Wednesday, April 28, 2010

ClimACTS 2010: Under A Big Top


So here's how it goes. One night I'm making my entrance to a screaming crowd under the big top wearing a skimpy bustier, fishnets and heels, carried on the shoulders of a smokin'hot, nearly naked, leather and chain clad adonis named Eddie; the next morning I'm cleaning up cat puke. The last 24 hours have been surreal--and I have the photos to prove it!
I had an absolute blast playing Ringmaster at THE THEATER OFFENSIVE'S annual gala fundraiser Tuesday night! THE THEATER OFFENSIVE is New England's longest running LGBT (lesbian,gay, bisexual,transgender) theater company, 21 years old this year!I shared a dressing room with a contortionist--the lovely Viktoria Grimmy a fifth generation Ukranian circus performer,

and the adorable Michael Lanphear aerialist extraordinaire--both of them hot off the @BRITNEY SPEARS World Circus Tour!

As we applied our greasepaint under the rain-soaked BIG APPLE CIRCUS tents pitched on government center, I couldn't help but think how much I love the grit and giddy camaraderie of back stage life, as much as the glamour of the front of the house where it all looks so perfect. As I nervously stood in the dark getting ready to mount Eddie's shoulder for our big entrance, guest star designer Christian (PROJECT RUNWAY) Siriano gave me the thumbs up on my costume. Later I kibitzed with Joan Parker harnessed up and ready to fly in her red pleather cape. Abe Rybeck Theater Offensive's sweet-souled artistic director in evening suit and dangly pearl earrings, hugged me every time he walked by, while 6'4" Fena Barbitall(sp?) and I compared corsets and heels.

I told Fena that Verna Turbulence had designed my bustier, but that the spikes and fishnets were "mine." She leaned down and whispered, "You're really a freak." I smiled and thought, aren't we all.

On with the show... more photos courtesy Ana M. Reyes! CLICK HERE: PHOTOS

Stay tuned!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

CONAN INTERRUPTUS/REGATTA DE SARATOGA


***THIS JUST IN***
According to Conan O'Brien, "Jim Carrey rudely interrupted my power ballad last night. How did he get past security in a Superman outfit?" Look here: http://teamcoco.com

***IN OTHER NEWS***

It was an exhilarating weekend out at Saratoga Springs New York where my girl and her crew team-- "WAYLAND/WESTON GO GO GO!!!"-- rowed their boats not so gently down the stream! Saratoga Lake, actually. What a regatta! The weather held--clear and sunny, warm to cool--while sleek young high school and college athletes from all over the East coast competed. They came in flights--the shells as long and strong as their rowers, slicing through the water in head to head heats.

I worked the food tent and felt so fine providing a bit of fuel for all that athleticism. I'm about as athletic as a slug on a rainy day. I once was a cheerleader at my all girls Catholic High School Lauralton Hall where we screamed for our basketball team while wearing our red gym suits with attached bloomers, and our names embroidered on the pockets. No kidding.

My best sport remains jumping to conclusions--and cheering my team on. By the way WAYLAND/WESTON novice girls earned a gold medal and placed second overall!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

ONSTAGE:YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN

I was almost decapitated on my way to the theatre tonight by one of those mechanical arms at the parking garage. But it was inside the Opera House that I actually laughed my head off. The new Mel Brooks Musical YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN was hysterical, beginning to end, with just the right blend of shtick and tits, music and mayhem to make Mary Shelley roll over laughing in her grave.

The gang is back in the heights--Transylvania Heights. Frederick Frankenstein ("that's Fronkensteen!!")a NY brain surgeon, inherits his grandfather Von Frankenstein's castle and resists but finally succumbs to the lure of the family business: making monsters! Tightly coiled Tony winner Roger Bart, sneakily springs the part on us with maniacal glee. He's got plenty of help from triple threat Anne Horak as zoftig lab assistant Inga, Cory English as Igor the hump-backed sidekick whose hump keeps wandering from side to side, and Joanna Glushak as the candelabra-wielding Frau Blucher; the mere mention of her name riles the horses into a lather. I laughed everytime, and I am not easily amused.

This was silly, sexy, old-fashioned fun with big production numbers, tap dancing villagers, madcap escapades under a full moon and mad experiments in an electrified lab by midnight. And to cap it off there's scene-stealing local boy--Brad Oscar in a dual role, one as a blind hermit looking for love in all the wrong places!

You've only got two weeks to see it at the Opera House--through May 2!
Click here for ticket info!

Monday, April 19, 2010

HAPPY 109TH AUNT LOTTIE!!




While the rest of us were filing our tax returns last week, our Aunt Lottie was turning 109 years old. This is not a misprint. This is true. It's freaking biblical. Lottie Stern does not wear glasses or a hearing aid. She only uses the walker to get down to the dining room. She entertains visitors frequently with hors-d'oeuvres and chocolates, and if they're family, she will pull out the particular family albums that relate to them.

Aunt Lottie now lives at Fox Hill in Westwood, MA, but first went there when she was in her 90's as a volunteer "to help the old people." She was born Monday, April 15, 1901, the same day Einstein wrote a love letter to Mileva Maric, and just 5 months before President William McKinley was assassinated. Lottie told us stories about riding to Nantasket Beach in a horse and buggy, and changing into her bathing costume in the carriage. She remembers the stack of nickels next to the payphone in her house that were used to make telephone calls.

On Sunday there was a big birthday party--for her daughter Joan. Joan just turned 80.

I once asked Lottie the secret to her longevity. She said, "Oh, I don't know dear. When I open my eyes every morning I just say, thank God."

