About Me

My photo
Little Rock, Arkansas, United States
I completed the 2016 Summer Program in the School of Cinematic Arts (SCA) at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles. I received a BS Degree in Radio/TV from ASU and a MA Degree in Technical and Expository Writing from UALR. As a Cancer Survivor and a Widow, I hope I can help others through my Blog http://leslieinlittlerock.blogspot.com/ Twitter @leslieinlr and Instagram @leslieinlittlerock accounts.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Why?



After Friday's horrific events in Connecticut, I have to ask Why?

I've asked "Why?" several times this year -  after the shootings at the Aurora movie theater and the Portland mall and after my husband passed away suddenly on May 10, 2012 from an undiagnosed medical condition.

Two years ago, my family went on a Christmas Cruise with my husband's family. We visited San Juan, Puerto Rico, strolled along the beach in St. Maarten, and went to Nassau in the Bahamas on Christmas day, 2010.


This year, my two teenage daughters and I are facing Christmas without their dad.

And once again, I have to ask Why?

I don't know the answer. But I know that my daughters and I have been very fortunate to receive so much love and support from our family, friends, fellow church members, neighbors, co-workers, and teachers.

Neighbors and members of our church family dropped off food trays, casseroles, desserts, drinks and paper products at our home that night. The next morning, two of my husband’s business associates showed up at our front door with a sandwich tray and news that they had just created a scholarship fund for our daughters at a local bank. That day we continued to receive dozens of flowers, plants, calls, cards and donations to the scholarship fund along with many food items. 

The next few days were a blur – planning a funeral, selecting a casket, writing my husband’s obituary. I was supposed to being seeing the new movie "The Avengers" with my family that day, not planning my husband's funeral.   

But there was one thing I could rely on and that was how technology helped me deal with the sudden loss of my husband. Within hours of hearing the news, my cell phone was flooded with calls and text messages from friends from all over the country. When I checked my computer later that night, I had received many emails along with Facebook messages and tweets, all expressing sympathy. 

Many of these messages and emails were from friends, family members, former co-workers, people I had gone to college with years before, and my husband’s business associates from all over the country. I also received Facebook messages from several of the foreign exchange students that we had hosted while my daughter was in high school. 

Everyday I received text messages from my friend Lynn who lives in Illinois and I had met at a Glee concert in Chicago in June 2011. Receiving all these messages from so many people helped me get through this difficult time. 

Seven months later, it's still hard. But at times I have found that I have received the most support from people I haven't even met. One of my twitter friends, Lindsay in Vermont, sent me a Vermont Teddy Bear wearing a blue bow tie. I named the Teddy Bear Blaine after a character in one of our favorite TV shows, Glee. I also received sweet notes from my twitter friends Laura and Berni, who both live in Argentina.

Our friends Kari and Darin Shea opened their home in California to us when my youngest daughter and I visited in August and again when both girls and I attended a Glee event in October. These trips gave us something to look forward to and be excited about for the first time in months. I remember when Kari sent me a text one night in July and asked me if I wanted to go to a taping of the game shows "Let's Make A Deal" or "Wheel of Fortune".  When I texted back that I was so happy about the upcoming trip, Kari replied that I deserved to be happy. I started crying because that was the first time since May 10 that someone said I should be happy. Most of the time I was being asked to pay a bill, fax a form, or do something.
 
 I've received hugs and concern from the homeless man who helps me feed the stray cats in the Kroger grocery store parking lot. The manager of our local Firestone and clerks in department stores have all expressed their sympathy.  We have continued to receive more support and help from my family, our friends and acquaintances in the months since my husband passed away. 

My youngest daughter and I just completed a Grief Support Group 8 week session at our local Children's Hospital.  At these meetings I met other women who have lost their husband's this year as well. One of the women lost her husband to a heart attack in June. She has four children, close in age to my daughters. I've found out that we have a lot in common and it has helped me to talk to someone else going through the same thing.

I just try to take it day by day. Two weeks ago, I was having a good week until I felt sad again on that Friday night.  I checked my email at midnight and found an email along with a newsletter from the Director of the Grief Support Group regarding handling grief during the holidays.

I cried as I read the newsletter about how difficult the holidays can be when someone you love is no longer there. Attached to the newsletter was a link to a blog written by a woman whose daughter passed away from colon cancer a little more than a year ago.

