Friday, July 15, 2011

Theatre Story

We went to the New Rep to see "The World Goes Round" tonight, which is a revue of Kander and Ebb Songs. 
And it was very fun.  I didn't know many of the songs, so that was interesting.  But I know EVERY word of "Ring Them Bells" for some reason.

"And haul me home a Huz if it's the last thing I do!"


Watching the show reminded me of "Cabaret", which was the last show I did at New Rep, and that reminded me of a really funny back-stage theatre story.  Really, front stage story.  You want to hear it?  It's pretty funny.

So, we're at the end of a matinee performance of "Cabaret".  And it's been a really rough show.  Like, everything went wrong.  One of the spotlights, which was one of those new-fangled, twirly lights, blew a fuse and was going crazy and twirling around during the show over our heads and lighting crazy parts of the room: the wings, the audience, everywhere but the stage.  It was like one of those berserk robots from "Wall-E". 

Then, at the top of Act Two, I'm supposed to discreetly sneak out behind the Kit Kat girls while disguised as one of them, for this big surprise reveal and I creep out behind them, trip over the step in my high heels, fall flat on my face and almost knock over a few girls to boot.  It was like candle pin bowling for Wiemar hotties. 

So much for that surprise!

But then, just when you think things couldn't get any worse: we've finally made it to the end of the show, and the Nazis have taken over, and it's supposed to be very dark and disturbing and I'm downstage trying to be creepy and menacing and I hear the audience start to giggle and I'm thinking "what's going on?  Why are they laughing?"  And I turn upstage, and the rest of the cast is dancing in lines behind me, and what happened was Shannon Lee Jones had passed by Paul Giragos, who's playing Ernst, and her long red fabulous Fraulein Kost wig got caught on his cuff links and had come right off, and was dangling off of his sleeve like a rabid chihuahua.  And poor Shannon is singing in her wig cap and Paul can't get her wig off his sleeve.  I mean, it was just a train wreck!  And horrifying.  And the audience is just cracking up, and I have to admit it was pretty freaking hilarious, now that I think of it. 

But what was really great was the audience all stood up at the end of that show.  I guess they must have all been thinking: "Good God, they just went thru Hell!" 

And I have to say, that was really sweet of them, that they had a sense of humor, and rolled with the punches. 

Because things happen onstage.  Lights break.  Props fall apart.  Costumes disintegrate. 

Actors forget their lines.  Or miss an enterance.  Or fall down. 

And all you can do is forgive yourself and move on.

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