« One From Column A...
by "The Real A"
April 26, 1999 - #83
I am having one of those days, dear readers. Yes, you heard it here,
it is one of those days. And just what makes it one of
those days as opposed to one of these days? It is one
of those days because everything is bugging me. I am bugged.
Bugged is what I am and there is no way around it. Everything that
everyone is doing today is bugging me. If people look at me, it bugs
me. If people talk to me, it bugs me. There is simply nothing that
isn't bugging me. In fact, the word "bugs" bugs me.
Yes, clearly it is one of those days.
Oh, I hope I stop feeling
bugged soon. Perhaps a nice bowl of popcorn would stop me from
feeling bugged. But I am not where I can make popcorn. That bugs me.
Perhaps an activity photo of a bowl of popcorn would stop me from feeling
bugged. Let's just see, shall we?
That really bugs me. Look at that popcorn just sitting there like so
much fish and I can't even have any. It's just a photo, an inanimate
object, an image. I don't even know if there's butter on that
popcorn and that bugs me. You know what else bugs me?
I'll tell you what else bugs me. Because of the way Mr. Mark Bakalor
(he bugs me) has set up this here column, every time I want to
italicize something I have to type this: <I>. And when I'm through
typing the word I want to italicize, I have to type this: </I>.
bugs me. Why can't I just italicize like a normal person? Why do I
have to type all those fancy-shmancy hieroglyphics? Could Mr. Bakalor
have made it any more difficult to italicize? Well, I suppose he
could have. I suppose I could have to type this: >*%^#$^&(*((.
And frankly, that would bug me. I have had it with being bugged. It is
no fun to be bugged and here I've been bugged since I woke up this
morning. I'm just lucky that my phone isn't tapped because then I'd
be bugged and bugged. I am going to do my damnedest to not be
bugged but it will take some doing because, as you know, I am bugged.
Wait, I know. Perhaps if I draw a picture of a bug that will help
exorcise the feeling of being bugged.
Nope. Maybe if I put the bug in the bowl of popcorn it will help
exorcise the feeling of being bugged.
Yechhhh. Isn't that nauseating? Seeing that bug in my nice
handy-dandy bowl of popcorn? Great. Now I am not only bugged, I'm
nauseous. Perhaps if I talk about something other than being bugged I
will not be bugged. Oh, what a lovely day it is. But you know what?
It isn't a lovely day at all, it's a gray day and that just bugs me.
I fear I am going to have to spend this entire column being bugged.
And why? Because it is one of those days.
Well, while I am being bugged, here are the activity
photos I promised last week. You'll remember that last week Mr. Mark Bakalor
was down here in Los Angeles and we met up after he saw The Last
Session. We met at Jerry's Famous Deli and if there are doubting
Thomases, or even doubting Eugenes, here is an activity photo of
Jerry's Famous Deli.
As you know, my companion and I had to wait forty-five minutes all by
our very own selves before Mr. Bakalor and his sweetheart Julie arrived.
Here is a photo of me waiting.
That's where I was sitting, but I had to go to the other side of the
table to take the picture. I hope you can still sense my aura. I
know my camera has that wonderful feature where you can set it to take
the picture automatically, but I haven't figured out how to do it yet.
It is very complicated and I do believe it requires pushing a button
or something. Anyway, Mr. Bakalor and said sweetheart Julie finally
arrived, sat down, ordered dessert and immediately started stuffing
their faces. Here is the indisputable proof of said stuffing.
Aren't they a sweet-looking couple? That bugs me. When I am bugged,
sweet-looking couples make me want to gag (gag spelled backwards).
May we stop for a moment and discuss the word "gag"? Frankly, the word
"gag" makes me want to gag. Not tell a gag, mind you, no, it makes
me want to gag, or at the very least, it makes me want to put a gag on the word
"gag". Where was I? Oh, yes, Jerry's Famous
Deli. After a while, we were joined by Mr. Bob Stillman, the star of
The Last Session. Here he is, sitting with Mr. Bakalor and his
sweetheart Julie. Note the empty bowl of soup which Mr. Stillman has just
And there you have it. A document of an event. A moment frozen in
time like Bird's Eye Vegetable Medley.