I cried again as I read her blog and quickly sent her a tweet, expressing my sympathy on the loss of her daughter.  I received an immediate tweet from her. At midnight. On a Friday night. I sent her a second tweet explaining that I lost my husband 7 months ago and now my 2 daughters and I are facing our first Christmas without their dad.  She immediately responded with this tweet "Leslie It's not easy-but I have learned even tho people leave us, relationships never die. My prayers r with you and your family."

And now this tragedy has happened in a small town in Connecticut.  At first I couldn't even read the story when the news first broke around noon on Friday. And now I see the pictures of the 20 children and 6 adults who died in a senseless act of violence at their school. 

 And now their families have to plan their loved ones funerals, pick out caskets, attend memorial services. I've done that this year and it's one of the hardest things I've ever had to do.

  All I can do is pray for their families. And I like to think that my husband was there helping to welcome these 26 souls to heaven on Friday.
 



 



Saturday, October 6, 2012

Movie Review - Pitch Perfect (2012)







Starring:
  • Anna Kendrick as Beca
  • Brittany Snow as Chloe
  • Rebel Wilson as Fat Amy
  • Skylar Astin as Jesse

Release Date:  Friday, October 5, 2012

Running Time:  112 minutes

Genre:  Comedy, music

Director: Jason Moore

Writers: Kay Cannon (screenplay) and Mickey Rapkin (book)

Rating:  PG-13 for sexual material, language and drug references

Brief Description: Beca, a freshman at Barden University, is cajoled into joining The Bellas, her school's all-girls singing group. Injecting some much needed energy into their repertoire, The Bellas take on their male rivals in a campus competition.



This movie is like one big episode of Glee set in a college instead of at a high school! Lauren and I saw the movie last weekend at the Rave Theater before it was released nationally yesterday. We loved the musical performances and especially like Rebel Wilson who plays "Fat Amy". Anna Kendrick, who plays the lead character, Beca, is one of our favorite actresses. She plays Jessica in the Twilight Saga series and was very impressive as George Clooney's assistant in the 2009 drama "Up In The Air". Besides a couple of gross scenes involving vomiting, we really liked the movie.


 

Summer 2012 Movies

Since Lauren worked at the Breckenridge Movie Theater in Little Rock this past summer, we were able to see many of the new movies for free. We saw the following movies and really liked all of them except the Snow White movie.
  1. "Rock of Ages" starring Tom Cruise, Julianne Hough, and Diego Boneta
  2. "Magic Mike" starring Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey, and Matt Bomer
  3. "Katy Perry: Part of Me" starring Katy Perry in one of her concert tours
  4. "The Amazing Spider-Man" starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone
  5. "Dark Shadows" starring Johnny Depp and Michelle Pfeiffer
  6. "Snow White and the Huntsman" starring Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, and Charlize Theron

Two Weeks From Tonight!

Lauren, Sara and I will be attending "The Biggest Show 2012" in Culver City, California sponsored by the organization Young Storytellers Foundation and featuring performances by several of the cast members of Glee!

The Glee cast members scheduled to perform include: Darren Criss (Blaine); Naya Rivera (Santana); Kevin McHale (Artie); Harry Shum Jr. (Mike Chang); Dot Marie Jones (Coach Beiste); and Max Adler (Dave Karofsky).

We're also attending a reception after the show with a Meet and Greet with the actors!  I'm keeping this information on the "down low" for now, so if you are my FB Friend, please don't mention it on my wall.


I know the upcoming weeks and months will be very emotional for us.  Our Wedding Anniversary is October 18 and my birthday is ten days later.  That is the main reason the girls and I are going to California to visit our friends and attend the charity event. This trip is giving me something to look forward.  I'm so excited that Lauren, Sara and I get to go to California soon!


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Movie Review - The Watch (2012)





Starring: Vince Vaughn as Bob; Jonah Hill as Franklin; Ben Stiller as Evan and Richard Ayoade as Jamarcus

Release Date:  Friday, July 27, 2012

Running Time:  98 minutes

Genre:  Comedy, Sci-Fi

Director: Akiva Schaffer

Writers: Seth Rogen, Jared Stern, & Evan Goldberg

Rating: R for some strong sexual content including references, pervasive language and violent images

Brief Description: Suburban dads who form a neighborhood watch group as a way to get out of their day-to-day family routines find themselves defending the Earth from an alien invasion.

