Last night, I saw 'Rock of Ages', a new West End show. It was cheesy, very cheesy, to the point that the show breaks the 4th wall and outright proclaims it has to shoehorn in a romance plot in order to make it at all engaging. It's basically a love letter to 80s rock, and the story was written just to have an excuse for each song to be sung in the sequence that it was. To give you an idea how cheesy the show is: the finale was Journey's Don't Stop Believin' *groan*. The ultimate disappointment, though, was that the song it's named after (Rock of Ages by Def Leppard) was never performed. During the beginning notices, it's explained they never got copyright permission to use it. :( Almost like a desperate wish, they did play it on speakers after the show ended.
Oh, I should explain. This show was perfect for atmosphere: when we (June and I) first walked in to the theatre, we were astounded at the fact we were physically transported back to the 80s: 80s metal playing on the speakers, the stage standing idle with all the curtains drawn up, the random 80s adverts and Sunset Boulevard signs dotted around the place. So yes, you entered the theatre and you could see the stage all set up, the band setting up. Oh yeah, playing the various songs in the show LIVE was a real rock band! They also had a few lines and interacted with the cast at various points. I found it very reminiscent of my trip to the Globe Theatre: the crew that moved the furniture and played the music were dressed up like servants, so they were very much a part of the scenery. Same with the rock band in 'Rock of Ages'.
All in all, if you want to see a show that is purely fun, doesn't take itself seriously, energetic and full of classic heavy metal songs, this show is for you.
As you might have guessed by the date, I saw it to celebrate my birthday. Admittedly, the best present I got was a job. But, to accept this job meant moving to the Czech Republic. So here's the thing I had to balance: having a good standard of living while in the Czech Republic but not earning enough in order to travel around the world or pay back my student loan (which I only have to start doing once I earn enough anyway). The thing is, the pros ultimately outweighed the cons. I've got my flight booked, and I'll be leaving in 2 weeks.