Have you noticed that I just used all my activity photos in one
fell swoop? That bugs me. I could have spread them throughout
the column, but nooooooo, I have gone and used them all in one fell
swoop. Damn my eyes. Perhaps it would be best to
just end this section, because frankly it's starting to feel like
the critical reaction to Frank Wildhorn's The Civil War:
Bad. But enough about me.
The Hair Dresser
I find that when everything is bugging me the best thing I can do
is to pay a visit to my hairdresser. I don't know why but there you have it.
And so, off I went to my handy-dandy hairdresser to have my handy-dandy hair
frankly my hair is a little tired of being naked. Now, my hairdresser
is no ordinary hairdresser. My hairdresser is not just any old
hairdresser. No, my hairdresser is Famous, with a capital F. My hairdresser is, in
fact, Legendary, with a capital L. Of course, I was going to my hairdresser
prior to the capital F or L. I have, in fact, been going to my hairdresser for
more years than most of you have been alive. Anyway, I decided that to
lighten my mood I should lighten my hair. I do this occasionally when
my hair is feeling especially heavy. I simply do not like heavy hair.
I like nice light hair. So, my F & L hairdresser prepared his special hair
lightening mixture with which to lighten my hair, and therefore my mood. Here is
an activity photo of the special hair lightening mixture and the
accouterments with which said mixture is applied.
Isn't that disgusting looking? Now this hair lightening process is
very complex. I sit in the chair while my F & L hairdresser and his
assistant do all manner of convoluted things. For instance, they
first take bits of my hair, brush the bit of hair with the disgusting
looking goop, and then wrap that bit of hair and goop in aluminum.
This process takes about thirty minutes and at the end of it one looks
just like Shirley Temple with aluminum curls. I would have
taken an activity photo of me with said aluminum curls, but frankly it
would have been to horrifying for you, dear readers, and it might have
caused fainting and hot flashes. No, we have spared you, dear
readers, and you are the better for it. So, there I was with a
head full of aluminum. The next stage in the process is to be put under
a hair dryer with the head full of aluminum. Oh, yes, my head full of aluminum and I were put under a hairdryer. That bit of business lasts approximately twenty-five minutes. During those twenty-five minutes, to pass the time, I perused a magazine entitled Movieline, and caught up on the latest comings and goings of celebrities I care not one or two whits for. I learned, for example, the shocking revelation that Sandra Bullock thought Speed 2 was a piece of garbage. In any case,
after twenty-five minutes the hair dryer phase of the operation was
over. I was then taken to a sink where the assistant proceeded to
remove the aluminum from my hair. He then gave me a lovely shampoo
and then applied a special overall lightener to my special overall
hair. He then gave me another lovely shampoo and this time topped it
off with conditioner. I was then taken back to the hair chair, where
all matters hair are taken care of. My F & L hairdresser was waiting for
me. Here is an activity photo of my hairdresser waiting for me.
Isn't he a splendid-looking hairdresser? Anyway, for the next thirty
minutes, he did what he does best and after all was said and done and
also done and said, he stepped back to survey his handiwork. And,
I'll be darned if my hair wasn't lighter. Perkier, with
brilliant blondish highlights. Suddenly everything seemed better.
Things weren't bugging me nearly as much. I
had a spring in my step (no mean feat), I felt youngish and alivish.
The assistant came up and oohed and aahed. I then paid and left. As
I walked down the street I hoped someone would look at me and say
"Surf's up" but it didn't happen. Frankly, that bugged me.
Yes, it's time to share more of my art collection with you, dear
readers. Art always makes me feel better and art always lightens my
mood. And so, in the spirit of being light of mood and hair, here are
some more paintings and such.
First up is a beautiful painting by an artist named Rico Tomasso.
This painting is very wide, like Cinemascope. It is the only wide
painting I own. The detail and mood and color are extraordinary, as is
Isn't that just breathtaking? Isn't that just too too? When I look
at that painting it almost feels like I'm there. The next
painting is by James Matthyous, a fine painter of illustrations for
book covers and stories. Have any of you dear readers ever read any
of the paperback Nancy Drew Files mysteries? This is the original
painting done for Case #39. See if it looks familiar to you.
