Sunday, May 31, 2009

Guess who I just saw?

Why, Ms Patti LuPone sitting in first class as I boarded a Virgin America flight to NYC!

I did actually catch her eye (my staring, doubtless) and came theesclose to simply saying "I love your work" or "I'm a big fan", as opposed to saying "Oh my God, I saw you play Evita when I was like 14 years old, and you were so awesome!!!!"

But I kept quiet.

When I sat down, back in my seat many rows away in Coach, I did ask the guy sitting next to me if he knew who Patti Lupone was.

Turns out, out of probably 200 people on that plane, I was sitting next to someone who works for her. Color me red-faced. he was nice, though, and gave me the program from a show she's touring about with Mandy Patinkin. I, of course, rambled on to him about how I'd seen them in Evita, and he kind of nodded and then put on his noise-canceling headphones.

I tweeted it for a while, and considered showing Patti's person the power of Twitter, as people responded, but I thought better of it.

I saw her later at Baggage Claim, and she was being perfectly nice to people who approached her, but I had a brush with fame's handler, not fame itself :)


Saturday, May 23, 2009

One Night Only Cabaret Fundraiser for AIDS

If you like good entertainment and a good cause, sounds like the J’LaChic Theatre 39, on Pier 39 in San Francisco is the place to be this June 15th. Cast members from the touring companies of both Wicked and Spamalot will be on hand, and the fund raised will benefit The Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation (REAF) and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

here are the deets as I know them to be:

WHAT: The Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation (REAF) presents a special One Night Only Cabaret
WHO: With cast members from the casts of Wicked and Spamalot with special guest, TOP SHELF
BENEFITTING: REAF and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
WHERE: J’LaChic Theatre 39, on Pier 39 in San Francisco
WHEN: June 15th, 2009 at 7:30PM
HOW MUCH: $40 General Reserved and $65 Preferred Reserved.
HOW TO ORDER: Phone: 415-273-1620 or Online A limited number of tickets are also available for the dessert party with the cast at the Hard Rock Café below the theatre on Pier 39 for an additional $25/person.

A little background info: The Richmond/Ermet AIDS Foundation has worked with over 25 touring casts to date to produce "One Night Only Cabaret" events. To date, REAF has distributed well over $2 million to AIDS service agencies.

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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Heading to the San Jose Rep tonight

Tonight the S.O., my folks and I are headed downtown to see The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at the San Jose Rep.

I actually saw the national tour of the show when it came through San Francisco a few years back, but it should be fun to see it again, especially with some local faves in the cast. Faves like Molly Bell and James Iglehart, among others. Kudos to SJ Rep for casting local!

Hopefully I'll have time to write a review and let you know what I think. In the meantime...did you see it? And what did you think?


Saturday, May 09, 2009

A chance to represent for the Arts at San Jose City Hall this Tuesday

Got an interesting email from the San Jose Stage Company asking for our local community to stand up and represent for the arts at a San jose City Council meeting this Tuesday:

Please join San Jose Stage Company and fellow members of the San Jose Arts Alliance* to make a visual statement in support of Arts Funding at the 7pm session of the San Jose City Council Meeting on Tuesday, May 12th at San Jose City Hall.

Our goal is to mobilize as many Board members, staff, artists, and supporters of San Jose arts organizations to attend the Public Hearing on the Proposed Operating & Capital Budget for FY09-10.

At the May 7th Budget Study Session, District 3 Council member Sam Liccardo, who is also our Arts Commission Liaison, proposed that the City look for ways to shore up funding for arts organizations, like San Jose Stage Company and other members of the Alliance. Other council members supported this proposal.

As a follow-up we need to show a major presence at the 7pm session of the May 12th Council Meeting.
  • Wear a black shirt

  • We will provide a sticker with a red letter A that says "Support SJ Arts."

  • If you really want to speak you can, but the main goal is to present a visual representation to the City Council regarding the number of constituents who support the arts.