This movie is really funny!  Yes, it has yucky aliens, murders at the local Costco Store (which is kind of like a West/East Coast version of Sam's) and Vince Vaughn as the father of a teenage girl named Chelsea, played by actress Erin Moriarty who was also on one of my favorite soap operas "One Life To Live". Gotta love it!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Glee Live Tour 2011



Introduction

My two teenage daughters, Lauren (19) and Sara (15) and I have watched Glee since the pilot episode first aired on May 19, 2009. At the time my daughters were 16 and 12 years old. We have always loved Broadway musicals such as Oklahoma, The Sound of Music, and Grease and we have watched all three High School Musical movies. We are also big fans of Kris Allen from Arkansas who competed on American Idol during the spring of 2009. 



Kris Allen performs with the rest of the American Idol Top Ten
at Alltel Arena in North Little Rock on July 25, 2009


We took this picture of American Idol Winner Kris Allen
signing autographs after the AI Tour at Alltel Arena in
North Little Rock on July 25, 2009







While we watched Kris progress each week through the competition on American Idol, we also saw many commercials for Glee. So we watched the pilot episode the night before Kris was named the winner of the eighth season of AI and loved Glee! The musical productions numbers were amazing and I also liked the writing style that combined serious issues along with comedy scenes.

While we were watching the pilot episode, I got a little bored during one of Mr. Schuester's scenes and I wandered off into another room.  All of a sudden Lauren called me to come back into the family room and she told me I needed to see this scene.  I looked at the TV and the members of  the New Directions Glee Club were singing the Journey song "Don't Stop Believin." They were all wearing red shirts and blue jeans and sounded amazing!  I remembered that song from the 80's but had not heard it in years.  The next morning Lauren logged into iTunes on our home computer and she told me that the "Glee song" was #1 on the charts! I knew then that Glee was special.


Rachel, Kurt, Mercedes, Tina and Finn singing "Don't Stop Believin"
during the Glee Pilot episode while Artie is nearby in his wheelchair.



Kurt teaching the McKinley football players the dance
to "Single Ladies"
 But then we had to wait months to watch the next episode! It came on again during the fall of 2009. By this time I started working later on Tuesday nights, so I recorded each episode and tried to watch it later during the week. I missed a few of the earlier episodes but I remember watching the episode titled "Preggers" that aired on September 23, 2009 because it opened up with Kurt, Brittany, and Tina dancing to the hit song "Single Ladies" by Beyoncé. In this episode Kurt also makes the football team and tells his father he is gay, Head Cheerleader Quinn finds out she is pregnant, and Rachel quit New Directions to star in a school musical. From that day on, I watched each new episode of Glee when it aired and I also recorded every episode so I could watch my favorite scenes over and over again!


The other day, a co-worker referred to Glee as "just a TV show." Technically, I guess it is just a TV show, but to a lot of people, including me, it is a lot more. My daughters and I laughed at the funny scenes such as the performance of "Push It" and cried when Kurt's father suffered a heart attack. I can still remember when actor/singer Darren Criss first appeared as Dalton Academy Warbler Blaine Anderson in the "Never Been Kissed" episode on November 9, 2010. The girls and I watched his performance of "Teenage Dream" on the DVR every night for months!


The Glee cast went on a small US tour during the summer of 2010. Sara wanted to go to one of those shows but at that time the only cities on the schedule were Phoenix, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York and those locations were too far to travel to for a concert.

In February 2011 I found out that the Glee cast was going on a larger concert tour for the summer with shows in 18 US cities and twelve days in England and Ireland. In May Lauren was graduating from Central High School, Sara was graduating from Horace Mann Middle School, and I would celebrate 10 years of being cancer free. I remember looking at all the tour dates and cities and even though we had never been to Chicago, it was probably the closest city to Arkansas. So as a celebration gift for all three of these events, I purchased VIP tickets online for the Saturday, June 4 performance of Glee Live in Chicago!


Friday, June 3, 2011


Thanks to a generous graduation present from my parents, the girls and I were able to fly to Chicago instead of driving. My husband booked the plane tickets and made the hotel reservations a week before the concert. We flew out on Friday morning and arrived at the Chicago O'Hare airport before noon. When we arrived in Chicago, I started carrying a tote bag with a copy of the April 23, 2011 issue of Billboard Magazine with Darren Criss on the cover. One of my goals of this trip was to meet Darren, have him autograph the magazine, and ask him if he received a birthday present I sent to him in February. So I took  the magazine with me everywhere we went just in case we saw Darren Criss. At this time we also realized we had left Sara's new Nikon camera in our car in the parking lot of the Little Rock Airport. Luckily we had two smaller digital cameras with us that we could use during the concert. We took a shuttle to the Holiday Inn Express Hotel in Rosemont, which is located just a short walk from the Allstate Arena where the concert was being held on Friday night, Saturday afternoon, and Saturday evening.


