The opening-night performance of the off-Broadway transfer of Satchmo at the Waldorf went sensationally well. John Douglas Thompson gave a letter-perfect performance, and the sold-out crowd at the Westside Theatre yelled its approval at show’s end. The producers then threw a fabulous party from which Mrs. T and I returned home in a daze of joy much like the one that overwhelmed me after The Letter opened in Santa Fe five years ago. One thing was different: I now know what it feels like to be blinded by flashbulbs!
Most of the early reviews were very positive. Even those critics who had doubts about the play were hugely enthusiastic about John’s acting, as well they should have been. (Here’s my favorite line: “To say that Thompson’s performance is a tour de force would be an understatement. This is a tour de megaforce.”) To be sure, several of my colleagues have yet to go on record, but so far it looks as though we’ve got a shot at a solid run.
While I’m still a bit dizzy–to put it mildly–life goes on, and so does my day job. I’ll be seeing a Broadway preview this afternoon and filing a review for The Wall Street Journal first thing tomorrow morning. Nevertheless, I’m about as happy as it’s possible to be.
* * *
Our Girl in Chicago, my co-blogger and best friend, took this snapshot as she, Mrs. T, and I prepared to head down to the theater yesterday afternoon: