Day: June 7, 2009

Live-Blogging the Tonys, Part II.

10:35, my time: I’m here with Phil, caught up to where I was when I left y’all.  Lauren Graham and Oliver Platt are presenting Guys and Dolls.  I like the color of Lauren Graham’s dress.  “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat” is marred by some audio glitches.  Think there are enough audio glitches?  Wow, someone came out with a microphone.  Nice.  This is a great song, the music in “Guys and Dolls” is fabulous–it is not, however, a show I have seen in its entirety sadly.  Not sure how I feel about the sort of rockstar gospel path it takes toward the end, although the self-spanking was amusing.

10:41: Early awards, congratulations to all the people who, evidently, weren’t important enough to be featured in the actual broadcast of the award.  Wow, a tie for best orchestrations?  Crazy.  Of course Billy Elliot won for best choreography.

10:42: Didn’t hear who these women are, but the bow on the dress of the one on the right needs to go away.

10:44: John Stamos is so tan.  He presents best supporting actor in a musical.  I’m guessing Gregory Jbara, who i love and who saw in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Billy Elliot, though this is a really loaded category.  Oh, the man with the British flag on his sleeve is Will Swenson, from Hair.  Gregory Jbara wins!  Well-deserved!  He brings his wife up with him!  He seems so happy!  When we saw Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Gregory Jbara spent half an hour at the stage door talkign football with my father.  Such a nice, lovely, talented man.  His role in Billy Elliot is really heartbreaking.

10:47: Best Supporting Actress in a Musical.  I bet Karen Olivo is going to win, though I love the ballet teacher in Billy Elliot.  Karen Olivo wins.  Good for her.  Karen Olivo is gorgeous, and seems really overwhelmed, but in the best way possible.  I also like her dress, it is very simple and appropriate–GREAT HAIR.  Yay Karen Olivo.

10:50: Carrie Fisher introduces Next to Normal–an odd, if hilarious, choice of presenter for this show about a bipolar woman. Carrie Fisher doesn’t look great, but I love her nonetheless.  Wow, she’s a total wreck.  From the cast of Next to Normal, the cast of Next to Normal.

10:51: Hi Alice Ripley!  PLEASE FIX THE ACOUSTICS.  I’m really excited to see this show on Wednesday! I’m curious to see this show’s treatment of bipolar disorder.  I’ve had a lot of friends who have dealt with this illness; the most sensitive fictional portrayal of the disorder I have seen thus far was Billy on Six Feet Under.  I cannot begin to imagine how they will treat it in a musical.  God, Alice Ripley is fierce.

10:58: Neil Patrick Harris eats sushi.  I love him.

10:59: Jessica Lange looks really beautiful.  She also looks a bit like lauren Hutton.  Phil says she looks a little facelifted.  I like the color of her dress, the nice magenta, but I dislike what it does to her breasts.  She also puts on reading glasses.  Awesome.  She presents Best Leading Actor in a Play.  WHICH IS DELAYED AS THE DVR GLITCHES.  Okay, crisis averted, though we did see what won Best New Musical.  Maybe Raul Esparza will FINALLY WIN HIS TONY?!?!? MAYBE?!  Please?  No, nevermind, Geoffrey Rush will probably win.  Aaaaaaaand Geoffrey rush wins.  Raul Esparza is never going to win a Tony, ever–he is the Kate Winslet of the Tony Awards.  She finally won her Oscar, though.  Geoffrey Rush has the light from the Rock of Ages performance.  He also says: “French Existentialist Tragicomedy Rocks.”  I love him.  He was great in Exit the King, he deserved this, I just adore Raul Esparza and want him to win his Tony Award!!!

11:03: Hallie Foote, daughter or Horton Foote, and costar present the late Horton Foote’s play Dividing the Estate.  Nice bow tie, costar.

