday, June 20, 2011

A GLEEful Surprise!

So, who has the best husband ever? THIS GIRL, that's who. I can't even tell you how excited I was on Thursday morning, when I got out of bed and found this taped to my TV:

At first I just noticed that the TV was paused on the news, for a segment about the Casey Anthony trial in Florida. I have become quite obsessed with watching the daily live feed of that trial, and Eric has been very sweet and pauses the morning recaps for me to watch every day. (And he even discusses it with me ad nauseum at the end of each day!) But it took me a minute to figure out why they were showing a stadium seating chart on the Casey Anthony recap? Oh wait, that's actually taped to my TV. AND IT SAYS WE HAVE TWO TICKETS TO TONIGHT'S GLEE SHOW! I nearly died.

When tickets went on sale back in...January? February? I don't remember, but we were still living in our old apartment...we tried to get the "cheap seats" right away, but they sold out in seconds. The next price level was a little more than we wanted to spend, so we decided to just skip it. Bummer.

Then last week, the week of the show, as Eric was scouring CraigsList for U.S. Open tickets (that post is coming up this week!), he started seeing Glee tickets popping up, and he decided that sounded like a good idea. He almost bought some off CraigstList, but then found better seats available through TicketMaster! And lo and behold, an early birthday gift for me was born. Hooray!

I know many of my readers are Glee fans, so I hope my fellow Gleeks are ready for an in-depth recap of the Glee Live concert! It was such a great show, so my goal is to make you all feel like you were there, too. Get ready for setlists, pictures and videos, oh my! (If you are not a Glee fan, it's okay, nobody is perfect. Regular non-Glee posting will resume soon!)

Eric came home from work early to change, and we were on our way shortly after 6:00. We took the train from Hoboken to Secaucus, where we grabbed a shuttle bus to the IZOD Center in East Rutherford. I was pumped already.

Thumbs up on the bus

We picked up our tickets at will call, but had a bit of a problem with security. I had our DLSR camera in my purse, and we were immediately informed we could not bring it in and would have to leave it in our car. Uhhh, our car is a train, so no can do. We swore up and down that we would not remove the camera from my purse during the show, and they took pity on us and let us in anyway. Phew! Close one! Through talking to others in concession lines, we later figured out that they were just being extra strict about cameras/video because they were filming the Glee 3D movie that night! Awesomeness! Plus, we were still permitted to use our point-and-shoot camera, so although the pictures wouldn't be as good, we would still be able to take some.

3D cameras filming the movie! My yelling and cheering is going to be FAMOUS!

When we got in we wandered around, took a souvenir photo, bought some souvenirs and found our seats.

Souvenir photo!

In our seats


The opening act was The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers, and they put on quite a show.

The opening act was very move-y, hence the blurriness.

Then they switched the stage out, and it was time for Glee!

Because they were filming the movie at the New Jersey performances, we were treated to a couple of special guest appearances. The first one was Jane Lynch! Sue Sylvester herself was there, in her very best track suit gown, with her Cheerios handing out barf bags to the crowd, because the show would be so awful.

Sue Sylvester!

And then, the show began. We loved how they opened it - with the original Glee Club members singing "Don't Stop Believin.'" They were soon joined by the rest of the cast, of course, and the crowd loved every second of it. The full cast numbers continued, with "Dog Days Are Over" and "Sing."

"Don't Stop Believin'"


Next, my dear Matthew Morrison appeared on the big screen. Oh, how I wished he had been there too! But, apparently he's touring in London or some other such lame excuse. The screen version of Mr. Schue had a heart-to-heart with Brittany (Heather Morris) about being nervous to perform. Mr. Schue advised Brittany to just think of her idol and let that inspire her - which obviously led to Brittany doing Britney, with her solo number "Slave 4 U."

Mr. Schue advises Brittany (see her there on the right?)

"Slave 4 U"

The solos continued with Puck (Mark Salling) singing "Fat Bottomed Girls," followed by Kurt (Chris Colfer) singing "I Want To Hold Your Hand," which was one of my most favorite performances of the night. Kurt is my favorite Glee kid anyway, and his performance of that song in the original episode is probably my favorite Chris Colfer performance (see it in its original episode form here). So moving, and I nearly cried when he sang it live. All that goodness was topped off with a stunning performance of "Ain't No Way" by Mercedes (Amber Riley) that gave me goosebumps. Artie (Kevin McHale) rounded out the solo series with his rendition of "P.Y.T.," always a classic!

Oh, hello, Puck. Come to mama.

Fabulous Kurt

Mercedes bringing the house down

Artie's "P.Y.T."

I have to pause to say what a great job Eric did in choosing our seats. We were in the 10th row off the floor, right about in the middle of the two stages they used. We weren't right up front, of course, but we were certainly low and close enough to see everything very well, including facial expressions! Our seats were perfect and my husband rocks.

Next up was another full cast number: "Born This Way," another one of my favorites! Rachel (Lea Michele) followed that with "Firework," complete with actual fireworks at the end.

"Born This Way"


Jane Lynch came back out at that point, to introduce the Dalton Academy Warblers! I love me some Darren Criss so I was psyched. The Warblers performed three songs: "Teenage Dream," "Silly Love Songs" and "Raise Your Glass."

Jane Lynch, in more casual attire this time

The Warblers!

Next up was the duet series, starting "Happy Days Are Here Again"/"Get Happy" by Kurt (Chris Colfer) and Rachel (Lea Michele). Beautiful! That was followed by "Lucky" by Quinn (Dianna Agron) and Sam (Chord Overstreet) and "River Deep - Mountain High" by Mercedes (Amber Riley) and Santana (Naya Rivera).