Isn't that just Nancy Drewish? Isn't that just too too? I especially
love her outfit and those two arguing kids in the background. It's
beautifully rendered, isn't it? Interestingly, the artist's medium is
chalk. If chalk is the artist's medium, what do you suppose the
artist's small or large is? Just asking. Finally, we have a
watercolor by the brilliant cartoonist Gahan Wilson. Mr. Wilson has a
mordant and macabre sense of humor and I've been a fan of his for as
long as I can remember. He did many cartoons for Playboy, and has had
several book compilations of his work published. His style is
instantly recognizable. This cartoon was used in the Christmas '81
issue of Playboy.
"I'm sorry, Mrs. Claus, but nobody here fits that description..."
Isn't that funny? Isn't that just too too? Even without the funny
caption it's still funny, because Mr. Wilson just draws funny.
Well, that was a lovely art show, wasn't it? I enjoy our little "show
and tell" and I hope you do, too. I do hope our little "show and tell"
doesn't bug you, dear readers, because that would bug me.
New Ice Cream in Town
In order to further lighten my mood, my
lightened hair and I thought we'd just mosey
on down to the supermarket and buy some ice
cream with the sole intent of eating said ice
cream. It's no fun to just buy the
ice cream, no the fun is in the eating. So,
there I was, minding my own business and
perusing the various cartons and containers
of ice cream. And there, amongst the various
cartons and containers of Ben and Jerry's ice
creams was a new Ben and Jerry's flavor.
Yes, you heard it here, dear readers, a brand
spanking-new Ben and Jerry's flavor. And what
was this flavor, you might ask and I might tell
you since I don't want to leave you hanging
by a thread (no mean feat). This new Ben
and Jerry's flavor was/is called Pistachio
Pistachio. Well, I thought, any ice cream
that has the same word twice is worth trying,
and I'm happy to report that Pistachio
Pistachio is excellent excellent. Of course,
it is imperative that one likes the pistachio
flavor and pistachios themselves if one is to
like Pistachio Pistachio. Because the one thing
you know you will get from ice cream with
the name of Pistachio Pistachio is pistachio
aplenty. Luckily, I do
like pistachio, both flavor and nut, so I was
in ice cream heaven. I ate my Pistachio
Pistachio with great fervor and glee (eelg
spelled backwards). I ate it with great
gusto and I was filled with Pistachio Pistachio
Passion, which also happens to be the name of
a musical by Stephen Sondheim (just the
Passion, not the Pistachio Pistachio - no, if
there were a musical entitled Pistachio
Pistachio it would be by Jerry Herman). I
recommend this new Ben and Jerry's flavor
whole-heartedly. It's got lots of actual
pistachios in the pistachio flavored ice
cream. And no shells, which is a plus in
my book (Chapter 334 - No Shells In Ice
Cream Is A Good Thing). Wait a minute. I've
just received an e-mail. Let's see who it's
from, shall we?
Date: Sun, April 25, 1999 08:27:31
To: The Real A (firstname.lastname@example.org)
From: Jerry Herman (email@example.com)
Isn't life funny? I, too, just discovered
Pistachio Pistachio ice cream and was just
thinking what a splendid Jerry Herman musical
it would make. Pistachio Pistacio is a
wonderful title for a new musical. We need
a good musical about the pistachio, and of
course all the musical theater nuts will have
to see it. I mean, who needs a musical of
The Civil War? First of all, The Civil War
is a terrible title. Second of all, there is no
title song. You can't have a hit musical
without a title song, even if the title is
a terrible one. Now, it is well known that
Meredith Willson had written a musical of The
Civil War, and his would have been a good
one. I was at the backer's audition for the
show and I remember the title song as if it
How can there be "civil"
In The Civil War.
If the North and South would give
A little - then this ol' war would be no more.
Let's put a little "civil"
In The Civil War...
And then maybe folks will live a
Maybe folks will learn to get along.
Maybe then The Civil War will be as short
As this little song.
I just loved Meredith Willson. Anyway, back
to me and my new musical Pistachio Pistachio.
I've already written the title song and I'd
like you and your dear readers to be the first
to take a peek at it.
You take the nut right out of the shell,
And plop it into ice cream that's swell,
Your nuts are really crunchy,
Delicious and quite munchy,
For dinner or for lunch - even
For a midnight snack
I keep coming back
For more of
That ice cream that keeps calling my name,
That name ain't Dolly and it ain't Mame,
I love nuts mixed with dairy,
And though it's kinda scary,
Call me the ice cream fairy
I've got to crow!