11:04: Bebe Neuwirth comes to present the memorial segment.  Natasha Richardson is featured.  It is incredibly sad.  Evidently one of the major members of the Shubert organization passed away.  The death montage, as I call it, is accompanied by a chorus singing “What I Did for Love” from A Chorus Line.  Some major people died this year: Horton Foote, Harold Pinter, Estelle Getty…the camera work here is awful, just zoom in on the screen.  Bea Arthur, George Furth, Eartha Kitt, Paul Newman…this was a rough year.

11:08: More Tony Awards that were not deemed important enough for the main broadcast.  Mazel tov, people.  I love the lighting designer winner’s (Billy Elliot) jacket, amazing.  It is red, and velvet.

11:10: Frank Langella is awesome.  He is also tan.  The end.  Except not, because he is presenting Best Lead Actress in a Play.  Marcia Gay Harden wins for God of Carnage.  Must see.  Wow, evidently she was in the original cast of Angels in America: Millennium Approaches.  How did I not know that?

11:15: Piper Perabo and Steve Pasqua present Neil LaBute’s Reasons to be Pretty.  I forgot about Piper Perabo, nice to know she is still alive. Phil says Steve Pasqua looks like Tobey Maguire, and not in a good way.

11:16: Elton John introduces Billy Elliot as a show about a struggle for rights.  Evidently Elton John must struggle with reading the teleprompter.  YAY ANGRY DANCE.  I wonder how they’re going to get all three boys in on this?  The starting kid is the one that I saw–Trent Kowalik.  Evidently each “Angry Dance” is choreographed to the strength of the Billy.  Trent is a tapper.  I guess Trent is the only Billy they are featuring?  Well, it makes me feel as though I saw the best of the Billys.  Nicely done, Trent.

11:22: Gina Gershon and her giant hair introduces the Legally Blonde touring production.  I cannot lie, I really like some of the music from this show.  Incredibly catchy.  Never saw the show itself, but I watched the stupid reality show on MTV like it was my job.  Yay, glad that was short.

11:24: Harvey Feinstein and his voice of gravel arrives.  His lapels are shiney.  He presents Best Revival of a Face–I mean, Play.  The Norman Conquests wins!  I definitely need to see the other two plays in the trilogy now.  I cannot imagine how the cast learns three shows and performs them in rotation.  Phil calls the main producer J.K. Rowling.

11:27: Harvey Feinstein presents Best New Play.  I haven’t seen any of these, therefore I fail.  God of Carnage wins.  Yazmina Reza collects another Tony.

11:30: Welcome back Angela Lansbury, we still love you.  Jerry Herman is getting a life achievement award?  Good for him.  Phil is enthused, because he loves Jerry Herman.  “Put On Your Sunday Clothes” is listed as from Hello, Dolly and Wall-E.  Phil says that when Jerry Herman saw Wall-E he was in tears over how well his music was used.  Well Jerry, I was too.  The use of Broadway in that music was brilliant.  GREAT OLD FOOTAGE of George Hearn in “I am What I Am” from La Cage Aux Folles.  Aw, I’m really happy for Jerry Herman.  Aw, he was born overlooking the Winter Garden Marquee.  DON’T PLAY JERRY HERMAN OFF.  Goodness.

11:36: HI ANNE HATHAWAY.  Your dress is so poofy.  I want to see her in Twelfth Night this summer.  She introduces Hair.  Gavin Creel is all about hair.  There is a lot of hair on this set.  I think they must grow their own hair.  Man.  This is a show that i will spend more money on in order to be in the orchestra.  I really want to be harassed by the cast members.  I also want to get onstage and dance during the curtain call to “Let the Sunshine In.”  Man, the cast is really all over the Tony audience.  The audience seems to be liking it, however.

11:41: Dispersal of the hippies, enter Kristin Chenowith.  And her shiny blonde hair. And her boobs.  She is so perky.  She presents Best Revival of a Musical.   Hair wins, which is ridiculous but pretty great.  The producer is very hairy indeed.  The cast is thrilled, and probably high.  Maybe?  Hair, another show very high on my must see now list.  The cast member behind Oskar Eustis looks as though he’s gonna cry.  I want to hug him.