"Happy Days Are Here Again"/"Get Happy" mash up


"River Deep - Mountain High"

Next up was another surprise guest appearance - Gwyneth Paltrow (a/k/a "Holly Holiday") showed up to perform "Forget You!"

Sing it, Gwyneth!

Gwyneth's performance was followed by another skit. This one had Brittany (Heather Morris) confessing her love for "Blaine Warbler" (Darren Criss), which of course caused Kurt (Chris Colfer) to be jealous. Kurt then "proposed" to Blaine - that he join Glee Club! Blaine agreed, saying they could sing great Broadway hits, to which Kurt objected because that's his department, and he already has to compete with Rachel.

Brittany professing her love to Blaine

Kurt "proposing"

And...CUE RACHEL! Lea Michele then came out and sang "Don't Rain On My Parade," which was an absolute show-stopper. She's fabulous.

Lea Michele singing some Babs - that's good stuff.

Next up were a couple more solos: Finn (Cory Monteith) sang "Jessie's Girl," and Santana (Naya Rivera) sang "Valerie." The cast then "closed the show" (don't worry, an encore is coming!) with "Loser Like Me," ending by throwing "slushies" (really confetti and streamers in cups) on the fans!

"Jessie's Girl"


"Loser Like Me"

After a few minutes, it was encore time. Honestly, the encore was probably the best part of the entire show. And what better way to start it off than with Chris Colfer's famous version of "Single Ladies?" I nearly died.

"Single Ladies"

Next up was another favorite dance number of mine: Artie's "Safety Dance." When Artie got up out of his wheelchair, the crowd went nuts. I'm so glad he got to dance!

"Safety Dance"

The show closed with two final full cast numbers: "Empire State of Mind" and "Somebody to Love." Sadly, my memory card filled up before I could record the final moments of "Somebody to Love," but it was fabulous. What a way to end the night!

"Empire State of Mind"

"Somebody to Love" (Lea Michele and Cory Monteith are front and center)

Now, the fuss over our DSLR camera had us all paranoid about taking videos at first (even with our point-and-shoot), so we missed the first seven numbers or so before we worked up our nerve to start recording. But, we did get snippets of a majority of the performances, which I compiled into a handy little montage for you. In case you want to skip around and just see certain numbers, here is a list of what is included in the following video:
00:04 "P.Y.T. Pretty Young Thing" (Kevin McHale)
00:23 "Born This Way" (Full Cast)
01:26 "Teenage Dream" (The Warblers)
02:30 "Raise Your Glass" (The Warblers)
03:05 "Happy Days Are Here Again"/"Get Happy" (Lea Michele and Chris Colfer)
03:49 "Lucky" (Dianna Agron and Chord Overstreet)
04:12 "River Deep - Mountain High" (Naya Rivera and Amber Riley)
04:52 "Forget You" (Gwyneth Paltrow)
05:21 "Don't Rain On My Parade" (Lea Michele)
06:56 "Jessie's Girl" (Cory Monteith)
07:12 "Valerie" (Naya Rivera)
07:35 "Loser Like Me" (Full Cast)
08:15 "Single Ladies" (Chris Colfer, Jenna Ushkowitz and Heather Morris)
09:11 "Safety Dance" (Kevin McHale)
10:14 "Empire State of Mind" (Full Cast)
10:51 "Somebody To Love" (Full Cast)
VIDEO: Clips from Glee Live in East Rutherford, NJ on 6/16/11
(Note: if you are reading this post through the email subscription, click on the video link to view it on YouTube.)

Naturally, there are also plenty of videos to be found on YouTube, including videos of the parts we didn't get. You can check them out here, if you are so inclined:
Jane Lynch Opening/"Don't Stop Believin'" (Full Cast)
"Dog Days Are Over" (Full Cast)
"Sing" (Full Cast)
"Slave 4 U" (Heather Morris)
"Fat Bottomed Girls" (Mark Salling)
"I Want To Hold Your Hand" (Chris Colfer)
"Ain't No Way" (Amber Riley)
"Firework" (Lea Michele)
"Silly Love Songs" (The Warblers)
"Klaine Skit" (Heather Morris, Darren Criss and Chris Colfer)
Of course, there are also longer versions of the videos I did get on YouTube as well, but I'm not going to track all those down for you. You are internet-savvy folks, so feel free to seek out longer videos at your leisure!

And of course, if you REALLY want to see the full show, you can check out the Glee Live 3D movie when it comes out this summer! You better believe I'll be there, reliving every fabulous moment.

After the show, we made the long trek home, which included a lengthy wait for the shuttle bus back to Secaucus, then a wait for the train. Sigh. But, who could complain after such a fun night?

Who is the best husband ever? THAT GUY. The Glee hand doesn't lie.

Thanks so much for this great surprise, Eric! I really hit the husband jackpot, didn't I?


Anonymous said...

I got chills reading this I am so so jealous & looked like a fabulous time! Thansk for sharing the great pics!! What a wonderful hubby you have!

Jessica said...

Great post!! Thanks for the pictures and video, I love it!

Jessica Renee said...

You're definitely a lucky girl!!! :)

Steph said...

Aw, love!

Kim said...

How awesome! The Tonys and Glee in one week, what a muscial lovers dream. Thanks for the videos!

KT @ KT's Refinishing School said...

Aww what a cute way to surprise you! I love that Gwyneth Paltrow/Holly Holiday wore the exact same outfit that she wore on the show when she sang Forget You :)

U.S. Open tickets?! Can't wait to hear all about that!

Molly said...

Baaaahhhh Glee!!!!!