Friday, August 01, 2008

New York Post: The Great White Way

Last of these posts, I promise. But when in New York, you’ve got to go to the theater at least once. Or in our case, twice.

The 39 Steps. When we heard that there was a stage adaptation of the 1935 Alfred Hitchcock movie and Chez K favorite, we knew we’d see it. How do you recreate the train sequence, or the chase across the moors? The answer is with a game cast of four – four! – and bracing theatrical legerdemain. It’s all directed by Maria Aitken, who for me will forever be John Cleese’s wife in A Fish Called Wanda. The Tony Award-winning stagecraft was what had me laughing, not the broader stuff like shoehorning as many Hitchcock titles into the script as possible. Before we saw the show we watched the movie again. And it still holds up.

Celebrity Encounter #1: After the show, the heavens opened. The deluge had us ducking into a diner near our digs. A few minutes later, we saw Mario Cantone darting to cover under an awning. Or at least I did. Rosemarie saw the back of his head.

[title of show]. This meta-musical about the making of a musical was an Off-Broadway smash and came highly recommended. It features energetic songs and a quarter of terrific performers. (Again with the four actors. A coincidence, honest.) But there’s a difference between an Off-Broadway show about holding fast to your dreams and a Broadway show about achieving them. The new third act, about the compromises needed to open on the Great White Way, feels contrived. But on the whole I enjoyed it, and you’ve got to love any show with its own YouTube channel.

Celebrity Encounter #2: Just before the curtain, Peter Gallagher sat down next to Rosemarie. Who initially didn’t notice. “I had bigger problems,” she said. “I was worried someone was going to step on my sprained foot in the dark.”

Miscellaneous: Link

Today’s reason why I love New York.