Saturday, May 31, 2008

I Got Carried Away!

With the help of GB, I was able to see Sex And The City on opening night. The movie theater was absolutely packed! Luckily we got there early and got good seats. I spend two hours in a constant state of euphoria. I laughed and cried with the other women in the theater. The movie was absolutely wonderful! I was so happy that it stayed true to the HBO series. I loved every minute of the movie. (So much so that after the show I immediately purchased the soundtrack!)

Friday, May 30, 2008

Cade's Field Day and End of Year Party

Allan and I volunteered to help with Field Day at Cade's school. So, we reported to the gym at 8:15 this morning. Mr. Davis, who has to be the best PE teacher ever, went through all the different stations. Half of the 8 stations involved water. As it turned out, Allan and I were assigned to the Squirt station.

The rules of the game were rather simple. One team of kids held the squirt bottles, the other kids had to keep from getting wet. If a kid got sprayed, he had to freeze. Another teammate had to come by and give a high-five which would unfreeze the kid. Within the 15 minutes they were at the station, each kid had to be given a turn at being a sprayer. Very easy and simple, I thought.

Five minutes into the first class and I realized organized play would not be happening today. Girls and boys were screaming at the top of their lungs. Some of the sprayers would stand in front of frozen kids just waiting for someone to come unfreeze, only to squirt them again. Kids reported so-and-so not freezing when being squirted. And none of the kids really wanted to give up their turn at aiming the squirt bottles. By the end of the field day day Allan and I were running around chasing the kids, laughing and screaming along with them, alternately squirted and getting squirted. We were soaked, but boy did we have a great time!

After field day the kindergarten class had their End-of-Year party. Allan and I stayed for that too. Allan got drafted to help with the sand craft station and I ended up being a face painter. We all had a picnic pizza lunch, and then Ms. W gave out some awards. Allan and I were both pleasantly surprised that Cade received a certificate for perfect attendance.

We all had so much fun, I can't wait for next year's field day.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

An Evening at the Theatre

Earlier tonight Ken and headed down to Charlotte to the Belk Theater. We were going to see Twelve Angry Men. I knew Richard Thomas was in the show, and for some reason I thought George Wendt was also in the show. I had read the play last year for the KLT playreading committee and I wondered how the show could be staged. As such, I was excited to be seeing the show.

The ushers immediately made me feel right at "home". I wasn't allowed to bring in my just-purchased-at-their-concession-stand Skittles into the auditorium. So I did what any decent person would do. I put the bag in my purse, snuck them in, and ate them while reading the playbill. How appropriate that I felt a little criminal before the show started.

The set was as you'd expect. A large room containing a table and chairs for twelve, a water cooler, a window, etc. The lights changed as the jurors filed in. Richard Thomas received a round of applause when he entered. And then the play began.

At some point during the show I realized that I was sitting, literally, on the edge of my seat, leaning forward. I had totally forgotten I was watching a play, and became completely wrapped up in the jurors voting on the fate of a young, black boy. I was absolutely enthralled!

On the way home I bored Ken to death by peppering him with questions about trials, courtrooms and jurors. I've never served on a jury, but if Richard Thomas served with me, I'd volunteer!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

An Afternoon at the Theatre

Yesterday at the KLT Volunteer Appreciation Picnic, I was able to catch up with Michael Carter, who has played my on-stage husband more times than I care to count. I was initially thrilled to learn that my current favorite script Almost, Maine was being produced. When I told him how much I loved the show, and how much I wanted to be in the show, he smiled slyly. He was in the show, in fact had a performance that night! When he saw my disheartened look, he quickly offered me a comp ticket.

I've just returned from the Open Space Cafe Theatre where I saw the closing performance of Almost, Maine. All in all I loved the show.

Michael Moore and Michael Carter played the male roles. Stephanie Gray and Shelly Segal played the female roles. I thoroughly enjoyed the scenes with Moore and Gray, especially the "Story of Hope". Segal wasn't as strong an actress, though she and Carter did well in "Seeing the Thing". Carter's performances in this show, especially in "They Fell" has been the best I've seen of his work.

I was pleasantly surprised that Juan Fernandez directed the show. I've not seen Juan since he directed me in The Curious Savage in 2004. When I asked him what was his next project he told me he was directing Blithe Spirit for Open Space in the fall. Since that's another favorite show, I told him to keep me posted on auditions.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Yard Sale and Picnic

This year we decided to hold the annual KLT Yard Sale and Volunteer Appreciation Picnic on the same day. We figured since most KLT supporters help out or attend the yard sale, they could head over to Harmon Park after for some hotdogs and fun.

