Ming writes: I attended the LOTR stage show in Toronto this afternoon, and I regret to say that the Helm’s Deep scene is still error-prone. During the performance I attended, Saruman’s orcs were scaling the walls of Helm’s Deep when, abruptly, they all left the stage (was there some kind of signal, I wonder?) and the raised platforms on the stage descended. I sat for a moment in bewilderness (though I had a very bad feeling about it, pardon the other-movie reference) before the voice of God announced that they were experiencing some “technical difficulties” and that we should remain seated. That announcement was repeated twice before the voice of God decided to have an “unscheduled intermission”.

During this break, I spoke to one of the ushers, who told me that this was the first time this had happened since the show officially opened last Thursday. I said I hoped they wouldn’t skip the scene entirely, and she assured me that they wouldn’t do that.

When we were called back into the theater soon thereafter, the voie of God thanked us for our patience and audaciously said “I’m afraid you will have to take my word” that Gandalf had returned and that, with his aid, the battle of Helm’s Deep had been won by Theoden’s army (I don’t think he even spelled it out so clearly, which must have left Tolkien virgins in a daze — though the confusing Khazad-Dum scene probably already did the job, as would the even more confusing destruction of the Ring).

During the second “scheduled” intermission, I asked to speak to the house manager, from whom I requested a free pass to see another performance of the second act. Unfortunately, he said he didn’t have the authority to grant such a request, and gave me TicketKing’s customer service e-mail address. I will be going back to New York on Saturday morning so if I don’t receive a favorable response by Friday, they’re going to have one very disgruntled hobbit. I have not come all the way to Toronto and spent so much money on an orchestra seat (no trifle for a college student!) to miss what I’ve heard is one of the most spectacular scenes in the show!