This is a view of the Allstate Arena before the afternoon
performance of Glee!Live on June 4, 2011


That afternoon we took the subway to downtown Chicago to meet my friend Lisa and her daughter Hannah who live in the Chicago area. The summer after my first year in college, I worked with Lisa at the Cinema 150 movie theater in Little Rock when it showed the block buster movie Raider's of the Lost Ark. Hannah is a student at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia and was home in the Chicago area for part of that summer. Lisa and I recently had gotten back in touch via Facebook and made arrangements to meet in downtown Chicago that afternoon.



Lisa and Leslie




Sara, Lauren and Hannah

On the subway ride downtown, Sara and I quoted lines from the movie, Adventures in Babysitting, starring Elisabeth Shue as Chris Parker.  Our favorite scene is when Chris and the kids are riding the subway in downtown Chicago and a gang called The Lords of Hell are about to start fighting another street gang on the subway.  Just like the gang leaders in the movie, we called out the names of Chicago streets as we passed by: "There go Jefferson. Here come Jackson."

We met Lisa and Hannah downtown, went shopping and also visited local landmark Cloud Gate, a stainless steel sculpture in the AT&T Plaza in Millennium Park which is nicknamed "The Bean" because of it's bean-like shape.



Sara loved seeing "The Bean"!


At the time there were several different groups of teenagers dressed in prom attire having their pictures taken in front of "The Bean".  Our favorite two groups were what we called the "Hooker Prom" because most of the guys were smoking cigarettes and some of the girls looked to be in their 30's and were dressed kind of slutty and the "Asian and Other Asian Prom" named after what Coach Sylvester calls the characters Tina and Mike Chang.


The Hooker Prom




The Asian and Other Asian Prom





One fun thing we all did Friday night in downtown Chicago was
have our picture taken by an outside camera at the Chicago Tribune Building.
The picture was then emailed to me in the format of a
newspaper story!


We ate authentic Chicago Deep Dish Pizza that night, found out that Coke products are not sold in Chicago, and then we rode the subway back to the airport and caught a shuffle to the hotel. Lauren's stomach was hurting and she was not feeling well at all, so we didn't try to go by the Allstate Arena after that evening's concert. I found out later that the Friday, June 3 performance in Chicago was one of the few performances that some members of the cast went outside the arena to sign autographs for fans!



Saturday, June 4, 2011



Do we look a little excited???!!!

We got up Saturday morning, and after a phone call to our family doctor back in Little Rock, Lauren was feeling a little better so we decided to go eat lunch near our hotel and to find the arena. I read on twitter the day before that actor Curt Mega, who plays a Dalton Warbler on the tour, had gone to a Target store near the Allstate Arena. When we stopped by the front desk at our hotel, we found out that both the Target store and the Allstate Arena were within walking distance from our hotel, and we didn't have to cross any streets to get there!

We entered the Target store around noon and immediately saw`several different people walking around the store wearing Glee Tour crew badges. Since there was an upcoming show at 3:00, I think they were crew members buying items before the afternoon concert. After a few minutes in Target, we decided to eat lunch at a Subway in the same strip mall as the Target store. As we were walking toward the Subway, Lauren saw a Panda Express restaurant in the parking lot. I laughed because in a recent Glee episode Sue made a joke about Panda Express.  We decided to go to Subway instead because it's one of Sara's favorite places to eat. Right before we walked in the restaurant, I turned to the girls and said "Maybe Finn will be inside!" I opened the door and held it open so they could walk in before me.

As soon as I entered the Subway I knew something was different.  It was like no one in the restaurant was breathing. It was just silent.  Years earlier, I learned to be "aware of my surroundings" after my aunt was robbed in a grocery store parking lot in Dallas. So at first I thought maybe the restaurant was being robbed, but then I saw two policemen sitting near the front door, just smiling at us as we walked in. Sara told me later that she thought she had her dress on backwards because everyone was looking toward the front of the store.

