492 posts categorized "THEATRE"

Jul 23 2014
Buona Sera, Ms. Grant: Attending Lee Grant's I SAID YES TO EVERYTHING Book Signing Comments (0)

Lee-GrantGrant's story of freezing on a Broadway stage in 1972 was gut-wrenching!

Lee-Grant-bookI spent a nice evening at the 82nd Street Barnes & Noble, attending the booksigning for the memoir I Said Yes to Everything (Blue Rider, $28.95) by Lee Grant (b. October 31, 1925)...though it did have some ups and downs.

First, getting there 20 minutes before the start time, I was nonplused to find the entire seating area filled. The crowd was older, and the event free, which made for an interesting time when it came to the things one overheard:

“Who exactly is this person?”

“She was in everything in the '60s and '70s.”

“How old is she? Eighty-eight? That's a very flattering photo on the cover.”

“What's she going to talk about? A book? What book?”

Joy Behar (b. October 7, 1942) had a ringside seat [later asking a loaded question about Grant's Broadway co-star Peter Falk (September 16, 1927—June 23, 2011)], while the rest of us just stood around like groupies. Grant was there early, off to the side, eyeballing the attendees and excusing herself silently to find a bathroom. It was cute that she looked so pleased by the big crowd.

Lee-Grant-audienceThey said yes to Lee Grant.

Grant was engaged in a conversation by well-known biographer Tom Santopietro, who repeatedly joked about Grant being the star. Grant was very comfortable doing the same, cracking jokes, cursing and openly reflecting about her early career, her experience being blacklisted for a dozen years and her transition to directing mostly documentaries.

One highlight was when she reminisced about walking down the aisle to receive her Oscar and thinking it was a big fuck you to the McCarthyites who'd tried to keep her down. For an 88-year-old woman, she looks and acts far younger, and has not only her wits but also her wit about her.

The questions were—shocker!—really great. These things usually have at least one or two embarrassing queries, but this time, Grant fielded thoughtful questions about stage fright, making diverse projects like her Columbo episode (March 1, 1971) and the '90s gay-themed movie It's My Party (1996) and how she felt when her sitcom Fay (1975) was axed after eight episodes.

Barbara-Cook-Barbara-BarrieCook (L) and Barrie (R) catch up. Barrie was going into The Prisoner of Second Avenue in 1972 when Grant was leaving.

After, we lined up. I spotted the fabulous actress Barbara Barrie (b. May 23, 1931) off to the side, chatting, but she gave off a vibe of, “Don't.” So I hesitated. After I saw her sign an autograph and then receive an intro by Grant, who'd begun signing in earnest, I knew I would go for a photo. By pure luck, Barrie was with the legendary singer Barbara Cook (b. October 25, 1927) when I got over to them. I asked politely for a photo with them both. “With? Yes,” Barrie said, implicitly saying no to a posed shot of just the two of them.

Barbara-Cook-Barbara-Barrie-2The room was filled with talented ladies.

“Oh, is it your birthday?” Cook asked, why I had no idea. Turns out she'd misheard something I said, but I didn't want to correct her. Barrie was amazed that Cook had guessed that just from seeing me. I felt guilty taking advantage of birthday positivity, but it was just an oops. The pic is cute.

Barbara-Cook-Barbara-Barrie-Matthew-Rettenmund-starsWith a great singer and a great actress. Hopefully, I'm a...great writer?

When I got up to Grant, I told her it was nice to be able to admire her both as an actress and as a person, because so many major stars are—and then the guy behind me was snapping our photo, so I smiled. “What? So many are what?” Grant wanted to know, ignoring the camera. Click. So that's why the photo is less than ideal. But oh, well, we look engaged in conversation.

Lee-Grant-Matthew-RettenmundAre we deep in conversation about Warren Beatty's sexual prowess?

“Sorry, so many are right-wingers,” I finished. She pooh-poohed that until I clarified, delicately, that I meant so many who were making movies in the '40s and, like she was, the '50s. With that proviso, she agreed.

I was able to get her people/the store's rep to approve my getting a posed shot of Ms. Grant—and I do mean one—posed shot in-between the umpteen fans who were queued up to buy her book.

Lee-Grant-2Ms. Grannnnnt!

