Sunday, September 17, 2006

Gala Night in Norwich

When we got to the theatre Saturday night, we had the camera all ready to go. So I picked it up to bring it out to the lobby where the volunteers had prepared this gorgeous and elegant buffet dinner for the black tie gala opening, turned on the camera and read, "NO MEMORY CARD."

Since our hotel is 20 minutes away, it was too late to drive there and back, so I feel awful that I don't have pictures of the beautiful opening night crowd. Brett looked so dashing in his white tie and tails. The women were dressed in gowns and sparklies. It was truly a "do," as they say. And the buffet was all southern food. Chicken gumbo with shrimp, some kind of pork dish, sweet potatoes, rice, etc. Beautiful. Delicious.

Backstage, they had set out a special table for Jimmy and me with Champagne, assorted teas, shrimp, etc. We don't drink or eat before a show, so all we did was sample tiny tastes, but still, these folks are really thoughtful.

Before the show, Mark the Board Chair gave a speech about fundraising. Brett introduced Big Voice and wow! what a show! They were with us every second of the way. It was fun for us, too, because we were finally back into the rhythms of the show. Taking a year off can make you a bit rusty.

For instance, the Thursday night show was almost flawless. Then, Friday night, we were forgetting lines, mixing things up, and generally making a mess of things. At one point in the show on Friday, Jimmy gave me my line and I looked out toward the lights and had absolutely NO idea what I was supposed to say. So, I tried not to panic. I just stood there, frozen solid, thinking, "If I wait long enough, these words are going to come into my head."

And they did!

(Whew.)

After the show, I announced that Jimmy would be performing a special benefit performance of "Zero Hour" for them. I told them that we were very proud of the work they do here and that we wanted the chance to give something special back to them. I told them how well received "Zero Hour" had been in L.A. and how proud I was of Jimmy's writing and acting. I urged them to pick up tickets immediately; that it would be a night they wouldn't forget.

Then we all went into the lobby and schmoozed and ate. A great opening night!
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