A Collection of My Memories
By Bianca JeanPhilippe, Senior
#Selma50: A Memoir
By Melanie Rodriguez and Saimi Reyes, Sophomores
Electric- that’s how Mr. Arrison describes this past Saturday’s Madonna concert at the AAA. No one would have ever guessed that teachers have lives, too. Read the full interview:
Q: How did you become a fan of Madonna?
Arrison: I went to a private Christian middle school and Madonna was taboo because of songs like “Like a Prayer” and “Black Jesus,” so it brought out the rebel in me.
Q: What were best performances of the night?
Arrison: That's a DIFFICULT question: I would have to say “Illuminati.”
Q: What was your favorite outfit of the evening?
Arrison: I did not pay that close attention to the outfits, but probably the Matador.
Q: Rumor has it that she did not come out until 11 p.m. Is that true?
Arrison: Well, the tickets said 8 p.m. but she took the stage at 10:24 p.m., which was early for her.
Q: What would you rate the show?
It’s not a sit back concert; it was more of a theatrical production with lights, sets, costumes, etc. I liked that her daughter came onstage to sing Happy Birthday to her because it showed a personal side to her.
Q: Would you go again?
Arrison: I would definitely go again. I wanted to go back and see the Sunday night show; Ariana Grande was the guest artist. The Saturday night show had no artist besides DJ Khaled. It's worth the $250 for the cheap seats. (WOW ARRISON, YOU’RE A BIG SPENDER)
By Hector Rodriguez, Senior
Kinky Boots opens with the introduction of Charlie and Simon (Lola) as two young boys: Charlie touring his father’s shoe factory, Price and Son, and Simon trying on his very first pair of red heels. Fast forward a couple of decades and we see Charlie, London-bound with his fiancée, and Lola, during one of her extravagant club performances.
Their worlds collide one fateful night resulting in a heel to Charlie’s head and a surprising epiphany. A broken heel and flustered Lola later, Charlie’s found the perfect solution for saving his father’s company: making flashy, sturdy, two-and-a-half foot high “kinky boots” just for drag queens. Lola’s only specification is that the boots must, Must be red. In her own words: “not pink, that’s for play-things; not purple, that’s for princes; and surely not green, that’s for… pickles; red, because Red is for seeeeeeeex.”
After some complicated explanations, Lola’s enlistment as Charlie’s designer, and the introduction to Simon, the other side of Lola--three-piece suit and all--the Price and Son team begins working on the boots to present to investors in Milan, hoping that will save the company.
No story is ever complete without its conflicts, though, and “Kinky Boots” does particularly well at ensuring that each conflict has some meaning and just enough satire.
The first conflict, between Lola and Don (Aaron Walpole), is settled in a boxing match of all things. This addresses the undying fault of “judging a book by it’s cover,” since Don doesn’t know that Simon happens to be a champion amateur boxer. In a kind-hearted twist, however, Lola lets Don win to maintain his pride, which begs the age old question, “Is winning really winning?” The most import lesson from this conflict, however, is the seemingly simple request Lola makes of Don after the fight: Accept someone for who they are. If one were to stop and really think about that, it is much more difficult than a boxing match against a pro.
Charlie's internal conflict is his accumulating stress throughout the musical, as he struggles between doing what he believes to be right and trying to please everyone--our other pivotal lesson in the musical. The increasing stress results in Charlie’s harsh treatment towards both his employees and Lola, almost ending many friendships, and addressing the result of taking out our frustrations on others.
Their final performance in Milan, after Charlie’s ungraceful attempt to model the kinky boots and Lola’s flashy rescue, marks the end of the musical, closing with the song, “Raise You Up” (which, by the way, is the choreography your fellow iPreppians attempted at their workshop). And just to give the most memorable ending possible, every cast member appears wearing their own pair of shining, sparkling, fierce pair of two-foot-high kinky boots.
The summary behind us, the musical overall provided an unforgettable experience. The music was unique and enjoyable, all written by the amazing Cyndi Lauper, and the choreography went fantastically with each scene’s mood, setting, and recent events. The musical was able to successfully achieve both a comedy unlike any other and an introspective performance that forces viewers to really contemplate the everyday issues that are portrayed by the characters. Most importantly, the lasting message that remains with everyone that watches the performance is simply acceptance. You are who you are, so don’t try to become someone else. Accept yourself for your flaws and your strengths all the same. You don’t have to be a Lola, but just be who you think you should be.