It wasn't ideal, photo-wise (though my shots of Grant and of the Barbaras turned out great!), but it was still a thrill to be able to meet an Oscar-winning, one-of-a-kind actress and director whom I truly thought I'd never get to see.

I can't wait to read her book. If you've never seen The Landlord (1970), recommended to me by my pal Gordon not so very long ago, seek it out.

 
Jul 22 2014
WIN IT—Tickets To SHANGELA: STRAIGHT OUTTA PARIS In NYC! Comments (0)

Shangela

Shangela, already a RuPaul's Drag Race legend-in-the-making, is performing her show in NYC August 1 through 3 at the Laurie Beechman Theater (407 W. 42nd St. at Ninth Avenue).

Shangela: Straight Outta Paris

Enter for your chance to win 1 of 2 pairs of tickets for opening night, August 1! (No travel or lodging provided; winner must be local.)

To enter, comment this blog with Shangela's greatest moment on RDR...I'll pick 2 of you at random to win Monday at 5PM ET!

Good luck!

For more info on the show, click here!

 
Jul 19 2014
Broadway Gold Comments (0)

Elaine-StritchVia Scott Nevins's Instagram

Last night, the lights on Broadway were dimmed in honor of the late, great Elaine Stritch, who died this week.

Dorothy_side_stare

After the jump, listen to Stritch's story of how she almost got the part of “Dorothy” on The Golden Girls...

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Jul 18 2014
New Girl In Town Comments (0)

Andrew-Rannells

Andrew Rannells goes into Hedwig and the Angry Inch on Broadway starting August 20. First look above!

 
Jul 17 2014
In Honor Of Elaine Stritch... Comments (0)

 
No Longer Here: Broadway Legend Elaine Stritch Dies At 89 Comments (0)

Elaine-StritchFebruary 2, 1925—July 17, 2014

Elaine Stritch, the hard-drinking, wise-cracking Broadway legend who in recent years had toured the country with a one-woman show and ended her TV career with a killer recurring role on 30 Rock—and who finally won a goddamn Tony in 2002—died today at 89. She passed away in her hometown of Birmingham, Michigan, just a year after moving back there from New York City upon retiring.

Tumblr_lnmkqe04831qhiw1zo1_r1_500

Stritch was the subject of a documentary this year, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me (2014), which I can vouch for as a very fun and intimate peek at her most unusual world.

Stritch's career is difficult to sum up in a sentence or two, but she was probably most famous for her appearance in the 1970 Stephen Sondheim musical Company, in which she sang one of the most famous songs in musical theater, “The Ladies Who Lunch”. Stritch is also closely identified with the Sondheim song “I'm Still Here”, although the song was first performed on Broadway by Yvonne De Carlo (September 1, 1922—January 8, 2007), thanks to her adoption of it in her show.

She had previously been the toast of Broadway in 1952 in Pal Joey, in which she sang “Zip”, a hysterically funny remembrance of an interview with Gypsy Rose Lee.

Stritch gathered the many songs for which she'd become famous and performed them in her one-woman show, Elaine Stritch at Liberty, for which she finally won that goddamn Tony. Her last-ever stage performance was at her beloved Café Carlyle (she lived for many years in room 309 at the hotel) on April 6, 2013.

Oh, and one of Stritch's very last TV appearances made waves:

 
Jul 15 2014
Need To Know: Bright Eyes, Dark Lies + It's The Life In Your Mermen + Native Blood Libel + Castro Cop Doffs His Top + Kenneth In The (310) + MORE! Comments (0)

Credence-sci-fi-gay-LGBTCheck out the trailer for #Credence at the end of this post.

*widget boy cultureBoy Culture name-dropped on hilariously named Face4Radio show.

*widget boy cultureBright Eyes singer's rape accuser recants, says she lied.

*widget boy cultureGerman national soccer hero sporting full wood.

*widget boy cultureSingapore's highest court hearing challenge to gay-sex ban.

*widget boy cultureMusto comes clean on addiction to prescription Golden Girls.

*widget boy culture1989 BONER: Creating one of Madonna's “Cherish” mermen.

*widget boy cultureTea Party movie argues Native Americans were never massacred.

*widget boy cultureComedy series based on Robbie Rogers coming from Craig Zadan & Neil Meron.

*widget boy cultureFirst black woman to win Olympic gold medal (in '48) dies @ 90.