I actually attended my very first KLT yard sale and I did manage to get a few items at great bargain pricing. After securing my treasures, I headed to Wal-Mart to shop for the picnic items. Since this was an appreciation picnic, I had requested our volunteers just bring themselves instead of potluck food. I had a planned menu, so shopping was fairly easy. We received a gift card from Lowe's so I headed there to get the hotdogs.

Glenn was the cook, and Mikey and I were the event servers. I had planned on 75 people and about 50 of our volunteers attended. We had plenty of food, though none left over. We chatted about Honk!, our upcoming production, and introduced the new season. We raffled off several items donated by local businesses. And I made sure every volunteer received my personal "Thank you" and KLT's appreciation.

The entire day was a huge success.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Quick Eye Test

Can you find the Bs? (Hint: there are 2 of them)
Now find the 1...
Locate the 6...
Do you see the N? (This might take longer!)
Lastly, find the Q...
Call your optometrist if you couldn't locate each letter in less than a minute!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Chicken Ranch: Theatre Alliance Has Rousing Season-ender

By Mary Martin Niepold
Published: May 12, 2008
Its storyline practically guarantees the fun: A whorehouse in Texas, circa 1976, is about to be shut down through no fault of some of its own customers: a governor, a senator and longtime friend, Sheriff Ed Earl Dodd.

Affectionately called the Chicken Ranch, this particular establishment is also where most of the action unfolds in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, a musical being put on by the Winston-Salem Theatre Alliance that opened Friday night.

Best Little Whorehouse is a big-number production with snappy choreography and a large cast, most notably 15 or so prostitutes, their madam, some townspeople, various politicians, local choristers, the Texas Aggies football team and -- at the center of the storm -- troublemaker Melvin P. Thorpe, a flamboyant TV personality who is determined to shut down the Chicken Ranch and fulfill his destiny as "watchdog" for the local TV market.

According to the show's own admission, this whorehouse had been around for more than a century. Now, Miss Mona (a former prostitute and current madam) has inherited it, and people can remember the days when the "ladies" began accepting poultry for payment, "one bird, one lay."

And so the evening goes: Ribald language, profane language, partial nudity and some very suggestive vignettes of coupling in the chicken house. Laughs and live music also spark Best Little Whorehouse, even though the pacing is sometimes slow on a show that's known for its spitfire and rapid delivery.

This show opened on Broadway in 1978 with choreography by Tommy Tune. Its book by Larry L. King and Peter Masterson with music and lyrics by Carol Hall went on to garner multiple Tony nominations and won Drama Desk awards for music and lyrics.

In Theatre Alliance's show, the music can fill the house at times, with two numbers in particular. One is a solo in which Jaye Pierce plays a gum-snapping waitress named Doatsey Mae who wishes she'd had a more exciting life. When she sings a hauntingly beautiful ballad, "Doatsey Mae," we also wish she'd not been quite so respectable.

At the other end of the musical spectrum is one of the show's best big-ticket numbers. "The Aggie Song" is a robust, full-bodied press from a chorus of football players getting ready to visit the Chicken Ranch, their prize for winning the Thanksgiving game earlier that day. It's pure fun, and director Jamie Lawrence successfully pulls in other cast members to deliver the song's punch -- raunchy athletes and prostitutes dressed in long satin gowns and corsages.

Two standout roles include the Sheriff played by Mikey Wiseman and the TV anchorman played by Gray Smith. Smith is never at a loss when taking center stage, as he frequently does at Theatre Alliance productions, and Wiseman, last seen in The Little Theatre's production of The Foreigner, has another hit with his role as Ed Earl.

Best Little Whorehouse is a good-time ending for the Theatre Alliance's season and its home at SECCA. A new home is expected to be announced in the fall.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Weekend at the Whorehouse

Yes I spent the weekend working at Whorehouse. What? No, I wasn't doing that kind of work. I worked box (office), sold treats (at intermission) and passes (season tickets). Come on, now. Get your mind out of the gutter.

After and in between all that working, I was able to watch the show. The guys in this production clearly outperformed the girls. The Aggie Song was the best dance number, by far. Mason Reich, the guy in the promo poster, owned this number.