I just stood near the front, looking around.  That's when I saw a man dressed all in black, wearing an earphone and his eyes were darting back and forth.  He was not holding any food and I realized that he was Personal Security Detail. I grabbed a bag of Cheetos from the rack of chips so I didn't look too obvious, and I wondered who he was protecting. Because we were in a suburb of Chicago, I immediately thought of Oprah or President Obama. Then I looked behind the man dressed in black and saw a young woman wearing a black skirt with leggings and black Converse tennis shoes. Oh. My. Gosh. I recognized those black shoes. They belonged to actress Ashley Fink who plays the character Lauren on Glee.  Ashley is also close friends with Chris Colfer. I quickly looked past the young woman and there he was, holding a Subway bag and getting a soft drink. Golden Globe winner Chris Colfer.



Chris Colfer and Ashley Fink


Because I didn't want to get shot or arrested, I stayed back and pretended to look for something in my tote bag, which still held the Billboard Magazine with Darren Criss on the cover.  I looked around but I didn't see any other Glee cast members in the Subway.

Just one week earlier I watched Chris Colfer as a guest on Piers Morgan Tonight. Earlier in the spring Chris had been named one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People In the World for 2011. During this interview Chris told Piers that one time he went to a movie by himself and had to call the police because other people in the theater swarmed him and wouldn't leave him alone. So I respected his right to privacy and stayed back, along with the other Glee fans in the Subway. As he was leaving with Ashley and the security guard, I took 3 quick pictures with my old pink Polaroid digital camera.


In this picture, the Security Guard is walking out the door, Chris is in the middle and Ashley is behind Chris.

When the doors to the white van opened,
other girls in Subway said they saw
Cory Monteith (Finn) and
Lea Michele (Rachel) inside the van.



And so the white van carrying several members of the
Glee cast drives away from the Subway!
















Well then, nothing could probably top seeing Chris Colfer in Subway, so we just ordered our sandwiches and talked about it for the next hour!  Most of the other people in Subway were also Glee fans who were waiting to attend either the afternoon or evening shows. We talked to one girl who said she saw actress Naya Rivera who plays Santana in the Target store just an hour earlier! After we finished eating, we went to the Target store and we saw several other people with the Glee Tour including some female backup dancers and a male backup dancer/singer who was also one of the Warblers. He and one of the makeup artists were trying to find him the right color of foundation makeup. Sara stood nearby, pretending to look for makeup!

After the exciting times in Subway and Target, we went back to the hotel to get ready for the concert. We were supposed to be there earlier because we were going to the Glee VIP Pre-Party.




We had a special line to stand in for the VIP Pre-Party!



Lauren checking in for the VIP Pre-Party!






As we were walking up to the arena the afternoon of the concert, I asked a teenage girl standing nearby if this was the line for the VIP tickets.  A lady who was the mother of the girl said she wasn’t sure, but we decided to try to find out ourselves and the lady and I went inside the box office lobby, got our tickets and went back outside to the VIP line.

We started talking and I found out that her name is Lynn McGee and she lives in Joliet, Illinois. I also discovered that she has two daughters the same ages as my girls and that her oldest daughter, Emma (18), just graduated from high school like Lauren and that her youngest, Hannah (14), just completed middle school like Sara.  By this time, all six of us had moved inside into a large room in the back of the arena for a VIP Pre-Party for the Glee concert.

 As we all ate snacks and made ice cream sundaes, Lynn and I found out that we had more in common. We both brought our daughters to the Glee concert as a high school graduation gift for our oldest ones.  I found out that Lynn and her girls have been big fans of  Darren Criss since he was a member of  the musical theater company called StarKids that is located in Chicago. Lynn took a picture of me with my girls in front of a Glee background and then I took a picture of her with her girls!

Sara, Leslie, & Lauren Doan



Hannah, Lynn & Emma McGee


Pictures from the Glee VIP Pre-Party!



As part of the Glee "VIP Package" we each received this special lanyard
and badge that we had to wear all the time while at the concert.













While at the Glee VIP Pre-Party, we each received a Glee Backpack,
Glee Photo Album, Glee Water Cups and a Dalton Warbler Tie!


We found out that the people who paid $500.00 per ticket for the Ultimate Glee VIP tickets met Jenna Ushkowitz and Harry Shum, Jr. at the "Meet & Greet". They play the characters Tina Cohen-Chang and Mike Chang, or Asian and Other Asian, as Sue calls them!

About two hours later, we were taken out a side door and led to the front of the Allstate Arena, where there were hundreds of people already in line!



