Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Ell.en Show

Yesterday we went to a taping of the El.len Deg.eneres show. So fun!

We started the day out early. I had read online that the earlier you got there, the better your seat. That turned out not to be the case, but we hit the road early hoping it was true. After DeAnn met up at our place, we swung by and picked up my good friend Carla and off we went.

We made pretty good time, even though the navigation system steered us wrong(either that or Joe didn't follow it correctly, which happens sometimes :). Anyway, Carla called her Dad because he used to work in Burbank(where the show is taped) and he got us going back in the right direction. Just goes to show sometimes you need a real life person over a computer to get some things done the right way!

Once we got there we were told we would have to wait until 1:30 to get in line to get our number(which was also our ticket in). Thus the whole getting-there-early plan kind of failed.

Oh well. We were so excited it didn't matter! We strolled around a little bit and took lots of pictures.

Right when we got there we saw these kids(well, teenagers) sitting on a bench outside the studio. They were all wearing Ell.en t-shirts and holding signs. As I walked by they shouted to me "We met Ell.en!" I was like "Really?" "When?". Apparently she had pulled up to the studio in her car about 5 minutes before we got there and when she saw their signs she got out of her car and said Hi to them! Just the first instance of bad timing that we would experience that day. We chatted with them for a few minutes and I took a picture of them because they were cute. They had been there since 3:00 a.m.! Total Ell.en fanatics! They let me take their picture. When we got into the studio they were front and center in the audience! The one holding the "Tony will you go to Prom with me" sign actually got El.len to ask Tony if he would go with her and he said Yes! (Tony is the D.J. on the show). They are going to send a camera crew with them and everything! Pretty cool.

After that we went back to the "holding area" and sat on the benches and waited until it was time to line up to get our numbers. We ended up waiting over an hour before they said we could line up.

At around 12:50 they announced that we could line up so I went to get in line, since the reservation was in my name.

Waiting in line to get our numbers

When I signed up online to request tickets(about a month and a half ago), I had no idea that the date I had chosen would be around the 1000th taping. From watching the show earlier in the week, we knew that the date of our taping was going to be the 999th show, with the 1000th show being taped on Thursday and airing on Friday.

Well there was a bunch of rumors in the ticket line that today's show would actually be the 1000th show, since there had been 2 tapings on Tuesday(when normally there is only one). So we were kind of getting excited that we might actually get to see the taping of the 1000th show. There was supposed to be a big hoopla and a lot of giveaways for that show so it would have been cool if the rumors had been true.

After about 40 minutes I got my numbers (47-50) and I joined the rest of my group back in the holding room. It was only 1:30 at this point, and the show wasn't due to tape until 4:00!

We thought we had a good chance of getting decent seats in the studio, as our numbers were so low. Yet another thing we would be wrong about!

As we were waiting they gave out these surveys with questions on them. Where are you from, have you ever been to the show before, etc. It also asked if you had any special talents or tricks you might want to share with them, to which we all answered "No!"

Another question on the survey was "How has the current economic crisis affected you?" I put a little information down about Joe losing his job and such but I didn't go into great detail or anything.

Well a few minutes later one of the show staff was making an announcement that they were going to ask some people to come with them so they could interview them a little more about the answers on their surveys and next thing I know they are calling both mine and Joe's names! So they take us to the back of the lot and have us all line up and tell us that our answers to the economic crisis question had touched them and they wanted to interview us! Joe was kind of mad. I had filled out both of our surveys and he was like "What did you write?". I told him I only wrote the truth and that he should chill out because maybe it meant we were going to win something!

They broke us into groups and got our names and numbers and then told half of us to go back in the holding area until they could come and get us to interview us. The other half of the group they kept there.

So back to holding area we went to wait. And wait. And wait. They didn't come back to get us so I was a little bummed. I think Joe was relieved. He said he didn't want to be on t.v. talking about how he had lost his job. He said he would have been embarrassed. I can understand that but if it meant we were going to win some money or something, I would have done it!

Finally they started lining us up to go over to the studio. I don't know what the rhyme or reason was to the numbers because even though ours were pretty low they lined up a bunch of people and took them over to the studio before us.

The studio was across the street and they had us get into groups, lined up in numerical order and cross the street together like a bunch of cattle.

Once across the street we entered the building and went through airport-like security.
Once through security they lined us up in what they call the "Riff Raff" room(which is basically the overflow room). The Ell.en shop was in there and they told us we had time to look around and buy stuff then since it became very crowded after the show. We browsed a bit and bought a t-shirt and then got back into line.

Finally they started filing us into the studio. It was freezing cold in there! And much smaller than it looks on t.v. We were a little disappointed in our seats. They were all the way on the left side(facing the audience), and not even half way down. It didn't even look like the camera swiveled that far over so I'm not even sure if we could be seen on camera at all.

The warm up guy came out and some blaring dance music started playing and he had us up and dancing right away. That was fun for about 4 songs. Then it started getting tiring! But the dancing continued for a good half hour before the show even started taping! By the time El.len came out I was exhausted! She did her monologue and then of course she started dancing. She went right by us and down the aisle but we were so far in that I didn't get a close up look at her.

