I'm spending entirely too much money. But I suppose that's what vacations are for. Breakfast this morning was Starbucks coffee. At ten I took the Wicked Behind the Emerald Curtain tour. One of the things I learned was that Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth are both tiny people. Well, the tour guides didn't say that, but they have to be if they fit into those costumes they had on display. Joel Grey is a tiny person too, but I knew that already. Anyway, our tour guides: Sean McCourt who played Elphaba's father in the original cast and eventually went on to play Dr. Dillamond. He's currently in Mary Poppins but still does the tour, probably because the whole thing was his idea. Our other tour guide was a member of the chorus, a very cute, very sweet gay man named Anthony Galde. After the tour it was brunch across the street at The Palms. Then I headed back to the hotel to drop off the souvenir poster I bought, then to the August Wilson to get Jersey Boys tickets for my aunt's birthday (not counting this as money spent today because I was getting them for my mother to give to my aunt and will be reimbursed.). Then it was time for the matinee of Wicked. Oh, I forgot! Just as the tour was letting out the matinee lotto for the front row seats was getting underway. I already had a ticket, but it was all the way in the back of the orchestra (row zz), so I figured 'what the hell?' and put my name down. And I won! From the last row to the second! I paid the good karma forward and gave my ticket to someone who didn't have one.
So, I had an awesome seat for what I think was the best show of Wicked I have ever seen (my fourth). Ana Gasteyer just started as Elphaba and she's wonderful. Seriously, the best I've ever seen and that's including the bootlegs with Stephanie Block and Eden Espinosa. Carol Kane played Madame Morrible and did a fantastic job as well. During the show I thought to myself that the next person they should get to play the Wizard is Richard Kind. He'd be awesome. The man playing him now (a fellow named David Garrison) sort of comes off as a Richard Kind knock off. Not that he wasn't entertaining. I just kept thinking how Kind would be better. And now I want to talk about the man who played Fiyero. His name is Derrick Williams and he is OMG HOT!!!!!
He looks very good with an open shirt which unfortunately, I couldn't find a picture of. He's also an amazing singer.
As I said, the show was awesome. Very moving especially considering I'd seen it three times already. Afterwards I went to NBC to see if I had time to take the tour but I didn't. I looked around the store a bit and noticed they have Heroes shirts. I'll have to pick one up when I go tomorrow. I had a quick dinner at a little restraunt with good soup then headed back to the hotel to rest my feet for a bit before heading over to the Marriot Marquis to see The Drowsy Chaperone.
When I first thought of coming to New York I really wanted to stay at the Marriot Marquis, but it's over $400 a night and while I might have been able to rationalize a one-night stay, there was no way I could do the same for three nights. I totally see why they can charge that much. Quite a fancified hotel, that. Anyway before going in, I went into my favorite Broadway gift shop (conveniently located under the theater) and picked up the OBC of Evita and the new cast recording of A Chorus line (which I need to see).
The Drowsy Chaperone is the best show I have seen in a long long time. It's fucking hysterical. A laugh riot from beginning to end with awesome performances by the whole cast. The opening monologue said in a completely dark house is the funniest thing I've ever heard (please, God keep the actors out of the audience. There's nothing worse than paying a hundred dollars just to have the fourth wall come crashing down on top of you). I had a really great seat too. I was looking at the wrong part of the ticket. I thought I was in row J, but I was actually in row F. Toward the center too. It was perfect. I could see everyone's face clearly, but wasn't so close that I had to turn my head. And the guy sitting next to me was hot.
This is the time of year that Broadway companies get together to raise money for Broadway Cares: Equity Fights AIDS
. They collect donations (I gave some at Wicked also), and also sell special items for charity like autographed posters and such. They also sell the Carols for a Cure CD (with holiday songs by various Broadway casts). Some companies do more than others. At the Drowsy Chaperone Bob Martin (bookwriter who also plays the Man in Chair) stood for pictures and they also sold greeting cards with art by Sutton Foster (who plays Janet Van De Graaf in the show). They're so cute. It's drawings of various Broadway shows as snowmen (The Drowsy Chaperone, Wicked, Les Miz, and Phantom).
Such an awesome day! I believe in the power of the theater!