I‘m enjoying reading this book. But I just don’t understand why publishers don’t hire fact checkers anymore. The author refers to “The Music Man’s Henry Hill.” No, it’s Harold Hill. No one could look that up on IBDB? Plus the words “The Music Man” ought to be italicized. Does nothing matter anymore?
Archive for the ‘Show Biz’ Category
I am pleased to introduce you to the young and talented cast of Ryan Gajewski’s What’s a China Cabinet Used For? for the 16th Annual 15-Minute Play Festival April 19, 2010. Auditions were this past Saturday and what a busy day it was. However, at the end of an exhausting day we had some perfectly lovely actors from which to choose.
Hallelujah that we got all of our first choices. I’m so looking forward togetting in the rehearsal room with these four and Ryan’s funny script. All for fifteen minutes of fun and giggles and just a little bit of comic-tragedy. It’s all going to be over way too fast so I hope that talented gent is working on his next wonderful opus. And I hope he’ll want to work with me again after this!
What a pleasant feeling it is that when you’re thinking — oh, what shall I do next? I’ve sent in my Fringe application and I have a poo-load of work to do and I’m worried that I’ll never accomplish it but I WANT to and I NEED to and surely I will — and out of the damn blue the playwright whose play got you back in the show business after so much time at last year’s Fringe calls you on the phone and casually — nay, COOLY and NONCHALANTLY with a LAID-BACK SAVOIR FAIRE bordering on SANG FROID even — asks you (after you nattered on for uncountable minutes of digression) to direct his play that was accepted to the 15-Minute Play Festival. And he never even ever really asked that question directly because that’s not how you two seem to work together. You talk a lot, he talks a little bit. Often things are implied and understood and this confuses you and you think it amuses him and you hate to admit it that you are learning about human interaction in such a modern way. So here you are — not having to just sit and fret about whether or no your magnum opus for Betzy with a Z will be accepted into the Fringe Festival — but rather here you are actually directing and producing
(why does this seemingly endless paperwork involved in producing even a short, short comedy boil my psyche in a caldron of joy like a European jungle explorer unwittingly befriended by cannibals in a B-movie? [complete aside: CONGO MAISIE starring Ann Sothern is on TCM at 7:00 a.m. and if you have to wonder if I’m recording it AGAIN then you have never met me, have you?])
— a 15-minute comedy by a truly humorous young writer who writes truly humorous writings. Damn!! Pleasant?! Did I say, “Pleasant”? SPECTACULAR is the word. Them theatrical juices oozing like a floozy in her too-tight dress on a humid night with the rent due and an aching hankering she couldn’t spell if she tried. SO, here’s the flyer for the festival. The thing is a competition. The audience votes. 80 seats. ONE performance Monday evening, April 19. If you want a ticket (and if you don’t, why in the hell are you even reading this bumptious blog?) set your calendar for March 29 when tickets go on sale and sell out in less than a few hours and go to THEATERMANIA.COM to buy tickets. No, there are no comps, there are no special arrangements because you love the big time swish director, no no no and no. Don’t call me, don’t e-mail me. On March 29 go to THEATERMANIA.COM and order your tickets. I love the play. It’s got some great words in it in amusing and intelligent combination. And you cannot beat a play titled
Last night I went for a Central Park run and ended up running 7.72 miles in 1:10, not including my brief chat with Elaine Stritch.
Yeah, Elaine Stritch. I had run up to Central Park and then West on 59th Street and then into the Park and up the West Drive to the reservoir and after looping once and then some around the reservoir I headed back down the East Drive to head home. I was determined to run all the way home and gain some extra mileage. I got to the statue across from the Plaza and then I crossed Fifth with the light to head home and I noticed an older lady in a black coat and black hat and she was holding a shopping bag with “The Plaza” (I think) written on it. Standing next to her waiting for the light to change I realized it was THE Elaine Stritch and, as I had my headphones on and the music was playing, I mouthed “I love you” as I am afraid to speak when the music is in my ears so I don’t shout. She gave me a take for just a second — I think it’s in her contract that she is obligated to give this take no matter the situation — and as I pulled off my headphones she said, “You’re sweet” or maybe it was “you’re a doll” but it was something like that. She looks even younger WITHOUT makeup and I don’t know what we said after that. I kiddingly said,” you wanna take a run with me” and she said “My running days are over, I’ve done my share” and I said, “I bet you have” and “You’re in better shape than I am.” She told me that she walks 3 to 5 miles a day. I never introduced myself because, hey, why should Elaine Stritch give a good goddamn about another middle-aged Manhattan swish recognizing her on the sidewalk and feeling he has the right to chat her up like there’s no tomorrow of an evening just because she’s out for a damn stroll in HER town, goddamnit all to hell. When the light changed we crossed the street together as she really didn’t seem to mind chatting with the Flaming Curmudgeon (could she have recognized ME!?) but as I got to the other side of the street I looked her right in the eyes and said, “YOU have a delightful evening!” and dashed off. I forget what she said. All I know is I ran faster on the way home than I usually do. Glad to have run in the magical streets of New York.
