Category Archives: theater

A Theater-Goer’s Diary: Anything Goes

Enrico and I saw this show with Patti LuPone at a Sunday matinee in 1988. It was the start of our Cole Porter obsession.

I had bought tickets at the last minute and we somehow ended up front row center. The stage, only about 4 feet above the level of our seats, represented the deck of an ocean liner, complete with a railing.

When we arrived to take our seats, I had been puzzled at a rectangle of soft foam taped to the floor more or less under my feet. Later in the show we learned what that was for: there’s a scene in which two characters are leaning on the rail talking, swigging from a bottle of champagne. They finish the bottle and drop it over the rail – cue sound effect of bottle falling and finally splashing. It landed on our feet.

Being so close to the stage was amazing — we were often less than 10 feet away from Patti LuPone, and I never saw her sweat.

After the show we took the train back to New Haven, turned on the Tony Awards on TV, and there she was again:

Playbill cover for Anything Goes at the Lincoln Center Theater

A Theater-Goer’s Diary: “Private Lives”

I’ve been meaning for years to write a list of all the great theater I’ve seen in my life, thanks largely to my theater-loving dad. The production that’s on my mind this week, for obvious reasons, was one that I attended not with my dad but with his wife, Ruth, in London in 2001.

I had become aware of Alan Rickman when I saw Sense & Sensibility while on a visit to my friend Sue in Dallas in 1995 (I hadn’t seen Die Hard at that point – not my kind of movie). As soon as the film was over, Sue and I turned to each other and said: “Who was that?!?” We had shared tastes in men since high school, and Rickman was instant-crush material even in our 30s – that voice!

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