11:45: David Hyde Pierce comes out to present Best Leading Actress in a Musical.  He is adorable, and funny, and always happy to be onstage.  Wow, he’s clicking through this.  Aw, Hunter Foster is sitting next to Sutton Foster, sibling pride!  Alice Ripley, who is fierce, wins, of course.  I like her dress, the color is fabulous.  Alice Ripley is giving a FIERCE SPEECH by JFK.  Wow, the [TOS] people weren’t kidding.  Cannot wait to see her on Wednesday.

11:48: Audra MacDonald, looking really gorgeous as usual, presents Best Leading Actor in a Musical.  I am sure the little Billys will win and it will be adorable.  Oh wow, Gavin Creel must wear a wig.  Constantine Maroulis does not.  The three little Billys win!  Amazing!  The first time a Tony has been shared by three people.  David Alvarez, Trent Kowalik, and Kiril Kulish.  Aw, they all look so nervous, and young, and cute.  None of them wants to go first, and they are fiddling with their Tonys.  Oh my God they are so cute.  My sister got a picture with Trent Kowalik when we saw Billy Elliot.  SO CUTE.  Yay them!

My sister Jessica with her friend Gray, one of the chorus members of the newly-minted Best Musical, Billy Elliot.
My sister Jessica with her friend Gray, one of the chorus members of the newly-minted Best Musical, Billy Elliot.
Jessica with Trent Kowalik, the Billy we saw and the newest winner, along with the two other Billys, of Best Lead Actor in a Musical.
Jessica with Trent Kowalik, the Billy we saw and the newest winner, along with the two other Billys, of Best Lead Actor in a Musical.

11:52: Chandra Wilson presents a bunch of Jersey Boys.  I wish the cute Billys hadn’t been played off for Jersey Boys.

11:54: Getting tired, glad it is the end.  Hello again Liza, love you.  She presents Best new Musical.  Billy Elliot wins, of course, quite a night for those Brits.  Liza shouts, “Billy Elliot!  THE MUSICAL!!” DVR cut off right after that for me–evidently NPH sang a song?  I’ll find it on youtube.  Still, a great season for Broadway overall!  Really excited that I am in New York and have the opportunity to see so many of these shows!

Live-blogging the Tonys!

8:08: LIZA!!!! I tear up a little bit.  The reaction shot of Anne Hathaway rocking out and screaming is priceless.  Other thoughts of the opening:  HORRIBLE ACOUSTICS.  Why is Bret Michaels at the Tonys?  Everyone loves Dolly Parton.  Stockard Channing, who I love, looks tired.  I was sort of bored by Elton John opening the Tonys, though it was wise to feature those three boys early on–people adore them.   I really really really want to see Hair.  Sutton Foster is one of the best things about Broadway today.  OMFG LIZA AND ELTON JOHN ARE DANCING WITH THE CAST MEMBERS OF HAIR.  Also, the female soloist in “Let the Sun Shine In” is amazing.  I also love that all the Broadway people are singing along as well.  I must see Hair.  The Tonys are so close to me this year!  Aw, and Bebe Neurith got a flower!

8:12: Neal Patrick Harris is a great choice as host.  Everyone loves him.  And very few people know that he has a career in Broadway.  Also, he is having a golden moment.  And everyone loves him.  His suit is so shiny.  Wow, most expensive number in the history of the Tony Awards? What recession?

8:14: Constantine Mouralis (spelling?) seems like a nice person.  I am glad that people can escape American Idol with their souls intact.  Why are the acoustics still not fixed?

8:15: Jane Fonda puts on her reading glasses.  I giggle.  I can’t tell if i like her dress or not, but I sort of like the giant broach/belt buckle thing.  She presents featured actor in a play.  The only one of these plays I have seen is The Norman Conquests, and I’ve only seen one of those.  Roger Robinson from Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, an August Wilson play, wins.  He is an older man, and it is his first Tony.  He seems extremely happy, and grateful.

