Tony Award Weekend
What a weekend! First, we have our first ever Talkin' Broadway Cabaret/Tony party at Don't Tell Mama on Saturday, the day before the Tonys and then, of course, there was the award ceremony on Sunday at Radio City.
Our party was sponsored by BroadwayArchive.com and what a party it was! Over 70 people attended, with many flying in from all parts of the country. I was hosting and was a bit of a wreck, to say the least. It had been years since I had been on stage, and here I was going to do 20 minutes of schtick. Fortunately, we had a good audience and everyone got a few laughs. A stiff scotch 'n soda boosted the nerves to get up on that stage and yak with our staff and chatteratie.
BroadwayArchive.com picked up the check for everyone's libations. They also gave away 5 videos from the Archive, Broadway tickets, and even some mousepads. James Marino from Car-Jam records provided everyone with CD's from his label which I thought was quite generous.
The show began 10 minutes late. I guess I talk Broadway too much. Our first guest was Alison Fraser and she literally knocked the crowd for a loop. She was simply terrific. Her rendition of "I'm Breaking Down" from Falsettos had the crowd cheering and stomping for more. She was accompanied on piano by Christopher McGovern and Sean Harkness on guitar. (Christoper is working on his musical, Lizzie Borden, which, hopefully, we'll get to see on Broadway.)
Tom Andersen, VJ, and Alison Fraser
Tom Andersen took to the stage next and he certainly didn't disappoint his Talkin' Broadway friends. Of course, he sang "Storybook" from Pimpernel for us and his "Far Away Places" was beautifully haunting. Ian Herman accompanied on piano superbly.
On Sunday, a whole group of us attended the award ceremony at Radio City Music Hall. I have to admit, it's impressive walking in this showplace and seeing six thousand people dressed to the nines. Other than what you saw on television there was little banter by Rosie O'Donnell and Nathan Lane between commercials, and not as much as Rosie did two years back. It seems things were tightened to insure that all the musical numbers would be presented and that acceptance speeches would come in on time...and they did.
Generally, once at every awards show comes an award which causes the audience to gasp or do a double-take. This year, during the PBS segment that gasp came when they announced the winner for Best Score. Everyone I know expected the winner to be Michael John LaChiusa but it went to Elton John and Tim Rice for Aida...thus the gasp, especially since the winners were not present. I think it's great they won. I mean I would never begrudge anyone for winning a Tony, but as the night went on and The Wild Party was shunned, I sort of got the feeling that it was more like let's vote not for a show, but let's vote to keep a certain show from winning anything. There were a few other surprises as well, but you don't need me to tell you what they were. That's half the fun in handicapping the Tonys, the other half is when your predictions make you look like a fool!
The 1999-2000 season is over, and we'll begin talking about the new season over the summer. Already, the buzz is on The Seussical and The Visit, two new musicals headed to the Great White Way. Here, at Talkin' Broadway, we're just in the talking stages of producing Talkin' Broadway Cabaret 2.
A special thanks from the staff of Talkin' Broadway to www.BroadwayArchives.com, the staff at Don't Tell Mama, Wayman Wong, Christoper McGovern, Sean Harkness, Ian Herman, Tom Andersen and Alison Fraser, all of whom made Cabaret 1 a night to remember.
See you Thursday!
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