a.k.a. "The Oscar Messenger"

A video visit to the Classic Cape Cod restaurant “The Lobster Pot” now in its’ 47th year, with a guided tour by the owner/manager Shawn McNulty. You won’t be able to watch this without getting REALLY hungry! Camera ~ Jack Siberine Editing~ Kevin Teller

Carey Mulligan 1I come from a long line of school-teachers. My mother was a school teacher. My British grand-mother was a school teacher, but I have never heard an aria, really, an ode to teaching and what it means to be a teacher so beautifully and eloquently expressed and rapturously enacted by Carey Mulligan in the revival of David Hare’s British play from the ’90’s “Skylight.”

I just thought it was an amazing monologue, and Carey Mulligan almost always amazes. I’ve been a fan of Mulligan’s going back to her Oscar nominated performance in “An Education.” And here she is nearly a decade later, clearly a young-looking 30-something named Kyra Hollis, who has left her rather posh bourgeois background to live in the far reaches of North London, and in a council flat(a British housing project) no less, where she commutes to her low-paying job as a teacher of the uber underprivileged in East Ham in the East End.

She admits that her LONNNNG commute to work on Public Transportation is the high-point of her day.

And then in comes Bill Nighy, her ex-lover, Tom Sergeant, an aging Jack-the-Lad, a successful restauranteur, to dynamite her life. For one long, cold night only in her flat that he describes as “Siberia.”

I am so not a fan of Older Man-Younger Woman scenarios on the screen or on the stage. We’ve seen so many of them. It’s trite. To the max. And the un-even writing career of playwright David Hare leaves me with a feeling of trepidation every time I go to see one of his many plays. Will I love it? Or will I hate it, too? And let me tell you the rather interminable mixed match set of Tom and Kyra in the first act left me as cold as their cold-water flat. I nearly left.

But I stayed, and then in the second act, suddenly Kyra shifts into high gear and unleashes on Tom just WHY she has chose to live the way she lives and where she lives and her unforgettable monologue about teaching occurs, and suddenly I felt “Skylight”, reaching as it does for the stars, finally MEANT something. Other than a will-they, won’t-they two-hander.

Oh, and there’s a third character Edward, Jim’s son, played engagingly and comically, by Matthew Beard, doing a very good impersonation of Billy Nighy as a teen-ager. He even looks like him, the same height, the same gestures, everything. He’s the most sympathetic, and also funniest of the three.

But the plays dismal cold council flat setting by the great Bob Crowley is spot-on, and there’s a fully functioning stove and sink(Yes, this is a classic kitchen sink working class British genre drama.) Mulligan prepares a spaghetti diner for Nighy for the entire length of the deadly first act. The tomato sauce and onion aroma wafting into the audience kept my olfactory senses alive, even as the leaden prose deadened my mind.The first act of “Skylight” smells good, then in Act II Carey Mulligan’s barefoot, East End, mother earth goddess takes off into the stratosphere into that sequence about teaching that has already burned itself into my memory and Mulligan into my heart.

Now I understood why my mother and grandmother were teachers.

 

East Village 3East Village FireI’ve enjoyed heartily the annual trek I make to the East Village’s Second Avenue, to see the graduating class of NYU Grad Acting perform their “Actors Presentations” or “Leagues” or scene nights. This year was a little more complicated in getting there because of the bomb blasted setting and building collapse, which occured literally NEXT door to the NYU building. Pictured above on the left, it’s the white building.

And yes, it almost went, too. “The building shook” I was told by Brian Bock, one of the talented graduating actors. Before the evening’s presentation, Chair of the Acting Dept. Mark Wing-Davey introduced it by describing it this way. “This class is very special to me because we were all in this building getting ready to open our production of ‘The Three Sisters’ and the explosion happened.”

He told me later that they didn’t know if the Actors Presentations(as spectacular and electrifying as ever) were going to take place in that building on Second Avenue and he referred me to an article in the New Yorker, which vividly details what went on.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/04/13/show-goes-on

I applaud all involved.

Gent's Guide 1Tony Winner for Best Musical, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder” has just recouped all its’ investments! Meaning it’s returned the money its’ many, many producers put into back to them! No mean feat on Broadway these days!

BROADWAY’S REIGNING

TONY AWARD®-WINNING BEST MUSICAL

” A   G E N T L E M A N ‘ S   G U I D E   T O  

L O V E   A N D   M U R D E R “

HAS RECOUPED

 

New York, NY – The reigning Tony Award® winner for Best Musical, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, has recouped its entire $7.5 million capitalization, producer Joey Parnes announced today. A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder began performances at the Walter Kerr Theatre (219 W. 48th Street) on Tuesday, October 22 and officially opened, to overwhelmingly rapturous reviews, on Sunday, November 17, 2013.

 

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder holds the house records at the Walter Kerr Theatre for both the highest single-week gross ($1,062,740.60 over eight performances on the week ending December 28, 2014) and total cumulative gross, which now stands at $51,557,644.05.

 

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder is the winner of four 2014 Tony® Awards including

Best Musical, Direction of a Musical, Book of a Musical, and Costume Design of a Musical.  It was the 2013-14 season’s most nominated production with 10 Tony® Award nominations overall, including dual Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical nominations, Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical, Original Score, Orchestrations, and Scenic Design of a Musical.

