I’m going to New York this week. Very excited. Very, very excited. Very, very, very excited. Can you tell I’m excited? It is both a work and a play trip. I went to New York for the first time in January 2004. It was cold. Very cold. Very, very – all right I’ll stop. It was the kind of cold where if you put on all the clothes in the world, it still wouldn’t be warm enough. And yet, it was a marvelous time. I walked around Chinatown during their New year, saw three Broadway shows and ran a 10m race in Central Park. I vowed to return as soon as possible. Two years and some months later…
The work reason is a great one. TADA Theatre is a youth theatre which runs an annual contest for teen plays. They choose five and give them staged readings. I’ve had two plays picked over the years: The Bright Blue Mailbox Suicide Note and Flaky Lips. Flaky Lips never got its reading because it was scheduled to go on that fateful Thursday night in 2003 when we had the blackouts.
This year they are having their 15 year anniversary and they are doing a “Best of” series. I was tickled to find out that Flaky Lips had been chosen and it was going on in May – the exact month that I had been finally working out another New York Trip. So not only do I get to go to New York, I get to see one of my plays. In New York. How exciting is that? Very exciting. Very, very exciting. Ok I’ll stop.
And if that weren’t enough – one of the reasons I’ve been frantically trying to arrange a New York trip is the current production of Sweeney Todd. Sondheim is my favourite musical guy and Sweeney Todd is one of my favourite musicals. Mostly because it’s so incredibly un-saccharine. Far from the stereotypical musical. Lots of blood and people dying. Love that. The original production was huge: huge cast, huge metal work set, huge orchestra. Big sweeping epic. This new version has only 10 actors. Small stage. No orchestra. The actors accompany themselves – they are the orchestra. Patti Lapone, who plays Mrs. Lovett, also plays the tuba. This is, well, (sorry) very, very exciting. This to me is what theatre is about – that fresh approach, the ensemble, the way the ensemble must work together or all is lost. I’ve been on Playbill.com like a hawk since it opened to make sure that the show was going to stay around. And now my trip is here and I’m…..
My other plan is to go see something very far from Broadway. On the first trip, we did the Broadway thing and after we see Sweeney it’s off to off-off-off Broadway. Something with five chairs in a basement. Can’t wait!