Friday, November 28, 2008

Our Color Purple Thanksgiving

They say 2008 was the year of change. So after nearly 39 years of group Thanksgiving gatherings at the homes of family or friends, Tim and I decided to make a change this year and spend Thanksgiving dinner at Orange Hill Restaurant.

The view when we arrived for Thanksgiving dinner. (12/27/2008)
The view when we arrived for Thanksgiving dinner. (11/27/2008)

A couple of reasons prompted this. First, we've never had Thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant before, and it sounded kind of fun (especially at Orange Hill Restaurant that we love anyway). Second, my whole family was in Chicago for Thanksgiving this year. Third, we had tickets that night to see The Color Purple stage musical at the Orange County Performing Arts Center.

We didn't intentionally buy show tickets on Thanksgiving. In fact, I wouldn't have thought they would even perform a show on Thanksgiving. But this year we subscribed to the series and selected Thursday nights as our show night. When we received our tickets, we actually called the box office to make sure there wasn't a mistake (there wasn't).

The view when we left Thanksgiving dinner. (12/27/2008)
The view when we left Thanksgiving dinner. (11/27/2008)

We had dinner before the show, arriving at 4:30 p.m. We strategically selected that time because we knew the view would be daylight when we arrived, we'd watch the sunset while we ate, and it would be night when we left. That way we could see the amazing view in all the major stages (the view, and the food, were amazing).

The show was great too. I don't know if it was the best show I'd ever seen, or even in my top 10, but I still enjoyed it very much. The woman who played the lead part of Celie, Jeannette Bayardelle, was great. And being the American Idol nut that I am, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that LaToya London, one of the powerhouse divas of Season 3, was playing the part of Celie's sister Nettie (LaToya London's Idol performance of "All By Myself" still gives me chills when I think about it).

We spent Thanksgiving night seeing The Color Purple. (12/27/2008)
We spent Thanksgiving night seeing The Color Purple. (11/27/2008)

The most standout performance, however, was by Felicia P. Fields, who played the unstoppable Sofia (the role Oprah Winfrey played in the 1985 film). Fields was reprising the role she originated on Broadway, and she was incredible. I especially liked her song, "Hell, No!" The audience went wild when she sang it.

Altogether, it was a very pleasant way to spend the day. In fact, if you ask me if I would have done Thanksgiving any different this year, I'd say: "Hell, No!" :)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Though I could have done without the second "Hell, No!", I gotta say the view from the Orange Hill Restaurant is pretty spectacular!

Sounds like you guys had a blast, but, wow, I feel for those poor actors who had to perform on Thanksgiving Day! That sucks, man...