Isn't that a toe-tapper? I've got to go now
and play it for David Merrick who might just
come out of retirement to produce it.
Best to you,
Who would have thought that Jerry Herman and
I would both have fallen in love with Pistachio
Pistachio at the very same time? That is just
one of life's funny coincidences, is it not?
Anyway, I have always loved pistachios so it
is great to have this new Ben and Jerry's taste
treat. Kudos of course to Herman Pistachio
for inventing the damn nut in the first place.
Interestingly, Herman Pistachio's neighbor
was Eustus Cashew. They were both somewhat
reclusive and weird, and more than one person
in their neighborhood was heard to say, "Oh,
those two guys are nuts."
The Real A: A Life
Miss Meryle Secrest has recovered from her
operation and is already pelting me with more
questions. Pelt, pelt, pelt, that's all she
does. I've got welts from her pelts. And then
she tried to get me to eat some smelts. After
I said, "What is it, fish?" I told her I'd
rather eat a pelt than a smelt. What the hell
is a smelt, anyway? Why would anyone
name a fish "smelt"? In fact, all fish names
are highly suspect and yes, fishy. I mean,
if you put a herring and a tuna next to each
other you'd be hard pressed to tell me why
one is named "herring" and the other "tuna".
Only a nut (not a pistachio) would name a
fish "tuna". Of course, what is "tuna" but
"a nut" spelled backwards? And then there's
scrod. Do we even want to contemplate the
mind that came up with scrod? I think not.
And how about Red Snapper? First of all, have
you noticed that the damn Red Snapper isn't
red? Or was "Red" its nickname, like "Red"
Buttons or "Red" Skelton? Yes, perhaps Red
Snapper's real name was Arthur Snapper. We'll
never know I suppose. You certainly can't
ask the Red Snapper because all you'll get is
a fish story. And what about sole? Oh, yes,
let us not forget about sole. First of all,
how can you have a fish sole, a shoe sole, and
be the sole person asking the question? That
is three too many soles in my book (Chapter
422 - Filet Of Three Soles or Dance: 10
You see what I've done, dear readers?
I've used up the entire A
Life section talking about fish. That is heinous (heinous,
do you hear me?). Next time you see me going
off on a fish tangent just tell me to clam up.
Letters... We Get Letters
Oh, I couldn't wait to get to the letters
section this week, dear readers. The reason
for this will be abundantly clear in a moment.
People have, from time to time, asked me how
I can write this here column week in and week
out and also week out and week in. And
sometimes I have to admit, it is difficult.
Sometimes I feel like saying, "No, by yiminee,
I will not write this here column anymore
because it is just too difficult". But then
I receive a letter like the one I'm about to
share with you and suddenly I don't care if
it's difficult or not to write this here
column, I'm going to keep on writing this here
column until the cows come home. I haven't
seen the cows in quite some time, so
apparently they are doing fine out on their
own and may never come home. Before I print
the letter that I received, let me reprint
the section of column 42, to which it
Talking earlier of great performances in
Sondheim shows suddenly made me think back
fondly to the greatest performance I've ever
seen in the musical theater. I was blessed
to see it. It was one of the greatest theater
moments of my life. And I'll never forget it
as long as I live.
As I have said before, when I was young I used
to go to the record store regularly, at least
three or four times a week. Sometimes albums
would just catch my eye (no mean feat) and I'd
buy them even if I didn't know one thing about
them. Such was the case when I saw the
Original Broadway Cast album of The Most Happy
Fella. The cover art just spoke to me. And
this was not the one-disc "highlights" album,
either, this was the three lp boxed set, which
was expensive, dear readers, but I had a
twenty which I'd removed from my father's
pants pocket, so what did I care? I bought said
box set, took it home and spent the next few
hours listening to it. Well, the score by
Mr. Frank Loesser just put me away. At my
tender age I didn't understand all the story
points, but the songs were incredible. I
would have thought that at times it was more
like an opera, but I didn't know what an opera
was. For days I tormented my family by singing
Standing On The Corner and the title song and
Ooh, My Feet. I played that album over and
over and over again. I memorized every note of
that album. I fell in love with the voice of
Susan Johnson who played Cleo, and I thought
the voice of Jo Sullivan as Rosabella was
just plain peculiar. I adored Shorty Long
as Herman, too, and loved Art Lund's smooth way with
Joey, Joey, Joey. But it was the voice of
Robert Weede as the titular Happy Fella, Tony,
that made me return to the album so many times.
