Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

You’re in town?!

T. in Footloose - the MusicalBesides putting fingers to the computer keyboard in a compulsive nature (some people chew their nails, I have the need to type), I’ve also put fingers to the piano keyboard since I was a toddler, mostly as a vocalist.  I don’t have a lot of parlor tricks, but singing is one of my top three, when pressed into service.

Actually, in life, I am most comfortable in three settings: 

  •  At a table – Talking to folks in front of me.
  • At the computer – In “conversation” with unseen people.
  • On stage – Speaking or singing, where I only hear the people.

They tell me that research has shown that most people “would rather die” than speak in front of people.  It has been 238 years, 3 months, 13 days since Patrick Henry gave his “Give me liberty or give me death” speech after the Boston Tea Party, but I still channel his fiery passion when I say I’d rather die than not have the chance to speak or sing (or write) for an audience.

To that end, I recently auditioned for a show here in my hometown, and I’m happy to say I’ll get to sing alongside a truly great cast in the fall musical production at our city’s Performing Arts Center.  Overall, I’m extremely excited for this opportunity, but as a “woman of a certain age” I’m always bit nervous about the daunting task of memorizing lines, music, blocking and choreography (knees, be warned).  Even so, I believe the hardest thing about THIS show, will be convincing my older family members to come see it, at all.  It’s not that they don’t like to see me perform.  It’s… the title of the show.

After I called my Maternal Unit, to tell her I’d gotten the part, I did everything I could to tell her about the show (A comedy musical that parodies other musicals!  It satirizes the legal system, social irresponsibility, municipal politics, greed and more!) before I told her… the title of the show.

She was interested and happy for me, up until I uttered… the title of the show.

Here is the actual transcription of the highly spirited conversation between me (ME) and the Maternal Unit (M.U.):

M.U. – It’s very nice that you’re in a new show, but honestly, WHO is going to go see a show called… tell me again, what it is?

ME – < Sigh. > Urinetown.  Urinetown – the Musical.

M.U. – That’s a terrible name!!

ME – I know.

M.U. – Nobody’s going to come see that!  Honestly.  That’s a terrible name!

ME –  I know, I know.  But, so was “The Book of Mormon” when it first came out.  It was blasphemous, really.  Yet, people went to see it.  And, are still seeing it.  And loving it.  They somehow managed to get past the title.

M.U. – Oh, I don’t know about that.  I think only those Westside artsy-people would go see a show like yours and your theatre is so far away.  Nobody will go out there!

ME – You do know that it’s only half an hour from Hollywood, right?

M.U. – People don’t drive that far at night.

ME – Yes, people do.  In fact, you’ll drive more than thirty minutes to go to dinner inSanta Monica.

M.U. – Pssh!  The beach isn’t that far!  It’s only about twelve miles from my house!

ME – Twelve miles of stop and go traffic, whether you take the freeway or surface streets, day or night.  No matter what, that drive to the beach takes a half hour.

M.U. – Still.  It’s not that far, mileage-wise.

ME – Okaaaaay.  Well, the Performing Arts Center is only 28 miles from your house, according to Google Maps.  Plus, it’s a really easy drive because it’s all freeway and if you don’t come in during Commuter Traffic on a Friday night, you’ll be fine.

M.U. – Maybe.  But that TITLE.  < I hear a small shudder in her voice. >

ME – It is a weird title, but I didn’t name it.  I’m just in it.  Just so you know, “Urinetown – the Musical” won three Tony Awards in 2002.  It’s a super fun show that Newsday called “elevated silliness of the highest order” – but, even though it is a comedy, it makes you think.  It shows how once you strip away color, race, religion and social status, we’re all the same, with the same basic needs.

M.U. – Hmm.  I still don’t know who will come to see it with such a horrible title!

ME – I have to hang up now.  I have to pee.

There are three kinds of men.  The one that learns by reading.  The few who learn by observation.  The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers

Urinetown – the Musical

October 19th – 28th, 2012

The Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center

Box Office (661)362-5304

2 thoughts on “You’re in town?!

  • is so cool! I dont suppose Ive read anything like this before. So nice to find somebody with some original thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for starting this up. is something that is needed on the web, someone with a little originality. useful job for bringing something new to the internet!

    • TKatz says:

      Thank you for that! I’m glad you enjoyed it and I thank you for taking the time to comment — it’s like getting an e-hug with my pot of tea today. Thank you for making my morning sweeter. xo – t.

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