Thanks to Ball State University Singers alum Luke Meyer, who has over ten years remained a constant and dear one of my ‘kids,’ I attended the 72nd annual Tony Awards on Sunday.
Luke knew one of the cast members of Carousel who had over-purchased his block of tickets, so we had seats four rows from the top of Radio City Music Hall. And except for distance from stage, there’s not a bad seat in the house.
I’ll add some photos at the end of this post, but will share a few thoughts first:
- The emotional high point of the evening was the appearance on stage of students from Florida, singing “Seasons of Love” from Rent.
- For me, the first big “I’m so glad I’m in this room moment” was witnessing Ari’el Stachel’s acceptance speech. The room was in rapt attention as he spoke of no more being ashamed to be of Middle Eastern descent.
- DeNiro stopped the show. And got bleeped on television. Twice. He appeared on stage without any big announcement. In fact, we were still focused on stage left and the end of the previous acceptance speech, and suddenly he was there, using the F word, and exalting in his moment. The room was electric.
- Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Chita Rivera both accepted their honorary Tony Awards prior to live air-time, and both delivered lovely speeches. They were each perfect in their own way. But that strange tribute montage during the broadcast was, well, a disaster.
- And The Band’s Visit? I’m surprised it cleaned up, but the Tony voters seem to be voting against the commercialization so apparent in the other three nominated new musicals, and they certainly seemed to celebrate this lovely, beautiful, perfect little show.
- Springsteen. Wow. Just wow.
My holiday ended in wonderful fashion, and I’m so grateful to Luke for procuring tickets!
The view across the mezzanine.
The view of the lobby before the show.
Another lobby view.
That’s Patti. Patti Lupone.
Before leaving my hotel.
With two Lukes on our way to Radio City Music Hall.
At my seat in the third mezzanine.
And here’s the New York Times review of the broadcast:
Thursday in NYC. Plans changed after my abbreviated night and a late cancellation for my mid-morning coffee with an alum.
So I had breakfast at the hotel, did some work, went to the Neuegalerie to see some Klimt paintings (including the famous 1907 portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer), talked to a friend in Saigon, talked to my youngest sister, talked to the office, ate lamb over rice from a street truck at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (a darn fine lunch!), eavesdropped on two elderly locals while on the bus on 5th Avenue, took a brief nap, traveled to Greenwich Village and almost missed my stop at 4th St because I was reading, had tea and a long catch-up with Austen Bohmer, enjoyed a manicure, stopped for a moment of homage at the Stonewall Inn, read for a while whilst sitting in Christopher Park at the Stonewall National Monument, ate a meat pie and mash at the Barrow Street Theatre, and enjoyed a totally immersive, way-too-fun production of Sweeney Todd.
Not a bad day!
From the Stonewall National Monument, a very happy Pride celebration to my LBGTQetc. mates around the world:
On Tuesday, with just moments to spare thanks to delayed flights in the eastern USA, I made to my ticket collection point with just five minutes to spare.
And I enjoyed a near-perfect show: The Band’s Visit.
An Egyptian police orchestra ends up in a Jewish settlement. It’s either the set-up for a horrible ending, a funny joke, or a stylish and evocative and heartfelt musical.
I saw the latter.
And I’m so glad I did!!
As usual, I am insanely proud of my Webster University voice students . . . this time thanks to the university production of Brigadoon. (It’s still running today, with one more performance at 2 p.m. at the Loretto-Hilton Center.)
Brigadoon was the first Golden Era musical I ever music-directed, and it holds a special place in my heart. And this production was lavish to view and lovingly sung.
Two of the six principals are my voice students. Here they are getting married:
And after the show, these selfies with my kids:
Caroline, plus creeper.
Sydney is a junior at Kirkwood. This past weekend, she played Janet in The Drowsy Chaperone in her school musical.
I was a very proud teacher! This kid just delights and delights, both on stage and in the voice studio.
I was in Naples to see Spencer Donovan Jones go on as Chulalongkorn in The King and I.
Saturday morning found me at the beach as soon as it opened.
And I had a fabulous meal:
And oh . . . I saw a show [proud teacher moment]: