Thursday, August 22, 2013

Let It Be: A Fun Evening of Pretend Beatles on Broadway (and around the world, soon)

And while I'm on the topic of non-theatrical Broadway experiences (see previous post), here's another show that's good for an evening of rock 'n roll. But you'll need to hurry if you live in NYC, this show is ending on September 1 in preparation for an international tour.

If dance isn’t something you’d like to watch but you’d prefer to do, then “Let It Be” might be more suited to your taste than "Forever Tango." Suspend belief for two and a half hours and you can almost imagine that the Beatles are really on stage at the St. James Theater, as the four performers (and one guest director) take the audience through a musical chronicle of the Beatles’ famous hits.  Some of the songs are better performed than others, and you might have a debate amongst yourselves as to which Beatles impersonator is actually the truest, but no matter, you’ll have a fun time twisting and shouting all the way to the finale.  Come early to watch the 1960s television commercials and answer the Beatles trivia questions shown on the monitors.  Throughout the theatrical concert, actual video footage from the Beatles' travels to New York is interspersed with other shots of the time. St. James Theater, 246 West 44th Street. Tickets:, 212-239-6200.

Friday, August 16, 2013

"Dancing with the Stars" Meets "Forever Tango" on Broadway

Maks and Karina in "Forever Tango"

If you love tango, don't miss Broadway's "Forever Tango," through September 15 in New York City. For only one more weekend, “Dancing with the Stars’” famous duo Karina Smirnoff and Maksim Chmerkovskiy will wow you with their magnificent technique and athleticism (as well as the memory that they were once engaged). The two are a gorgeous embodiment of the tango, and it’s pure joy to see these television stars close up.  The other fourteen dancers are pretty spectacular, too, and you’ll start to wonder if you might actually be able to dance like that if you had a great partner to guide you around. Also currently in the show is the Latin Grammy Award-winner Luis Enrique. The screams and applause from the audience will let you know his importance in the salsa world, even if you might not be familiar with his name. Luis Fonsi, another Grammy Award-winner, takes over on August 20.  While some of the tango numbers may be less than conventional – including the comedic tango numbers – the quality and attitude of the dance and dancers are impeccable.  You’ll be mesmerized by every flick of the leg, every athletic spin, and the remarkable expressions on each dancer’s face.  The eleven musicians who play the accordions, piano, violin, and other instruments are worthy of a concert by themselves; and the costumes are sexy tango. Walter Kerr Theatre, 219 West 48th Street, New York City. Tickets:, 212-239-6200.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Shoe Tree in Zion National Park and Visits to Red Mountain Spa and Bryce Canyon

Shoe Tree at Zion National Park
Can anyone tell me when this started?  I don't usually write about photos, but this one struck me.  In gorgeous gorgeous Zion National Park, where hiking brings you to one spectacular view after the next, you'll also find this tree. Fall is the perfect time to visit here, and it makes a great trip along with a visit to the spectacular Hoo Doos of Bryce Canyon National Park. In fact, I think I should return to Red Mountain Resort and Spa in St. George, Utah, my home base for day trips to both of these national parks, and where I first tried rock climbing.  It's also one of the best spiritually oriented spas, with Native American-inspired treatments like the full-body Four Journey which explores the four directions of the Medicine Wheel using sacred herbs, plants and animal symbols. And cuisine? The spa is unusual, not because it offers delicious gluten-free and anti-inflammatory food choices with Western inspired cuisine, but because it offers a full wine menu as well. Wine in the red mountains. Ahhhhhh.
Hiking at Red Mountain Resort and Spa

Hoo Doos in Bryce Canyon National Park