Monday, December 03, 2007

Large Openings And Other Delights

Today is a slap-dash day for me--lots to catch up on at work, plus I'm feeling a little under the weather--but I have a few minutes to kill before I call my mom again (I called a while ago and she asked me to call back in an hour, because she's playing bingo right now), so I'll just give a quick digest of this weekend's happenin's:

Friday night we opened Rudolph the Red-Hosed Reindeer at the Bailiwick. We had a great opening night crowd, and they were in the mood to laugh! Saturday night, they were more subdued (due in part, I'm sure, to the hideous weather), but we still had a good turnout. Yesterday's audience was surprisingly big and lively for a matinee audience--they got every joke and even a few we didn't know we'd made! The cast of the show is really great, too. Special thanks to Robert "Sam the Snowman" Bouwman for letting me use his white greasepaint on my eyebrows and beard. I promise I'm getting my own this week! (I should be grateful that I still HAVE to use anything in my hair to make it look grey. The beard is already turning on its own--I almost don't need anything.)

Also on Friday night, we had a getting-to-know-each-other social for Season of Concern. It was the 20th anniversary of the first World AIDS Day, and we all introduced ourselves and talked about what drew us to the organization. Everyone there was really passionate about the organization's goals and mission, and it was really inspiring to be around other passionate people. I'm trying to come up with a project/program that benefits both the performing arts community in Chicago and also teenage artists. (Our workplace is devoted to a "communities and children" message and this would be an ideal way to benefit both, while I do something I love. Now, if I could just get some inspiration...ideas?) "Rudolph" has been making good collections in benefit of SOC, too. Thanks to our audiences for their generosity!

Saturday night, we attended Hell In A Handbag's first Camp Midnight movie showing of "Xanadu" at the Music Box Theatre. Despite the long lines of nerds waiting for an autograph from Crispin Glover (who, I have to say, looked remarkably refreshed and composed even when we emerged at nearly 2:30AM), it was a fun time, and we had a great crowd. Dick O'Day hosted and some of our lovely Handbaggers were on hand to perform "muse" duty. (There are photos, but they turned out rather dark--I need to see if I can brighten them up a little before I post them.) Also attending were Stephen, the two Tims, Phillip, and BC, who was doing hair and makeup for the muses. We had scads of fun yelling lines at the screen and singing (or in my case, howling) along with the songs. (I was punch-drunk after too much Santa and too many beers--live with it.) I never saw "Xanadu" when I was a kid (although I had the soundtrack and wore it out from repeated playing)--and now I'm sort of glad. Even as a 12-year-old, I couldn't have kept a straight face! ONJ complained that much of the script was written as it was being filmed, and it really showed. The art direction, however, was great for its time...albeit dated.

Last night, I was at a friend's house and we watched "Hairspray" in its entirety. I won't say anything bad about John Travolta ever again. Ever. I think he probably took the movie because it was a chance to dance again without the rigors of being a lead dancer, such as in "Saturday Night Fever," or "Stayin' Alive." But that was basically his start--being a dancer--and there aren't too many roles that allow a 53-year-old actor to have a dance number anymore. I give him kudos for taking such a leap to play the part. (His Edna is somehow more pathetic than Divine's--somehow, you KNEW that Divine's Edna was going to whup ass--John's is more awkward and downtrodden, and somehow that makes it all the more endearing.) Also, I love Queen Latifah as Motormouth Maybelle and Seaweed is even hotter than the one in the original Waters film. However, I woke up with "Miss Baltimore Crabs" stuck in my head this morning, and that simply won't do. No, it won't...

More later....


Blogger Steven said...

Sounds like a productive and rewarding weekend was had. Glad the show went well! Yes, Saturday's weather definitely was a spoiler for a holiday party. Too far to drive to Roselle when I knew I'd be challenged with ice later in the evening. But at least we got our World AIDS Day service in at the church that afternoon!

4:29 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

I'm glad that you got to go to the important! Yes, I'm looking forward to a good "Rudolph" run...

5:41 PM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

Kids love creating. It probably wouldn't be that complicated to provide some guidance and a space where they can craft a piece from their own experiences, workshop it and then get to perform it. I just finished Three Cups of Tea and if that guy can build schools for girls in Pakistan, you could get this project going.

Hairspray kept me up all night while they filmed in my hood. I hate Hairspray.

12:48 PM  

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