We were able to go into the arena early and to buy merchandise or just look around. Sara and I both bought Glee t-shirts and Sara also bought a big Glee foam finger!







Our seats were on the fourth row on the floor, right in the center!


The concert is about to start!

Right before the concert started, Lauren turned to me and said "Mom, in about 10 minutes Darren Criss is going to be in the same building as us!"  I think that's when I really got excited!

Most of the following pictures were taken by Lynn, Emma, and Hannah.  Their seats were on the 3rd row and they were able to take some great photos.  Even though Sara didn't have her Nikon camera, she did take some good pictures and I've used some of those too!  I tried to document each song in the concert by including a picture that was taken during that song.

The Opening Act for the show was the Legion of Extraordinary Dancers (LXD), the dance project of Glee cast member Harry Shum, Jr. The dancers were amazing and I recognized one of them as the guy we saw earlier in Target!




























After the opening act LXD, the main show opened with a pre-recorded video
from Mr. Schuester and cheer leading coach Sue Sylvester
introducing the New Directions



And so it begins...

The lights went down and the music for "Don't Stop Believin" starts playing in the background and then Cory and Lea walk out on stage singing!


"Don't Stop Believin"
Full Cast:  Lea Michele and Cory Monteith soloists


It was just amazing to see them singing this song in person - I thought I was going to cry!





Then three of the original five "New Directions" (Kevin, Chris & Amber)
joined Cory and Lea on stage





The rest of the Glee cast came out on stage too!





"Don't Stop Believin" was the best song to open the show
because it's Glee's signature song. If I remember
correctly, I think each character's name was announced,
but I can't remember!





"Dog Days Are Over"
Full Cast:  Jenna Ushkowitz and Amber Riley soloists

Jenna and Amber sang "Dog Days Are Over" along with the full cast.
After this picture was taken, Cory looked right at us and smiled really big!


"Sing"
Full Cast:  Lea Michele and Cory Monteith soloists



For the next song, "Sing" they removed their white vests and sang
in front of the SING backdrop




This is the song the New Directions sang in the episode with Sue
dressed as lumberjacks!


"I'm A Slave 4 U"
Heather Morris


Wonder who is next???






The "Britney/Brittany" episode was one of our favorites!





Heather sings the Britney Spears song "I'm A Slave 4 U"!


After Heather performed and exited the large stage, lights appeared toward the back of the arena where a smaller stage was set up. Sara had already researched the concert on the Internet and told me that some of the cast members would perform a few songs at this smaller stage, "just like Taylor Swift did in her concert," she said. 


"Fat Bottomed Girls"
Mark Salling


Mark Salling (Puck) opened up on the smaller stage by
playing his guitar and singing "Fat Bottomed Girls"
and then walked through the crowd to the large stage!


"I Want to Hold Your Hand
Chris Colfer

Next on the smaller stage was Chris Colfer (Kurt) singing
"I Want To Hold Your Hand"by The Beatles.





Kurt sang this song to his father Burt while Burt was in a coma
in the hospital in the episode "Grilled Cheesus".

"Ain't No Way"
Amber Riley

The final performer on the smaller stage was Amber Riley (Mercedes)
singing "Ain't No Way" that she sang on the episode "Night Of Neglect" 
Because we were sitting so close to the front, it was hard to take pictures
when they were on the smaller stage, so this is a picture of Amber during
another performance. I''m pretty sure the cast went through underground tunnels
or something to  get to the back of the arena  without being noticed!


"P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"
Kevin McHale

The next song was performed on the large stage, so we could see it a lot better!  It was "P.Y.T." that Kevin (Artie) sang in the "Silly Love Songs" episode, which is one of our all time favorite Glee episodes!  And Harry (Mike Chang) danced while Kevin was singing.  I was afraid that Harry was going to roll Kevin right off the stage in the wheelchair!










Harry did an amazing job during "P.Y.T."!
I'm sorry the crazy drunk guy on the 2nd row
has his arm in the way of the picture!


Kevin is great singing all the Michael Jackson songs!
Look, he is even wearing a red leather jacket!
And I love the white socks.

"Born This Way"
Full Cast:  Chris Colfer, Amber Riley, and Jenna Ushkowitz soloists


We actually ordered our own Glee "Born This Way"
T-Shirts online! Leslie ordered "Brown Eyes" (same as Tina's)
Lauren ordered "I'm With Stupid" (same as Brittany's)
and Sara ordered "Four Eyes" (same as Artie's)


Ashley Fink is wearing the same skirt, black leggings,
and shoes she wore when we saw her in
Subway that afternoon!









