Forgive me if your recent calls and/or e-mails have gone unanswered. I’m struggling to deal with some pressing post-marital deadlines before leaving on Saturday morning for an out-of-town theater trip. I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.
Archives for October 18, 2007
Here’s my list of recommended Broadway and off-Broadway shows, updated weekly. In all cases, I gave these shows favorable reviews in The Wall Street Journal when they opened. For more information, click on the title.
Warning: Broadway shows marked with an asterisk were sold out, or nearly so, last week.
• Avenue Q (musical, R, adult subject matter and one show-stopping scene of puppet-on-puppet sex, reviewed here)
• A Chorus Line * (musical, PG-13/R, adult subject matter, reviewed here)
• The Drowsy Chaperone (musical, G/PG-13, mild sexual content and a profusion of double entendres, reviewed here)
• Grease * (musical, PG-13, some sexual content, reviewed here)
• The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (musical, PG-13, mostly family-friendly but contains a smattering of strong language and a production number about an unwanted erection, reviewed here)
Mrs. T and I gave each of the guests at our wedding a custom-pressed CD called Autumn in New York: A Wedding Album (Mostly by Friends, Present and Absent). The cover is a reproduction of one of the pieces in the Teachout Museum, a fired tile called “View from My Studio” painted in 1966 by Nell Blaine. The album contains sixteen tracks:
• “Ask,” written by Stephen Morrissey and Johnny Marr and performed by the Lascivious Biddies (from Get Lucky). The Biddies–Deidre Rodman, Saskia Lane, Amanda Monaco, and Lee Ann Westover–also supplied the music for the post-wedding dinner party.
• “Slow Boat to China,” written by David Cantor of Dave’s True Story and performed by Mary Foster Conklin (from Crazy Eyes, her first album). Mary also sang Lucky to Be Me during the ceremony, accompanied by Deidre.
• “Black Butterfly,” written by Duke Ellington and performed by Dick Sudhalter (from Melodies Heard, Melodies Sweet…).
• “Hedgehog,” written by Amanda Monaco and performed by the Amanda Monaco 4 (from the group’s self-titled debut album).
• “Gimme a Man,” written and performed by Patty Tuite.
• “Famous Potatoes,” written by Deidre Rodman and performed by Deidre and Steve Swallow (a bonus track from Twin Falls).
• “One Hand, One Heart,” written by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim and performed by Tuck & Patti (from Dream).
Bill, Dick, Greta, Julia, Kendra, Luciana, Mary, Patty, Paul, and the four Biddies are all friends. Nancy, who died in 1995, never knew Mrs. T, but I have no doubt that they would have liked each other very much. Copland is my favorite American composer, and “Down a Country Lane,” a two-page miniature for solo piano written as a teaching piece for children and originally published in Life in 1962, is one of his loveliest pieces. Mrs. T chose “One Hand, One Heart” to be sung during the ceremony. I wrote the liner notes for Get Lucky, Neruda, Observatory, and Tempest Fantasy.
All of the albums from which these tracks are drawn can be ordered through amazon.com, and some of them are also available on iTunes. (“Famous Potatoes” is an iTunes-only bonus track.)
“This music of yours. A manifestation of the highest energy–not at all abstract, but without an object, energy in a void, in pure ether–where else in the universe does such a thing appear? We Germans have taken over from philosophy the expression ‘in itself,’ we use it every day without much idea of the metaphysical. But here you have it, such music is energy itself, yet not as idea, rather in its actuality. I call your attention to the fact that is almost the definition of God. Imitatio Dei–I am surprised it is not forbidden.”
Thomas Mann, Doctor Faustus (trans. H.T. Lowe-Porter)