I'd never heard a voice as powerful or as
sweet or as honest. By that time, I had quite
a few cast albums, but Happy Fella was my
Flash forward. I'm in my first year of
college. I see an ad in the paper for one of
the many "theater-in-the-rounds" that had
proliferated all over Los Angeles and environs.
I'm sure you've all heard of theater-in-the-round, in which the audience is literally all
around the stage, which was also round.
Obviously, set designs were simple and
directors had to keep the actors turning a lot,
so everyone could see them. They would get
"names" to come in and do shows at these
venues, and I got to see Ethel Merman do
Call Me Madam, Tammy Grimes do The Unsinkable
Molly Brown (also saw Nanette Fabray do it,
too, which was way too scary), Jane Powell do
Peter Pan. Well, you get the idea. Anyway,
I see an ad for the San Bernadino Theater-In-The-Round.
And they're doing The Most Happy
Fella. Last two performances the following
day. Well, I'd never seen the show on stage,
so I called and got tickets to the matinee.
I cut the ad out so I'd have the address, and
it was only then that I noticed who was in the
show. Robert Weede, and the original Joey,
Art Lund. Next day, and off I went to San
I had great seats for the show, very close to
the stage. From the minute the house lights
dimmed and the orchestra went into the mini-overture,
I knew I was in for a treat. I can
no longer remember who played Cleo and
Rosabella, but they were great. Then, after
the first scene was over, Mr. Weede made his
entrance, singing the title song. And that
was it. I was in tears. I knew I was in
the presence of a great star, a magical
performer who, despite the fact that he was
appearing in San Bernadino in the round in a
show he'd starred in on Broadway ten years
earlier, was giving his heart and soul to
every member of that audience. Such acting,
such singing. Mr. Lund was swell, too, and
the director, Ernie Sarracino, did a great
job keeping everything moving. But it was
Mr. Weede's show. When he sung Momma, Momma
it was just thrilling. And when Rosabella
finally realizes that she loves Tony and they
have their big duet (and surely one of the
musical theater's most glorious moments) My
Heart Is So Full Of You, there wasn't a dry
eye in the house. At the end of it, the
entire audience rose to its feet, cheering.
I'd never seen anything like that happen.
This was before Carol Channing's ex-husband
would lead the Hello, Dolly! revival audiences
to stand as she entered and at the end of the
title song. No, this was real, this was
deserved. In those days, audiences rarely
gave standing ovations to anything, let alone
in the middle of a show. Mr. Weede and his
Rosabella were visibly moved by the ovation.
At the end of the show there was another
standing ovation and cheering and shouts of "bravo".
As soon as I got out of the theater,
I ran to the box-office and purchased tickets
for the closing performance, which was two
hours away. And which was no less wonderful.
The fact that Mr. Weede could give that
performance twice in one day was something
I'll never forget (he didn't need an
"alternate" like whoever plays Jekyll and
whoever plays Christine in Phantom). After
the second show I knew what I had to do. I am,
to this very day, quite shy about going
backstage after a show, even when I know
people involved. But I found the backstage
area, and told the doorman that I would love
to meet Mr. Weede and get his autograph. I was
taken to him, and I just couldn't stop
yabbering about his performance and what it
had meant to me. His reaction was interesting.
He received my pouring on of the praise as if
no one had ever told him how great he was
before. He was so gracious and real and kind
and human and humble and he was as touched by my praise
as I was by his performance. And then do you
know what this wonderful person did? He
invited me and the person I was with to the
cast party! I could not believe it. I went,
of course. And he introduced me to everyone
in the cast, and the musical director and
the director (years later I would recount this
story to the director and he remembered me)
and everyone else. Needless to say, there
aren't many Mr. Weede's left in the world of
the theater, and when he died some years later,
I pulled out the album of The Most Happy Fella
and listened to it and just smiled as I
remembered that day and the kindness and
brilliance I'd been lucky enough to witness.
Yes, that was way back in Column 42. Now, here's
the letter I received, which I print in its
entirety for you, dear readers.
