I was all over the place yesterday.
Started with David Hyde Pierce on the Upper West Side, talking about his upcoming show at the Paramount with Michael Feinstein. Turns out they’re L.A. neighbors. They’ll play the Paramount Nov. 28 and then head to Feinstein’s NYC club for the entire month of December. Hyde Pierce is a classically trained pianist who says he was “very good for a small town,” but soon realized, when he got to Yale, that another career was in order. He could not have been more generous with his time. What a great guy. I’ll chat with Feinstein — the man who introduced me to the Gershwins — next week.
From there, I dropped in to the paper to pick up more and more notebooks to fill and then I was off to Scarsdale High for “Beauty and the Beast,” where choreographer Lisa Harvie was blocking the curtain call. When I was in school — in a time shortly after the Greeks — we always blocked the curtain call after the final dress. Scarsdale’s show isn’t till next weekend. Some great voices in that company. Chatted with Margaret Gondolfo (Belle), Lucie Fink (Babette), Michael Strauss (The Beast) and Gracie Nash (Mrs. Potts) about playing characters they grew up on and how they get into character.
Last year we interviewed kids and had them sing 16 bars (or so) from their shows. This year, we’re shooting videos about kids getting into character. We call the feature “Building Character” and you can check it out at www.lohud.com/video and clicking on the school musicals tab.
Then, photographer Mark Vergari and I headed north to Chappaqua and Horace Greeley’s “Evita.” Director Chris Schraufnagel and music director Maureen Callan could not have been more accommodating. We watched the end of Act 1 and then “Schrauf” gave the cast 10 as I interviewed Julia Deutsch (Eva), Sam Caywood (Juan), Josh Miller (Magaldi), Christine Haggerty (Peron’s mistress) and Matt Haas (Che). Haas says he was one of the only kids who knew the show when rehearsals started, but they all seem to have taken to it, if what Mark and I saw at last night’s rehearsal is any indication. Great stuff, crisp blocking and voices that shine. Looking forward to that show, one I’ve somehow never seen before.
If you want to find out where I’ve been or where I’m headed, follow me on Twitter, at www.twitter.com/peterkramer