The first time I was went to London was way back in 2007. Being a musical geek a trip to London is the equivalent of dying and going to heaven. The escalators on the tube alone send shivers down my spine with the posters from all the shows. And there's so many that it's simply impossible to choose. Alas, I had too. When you go abroad with a group of friends you can't always have your way. So I used all my powers of persuasion for us to go see The Lord of the Rings - The musical. A lot of people argue that it wasn't the greatest of ideas, but I had done the translation of the behind the scenes documentary and knew I was going to see something great. And above all I was fully aware that it was something that would keep the Drury Lane busy for a few months only (and I was proven right when The Lord of the Rings gave way to Shrek - The musical). I had time for Phantom or Les Miz, but this was a one time only opportunity that I gladly took. Of course it pained me to see the posters of all the musicals I wasn't going to see. And then there was Hairspray. Not that it's one of my favourite musicals (even though it's so adorable), but it had Michael Ball as Edna Turnblad and that was another world of pain to miss. And there and then I told myself that one day I would come back to London (or even as many times as it took) and I would see my fair share of musicals and I would see my favourite actors on stage, Michael Ball being amonst them.
Fast forward almost five years. It's 2012 and I'm proud to say I moved to the UK almost a year ago and am currently living just about two hours away from London. I've been there four times and I've seen three musicals, which may not look like much but it's a lot more than it would've been had I stayed back in Portugal. Spring Awakening, Wicked and - just two nights ago - Sweeney Todd featuring Michael Ball as Sweeney. And with that I feel that I've come full circle. I have grown and changed by leaps and bounds and am now in a position to delight myself on a fairly regular basis with a few of what is to me one of life's great pleasures. Musicals. Right here, so close to my doorstep. And I am happy.