It's a good thing I actually like musical theater somewhat, otherwise I would've drilled my eyes out with animal-themed vibrators while editing this thing. I just think that'd be a funny way to go blind, like Oedipus but sparkly and with a g-spot.
Anyhow last week I did real meaningful writing type things and now I will compensate by switching over to another primary topic: frivolity.
In honor of FLIRT! and Andrea McArdle in drag; today I'll indulge my lifelong romance with the theater with a Top Ten of Theatrical Experiences.
I'm not doing this to suck the asses of the minions who may travel here hunting for haviland photos, I mean, Hav doesn't even like musical theater as much as I do and I'm not gay so why would I suck on someone's ass, that'd be boring. This Top Ten is part of a thematic series of Simple Top Tens, brought to you by Totally Simple Magazine. Previous issues have included Top Ten Sport, Top Ten Dream Jobs, "Top Ten Worst Holidays, Top Twenty Love Songs, Top Ten People from "Full House" that I'd Sleep With, Top Ten Musical Memories.
Secretly I was once into theater more than I've ever been into anything ever. If it wasn't for the intense pressure and limited financial security of my super grown-up life, I still would be. I'd see anything: musicals at public high schools, operettas in rural Southeastern Michigan, any ol' tour that rambled through Detroit -- hell -- I'd watch dinner theater with rapture. When we traveled, we saw theater, and sometimes its landmarks, or traveled specifically to see theater in Stratford (Canada), Oregon, and Spring Green (Wisconsin). I went to a boarding school that teemed with incredible theater, did the theater "beat" for my college paper (U of M did some good stuff -- even smaller shows like Closer and 4.49 Psychosis), omg!
So I've always had a lot of actor friends or boyfriends or girlfriends. I like to be the person who works on the words, then I match up with someone who can handle the external things, like images and movement.
I wanted to write "My So Called life: The Musical" but Haviland told me that wasn't a good investment plan.
I wanna see Six Degrees of Separation (John Guare) and I'm confused why I've never been able to find anyone doing it anywhere ever in my whole life.
10. Spring Awakening (Broadway): If you've ever emailed me the day of -- then you know. I never say yes to anything the day of. When I get up, I've got a good idea about how the day's gonna go from there and I change plans for two things: people I want to bang, and theater. So when I said "yes!" to Lainy's query: "I found two front row seats for $50, wanna go tonight?," her reply was was "really?!!" 'cause I'd just made a day-of plan, the first of our friendship.
If the dictionary played music, it'd play the SA soundtrack under "yearning." See: prefect, sexy, full, jumping. Also, it's hot to see the Original Broadway Cast of something that you know'll be around for a while.
7. The View From Tall (reading, the East Village somewhere): Just a reading of a new play but it was the first time I saw Haviland act. She played a 15-year-old. And I remember thinking; "good, she's really fucking good." 'Cause I can't be besties with an artist who's bad at their art, it gets awkward. So once I knew that every compliment I'd ever give her would be true, we were good to go.
6. Grease (Broadway Tour) starring Rosie O'Donnell, Detroit: I still have my ticket. I was a wee lass and kept thinking "I am in the same room as my favorite famous person!" and wondering if my life would change after sharing walls and relatively -- oxygen -- with her. It didn't. And by the time I actually spoke to her person-to-person, I was older and saw famous people as real people, not as "famous people." I thought the show was fun, but wondered what happened to "You're the One That I Want."
3. RENT, Broadway: I saw it in Detroit on tour and was underwhelmed. But I'd love the soundtrack so much and so -- in another unprecedented move inspired by theater -- I made a day-of plan to see it in NYC on Broadway. After an afternoon team meeting at Olive Garden, Ricky pulled me aside and said "we're going to go wait in line to get those last-minute $10 standing-room-only tickets for Rent wanna come Elizabeth has never seen it," and I said, "Okay," and I did and it was beautiful, even though I was sick then and my limbs throbbed when I stood still for long stretches of time. I still stood; captivated and painless, you know? I guess as lame as this sounds, Rent encapsulates a lot of how I feel. Like, about my life.
(sidenote; did you know you can watch the press reels of the original cast on youtube?)
(Got tickets for In the Heights, Passing Strange, August: Osage County, Avenue Q, Chicago, Wicked, Rent, Spring Awakening, Xanadu, or [title of show] any time? I'll make it happen.)
2. Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolff? Broadway (revival w/Kathleen Turner): It was a Wednesday matinee or something. Me and the senior citizens, which's just how I like it, we had a soft food buffet afterwards. I suspect Kathleen Turner was a stunning villain in her prior life, which took place in graphic novels. Now she's just like a superhuman.
a) The Shane Reading: Lainy and I skipped work to go see this one 'cause Haviland was reading stage directions for Susan Miller's play about writing a lesbian teevee show (Susan wrote for the first season of TLW) and she'd snagged actors like Sarah Paulson and SHANE to do it. It changed my life forever I am now not a monkey but Godot.
b) Our Town (my Middle School, Ann Arbor, Michigan): I played Stage Manager. During the monologue about love, I looked @my boyfriend with deep love of all shapes and sizes. My costume; blazer & a t-shirt. Bad sign. I've said it before; Our Town's one of my favorite plays, though it's popularly disliked by people not smart like me and Thornton.
c) All plays I ever saw that involved children dressed up as objects like trees, sailboats or fruits/vegetables.
d) late add : Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Caitlin likes it a lot. I was in it. In the interest of adolescent fairness, we had a different Joseph in each act. It was better when I saw it in Detroit with Donny Osmond, who I was already curious about in general 'cause I was very into the 70's then (it was my Brady Bunch phase), he had a little spat with Rosie O'Donnell culminating in a musical event on her show and he has a sister named Marie. My name is also Marie, and I wrote this blog. Toodles! Also it's on the short list of "scores I have memorized from start to finish."
Ok you guys I have to get at least four hours of sleep and watch three more hours of Rent videos. There's all this 10 year anniversary original cast recording stuff too. All our lives I've longed to discover something as true as this is ...