 

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder stars Tony® Award winner Jefferson Mays, Jeff Kready, Scarlett Strallen, Catherine Walker and Carole Shelley, with Sandra DeNise, Joanna Glushak, Kristen Hahn, Greg Jackson, Eddie Korbich, Mark Ledbetter, Kevin Massey, Michael McCorry Rose, Jennifer Smith, Kathy Voytko and Price Waldman.

 

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder features a book and lyrics by Robert L. Freedman, music and lyrics by Steven Lutvak. Direction is by Darko Tresnjak, with choreography by Peggy Hickey.

 

The design team for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder includes Alexander Dodge (Scenic Design), Linda Cho (Costume Design), Philip S. Rosenberg (Lighting Design), Dan Moses Schreier(Sound Design), Aaron Rhyne (Projections Design), and Charles LaPointe (Wig Design).  Orchestrations are by Jonathan Tunick and Vocal Arrangements are by Dianne Adams McDowell andSteven LutvakPaul Staroba serves as Music Director.

For more info, please visit www.agentlemansguidebroadway.com

Happy Easter 2015!

Easter 2Happy Easter Every Bunnies!

DanzaAnd so it starts, the first big casualty of the Broadway season, “Honeymoon in Vegas” starring Tony Danza, is set to close on Sunday. I liked it. The first act dragged, but the second act was genuinely funny, and Danza, though he couldn’t sing (much) was charming. I thought it would’ve lasted at least until the Tonys, which are in June. I thought it had mainstream appeal, being about honeymoons & Hawaii & Vegas & all that jazz , but, guess not…

The Official Press Release announcing its’ demise follows ~

THE CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED NEW MUSICAL

“ H O N E Y M O O N   I N   V E G A S ”

WILL PLAY ITS FINAL BROADWAY PERFORMANCE ON

SUNDAY, APRIL 5, 2015

 

New York (March 31, 2015) – The critically-acclaimed new musical, Honeymoon in Vegas,will play its final performance at Broadway’s Nederlander Theater (208 West 41st Street) onSunday, April 5, 2015, the show’s producers announced today. Lauded as “a real-live, old-fashioned, deeply satisfying Broadway musical in a way few shows are anymore,” by Ben Brantley of the New York Times, Honeymoon in Vegas is directed by Gary Griffin, features a book by Andrew Bergman, and a score by three-time Tony Award-winner Jason Robert Brown.

 

Those who have purchased tickets to a performance after April 5, 2015 through Ticketmaster will automatically receive credit to their accounts for their refunded tickets. All others should contact their initial point of purchase to inquire about receiving a refund for their tickets.

Honeymoon in Vegas began performances on Tuesday, November 18, 2014, and officially opened on Thursday, January 15, 2015 to rave reviews. Prior to Broadway, Honeymoon in Vegas completed a successful engagement at the Papermill Playhouse in Milburn, NJ October 6 – 27, 2013.

The cast of Honeymoon in Vegas includes Tony Award nominee Rob McClure, Brynn O’Malley, Emmy and Golden Globe nominee Tony Danza, David Josefsberg, Nancy Opel,Matthew Saldivar, Matt Allen, Tracee Beazer, Grady McLeod Bowman, Barry Busby,Leslie Donna Flesner, Gaelen Gilliland, Albert Guerzon, Sean Allan Krill, Raymond J. Lee, George Merrick, Jessica Naimy, Zachary Prince, Catherine Ricafort, Jonalyn Saxer, Brendon Stimson, Erica Sweany, Cary Tedder, and Katie Webber.

 

The creative team for Honeymoon in Vegas also features three-time Tony Award nomineeAnna Louizos (scenic design); Emmy Award-winner Brian C. Hemesath (costume design); Tony Award-winner Howell Binkley (lighting design); Tony Award-winner Scott Lehrer & Drama Desk Award-winner Drew Levy (sound design); Tony and Grammy Award-winner Don Sebesky, Larry Blank, Jason Robert Brown, Charlie Rosen (orchestrations); Tom Murray (music director); and Charles G. LaPointe (hair and wig design).

 

Honeymoon in Vegas is produced on Broadway by Dena Hammerstein, Roy Gabay, Rich Entertainment Group, Dan Farah, Metro Card, King’s Leaves, Dan Frishwasser,Leslie Greif / Thom Beers, Susan Dietz & Lenny Beer, Howard Hoffman / Anna Czekaj, Important Musicals, Sharon Karmazin, L.G. Scott, and Martin Markinson

 

Honeymoon in Vegas, based on the 1992 Castle Rock Entertainment Motion Picture, tells the story of Jack Singer (McClure), a regular guy with an extreme fear of marriage, who finally gets up the nerve to ask his girlfriend Betsy (O’Malley) to marry him. But when they head to Las Vegas to get hitched, smooth talking gambler Tommy Korman (Danza) – looking for a second chance at love – falls head over heels for Betsy and Jack must go to extreme heights to win back the love of his life.

For those of you who’ve never been able to see a complete episode of “The Stephen Holt Show”, only You Tube segments, here’s a complete, unabridged version of what is aired on TV. Enjoy!

Camera ~ Jack Siberine

Editing ~ Kevin Teller

Theme Music, the Overture from “Kareer Suicide” by Donald Arrington

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