Indiana June is the main character in a real-life Pick-A-Path Adventure story. She is cycling the globe and letting people vote to decide what she does next. Her fate is in your hands so get voting to choose how the story unfolds. Read more…

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Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Wrapped in a beach blanket in Babylon

Chance is a wonderful friend if you're willing to accept her outstretched hand and follow her blindly when she shows up.  

My latest encounter with chance lead to me attending an incredible show. I met Carolyn, an English journalist on a gourmet chocolate tour in San Francisco and after devouring mouthfuls of delicious dark chocolate I accepted her invitation to tag along with her and Lisa (San Francisco's Cultural and Event promotion manager) for the afternoon.

With one night left in town, Lisa suggested I check out the longest running musical revue in theatre history... Beach Blanket Babylon. Her eyes lit up as she tried to describe San Fran's fave musical but I really had no idea what she was on about, however I gathered there would be some impressive hats involved.

Be Italian2

I foolishly decided to walk the 10 blocks to Club Fugazi in the rain, not taking into account the notoriously steep and slippery-when-wet streets of SF. The rain may have dampened my attire but when I turned into Beach Blanket Babylon Boulevard and saw the queue outside the theatre my heart raced. When they name a street after a musical, you know it's going to be something special. I was seated in the Magin box and while I waited for the curtains to part, I took the opportunity to speed-read the program. 

"Beach Blanket Babylon started with Steve Silver and his friends performing in June 1974 and became an instant hit. Highlights include: a performance before Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, an invitation to the White House by President Reagan, a successful 18-month run in Las Vegas and on their first tour of the United States as a married couple, Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of York, were guests at Beach Blanket Babylon in 2005."

The show ensured my cheek and abdominal muscles got a good work out, with act after act of rip-roaring belly laughter and involuntary clasping of hand-to-mouth, as countless giggles slipped through my fingers.

Beyonce  Pineapple Princess 2 (production)

It's a satirical take on the fairytale theme of a young woman looking for a prince. Snow white, snow flake and snow plough as she is affectionately referred to, is guided by the most unexpected of fairy godmothers - from a busty French prostitute to Beyonce. Politically themed songs are raunchy and cutting, focusing on the innaporpriate actions and personally traits of well known candidates but always with a smile. There's a ridiculous number of puns that turn up in the dialogue and a-top the heads of the cast with fantastical hat designs that defy gravity, each one an impressive engineering feat. 

French Poodles

Imagine a world where French poodles sing and dance, peanuts are hippies and it's OK to wear your heart on your sleeve... or and an entire city on your head.

San Francisco Skyline Hat 3 (production)

The classic fairytale structure rewards the audience with a happy and off-the-wall ending. The secret of the show's success is it's ability to stay relevant in changing times, incorporating pop culture's successes and failures, all wrapped up in a candyfloss coating of fun.

Old school storytelling + pop culture piss-takes + huggable characters + fantastical headwear = my favourite two hours in San Francisco.

Latest Poll Results
New York: What will Indiana June do in the big apple?
21% Track down and visit Oliver Jeffers:
Renowned Children's storybook writer & illustrator
11% Walk the High Line:
A linear park built on a 1.45-mile section of the elevated NY Central Railroad 
11% Be a NYC detective for a day: 
Part game, theatre and tour to discover some of NYC's most off-the-beaten path spots
13% Explore the City Hall Subway Station: 
Abandoned & hidden from the public for 60 years
12% Flying trapeze class:
Hone her circus skills learning how to fly on a trapeze 
30% NZ Flag + Statue of Liberty:
Bodypaint the NZ flag on her body and go up the Statue of Liberty
2% Go to Queens and find a 'Nanny' sound-alike:
Video someone with the nanny accent saying "noo Zealand, i love that place"
Voting closed | 204 VOTES
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