I represented our company at strike today. I vacuumed the entire fucking theatre plus the dressing room and box office. Because the stage manager I hired and who was paid for his supposed commitment was on to his next tech. My mistake for paying him off before his duties were completed. Trust NO ONE, kiddies, especially people who pass themselves off as theatre professionals because they idiotically believe that being a professional means merely that they are being paid for their time. Working through one’s rage with a vacuum cleaner is pleasant, sweaty and fulfilling. I can vacuum an entire theatre and I was the director of the show yet the stage manager couldn’t even fucking MOP THE GODDAMNED FLOOR before a rehearsal several weeks ago. Sat there stuffing his maw with an egg sandwich. I went out and bought paper towels, came back, got down on my hands and knees and dried the floor. And this utter SHIT has the GALL to tell ME what’s wrong with my directing and my production. Not on your life mister, not on your lazy-assed goddamned life. You had better stand back, mister, when this bitch starts to sing!
This is where I toil and fret, roil and sweat, day after dusky day. THE show business is not easy and it is not merciful, like a playful pantheon of gods who know I worship them and cannot live without them. I sputter and err, I’d tear my hair if I could. Rend garments, bellow tempests. And when I am not in this room, when I am in bed late at night, at three a.m. I awaken shaken wondering if I’ve been mistaken to ever go here at all. The trembling tries to take me down but I have learned to breathe and after some days of feeling like my heart were lead and my life mere dread, I realize I know what I’m doing and I see what needs to be done and the pain is only temporary. The pain that leads the way to the gods know what and damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.
Listen, I have been really swamped with getting this production together which is certainly not a complaint, just a fact. I had to replace an actor — luckily before rehearsals began but unluckily after postcards were printed. Too bad. The actor was very talented but the actor was over eager to try and do too many things and have his cake, eat it, and probably get an award for baking the cake as well as for the having and the eventual eating of the cake. Youthful enthusiasm is a lovely thing if it ain’t interfering with my plans. Sorry, no, you can’t do a show down the street at the same time we are performing our show and run over or ride your scooter over and pop in for the final scenes. There’s not enough booze and pills on the planet for me to survive that sort of anxiety. Sorry. And then at the last minute, after you have tried to convince me you can do both, to say, oh, I’ll get the other show to re-cast so I can do your show because I’d rather do your show. All this FIVE days after you listed NO CONFLICTS on your conflicts sheet. Sorry, all this discussion is just way to much effort when I can just cast someone who has no conflicts and all my lovely actors will be lined up in a neat row before the curtain goes up, all in the same theatre, all committed to one project. Oh, it feels good to get that out. So, I should be trying to map out a damn rehearsal schedule — a project I have been avoiding all weekend. And here I am tapping away. I think I’ll go to the Y for a swim to try and calm down a little and return to all this later this afternoon.
Saw the new Harry Potter film. I kept trying to convince myself as more minutes dragged by that this was a good film and I was enjoying it. No, I enjoyed some bits — cute little character bits with the angst of teens in and out of love. However, the plot flew out the proverbial window at some point and Harry is left looking like a useless flaccid fool, unable to act. Really really really different from the book and so many details dispensed with completely. Every plot point that is fought so hard for on the page is just so easily covered in the film. Like there’s no danger at all. I hope they get back to good storytelling for the last two movies. I will start re-reading the books this week (yeah, like I have time for that!).
Ran a 4-mile race on Saturday in Central Park and did pretty well. Something around 34 minutes. I don’t know the official time yet. Now, what the hell sort of photo or image shall I insert into this rambling post? Oh, yes, that works nicely. Thank you.