  • Our message is simple -- the Arts add value to our city and we are requesting that the City find ways to shore up the declining TOT - Transient Occupancy Tax (hotel tax) to ensure our grants remain at the current levels.


    Friday, May 08, 2009

    It's a Wildcat Weekend!

    So last Sunday's Board Dinner for the cast/staff of Wildcat was a lot of fun, and my vegan dinner from Golden Era Vegetarian Restaurant went over like gangbusters!!

    Along the way I got to see a bit of the show (which opens tomorrow, FYI) and it was not at all what I was expecting.

    The one song I know from it is the quite perky "Hey, Look Me Over", but the scenes I saw being rehearsed on Sunday were a little darker than that song would lead you to expect.

    I'm looking forward to seeing it all, and that perky song in context!

    For a little more info, check out an interview with Wildcat's director, Kalon Thibodeaux, over at the 42nd Street Moon blog. And check out this article from the San Francisco Examiner.

    Disclosure: I'm on the board of 42nd Street Moon

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    Tuesday, May 05, 2009

    Tony Nominees Announced

    You can see the full list here.

    Apparently hair metal rock jukebox musical Rock of Ages, starring American Idol Season 4 6th place finisher Constantine Maroulis got a nod for Best Musical. And Maroulis himself got a nomination for Best Leading Actor in a musical! And if those aren't odd sentences, I don't know what would be.

    Intrepid blogger and twitterer Jane Fonda got a nod for Best Actress.

    In what may be a first, all three boys playing Billy Elliott have been nominated together as Best Actor in a musical. Frankly, I think seems that's incredibly lame. Granted, I haven't seen the show, but are they really saying all three boys are Tony caliber? Did they nominate all three so as not to hurt anyone's feelings? It's just weird. If they're all three just that good, then give them 3 of the 5 nominated slots.

    Lots of star power not nominated for their performances this year. I'm sure someone will round that up. But nice to see that veterans like Angela Lansbury, Carole Shelley and Stockard Channing still got it.

    Who's a surprise or who's missing in your book?

    And congrats to all the nominees!

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    Monday, May 04, 2009

    When blogging worlds collide: Theatre and Green??

    Ultra-intrigued to see this Ecorazzi post about New York's first LEED-certified Broadway theatre!

    The full text of the press release can be read here. There is a ton of great info about all the ways this theatre has been built to be green (and how the former building on the site was torn down and re-used, again to be green.

    The Roundabout Theatre will be in residence there. They of the current celebrity-filled Waiting for Godot.

    Cross-posted from my green blog...and it's not often I write those words!!

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    Sunday, May 03, 2009

    Spending my Sunday at the Moon

    Later this afternoon I'm heading up to see a run-through of 42nd Street Moon's newest show, Wildcat. The Moon has this nice tradition where the Sunday before Opening, two board members provide dinner for the cast and crew, who will be in the middle of a very long day.

    It's a way to let the cast and crew know that the theatre supports them and is invested in their success. This will be my first time providing dinner, and I'm hoping everyone will be cool with the fact that I'm providing a vegan dinner from Golden Era Vegetarian Restaurant. (Of course I told management that I was bringing the vegan.)

    I've never worked at another theatre where they did this, and in fact I don't think they did this back in the 90s when I did shows there. It's a nice touch.

    The 42nd Street Moon blog has an interview with Wildcat star Maureen McVerry up right now, and she points out something else that has become rare amongst theatre companies:

    "The Moon is such a positive company. It has a very refreshing attitude about putting on shows and retains a sense of joy and community that other theater companies don’t have. Come to think of it, I don’t know of other companies that even practice communal vocal warm-ups."

    I think some community theatres must still do group warm-ups, but I wouldn't be surprised at all if the Moon is a rarity amongst professional theatre companies.

    Anyway, I've never seen Wildcatand know very little about it except that it features the famous song "Hey, Look Me Over!". Looking forward to a fun afternoon/evening getting an early look at it!

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