8:18: Bartlett Sher gets some love.  So does the great, late August Wilson. So does Obama, who saw the show last weekend with Michelel on their fancy date night.

8:19: First commercial.  I clean up from the dinner that I trekked to 1st avenue and 90th to collect: delicious chicken etc. from Pio Pio Peruvian chicken.  I put the remainders in the microwave to keep it warm for Phil, who will be journeying uptown post-rehearsal of his show.

8:24: First performance.  Shrek.  Saw it in December.  Again, Sutton Foster is a wonderful, charming lovely person and an incredibly talented performer.  Also, I love Daniel Breaker, who plays Donkey.  I saw him in Passing Strange last summer.  May he continue to win great roles.  Shrek was really, highly entertaining.  Of course the excellent cast helps.  And thank goodness, they are featuring Christian Sieber in this performance–but did his knee-pads slip on the stage? Ridiculous.  He is six feet tall but spends the entire show on his knees as Lord Farqaad.  It is a very clever, very suspension-of-disbelief little theatrical trick.  Also, They’re lucky they have a Jen Cody in the chorus, she’s as tall as Sieber is when he’s on his knees.

8:29: Sutton Foster, Brian D’Arcy James, and Daniel Breaker are in the audience in their costumes to watch the rest of their cast perform.  Adorable.  Also, NPH just said “BTW.”  LOVE. HIM.

8:30: James Gandolfini says that he and Shrek are of no relation.  I never watched The Sopranos, but suddenly I like him.  He and Jeff Daniels present bed featured actress in play.  Once again, the only one of these I have seen is The Norman Conquests. Angela Lansbury, unsurprisingly, wins for Blithe Spirit.  I need to see her in this show ASAP, before she leaves to continue being awesome elsewhere.  The audience LOVES HER SO MUCH.  The reaction shot of Heidi from [Title of Show] makes me so happy.  This is Angela Lansbury’s FIFTH TONY AWARD (amazing), and she still seems very humbled and grateful.

8:34: Something about presentations by touring shows?  I think?  I got distracted by a MoMA twitter about a performance art piece tomorrow night.  Why is Mamma Mia still on Broadway?  I mean, I understand that people love Abba, I myself enjoy Abba, but still.  I mean, really.  The show is fun but that was like, 8 years ago.

8:42: Snippets of plays!  I remember when they used to do this a long, long time ago.  I appreciate Colin Hanks, I hope he is on Mad Men more often; he has large ears.  They are introducing 33 Variations, a play I probably won’t see because it is about a Beethoven-obsessed scholar dealing with ALS.  Sometimes things can be too depressing for me.

8:44: Will Ferrell calls himself a Broadway veteran.  The audience laughs.  His tie is white.  Also, he correctly pronounces Waiting for Godot in a really exaggerated manner.  Aw, Hunter didn’t win for Best Book?  Sadface.  Will Ferrell is presenting for Best Original Score of a Musical.  The award goes to Next to Normal, which I am seeing on Wednesday.  Dolly Parton, in the meantime, waves at the camera from offstage.

8:47: Next to Normal winners shout out BMI Lehman, where Phil does his musical theatre stuff, then promptly get played over by the music.  I hate it when award shows do that.

8:48: Lin Manuel-Miranda, of recent In the Heights fame, comes to introduce the West Side Story performance.  They do the dance at the gym, a wise scene, one of my favorites from the show.  One of the best parts of watching the Tonys is getting to see all the chorus people, who have probably dreamed about this moment foreve,r perform for their shows.  West Side Story is, of course, filled with young chorus folk.  Also, they really did completely recreate Jerome Robbins’ choreography.  I mean, I guess you don’t tamper with that which is already perfect.  I sort of like the idea of a long-haired Anita, it is unexpected. This show really has some of the greatest music every written for anything ever.  If only the ending were a little different, right?  A decent Tony performance: good combination of showcasing the dancing talents of the entire cast while still featuring the two leads.

