Being the clever and wonderful and sweet girlfriend that I am, I naturally gave Jason an equally clever and wonderful and sweet gift for his birthday last year. I would like to note that the gift is even extra super special because his birthday is on 31 December. As in, NEW YEARS EVE. Had I known this before I fell in love with him (I should have requested a thorough inspection), I would have made him change it. But, whatever. We're here now, AREN'T WE?
So anyway. This year, I bought a season subscription to our local playhouse, the Montgomery Theater in Souderton. This, in and of itself, is an awesome gift. I've said it before and I'll say it again: The theater just rocks. The building is gorgeous, the staff is dedicated and passionate, the programs are inclusive, the shows seem to be handpicked and parts singularly crafted for the actors that play them, it has a perfect, central location and every seat in the house is good. It's a great, local establishment.
For Jason's birthday, I bought the season subscription, but made it sweeter by actually picking the dates out on the calendar, and creating five Date Night packages. Each package is really a bottle of wine (Pinot Noir, Red Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon) that has a handmade tag listing the date, time and show tied around top, a certificate good for a dinner (homemade or at a restaurant, his pick), and a description of the play from the theater's program.
See, it's the birthday gift that gives all year. And, it's insanely caring and thoughtful. I know, I know, I'm just good like that.
[Please, don't mind that nagging thought in your head. The one that's saying something like, "Heeey... wait a minute. Mikaela's the one who likes the theater so much...she's going to the plays, too...hrmmm." I am selfless and goddess-like. I did it for Jason. It's all for him!]
We've enjoyed three shows so far: Psychopathia Sexualis, The Drawer Boy, and Butterflies are Free, We went to our fourth show, The Last Five Years (by Jason Robert Brown), over the weekend. Jason's dinner choice was sushi from Kira and the wine was Ravenswood Red Zinfandel.
After dinner, we walked to the theater. Luckily we got there a little early and had time to visit the Sharon Moore Gallery across the street. Sharon just moved her gallery from a crowded store front on Broad Street, to this newly renovated, high-ceiling space in one of Souderton's famous old cigar factories. You must visit!
I purposefully don't read the descriptions of the plays. A fun effect of this, is that there's always something that surprises me. Like The Drawer Boy is a drawer, like with markers and pens, not like, his parents couldn't afford and didn't have the room for a crib, so he slept in the dresser drawer as an infant. It was an honest misunderstanding, people! One can imagine my surprise - In my mind, I had built a gritty story about a down-on-their-luck, young couple living in Brooklyn, who had a baby, but no money and little space in their one room apartment.
The Last Five years, was surprising as well, but not quite in the same way. I knew it was a love story (by seeing the logo), and was surprised when it turned out to be un-sappy, and rather brave. And also when I realized it was a musical. I'm not a big fan of musicals. It was hard for me not to groan and tell myself that we could leave at intermission. Which, of course, we didn't. Because the play was fantastic.
The format was brilliant for this story of unfortunate timing and missed opportunities for understanding. The woman's point of view (Jessica Edwards) starts in the present and works back to the couple's first meeting, while the man's (Michael Philip O'Brien) begins at their first meeting and progresses to the present. The couple's stories intersect only at the mid-point of their relationship, the wedding.
Date Four was definitely a winner :) Our next and final date is The Desk Set and a bottle of Barefoot Reserves Pinot Noir (our favorite). Stay tuned - or better yet, go see the show!