It was about this time that we realized this show was indeed the 999th show and not the 1000th. Bummer. We were still hopeful that there would be some sort of giveaway, as we had been talking to people in the holding area who had been there before and each time they had been given some cool prizes for attending.

After Ell.en stopped dancing and sat down in her chair they showed some of the show's funniest moments leading up to the 999th show and then they went on location and she called the family who won Ell.en's Stimulus Package on the phone they brought the money machine to her house and let her get all of the money out of it. Then it was time for the first commercial break.

After the break the first guest was Reyn.olds, who is in the movie Wol.verine right now. He was funny but overall I wasn't that impressed.

Next she had on a little girl who composes music and plays the piano. Her name was Em.ily Bear. She is obviously some kind of child prodigy and she was amazing. She talked with El.len for a few minutes and then played a breathtaking song on the piano that she wrote. It was so beautiful it almost brought tears to my eyes.

Between each guest and during the commercial break they would start up with the music and get us all dancing again. It was starting to get old at this point. During these times El.len would just sit in her chair or stand on the stage while 8 or 9 people tended to her. Going over cue cards, refilling her water, touching up her makeup. At this point I was beginning to dread the commercial breaks because I was tired of dancing and it was LOUD!

The last guests to come out were Joan and Mel.issa Riv.ers. They had been on the Celebr.ity App.rentice and Mel.issa had just been "fired". They were pretty funny and very entertaining.

The last thing she did was announce that an audience member was going to win a thousand dollars then they announced who it was and she got to go up on stage and talk for about one minute about why she needed the money.

And then it was over. They told us as we were leaving we could take a tram over to another lot and go to the Br.os store. Since it was rush hour traffic time, that's what we opted to do. It was a small store so we stayed about ten minutes and then the tram brought us back to the parking lot where our car was and we left.

We were kind of bummed that there were no giveaways at all, seeing as though the 1000th show was being taped the very next day and she had been advertising tons of giveaways for that.

We stopped at Chip.otle on the way home for dinner, since we were starving and didn't want to sit in traffic.

Here's some pics

Picture of the entrance to the Warner Bros. parking structure. Fascinating for you, I'm sure :)

Hanging on the outside of the studio.

We had a lot of fun in front of this poster, taking pictures. We looked like such tourists!

More posters hanging on the outside studio walls.

Back in the holding area
Joe was obviously feeling a little loopy by this time, making it necessary to re-take the photo.
That's better

Dinner at Chipo.tle in Burbank

and Carla have more pictures that I'll have to get from them so I can post them too.

All in all it was a very fun day and I would do it again if given the chance.

I bought a "Laugh. Dance. 1000." T-shirt, which I fully intend to modify with my Cricut and some t-shirt transfer tape to say "Laugh. Dance. 999." Heh.


Snowflowers Mum said...

looks like a LOOOOOONG day to me! I desperately want to see a taping of the Daily Show...but I dont know if a full day of waiting is worth it!

Tracy, Amelia and Jack said...

Man, that sucks that you missed the 100th taping by one stinking day!! I wouldn't watch that show if I were you-you will just be thinking about how all of those gifts could have been yours.

Glad you had a semi-good time anyway:)

2china4S said...

Sorry you had to wait so long and then missed the 1000 show. Still, looks like you had some very well deserved laughs and positive memories out of your visit.

Jenna said...

I love Ellen, I watch her everyday... That sucks that you missed the 1000 by one day!!! I can't believe she didn't do a give away, there wasn't a giveaway yesterday either, the 998.
It is cool that you were so close to winning the $1000. When I read you went to the show I was really hoping for you. That would have been really awesome!
I am sorry your day wasn't as good as you were hoping, it does sound a little disappointing. Overall going to the Ellen show had to be so awesome.
I still can't believe there wasn't a giveaway. She always has a giveaway. When I watched the show yesterday I was shocked about that too. It sucks you had to wait a month an a half and go on a day without a giveaway.
Sorry, I am a real Ellen fan. I tivo Ellen.

Lea said...

wow what a day. A day u will never/ever forget.


Shannon said...

I've been waiting to read this post- I've been so excited for you! Ok, so I have questions-
Did you have a good view of the guests & Ellen?
Were the chairs comfy?
Was Ryan Reynolds cute in real life (cause he is dreamy in movies)?
When the guest segments were over did they get right up and leave or did they chat with Ellen for a minute?
Do commercial breaks last longer than they do in real life? Like on the tv they are only 2-3 minutes.
One day I'll get out there. I'm dying to be on Price is Right, Family Feud & Ellen.
Glad you had a great time! Seems it really pays off to be an uber fan!

Natalie said...

LOL. Great story. At least you have the pictures and your husband is a trooper for going with you.


Carrie said...

I thought wow how cool-but not after all that dancing! Did they give out any drinks and sweat bans?
Well at least you can say you went! Would you ever go again?