My son found your article while looking for information about his grandfather,
Robert Weede, and sent your site address to me. What a wonderful tribute to my
Dad!!! I've just now finished reading the part about your experience with him.
It's so well written, I'll have to read the rest of the piece. My son's (Bill)
fiancee said that he came out of their computer room crying (he's 35) saying,
"That's about my Grandpop." You really moved him, and me also. Thanks so much
for that wonderful remembrance.
Please excuse my ignorance, but what do you do? Are you a writer, or is this
just for fun? Would certainly like to hear from you.
Isn't that amazing? Isn't that a wonderful
letter to have received? This column is like
AT&T, it reached out and touched someone and
in return reached out and touched me back.
Thanks to Richard Weede and his son for making
my day. Because of that letter I am no longer
bugged. Now, on to our other letters.
Emily's friend Michelle had a dream in which
there was a band called Like So Much Fish
and that they were going to open for a real
group called Ben Folds Five. I like the idea
of a fish band. Perhaps the members' names
would be Cod, Scrod and Haddock. Actually,
that sounds more like a CPA firm.
MJDGDC (not EWBVUT) asks me what educational
feature do Adam Guettel and my close personal
friend, Mr. Stephen Sondheim share? Perhaps
they both attended the same college? Perhaps
they both learned things from Mr. Guettel's
mother, Mary Rodgers? Perhaps I have no clue?
Cinderella (yes, Cinderella) was sorry to hear
about Anthony Newley. She loves Roar Of The
Greasepaint - Smell Of The Crowd, as do I.
Cinderella recently saw Miss Bernadette
Peters in Annie Get Your Gun and Alan
Cumming in Cabaret and thought both shows
cheshirecat was also saddened by the passing
of Mr. Newley. He even owns a video of Doctor
Doolittle in which Mr. Newley appeared,
singing a terrific song called After Today.
Joey wrote to tell me that she couldn't write
but that she will write soon. I hope she
writes other words besides "soon" because
if she only writes "soon" it will be much too
short a letter.
S. Woody White told me A Tale of Two
Accidents, one on each coast. First, his
beloved, der Brucer, tripped over a curb (bruc
spelled backwards - how appropriate!) in
Philadelphia, fell and bruised (or Bruced) a
few ribs. Then, S. Woody White went and did
the exact same thing, only in Long Beach. He
not only bruised some ribs but got a black
eye as well. This is known as syncronicity
in accidents although these synchronous
accidents can only occur in Long Beach
and Philadelphia. If only S. Woody White had
read the book on this very subject,
Syncronicity in Accidents and The Cities They
Occur In by Dr. Osgood Osgood III this whole
thing could have been avoided.
Anna wants to know why everyone is making
such a big deal about Frank Wildhorn being
the first composer in twenty years to have
three musicals running concurrently on
Broadway. Of course, that is the very subject
of our trivia question, which I shall answer
shortly or longly as suits my fancy, whatever
the hell that is. The amusing thing
about this Wildhorn hype is that his fanatical
fans were first trying to say that he was
the only composer to have three shows running
concurrently on Broadway. When it was pointed
out to said fans how incorrect they were, they
changed it to the only American composer to
have three shows running concurrently on
Broadway. When it was pointed out to them that
they were once again incorrect, they changed
it to, the first American composer who's had
three shows running concurrently on Broadway
Tiffany (not Tardy Tiffany) tells me she's
got the soundtrack to Anthony Newley's
Can Hieronymous Merkin Ever Forget Mercy
Humppe and Find True Happiness and that she
spent her formative years singing the songs
Once Upon A Time and Oh, What a Son-of-a-
Bitch I Am. Perhaps if Tiffany would send
us a cassette of her singing said songs, Mr.
Mark Bakalor could put them right here in this
column in Real Audio or whatever the hell
it is. I mean, we have activity photos, why
can't we have Real Audio or whatever the hell
it is? We must be on the cutting edge of
technology here. But noooooo, Mr. Bakalor
just sits on his buttcheeks like so much
fish and can't be bothered to give us Real
Audio or whatever the hell it is. So, we
must suffer, dear readers.
