Monday, October 30, 2006

A Wand'ring Minstrel, I

I write this update from a beautiful and spacious apartment on the 11th floor of a 53 story high rise in downtown Manhattan with a lovely view of the locker room on the 3rd floor of the fire station across the street. More on that later...

So where did we leave off? From Evansville to Bloomington, IN and Indiana University. A beautiful theatre, a great town, and an expensive "tropical resort" (in Indiana) 15 miles outside of town with an odd mix of themes. I wanted to stay in Mickey's Aloha Suite with a view of the zebras. It was quite beautiful though, situated on a huge lake with an indoor/outdoor pool, sauna, hot tub and...

Bloomington, Indiana
The Windjammer Lounge (hotel bar), which actually was okay, considering they stayed open until 3am one night for us with a DJ who probably works a lot of weddings.

After Bloomington came a loooong drive to Erie, PA. Cold. F'ing cold. But an amazing theatre, the Warner. The Warner Theatre is named after the famous Brothers who commissioned the theatre to be built in 1929. The enormous lobby has all the glitz and glamour of any Hollywood movie house.

The only weird thing about the theatre is that the "pit" is really on the house floor level, so we were quite visible to the audience. I personally sort of love that though, because I love being able to see the audience react to the show.

Another nice thing about Erie was that the Avalon Hotel (big rooms!) was only a block and a half away. It's always wonderful when the hotel and theatre are within walking distance of each other.

Erie, Pennsylvania
Papermoon Restaurant Gallery and Jazz Club
Actually, we probably spent more time in Benjamin's, the hotel bar, but this is a special shout out to the owner of Papermoon who hosted us on opening night in Erie, with live music and a free round of drinks. Then we all left because the drinks were too expensive.

As soon as the last show ended in Erie, I hopped in the car and drove HOME home to see the 'rents. Stayed overnight, had an early dinner with Mom, Grandma and Sister and then cut and run like a Bush nightmare.

Next on to Easton, PA, home of the Crayola factory, my cogitative roommate Colin and the smallest house we'll be playing on tour. So small that the bassist and I played the show remote from a hallway in the basement. Naked. Just kidding. Only about the naked part. Both in Erie and Easton, the show was cut down considerably due to venue limitations. For instance, we use a lot of drops and fly units in the show, some of which take up the space of 2 or more standard size drops. A number of theatres do not have the fly space necessary for every piece. Our show is very big, travelling in 5 trucks. Load ins and strikes are quite an accomplishment.

Now, we're getting close to Halloween, so where would you go for a good costume party?

Easton, (actually Allentown) Pennsylvania
Gay Bar: The Stonewall
Yes, that's the name, but a great place and a big Halloween party. and PlanetOut were actually there photographing for their websites.

Which brings me to my New York apartment...Today, Sunday, was a 3:00 matinee in Easton, followed by strike and load out. Monday is a golden day (completely off). We are TOO close to New York City. So I drove into Newark after the show and took the train in to Manhattan where I'm staying with a director friend, Stephen. Tomorrow will be a free day in the City, catching up, and seeing a show tomorrow night. Fingers are crossed for the FIRST PREVIEW performance of the new revival of Company. Tomorrow night, after basking in the glow of Broadway, I'll head back to Ma 'n' Pa's to spend the night and then Tuesday we're in Morgantown, WV. Big weekend coming up at Penn State University.

I already know where I'm eating every meal.

Here's some new fun: our brand spanking new TV commercial, filmed live in Charleston, South Carolina. If you hear the string section, that's me.

The Producers National Tour Commercial

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