One of those weeks.

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I’ve been meaning to write about last weekend’s theater trips, but the whole week has been hectic, and this is the first chance I’ve gotten:

So, recapping it all:

  • Friday October 24th, The Mystery of Edwin Drood by the Corpus Christi Players. One of my favorite shows. I reviewed it for RECT so I can’t say anything about it.

  • Saturday: The Rocky Horror Show at Allegro Productions. Interestingly, this company did RHS just three years ago. However, this new production, has a completed new cast, and (If I recall the previous correctly) largely new staging.

  • Sunday: Tartuffe at the Leonia Player Guild, making three of my favorite shows in one weekend! Tartuffe was written in the 1600’s by Moliere, in rhyming French. This production was of the classic English translation by Richard Wilbur (I don’t think I’ve ever seen any other translation performed). I’ve always kind of suspected that taking a play which rhymes in French, and translating it into a play which rhymes in English, is very similar to writing a new play on the same topic. Either way, it’s a very funny play and this was a very good production.

  • Monday: Stage reading of The American Plan, by Richard Greenberg. This play I didn’t quite get into. He wants to marry her. She wants to marry him. For most of it, her mother want them to get married – SO WHAT WAS THE PROBLEM?

  • Tuesday: cold reading of the play “Lionel” by two people who’s names I didn’t catch. I even got to play a part (of the devil’s kid brother). It presumes that about 1000 years before Christ, God tried to do the same thing with another Immaculate Virgin, but the plan goes awry, hence the 1000 year delay. The play starts rather grandiose – It’s “prologue” is a ballet which has more plot than most evening length ballets — but then moves to a much smaller scope, and kinda loses its way. Character are also expected to start singing songs at various points, but the songs aren’t given, just the “theme” (which is often quite specific), which lyrics & music, presumably the director supplies (or the actor ad libs). It was also, apparently, written by African Americans, intended for an all-Black cast, and had some comedy based on black-stereotypes — which, when read by our all-White group, came off as racist.

  • Wednesday: A walking “Ghost” tour of Greenwich Village, NYC. This was a lot of fun. I got to see lot of old buildings, many of which were built in the early 1800’s, and hear stories about the famous people who lived in them. The parts about the ghost sighting was a bit boring — the fun part was hearing how they became ghost by killing each other.

  • Thursday: My friend, Perre Poley, had set up a Haunted Garden in his backyard, and was giving tours (and accepting donations). He had set piece of Regan (from the Exorcist), the Medusa, Frankenstein, Aliens, Freddy Kruger, Michael Meyers et al. Most of those was just dummies, but some were portrayed by friends in costume, who stood still as if they were dummies, until the right moment to jump forward and scare the visitors. I got to play a portrait which came to life. (BTW, Thursday was my birthday. I won’t go into details, but next year apparently, I learn to meaning of Life, the Universe and Everything.)

  • Friday: Halloween. First off, right from the train station, I drive to Westfield to see (and review) Murder Among Friends. It was doing so well, that was the only night I could get a ticket for. After that, I drove over to Perre’s house for the big night at the “Garden of Unearthly Delights”. I was back in the portrait for a bit longer, but they were mostly closing up as I got there. For the three nights (he started on Wednesday), he pulled in close to a thousand dollars in donations. We hung around and chatted for a while, and at about 11:30, I header off to my third destination, a co-workers Halloween party in lower Manhattan. I had been to his party last year when is was “out of control” (about 50-60 people in a small apartment), but this one, in his new larger apartment, was much smaller. Go figure. There were two people there dressed as Roy (of Sigfried & Roy) – basically, a flashy shirt with a stuffer tiger hanging from there necks, and some fake blood. In fact, as I was walking to his apartment, I saw someone else with the same concept. However, the costume trend I saw the most of, was women as insects. I must has seen about 10-15 example of that them in the course of the day.

  • Saturday: In the morning (and early afternoon), I was working at a soup kitchen. Not much else for the rest of the day, until about 9PM when I went back to Perre’s. He had planned a Halloween party, and as he, and many of his friends are female impersonators and other form of performers, it’s usually a colorful event. However, today, hardly anyone showed up. Perre suggested that it might be that his friends have caught on that he doesn’t let his party degenerate into orgies, so many lost interest in coming.