Tiffany wants to know if Universal even has
a print of Hieronymous Merkin or if it's a
lost film. I happen to know that a "screener"
tape was made, but then apparently the powers that
be decided against releasing it. Perhaps
now with Mr. Newley's death they'll reconsider.
Julie (sweetheart to Mr. Bakalor) wrote to
tell me she had a swell time meeting me at
Jerry's Famous Deli. I, too, had a swell time,
but I believe Julie had a sweller time and
I can prove it because the proof is in the
pudding, or in this case, the chocolate cake.
Doesn't she look like she's having a sweller
time? Chocolate cake always takes the cake,
swell time-wise. Julie also tells me that
she just pulled an all-nighter writing a
research paper on raccoons. First of all, why
is Julie pulling an all-nighter? Does the
all-nighter appreciate being pulled? Maybe
the all-nighter would just rather sit on its
couch like so much fish. And what's this
business about writing a paper on raccoons?
Isn't it hard to write a paper on a raccoon?
Isn't a desk better? I mean, the raccoon
doesn't just sit there while you're
writing a paper on it, does it? Also, are
there really that many interesting things
you can say about a raccoon? Oh, they make
nice hats (my close personal friend, Mr.
Davy Crockett, had one) but aside from that,
what? To me a raccoon looks like its doing
a bad impression of a squirrel. I think I
have exhausted the topic of the raccoon, don't
you, dear readers? I think it's time we move
on to the macaroon which is ever so much
Tom (the Boy From Oz) is back on-line after
having been off-line, and we are glad to have
him back on-line because it is no fun to be
off-line, unless you are writing a research
paper on raccoons. Tom wishes there were more
videos of Stephen Sondheim's shows, especially
Pacific Overtures. The sad part is that
Pacific Overtures was professionally taped for
Japanese television while it was on Broadway.
It's a shame it's never been made available
as the quality is very good.
Trivia and Other Useless Knowledge
Lots of you wrote in answers to last week's
question: What other composers besides Frank
Wildhorn have had three shows running
concurrently on Broadway. Well, here are
some of the answers you provided.
Stephen Sondheim (Company, Follies, and
the Phil Silvers revival of Forum)
Jerry Herman (Mame, Hello, Dolly! and Dear
Andrew Lloyd Webber (Phantom, Cats, Aspects of
Love., or Sunset Blvd., or Joseph)
I believe it would not be hard to find that
Richard Rodgers had three shows running
concurrently on Broadway, as well as several
others. Thanks to Elan, Andrew, cheshirecat,
Anna, jon, and Tom (formerly Louis) for all
their good answers.
This week's trivia question: In the last
thirty years, many Sondheim alumni have gone
on to star in sitcoms and tv series. Name
as many performers and series as you can.
Send all answers to me at
firstname.lastname@example.org or use the form below...
Well, dear readers, another column bites the
dust, although what the dust did to deserve
this is anyone's guess. I must leave you now
and go partake of more Pistachio Pistachio
ice cream. And, after eating said ice cream, I must take my lightened hair and show it to the world at large. After showing my lightened
hair to the world at large I shall come home
and read a book I just picked up entitled
The Wonderful World of Raccoons and Why Papers Should Be Written On Them by Chas. "Sockeye"
Until next week, I am, as I ever was, and ever shall be...
Yours, yours, yours, yours, yours.
Assassins is about how society interprets the American Dream, marginalizes outsiders and rewrites and sanitizes its collective history. "Something Just Broke" is a major distraction and plays like an afterthought, shoe horned simply to appease. The song breaks the dramatic fluidity and obstructs the overall pacing and climactic arc which derails the very intent and momentum that makes this work so compelling...
- Mark Bakalor
I found [the Sondheim Celebration's Company] to be completely delightful. Almost all of the numbers excited and energized me, and most of the scenes were about as pitch-perfect as you can get. I just sat there with a big smile on my face the whole show.
Which is not to say that it is perfect...
Explore the rest of the Finishing the Chat Community Forum
With three hand-held cameras, one major theatrical milestone and nearly nineteen hours of
footage, this rare and intimate look with Original Cast Album - Company is a must for any Sondheim fan.
Sondheim's most beloved works is sure to be Sunday in the Park with George, available on DVD, video tape, and CD.
All Sondheim completists are sure to now own the first complete recording of The Frogs coupled with Evening Primrose. Do you?
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