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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Like Monday-night football, except not football

For as long as kicklines have had kicks in them and been in lines*, Monday has been the Broadway theater performers' day off.

*I wanted to evoke old-timey musical theater, but obviously this is an awful sentence and I have no way to verify it. For all I know, the 8 shows per week schedule has been in constant flux, and the Monday night off-day thing is only a recent development. But I'm going to run with it.

In any event, because of a strange and unusual change to WICKED's traditional schedule, last night we did a show. And, hey-o, I got to go on as Elphaba! What are the odds, right? Here is a photo of me backstage being happy about it, but also with a Monday-induced weird and crazed look in my eye:
In retrospect, it seems that WICKED's Monday show may have offended the theater gods, because apparently last night's show was unprecedentedly loopy, and not just because I was depleting all my energy taking weird and crazed photos of myself. 

What was loopy about it? Well, there were the little things, like that I almost wiped out right before the second high-belted "Fiyeroooooooooo" in "No Good Deed," or that my dear friend Alyssa Fox (Elphaba understudy, who now performs parts of my former ensemble track) actually did wipe it out during the Ballroom Cross (I know from experience that the dress she wears is insanely unwieldy...especially on a Monday!), or that for some reason the makeup on my chin kept spontaneously disappearing, such that our makeup designer Joe had to retouch me every time I walked offstage ("where is your chin?!?!" he kept saying).

And then there was the Oz Head set piece. Apparently there was a kink in the set automation sequencing, and as the Oz Head rolled out for "Wonderful" in Act Two it hit the monkey grate overhead and nearly toppled over! Luckily, it didn't end up tipping, and Tom McGowan, our Wizard, had time to dash out from behind it. But it also didn't continue its automation, and so was turned around the wrong way during the ensuing scene. Not a show-haulting deal in the end, but if you've seen WICKED you know that there are some crucial ways that the Wizard interacts with the set piece. So it was a challenge, to say the least. But Tom, consummate professional that he is, handled it like an absolute champ -- especially considering how shaken he was by the Oz Head almost falling. 

So I hereby bestow the Inaugural Unnaturally Green Award for Monday-Night Bravery, Resilience, and Recuperative Stage Craft to Tom McGowan, one of my absolute favorite people in the world, and who I'm so glad is okay! (Seriously, he is a totally awesome dude.)

With that, I am off to drink a half cup of coffee, in which I shall pour some quarter and quarter.

Glad it's Tuesday,


  1. Oh no! Donna Vivino from the first tour actually wiped out during the scene where Fiyero swings into save her. She tripped running off stage after tripping on his foot! This wasn't on Monday though!

  2. i bow down to u guys..even with this things happening u were able to keep your cool. the show must go on :)

  3. That head crashing into the gate was pretty danged scary -- and loud. I was very impressed by the way you guys handled it, though.

    Totally missed Alyssa's wipeout (she told me about it at stage door). I did notice you kept the green on your hands better this time -- guess the schmeariness* transferred to your chin :-p

    *made-up word

  4. Thanks, Felicia! Love you.
    Is there any sort of cash prize that goes along with this? I'll need it to explain to a therapist my newfound fear of rolling set pieces. And Monday night performances.

  5. Wicked Monday! ;) Oh my to all of that happening, some weird things have been going on with the Wicked productions recently. The 2nd tour had both bubble and wheelchair issues when they were here in NC. Glad you had a good show minus all of the chaos. :)

  6. Well done Tom! Sounds like he handled it very well... I remember one time our London Wizard just randomly kicked the Oz Head when it broke, he seemed to think that would fix it!

  7. I don't think anything loopy happened to me yesterday....I think I wore extra glitter though ;););) So thankful our Tom Tom is okay!!! xo -Libby

  8. There is a reason for the famous theater traditions and superstitions....Monday being just one of them. Never mess with them or karma.

  9. Love the crazed photo and your equally crazed recounting. Few things stir my solitary, audible laughter. Your wit is magical!

  10. Can I just say how awesome it is that your mom always posts raves on your blog? I love my mother like crazy, but she's German and, well, they don't express themselves like that. So bravo, Momphaba!

  11. Shouldn't it be the "Inaugural Unnaturally Green Award for Monday-Night BraverISM, Resilience, and Recuperative Stage Craft"?

  12. It's 7:04AM and you win the award for being the first one to make me laugh out loud today!

    Putting quarter and quarter into your half-cup of coffee. Brilliance.

  13. May I ask why you randomly performed on a Monday?