5:57: Susan Sarandon presents Best Direction of a Play.  I just saw her last week in Exit the King.  I love her speaking voice.  Matthew Warchus is nominated twice?!  Wow, he is busy:  Gods of Carnage and The Norman Conquests.  He wins for Gods of Carnage. Yasmina Reza’s latest play (evidently he has directed four of her plays?!) which I really want to see–the cast includes Jeff Daniels, James Gandolfini, Marcia Gay Harden, and Hope Davis.  He also acknowledges his Norman Conquests cast, which is sweet.

9:00: Susan Sarandon also presents best Direction of a Musical.  The women who directed Hair and Rock of Ages look like they could be in the casts of their own shows.  Stephen Daldry wins for Billy Elliot.  I predict Billy Elliot will be the big winner of the evening–forgettable music, but a really fantastic production.

9:02: Rock of Ages comes on without being announced.  I WANT TO SEE THIS SHOW SO MUCH.  Really it looks like the most fun jukebox musical ever.  Also, everyone onstage looks as though they are having a great time.  Is Gavin Creel holding an English flag?  Is that even Gavin Creel?  Jessica?  Constantine Mouralis is so likeable, wow.  The little man with the mustache looks sort of like Jack Black.  Heh, yay meta-theatre.  OH HE IS COMING TO TALK TO LIZA.  This makes me so happy.  Rock of Ages colliding with Liza.  Really, this is the best moment of the day.  And people are holding up their phones like lighters, as  “Don’t Start Believing” starts playing.  I never grow tired of this song ever.  I forget who plays the female lead in this show, but she’s supposed to be awesome.  Again, the camera lighters, joy.  Also, this show’s band is very much in on the action, nice.  GYAH GLITTER SHOT BY A MAN WITH WINGS.  Okay this show has gone very high on my MUST SEE NOW list.  And end with a crotch shot of the little man with the mustache.  WIN.

9:07: NPH is doing shots with Bret Michaels?  Can I come?

9:12: Hi Edie Falco!  I like the color of your dress, I’m not sure how I feel about the texture.  She presents the award for Best Special Theatrical Event.  Liza will probably win, although Will Ferrell has a fighting chance.  Liza wins.  I love Liza.

9:14: Phil calls me to tell me he’s on his way.  Liza thanks the audience. Did I mention I love Liza?  If you haven’t seen Arrested Development go rent it right now, if only to see Liza’s performance as Lucille Two.  Also, DON’T PLAY MUSIC OVER LIZA.   I will soon suspend live-blogging to restart the Tonys with Phil, but will restart once I get caught up to the Liza part. Thanks for your patience, gentle readers!!!

9:16: Marcia Gay Harden and Hope Davis emerge to present Gods of Carnage, another need-to-see.  Not sure how I feel about Hope Davis’ dress, though I appreciate that it is short.  Love the color of Marcia Gay Harden’s dress, but she could use a bit of lipstick and blush.

9:17: Suspension of live-blogging!  Will continue providing my much-sought-after opinions shortly!

In honor of the TONY AWARDS!!!

I had a post about my Saturday in the makes late last night when my firefox crashed, so I decided to go to bed.  You will all receive tidings of my fun evening in Brooklyn later tonight.  In the meantime, in honor of the TONY AWARDS, I present to you this video from a fan of [Title of Show]:

Tony Awards Cake!

I will be semi-live-blogging the Tony Awards.  I say semi because I will be watching the latter part of it on delay, as I am waiting for Phil to finish up his rehearsal for The Wasp Woman so he can join me uptown for our own personal Tony Awards viewing party complete with Thai food.  The party we were supposed to attend was cancelled, so we improvised.  I also say semi because I have not yet seen many of the shows that are nominated.  This will be remedied as the summer progresses, though I can guess that Billy Elliot will win best new musical and those three boys will win best actor in a musical.  Oh and Alice Ripley will win best actress in a musical for her role in Next to Normal, which I am seeing on Wednesday.