HAPPY BIRTHDAY LOTTIE! WE LOVE YOU!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

DATE NIGHT/DINNER FOR SCHMUCKS TRAILER


Here's a trailer of Concord MA. native Steve Carell's new movie with Paul Rudd due out this summer--a remake of a dark French farce called LE DINER DE CONS (THE DINNER GAME) which I loved.
But first DATE NIGHT--Which I did not. It's the #1 movie at the box office and in it we witness the knee-capping of two comedic giants: Tina Fey and Steve Carell. They gamely stumble through, crippled by a ridiculous plot about a suburban couple trying to re-ignite their relationship with a night out on the town; meanwhile it's the film that goes up in flames. Absurd events spin out of control in the hands of director Shawn Levy (NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM, THE PINK PANTHER)who's so ham-fisted he thinks Tina Fey slobbering over Mark Wahlberg's shirtless torso is funny the third and fourth time around. He throws in an endless car chase. In the middle of all the mayhem (crooked cops,a porn-soaked politician, a mob boss, Tina and Steve pole dancing) he attempts a poignant scene of marital reconciliation. He wastes countless talented actors--James Franco, Taraji P. Henson, Ray Liotta, Kristen Wiig, Mark Ruffalo, Leighton Meester, Mila Kunis-- on ill-conceived, misshapen scenes that go nowhere and add up to nothing.

Tina and Steve will no doubt walk away unscathed, but it must be hard to plug this garbage on all those talk shows. So back to Steve's summer outing. This July look for him in DINNER FOR SCHMUCKS. Click on the link below to see the trailer!

http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/paramount/dinnerforschmucks/

Monday, April 12, 2010

CRAZED


I'M BACK and on overload!

What do the Kennedys,Joan Rivers, Patsy Cline, and Shakespeare have in common? I tweeted about them all tonight, so check out my twitter link for full info! (I think this is an efficient way to corral a whole bunch of wild info! Let me know what you think.)
And I just rolled in from a fabulous 50th birthday party for my gorgeous friend and neighbor who shall remain ageless. Those of us on the flip side, know first hand how wonderful it is to achieve our "muchness."

That said, I am learning a hip hop routine for a "Dancing With The Stars" type fundraiser. It's just not as easy to learn hip hop as it was only days ago. I think I'm aging exponentially. I've decided not to tell my body about it; it'll find out the hard way. I will blog about it from my hospital bed after the event-- which should be followed by another fundraiser called "Traction With The Stars." People can bid on the opportunity to read to us in bed. If you want to see an entertainment emergency in progress, come to The Radiance Benefit for SPRINGSTEP http://www.springstep.org


Goodnight-
and stay tuned!

Monday, April 5, 2010

BROADWAY BLOWOUT

Marji and I spent two days on the Great White Way last week and had a blast!!!

COME FLY AWAY
Twyla Tharp choreographs Frank Sinatra, again. This time it's all over the stage with a 17-piece big band and a vocalist. She was unnecessary. Those dancers' bodies were freakily "musicular"-musical and muscular! The women were amazonian while the men hoisted, stalked, or were just plain bowled over. The songs sizzled while the dances evoked giddy good times, lust, loneliness, jealousy-- and yes of course, romance.

(Thus we craved late night steak frites and pastry at soho bistro BALTHAZAR.ooh la la!)

A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE
We witness blonde bombshell movie actress Scarlett Johansson's Broadway debut in Arthur Miller's overwrought classic. She blows us away. She's heartbreaking and exudes old-fashioned innocence. Liev Schreiber and Jessica Hecht give serious emotional heft to what might have been melodrama in lesser hands. All that Italian angst sent us out in search of pasta.

(Pre-theater linguini a la vongole and tiramisu at La Masseria. "La vita" is certainly "dolce.")

GOD OF CARNAGE
Two couples sit down for a polite discussion to settle their kids schoolyard spat; things inevitably devolve into a primitive, darkly comic, alcohol-fueled debauch that reminds us we are animals after all. Jeff Daniels, Lucy Liu (making her Broadway debut) Janet McTeer, and Dylan Baker fuel the onstage carnage that won James Gandolfini a Tony.

By 9:39 PM we hit the Henry Hudson Parkway and head home, not nearly satisfied; we settle for Cary Grant's biography on audio tape, secure in the knowledge that somethings are still right with the world.

Good night--
and stay tuned!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

STILL SCREAMING: PHANTOM OF THE OPRAH

The funniest show in town just closed: PHANTOM OF THE OPRAH put on by Ryan Landry's wildly inventive, screamingly hilarious GOLD DUST ORPHANS. Once again I took my seat at the Ramrod Center for the Performing Arts (more commonly known as Machine) sipped my chardonnay, and watched open-mouthed as a divinely diva-ed troop of men in drag skewered TV's first lady.

All manner of high and low-jinks ensued: swinging chandeliers, puppets, crotch shots, Pickles the ballerina, Ryan's dog, choreography snatched from BYE BYE BIRDIE and SWAN LAKE, and a plot erupting from THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA and Oprah's most infamous interview with the veiled woman whose face was ripped off by a chimp; here she's delicately referred to as "the monkey lady." The mongrel plot then morphs into the goings on at a frisky girl's school with Landry as the evil headmistress Madame Cunte' (accent very carefully on the second syllable), and one hot piece of jailbait played by the gorgeous internationally renowned drag queen Varla Jean Merman! This tour de fucking force is directed at breakneck speed with flamboyant finesse by Larry Coen.

I have NEVER laughed so hard. I am telling you all this because as Ryan says at every show, the Orphans- Afrodite, Penny Champayne & Co. are Boston's best-kept secret. But they need to be outed once and for all!! Their next show: THE GULLS-based on Hitchcock's THE BIRDS (Could REAR WINDOW be far behind?!)

Sounds like a scream.