Come look at the freaks . . .
It was announced this week that the beloved cult musical, “Side Show” will be returning to Broadway in its revised form [click HERE for NYTimes article]. I am second to no one in my love for the myth and magic of the original production of “Side Show” (although, when did SIDESHOW become SIDE SHOW?) and its inclusion in the pantheon of failed, big and brilliantly scored musicals alongside Merrily We Roll Along and Mack and Mabel. Once, in the long ago when I still had my beloved and much abused theatre company filled mostly with young (very young) people and did uniquely twisted, relevant, productions only a few bothered to attend, I helmed a production in which I, and my musical theatre illuminati partner in revisionist crime, Alison, re-wrote and re-arranged much of the show, making recitativo into spoken dialogue and cleverly using reflective materials on sets and costumes, catching glimmers of light which here and there flashed uncomfortably into the eyes of the audience, until the final reprise of “Come Look at the Freaks” when the ensemble sneakily dashed and turned on the house with a wall of mirrors to hammer home the point that we are all the freaks — no one ever called our productions subtle.
The revisions that have been made to “Side Show” now — in my humble “I have seen every musical since dirt” opinion — are both too much and not enough. The second act — as always — is still not strong enough. Messrs. Condon and Krieger and Russell, you are welcome to my mirror idea, and I will be happy to assist you. But, having seen the Kennedy Center production, I (and the others with whom I saw it) just don’t think it is a compelling enough re-dreaming to succeed, and I fear that if it fails again, it will fall into the so-so musical category rather than where it belongs, happily a legend among the Glorious Failures. Compare the revival to the original, here:
And now, the original twins, Alice Ripley and Emily Skinner:
I think that tells you pretty much everything you need to know.
That damn cat . . .
In addition to the house (and dogs) I have been sitting this week and the multiple trips to various doctors and airports and drugstores (oh my) I have also been checking in on a cat. I confess, I am a dog person. But I have stayed with this cat before on overnights, although in those cases, her sister dogs were there and this time they are not but I was warned she would be in a foul mood having been left alone in the house. Wow. Angry Kitty managed to urine-SOAK the New York Times padded round her box (I don’t think it was a comment on the level of journalism, although I suppose the cat could be a Wall Street Journal fan?) and, somehow, position her nether-regions up against the wall in order to defecate DOWN THE WALL? What? I spent about 45 minutes scrubbing, reloading newspapers and litter (although the evil furball had barely used the box) and looking to find the demonic feline so as to warn her that this sort of behavior would – in all likelihood – earn her the death penalty when her owners returned. She was nowhere to be found. Perhaps she ran away from home? Not a bad idea. I might try it myself if things continue along the path they’ve been going this week . . .
Techno-cursed . . .
The cat isn’t the only thing seeming to piss and shit all over areas of my life this week. First of all, there is HORRID cell coverage out here on the lake, so it takes for-fucking-ever to send a Tweet and requires running from one to another location in the house trying to catch bars. Consequently, I have had – shall we call them – some communication issues. Too, twice this week my new laptop has been acting up, making me unable to go on-line, the mouse behaves oddly, all sorts of things go wonky-wanky-winky and then, just as mysteriously and suddenly, it all straightens out. Bottom line, I’m sure it’s me but my adaptation to it is not going as well or as quickly as I’d hoped. And my phone has been behaving strangely as well. Then, two days ago, my car started doing that “I’m having trouble accelerating” thing again. And, final straw, yesterday, as I was driving to and from my various assigned tasks, I placed the mix-cd I long ago made myself that opens with Betty Buckley singing “When There’s No One” from yet another legendary failed musical, “Carrie” – and don’t you know, it started skipping and stalling and – well, I started to cry. I tried to calm myself down. I tried another cd. Same thing. I tried another cd port. Same thing. Now, I can’t have music? Remember when I had music?
That’s Alison playing for me. She gave me music for so many years. She is one of my very, very dearest. And Cody filmed me. I cried a lot that day. They both held me up.
When I was younger, I could never wear a watch. It would stop. Lose time. Gain time. Whatever. I suppose that I could attribute everything that has happened of late to my oddly powerful electromagnetic vibrations — it all fits in with my “I DON’T BELONG HERE ON EARTH – I’M A MISTAKE – I GOT OFF ON THE WRONG REALITY” — I’m going with that. I can’t talk about it. I think my Tweets this week tell the tale better.
Tweets to goodbye by . . . I’ll let my Tweeting tell the story . . .
- I wonder if you ever regret having casually thrown me away & disregarded my feelings & topped it off by making me a villain. Are you sorry?
- How Gay Am I? Garland in “Strike Up The Band” 8-10 on TCM. “TEEN WOLF” 10 on MTV. With doses of Cabernet, chest pains,& regret. Marry me?
- My blog entry today has cost me 5 followers? What? How is “Yesterday did not go as planned. . .” a breakup w/me post?
- Story of my life. Text from man: “I want you to come over but have to wait for my GF to leaf.” Reply: “What sort of houseplant is she?” FML
- I’m thinking Bette Davis from “Little Foxes” (although I prefer Tallulah) & if you have to ask “Which lines” we cannot be friends.
- Apropos my mood: RAGE/MELANCHOLY/SELF-PITY/REGRET. Remember I was almost famous as SWEENEY TODD?
- If I told the story, no one would believe it. Which might be a good thing. Please, can I get to “The End”? So exhausted.
- Today: Car cd player, computer, both BLEW the hell up in malfunctions and I was “shamed” on Twitter and in person. FML. So done
- OH MY HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THAT IS LINDA BLAIR, UNIVERSE, STOP STOP PLEASE STOPPPPPPPPP!!!
- Perhaps my channelling of extreme psychic electromagnetic love/light/energy is causing all my electronics to explode? Let’s go with that.
- Perhaps that is also what caused the awful cat I’m checking in on to pee all over the SundayNYTimes and poop ON THE WALL? What a week. FML
- And my latest non-significant-other genius to text: “I didn’t get the 5 messages you sent.” Reply: “Yet, somehow you knew there were 5?”
- Or, my Mother to say to me today about my dead father; “He was a genius, like you; so sad neither of you ever used it.” FML.
- I do most heartily apologize to myself for decades of having allowed myself to be treated like crap by people I thought superior to me.
- I wish I thought I could make it up to me but, sadly, I don’t think I can ever forgive myself. Therefore, I’m ending all communication w/me.