Wednesday, January 19, 2011

La Cage Aux Folles

I'll admit it: I'm kind of a Kelsey Grammer fan. Maybe it comes from the millions of episodes of Cheers I used to watch with my dad when I was a kid. Or the episodes of Fraiser as I got older. Who knows. But I like him. I always have.

Last year when La Cage Aux Folles opened and I found out that Kelsey Grammer was in it I was kind of excited. But at the time, the storyline didn't really seem like something that would go at the top of my list of shows to see... so I skipped it when I was in New York in May.

By the time this trip rolled around I had read enough about the show and seen some clips and decided it was right down my alley.

My roommate that I travel with, and a friend that lives in New York went with me to see La Cage. I found some decent deals on tickets, but they were in the balcony. Even so, the show was fantastic and made me laugh all the way through.

In case you don't know the premise of the story, it is about Georges and his longtime partner Albin. Georges runs La Cage, a popular drag club, and Albin is the star of La Cage. Their son, Jean-Michel falls in love with a girl who's father is a super conservative politician.

As you can probably guess, comedy ensues when the two families meet, with Albin posing as Georges' wife and Jean-Michel trying to hide the truth of his family from his future in-laws. And in the end the truth of family and love comes shining through.

Jacob, the family butler (or maid, depending on who you asked!) was played with great comedy and flair by Robin de Jesus. He added a great touch to the show. Kelsey Grammer was fantastic in his role as Georges. He had just enough comedic lines to make him funny, but just enough serious lines to see that he was really worried about his son more than anything in the world. His career in theatre has given him a rich history to draw from and his film and television work have given him a great are to pull from comedically.

The winner of the whole show, by a long shot was Douglas Hodge. Even though this was his Broadway debut he absolutely without a doubt deserved that Tony he won. His facial expressions and projection abilities were amazing. We were sitting in the balcony and could see each and every facial expression and movement he made. He was extremely funny and the star of the show.
There are people out there who have issues with people from Hollywood staring in a Broadway show, calling it stunt casting...well, all I have to say to that is that if they are good, then it's not stunt casting. And Douglas Hodge, even with a career solidly in film and television, was NOT stunt casting.
My advice: for a great laugh, go see this show. But, if you want to see Grammer and Hodge, you only have until February 13th. After that Jeffrey Tambor and Harvey Fierstein will be assuming the leads in the show. Either way, I'm sure the show will continue to be amazing all the way.

2010 Tony Award Best Revival of a Musical
2010 Tony Award Best Actor in a Musical - Douglas Hodge
2010 Tony Award Best Direction of a Musical - Terry Johnson
2010 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Revival of a Musical
2010 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Actor in a Musical - Douglas Hodge
2010 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Costume Design - Matthew Wright
*All info taken from


Exhaustion is what happens after a 12 hour car ride, 4 1/2 hour bus ride one way to get to New York City, only to spend a couple of days and then do it all in reverse.

Exhaustion is what happened to me this past weekend. But in spite of all of that, I had a fantastic time and got a fairly good dose of Broadway in the process (along with visiting with some awesome friends, meeting some new friends, and eating waaayy too much great New York food).

Before my roommate and I took off on our trip, we bought tickets to see La Cage Aux Folles and American Idiot. These were pre-planned shows. We figured we would do TKTS or lotto tickets for anything else we wanted to see.

La Cage Aux Folles was a show I'd never seen before. American Idiot, I'd seen twice already. I plan on writing reviews of both shows because it turns out that we ended up seeing American Idiot twice and had no time for another show (we missed the Saturday matinee because of time/travel restraints). We did, however, get to make a quick trip to SoHo to see John Gallagher Jr perform one night. That was an interesting night. That will also probably be it's own blog post.

You know, it's weird for me to be in New York. Even though I'm a tourist in so very many ways, I've been there enough times that places like Times Square give me the creeps and I rarely take more than a couple of pictures the whole trip. Sure, I still cart around my backpack and my map. But I also step out of the middle of the sidewalk if I feel the need to look at said map. Unlike about a million and two tourists that feel the need to stop and look at their maps or take pictures of random buildings (not even good ones like the Empire State Building!).

Either way, I always have fun and leave exhausted each and every trip. And I always make new friends each time I go (this makes it so much easier... I have more floors to sleep on!). Anyway, enough rambling from me. Stories and reviews to follow later this week!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Congratulations to the Cumberland County Playhouse!'s Nashville Theatre Awards were Sunday night and Cumberland County Playhouse cleaned up! Below are they categories that they won.

-Best Play (non-professional): The Best Chrsitmas Pageant Ever, Cumberland County Playhouse
-Best Play (professional): Duck Hunter Shoots Angel, Cumberland County Playhouse

-Best Musical (professional): Brigadoon, Cumberland County Playhouse

-Best New Work: Mark Allen's Tinyard Hill, Cumberland County Playhouse

-Best Director/Play (professional): Donald Fann, Duck Hunter Shoots Angel

-Best Director/Musical (professional): Michele Colvin, Brigadoon

-Best Music Director (professional): Ron Murphy, Brigadoon

-Best Actor/Musical (professional): Britt Hancock, Brigadoon

-Best Actor/Play (professional): Jason Ross, Duck Hunter Shoots Angel

-Best Costume Design (professional): Rebel Mickelson, A Little Night Music, Cumberland County Playhouse

-Best Lighting Design (professional): Tony Lathroum, Duck Hunter Shoots Angel

-Best Set Design (professional): John Fionte, Duck Hunter Shoots Angel

I have to say, I saw A Little Night Music and Brigadoon and both were wonderful. Cumberland County Playhouse has always been close to my heart, since they are close to my home. They are my little piece of Broadway in my backyard, so I was very happy (though not terribly surprised) that they did so well.

All info from this article was found HERE. Photo coverage of the event can be found HERE.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

We're Going Home Again...

Okay, so New York City isn't my home in the literal sense. But it pretty much is home in my heart. And in a little more than a week, I'll be back there again. I'm only staying for a brief time, but I'll have time to visit with a few friends and to see SHOWS! :)

It's already official that I'll be seeing American Idiot again (for the 3rd time!). Billie Joe Armstrong won't be in it, but I'm actually kind of glad about that. I don't want to have to fight the Green Day fans at the stage door...or have to listen to them scream through the entire show.

Pretty much everything else is up in the air. I might be going to see La Cage Aux Folles, which would be nice. I'd like to see it before Kelsey Grammer leaves the cast. Also there is a slim possibility that I'll see Time Stands Still. It's been extended through the end of the month and I'd like to see what I can find tickets-wise at the TKTS booth.

Be prepared for lots of reviews and posts when I get back to my literal home! :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

New Year, New Shows

A new year has begun and so many people are making resolutions. I try my hardest NOT to make resolutions because they always seem to be of the "get healthier" and "loose weight" vein. And I never seem to keep them. My "fat girl Christmas tree" is proof of that!

I decided to have a New Year's resolution though. This year it is going to be theater related. My goal is to see more new shows. Not just new to me. Original shows.
It won't be the majority of shows I see. But it will help me to back up my claim of lack of originality. I want to be able to support original shows. After all, weren't all shows original at some point in time?

We'll see how it goes.... maybe I'll keep this resolution. Maybe not. Either way, I think it will be fun to give it a try.

C.S. Lewis - "Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often if has been told before) you will, nine times our of ten, become original without ever having noticed it."