June 14th 2010
Edited by: Marcy
NThere’s not going to be much to report in this report…
As per usual Randy did a great job w/ this Reading. He was funny and understated and over-the-top all at the same time as “Shane,” one of the many people involved in the skit, On Facebook.
But unfortunately, I cannot say the same about the event or the venue. This was a really great cause, raising money on behalf of the Human Rights Campaign, Marriage Equality New York, and New York Theater Workshop. It was held at The Angel Orensanz Center… essentially an old converted church, so the atmosphere was perfect for a wedding.
But after spending $75 to attend the event, I was more than a little disappointed to arrive and discover that what was billed as General Admission was actually assigned seating, so I was not able to sit w/ friends. I wound up in the second row from the back, in a plastic folding chair, right by the lobby door.
Also, since all chairs were placed on the floor w/ no incline, and the “stage” was merely the altar of the church, it made it virtually impossible to see any of the actors! Occasionally, when all the people in front of me moved their heads in just the right pattern I was able to see the actors from shoulders up.
The sound was another story… the sound system and acoustics were awful, compounded by the noises coming from the lobby and the office, the creaking wooden floors as people moved about, as well as the constant squeaking of those plastic chairs as people jockeyed to get a view.
The two back rows didn’t even get the candied almond favors that the rest of the crowd did. :(
As worthy as it is, I may have to think long and hard before attending another fundraiser for this group…
On to the show….
There were 15 separate short plays, some serious, some funny and a few downright hilarious!
Besides, On Facebook, my favorites were Outlaw Wedding w/ Kathy Najimy, The Gay Agenda w/ Kristine Nielson and Christopher Sieber, and Doubtless w/ Kristine Nielson, Dale Soules, Michael Stuhlbarg, B.D. Wong, and Michael Longoria. All were comedies. Other notable actors were Judd Hirsch, Matthew Broderick and Dan Butler, “Bulldog” from Frasier.
In keeping w/ the wedding theme, the women wore fancy dresses or pants sets and all the men wore suits… Randy had on a great looking beige suit w/ what looked like a light blue cotton button-down shirt underneath. As I said before, I really couldn’t see the performance very well, but Randy did pass right by me as the cast left the room at the end of their skit.
On Facebook, which also included Jefferson Mays, B.D. Wong, Debra Monk, Halley Feiffer, Dale Soules, and Nancy Giles was a dramatization of a real discussion that took place on Facebook in December of 2009. It is not only a funny take on the serious issue of marriage equality, but it also poked fun at Facebook itself.
On one side, there’s quiet and unassuming Bob (Wong) who has friended sweet and homey and ultra-conservative Beverley (Monk). They are the kind of FB people that you friend, but don’t know why. LOL! Into the mix comes Bob’s outspoken gay friend Shane (Randy), and his husband Oliver (Mays).
The banter back and forth b/ Shane and Beverly was very funny, w/ Beverley answering hothead Shane w/ a sickly sweet voice declaring, “I have some wonderful gay friends.” and an annunciated, “Smiley Face!”
Oliver, in an attempt to trick Beverley, logs on w/ a rant about how marriage is meant to be b/ one man and one woman, yadda, yadda, yadda. When Beverley and her friends declare - w/ a thumb up to the audience, “I like this!” Shane then happily introduces Oliver as his husband and seals it w/ a rather long kiss! From that point on they stand very close to one another, holding hands, or w/ arms over shoulders, etc.
At several points, in true FB fashion, the actors also announce to each other, “Psssssst! Private Message!” or “Four people like this!”
It really was very clever, well written and very well performed. Some of the other skits seemed rougher and other performance stiff and unpolished.
For the final Reading, all the members of the previous Readings stand on stage as witnesses to the wedding taking place. Unfortunately, Randy did not participate. Someone said they saw him upstairs in the balcony which served as the green room for the event.
After the show, those who bought the more expensive tickets were invited to meet and greet w/ the cast and directors. I did not have these tickets, but a friend did. Randy did not attend. For what it’s worth, it has been reported that he had to leave very early Tuesday morning to make a train to Stockbridge.
Gee… for someone who said there wasn’t much of a report, I sure as hell wrote an awful lot! ;D
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Edited by Marcy