Gesh Metz was Mona, the proprietor of the Chicken Ranch. While she is a very talented singer, I just didn't get the sense that she really understood her character. There was no rapport between her and her "girls", nor with Sheriff Ed Earl Dodd. (And it's Mona's relationship with the Sheriff that allows the Chicken Ranch to remain open!)

I'm not a prude by any means, but even I was shocked at the gratuitous sex act simulations leading into the act one finale. Jamie threw out the theatre adage that "less is more" and went classless and tawdry. I'm pretty sure I was witness to how some of the actors' kids were conceived.

Mark Armstrong, as the Bandleader and other characters, was fabulous. (I've come to expect nothing less from him!) Ken Ashford's Governor number was rousting and energetic.

It was Mikey Wiseman's "Good Ole Girl" number that brought tears to my eyes. He is a very talented singer and he absolutely nailed the song and the Sheriff's emotion. I kept wishing Gesh could have risen to the same occasion.

The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
was certainly an entertaining show. Unfortunately, I was left disappointed.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Celtic Festival

Cade, Mallorie, Mikey and I spent the day at Bethabara Park celebrating our Scottish heritage at the annual Celtic Festival. We all had a blast.

This year you could rent, for free, an entire Scottish outfit. Cade and I were the only ones game. He had no problem wearing a skirt!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Local Actor Makes His Debut

Allan, Mallorie and I attended Cade's theatrical debut tonight. His kindergarten class performed in the school's spring musical, Bugz.

We arrived at school early so I could help the kids getting into their costumes. The kids were funny; greeting their schoolmates as if they hadn't seen them that very day! With 10 minutes to curtain I gave them a performance pep talk. I really didn't have to, none of the kids seemed to be suffering from stage fright. I did have to explain that "break a leg" was a positive sentiment.

The show was so very cute. Each class represented particular bugs - ladybugs, fireflies, army ants and butterflies. The other kindergarten classes would sing, while the spotlighted bugs performed a little dance routine. Cade gave a great performance, even though he had to watch his neighbor to keep up with the choreography. Allan and Mallorie were laughing and clapping; I was crying with pride. Overall, I thought Cade's class gave the best performance. They were a very organized and energized group of Army Ants!

Monday, May 05, 2008

A Fun Job Interview

Earlier today I went down to the Children's Museum of Winston-Salem for a group interview. They were looking for museum guides. I figured being around kids would keep me young and active. I was a little disheartened to see all the other applicants were teenagers. I quickly took charge of our table assignments, in an effort to show that I was a good leader.

We sang a few songs to get started. One song I hadn't sung since I was in Girl Scouts! Next, we had to go to an area of the museum and come up with a creative commercial for that particular exhibit. I'd never been to the museum before but luckily Ana had. We went straight to the Food Lion exhibit and with Casey's help we came up with a poem.

We met the museum staff and I was pleasantly surprised to see Ally there. It was actually her first day as the museum's new Director of Programming. Now I'm really hoping I get hired. While it isn't the greatest pay, I know I will have fun working there!

Love and Support

Bill and Kathy, April and Jacob, Kathy C., Norm and Reba, Kenny and Amanda, Kaye, Mikey, Ken, Dick and Carolyn, Clara and Dawson, Mike, Michael, Mom, Liz, Myla, Jeff, Randy and Barbara, Mark, Stephanie, Gregg, Mallorie, Charis and Anne, and Norman...

Thank you so very much for coming to The Cemetery Club. I am so very honored by your love and support.

Monday Funny...Real Friendship

Are you tired of those sissy "friendship" poems that always sound good, but never actually come close to reality? Well, here is a series of promises that actually speak of true friendship. You won't see cutesy little smiley faces here, just the stone cold truth of real friendship.

When you are sad,
I will jump on the person who made you sad like a spider monkey jacked up on Mountain Dew.
When you are blue,
I will try to dislodge whatever is choking you.
When you smile,
I will know you are plotting something that I must be involved in.
When you are scared,
I will rag on you about it every chance I get.
When you are worried,
I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse it could be until you quit whining.
When you are confused,
I will use little words.
When you are sick,
stay away from me until you are well again. I don't want whatever the heck you have.
When you fall,
I will point and laugh at your clumsy butt.

Now, send this posting link to 10 of your closest friends, then get depressed because you can only think of 4.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

More Quotables

Life is too short to wake up with regrets. So love the people who treat you right. Forget about the one's who don't.
Believe everything happens for a reason.
Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.