Tag Archives: Jordan Parente

Monday in NYC

A full day!  11,415 steps, according to the iPhone.  That’s 3.6 miles of walking. I believe it, based on how my feet feel Monday evening.

Looking west from my hotel room window, morning and late afternoon:

And looking north on 8th Avenue:

Notice how the tall buildings do not cast a shadow north of Columbus Circle. That’s Central Park territory.
Happy Socks = happy man.

Yufei and I had drinks at The Aviary at the Mandarin Hotel on Columbus Circle.  And we had some incredibly good Iberico ham.

From my walk back to the hotel tonight:

I took Jennifer Johnson Cano to lunch on Monday, and also spent a couple of glorious hours at the New York City Public Library performing arts branch at Lincoln Center.  Walking across Lincoln Center plaza with Jennifer felt like something out of a movie. And I had drinks and a nosh with my former student Jordan Parente Monday evening.

From the Library today, Jerome Robbins‘ Lincoln Center Honors award:

Yufei reminded me of why I love NYC so much:

A remarkable evening

No one will ever say that Legally Blonde is the deepest, most meaningful, most emotionally pungent musical theatre piece ever written.

In fact, as a script and a vehicle, it’s pretty vapid.

But the show also has some great vocal hooks, an energetic score with just the right number of ballads, opportunities for wink/nudge humor as well as many moments of belly laughs, and broadly written characters that cry out for actors who can make the outlines their own.

With my senior Jordan Parente after the show.
With my senior Jordan Parente after the show.

Last evening, at Webster University’s Loretto-Hilton Center, my colleagues and students in the Conservatory of Theatre Arts kicked this show out of the building.  Under Lara Teeter’s direction, with Larry Pry providing expert musical direction, and with a winning cast of impassioned students, this was one of the funnest evenings of theatre I’ve had at Webster since I arrived her five years ago.

Of course I was a proud teacher with one of my students in a leading role, and another of my students (and only senior) showing up in every other scene (with multiple costume changes, and even wigs) and serving as dance captain.  Add to that the joy of having had many of these students in music theory class.  And then add the energy of a very full house, each of us in the palm of the casts’ hand.

I was a happy man last evening.

[Here’s an article that adds depth to this blog entry.]