Wednesday, December 19, 2012

'The Nutcracker' at the New York City Ballet

Every Christmas since moving to New York I have wanted to see 'The Nutcracker' ballet. I finally managed to get tickets and was very excited to go last week.  

The NYC ballet is located within The Lincoln Centre on the Upper West Side.  It is a beautiful venue and worth arriving early to enjoy the views from the balcony.  I somehow managed to completely mess up the seating, so we ended up being right at the back of the theatre!  However, it wasn't a full house so we were able to sneak to slightly better seats.

The Nutcracker is a family ballet and although aimed more towards children, it is enjoyable for all ages.  If you haven't been to a ballet before it is a great one to see as it's not too long (1hour 45mins) and you will probably recognise a lot of the music.  The sets are spectacular, with a Christmas tree that grows to 40ft, falling snow and a flying sleigh.  

The dancing was amazing and my hairs stood on end when watching 'The Sugarplum Fairy' and 'The Snowflakes'.  Although the children were great, I enjoyed the second act more than the first as there were more adult performances.

It was a lovely experience and I left the theatre feeling very Christmassy and excited for the holidays!  

'The Nutcracker' is running until the 30th December and tickets start at $34.  For more information and to book tickets, visit http://www.nycballet.com/Ballets/G/George-Balanchine-s-The-Nutcracker.aspx.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

'Dr Oz' Live Show Taping

I had so much fun at the 'Jeremy Kyle Show' live taping, I wanted to go and see something else.  I managed to get tickets for the 'Dr Oz' show which is filmed at the NBC studios by Rockefella Center.

A week or so before the taping they sent out an email asking for people to help Dr Oz on the show, and although I would have been too nervous, my friend jumped at the chance.  She was going to assist him on a segment and that meant we got to go backstage before the show!

We arrived at the studios and were greeted by a producer who checked us in and took us upstairs into the dressing room.  It was very exciting, there were lots of people rushing about preparing for the show.  Everyone was friendly and took the time to say hello and explain what would be happening during the recording.  My friend had a visit from wardrobe and then went into hair and make-up.  I stayed in the dressing room and tried some of the mini muffins and fruit skewers on offer, much better than the dry old bagel we got on the Jeremy Kyle show!

When it was time to start taping they took us into the studio.  The rest of the audience was already seated, so after the comedian warmed up the crowd, Dr Oz came out to start the show.  He was really friendly and said hello to the audience.  My friend said he put her totally at ease during her segment, chatting with her and making her feel comfortable. 

The show is taped as close to real time as possible and took about 90 minutes to record in total.  We were able to see most of the action, the cameras only blocked our view a couple of times, and it was a great fun.  At the end of the show Dr Oz came over to thank everyone for taking part and I got to shake his hand and say Hi.  As we exited the studio we were given a free gift and my friend received a Dr Oz mug for being a guest. 

I enjoyed the whole experience and would recommend you go if you get the chance, and definitely participate if they ask you!  That way you get the opportunity to go backstage and really see what goes in to making these shows happen.

To apply for free tickets, visit http://www.doctoroz.com/get-show-tickets.