"Firework"
Lea Michele

Lea was wonderful singing "Firework" by Katy Perry!
This is one of Lauren's favorite songs from the "Silly Love Songs" episode.



I cried when Lea was singing this song, and she
curled up her fists and stomped her foot just like the character Rachel!






I think that's a tattoo on her right wrist!



The fireworks on stage were awesome!














DALTON ACADEMY WARBLERS
"Teenage Dream"
"Silly Love Songs"
"Raise Your Glass"
Darren Criss


The Warblers started on the small stage singing "Teenage Dream"


Using my iPod, I took a short video of Darren Criss and the Warblers as they ran up the stairs of the main large stage singing "Silly Love Songs" and then sang "Raise Your Glass". With the exception of the crazy drunk guy on the 2nd row, I think it's a great video! There is also a teenage girl that keeps screaming and waving her arms. Oh, that is just Sara! One of the guys at the Apple Store in LR helped me save my iPod videos to my husband's lap top PC so I could upload it into this blog.

video











































"Happy Days Are Here Again/Get Happy"
Lea Michele and Chris Colfer



They performed the mash-up of these two songs
on the smaller stage toward the back of the arena





This performance is one of my mother's favorites
from the TV show




"Lucky"
Chord Overstreet and Dianna Agron





"River Deep - Mountain High"
Naya Rivera and Amber Riley












Blaine/Brittany/Kurt Skit










"Jessie's Girl"
Cory Monteith





"Valerie"
Naya Rivera






"Loser Like Me"
Full cast: Lea Michele and Cory Monteith









After performing this song, the cast threw multi colored confetti at the audience in Slushie cups!


Encore
"Singles Ladies (Put A Ring On It)"
Chris Colfer, Jenna Ushkowitz and Heather Morris




"Friday"
Darren Criss, Chord Overstreet, Kevin McHale,
Mark Salling and Harry Shum, Jr.

We were lucky enough to see the song "Friday" performed
by the Glee cast because it was removed from the set list
after June 12 due to some rumored issues with Rebecca Black.




Darren's StarKids friends all live in Chicago
and they were sitting one row behind us.
This is one of the times that he kept waving
and pointing at them!



"The Safety Dance"
Kevin McHale



One of our favorite performance is when Artie gets out
of his wheelchair and dances to the 80's hit song
"The Safety Dance"!



"Empire State of Mind"
Full cast: Kevin McHale, Cory Monteith, Mark Salling
and Amber Riley soloists









"Somebody to Love"
Full cast: Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, and Amber Riley soloists









After the concert, we waited by the back stage door, but the cast
did not come out to sign autographs. We took this picture
of all four girls!


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Our plane didn't leave until later that evening, so we checked out of our hotel room, stored our luggage at the front desk, and took the subway back to downtown Chicago. Once downtown, we took a bus to the Navy Pier where Lauren and I ate real Chicago hot dogs!

Earlier in the year, Sara saw a show on Food Network about iCream cafe, a local cafe in Chicago that allows you to create your own ice cream!  So I looked it up online, called the cafe, and then we took the subway to Wicker Park and found the cafe. The ice cream was amazing!


Lauren loved going to downtown Chicago and seeing all the theaters!

Sara's favorite iCream Cafe!

Lauren loved downtown Chicago!



We had a great time visiting the Navy Pier!


Epilogue

Lynn and I became Facebook friends and kept in touch after the Glee show. She was taking her two daughters and their friend Katie to St. Louis on July 21 to see Darren Criss in concert at Six Flags. After much thought, Sara and I drove to St. Louis on July 20 and met Lynn and the girls at Six Flags on the morning of July 21.



Sara, Hannah, Emma, and Katie at Six Flags on the
hottest day of the year in St. Louis!





Lynn and I after the Darren Criss concert






We had seats on the 2nd row and Sara
took lots of good pictures!






Thanks to a lot of good luck (and our friend Terry Black)
we got to meet Darren and I finally got my Billboard Magazine
autographed by him! His signature, followed by a smiley face,is above his left hand shoulder.
And we found out that he received the gift I sent him to the Glee Studios for his birthday in February!






Leslie, Darren, and Sara
July 21, 2011