*widget boy cultureShirtless shots of Hot Cop of the Castro, Chris Kohrs, appear.

Hot-Cop-of-the-CastroTopless cop of the Castro

*widget boy cultureMissouri's sane Gov. Jay Nixon (D) vetoes bill allowing teachers to pack heat.

*widget boy cultureHoller If Ya Hear Me closes on Broadway on July 20.

*widget boy cultureNever hire again any photog who lets stuff like this leak:

Tumblr_n8n6usYlYr1r90m4vo1_500Jesus, they even though the bag looked too fat.

*widget boy cultureWho would pay for a mold of Farrah Abraham's holes???

*widget boy cultureJames St. James interviews Kenneth Walsh, who is newly single but no Truvada whore.

*widget boy cultureAfter the jump, check out #Credence, a sci fi film with an LGBT core...

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Jul 13 2014
Need To Know: Man For Thorpedo + Attention Walmart Shoppers + Sexy On The Beach + Demi Does Equality + Mitt's Sweet '16? + MORE! Comments (0)

*widget boy cultureIan Thorpe on Australian TV: “I'm not straight.” Also apparently a gay virgin. Rafael-nadal-shirtless-spain-07102014-01-675x900

*widget boy cultureBefore you ask who cares if Thorpe is gay...read this.

*widget boy cultureTracy Morgan suing Walmart.

*widget boy cultureRafael Nadal on the beach. Yes, please.

*widget boy cultureDavid McIntosh has some damn hot legs on him.

*widget boy cultureWhere the Bears Are's Season 3 official traileRRR.

*widget boy cultureLaverne Cox in John Legend's new video.

*widget boy cultureDemi Lovato in HRC video for marriage equality.

*widget boy cultureCelebrating the career of Broadway, TV & movie actress Penny Fuller.

Penny-FullerPenny Fuller helping to bring down a prez in All the President's Men (1976).

*widget boy cultureThink twice before using Propecia. (If nothing else, it definitely softens the wood.)

*widget boy cultureRepublicans pine for more Romney, whom I'm convinced will run in '16.

*widget boy cultureChristopher Walken is “Hook” in NBC's live Peter Pan.

*widget boy cultureThis bitch better step off of Michael Sam. He should not become ex-gay.

*widget boy cultureBRIDGE TO NOWHERE: Chris Christie carries on against marriage equality.

*widget boy cultureActor Christian Monassa is sweet in the booty. (Work Unfriendly)

Christian Monassa 1.mkv3508-thumb-500x577-19788Even from the front, you can tell he looks good from the back.

 
Jul 11 2014
Need To Know: Bi, Bi, Bi + Obama Parries With Perry + Rosie's New VIEW + Michelle O Engenders Contempt + MOCKINGBIRD Actress Dies + MORE! Comments (0)

*widget boy cultureRacy new bisexual video (above) from Aris.

*widget boy cultureRuba Wilson wants to put out a visual album and needs your help.

*widget boy cultureGov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) caves, shakes hands with Obama. But that's it!

*widget boy cultureRosie O'Donnell officially returns to The View.

Rosie-o-donnell-makes-faces-o

*widget boy culture98-year-old San Franciscan evicted from her apartment of 50 years because $$$.

*widget boy cultureEven poor white people have it better than black people.

*widget boy cultureEmmy nominee Ferguson on hubby's cancer battle & Quinto rumors.

*widget boy cultureRadio host and nutjob Alex Jones calls Michelle Obama our “First Tranny.”

*widget boy cultureBe-Speedoed pornstar Jessie Colter called queer, kicked out of water park. Jessie-Colter

*widget boy cultureLindsay Lohan already proving to be a bad hire.

*widget boy cultureHeathers: The Musical posts closing notice.

*widget boy culturePageant: The Musical is back!

*widget boy cultureWell-off lady swiftly descends into poverty, crawls back.

*widget boy cultureOVER HALF of all statements on FOX News are false.

*widget boy cultureTo Kill a Mockingbird actress Rosemary Murphy dies @ 89.

Rosemary-MurphyDeath of an actor's actor

 
Jul 07 2014
Inch By Inch: A Chat With John Cameron Mitchell Comments (0)

John-Cameron-Mitchell

Hedwig creator John Cameron Mitchell on the Broadway production with Neil Patrick Harris, Lena Dunham and Shortbus...

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