Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dear reader,

One of the difficult aspects of this blog is that whenever we do a new show, the blog becomes a bit of an extension of the production. A new review comes out. I post it. Or there's an event. So, it gets a little boring. Sorry.

Also, I go for long stretches of the day where I'm not connected to anything electronic. I'm not a Luddite. I know that private time, alone time, needs to carved out.

So, when I do finally sit down to write a blog entry, the time is short. And I don't know what's personal and what's not. For instance, when we get a great review, it's very PERSONAL to us. We are rejoicing.

But when one posts these things, it just looks like promotion.


People have been asking me about my music. So, in case I forgot to mention it, mark Jan. 13, 7pm on your calendar. It'll be a "pay what you can" concert, with very special guests. So, everyone can afford it.

I haven't played an actual concert in New York in forever, not since the big Last Session night 11 years ago. We did Big Voice, but I haven't just sat in front of an audience, with a piano, in concert, since then. I'm going to make an official press release for after the new year. So, I don't want to discuss it too much here.

Speaking of Jim, he thought he looked bad in the sequence where he's telling the story of the blackout. That's bad editing on my part. You know, these video diaries are my hobby. Putting them together helps me think. And time is also my enemy on them. In fact, I mis-numbered "Snow Day," calling it 5 when it was 7.

Before every show, Jim has a ritual, like many professional stage actors. He arrives at least an hour early to the theater and just sits on the dark set. It gives him a chance to feel the room, power down, focus and prepare for two hours of being Zero Mostel.

He also walks the set, checking to make sure everything is exactly as it's supposed to be. It makes him feel safe.

In the video, Jeramy talks about how the first thing he, as stage manager, remembers to set is the glass of pencils.

That's because the other night it was in the wrong place. Jim got up to move to the pencils, didn't see them, got confused, lost his place in the script, and jumped two pages, which he then had to reinsert later because an "act two pay-off" needed the "act one set-up."

For the stage managers running lights and doing sound cues, this presented a problem because, once he doubled back to get the next pages, they had to flip back in their books, too, in case a cue was called for during those lines.

Also, a phone ring was imminent. They didn't know if he would find his way to the exact cue or not -- and since the call is an interruption of a stream of dialogue, hitting it too early could throw everything off.

So, every night, Jim comes out front and sits in the chair in the dark and thinks through the whole play. He thinks I made look like crazy ol' grandpa out on the front porch disturbing the kids, which is, by the way, a role he'd relish."

So, he was doing his pre-show meditation prep, the crew had finished early, we knew a blizzard was arriving. It was a rare moment of perfect calm. I grabbed the camera. You know you have a happy team when the crew comes early enough for moments like this to happen.

Today is matinee day. An Internet reader is coming to the matinee with her mom. Then, tonight, we're taking the crew to Sardi's for Christmas dinner (actor's menu, of course!).

Christmas Day, Jim has two shows, and then two shows Saturday, and one on Sunday.

Now, I'm gonna start planning "Living in the Bonus Round 2010."

What a great time for new year.


NG said...

1. I didn't see anything wrong with the video; I saw it more as a short film, a day in the life thingy.

2. Your "promotions" are not boring. As I mentioned to you earlier, I'm fascinated by how one person can say Jim was being one dimensional, while someone else can be awestruck by how Jim captured the very essence of what was Zero Monstel.

As a blogger, your entitled to write about that, regardless of what people think.

Amy Lynn said...

I love you!

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