Saturday, January 25, 2014

The home of Little League Baseball, the armpit of the United States and....Lowell.....

The Carson Four Rivers Center in Paducah, KY

Our historic hotel in Williamsport, PA

The Community Arts Center in Williamsport, PA

The Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, NJ

The Lowell Memorial Auditorium

I hope this week's blog finds you all well! The whirlwind of travel and cold continues, but we keep rocking! Here's what happened this week....

We traveled from Lexington to Paducah, KY on Monday, and it was a pretty short drive, which was nice. A cozy little hotel with quite a few food options nearby, and rental cars to transport us to the theatre a few miles away. Shortly after unpacking, James and I made the short walk to Panera to get some dinner, and not long after the boys and I headed to the theatre. The Carson Four Rivers Center was a beautiful new arts center (above), and I was quite taken with the locomotive and various train cars just a few feet from the theate's entrance. The show that night was pretty great; not Lexington great, but still. And the load in was quite painless for our crew, which always bodes well. After the show, a number of us went to Buffalo Wild Wings close to the hotel for a little food and merriment. 

Tuesday brought something that has been and will be a rarity: a day without travel, and nothing to do during the day. I used the day to get a bite for lunch, check on the impending upgrade of my iPhone, and run a couple of other errands. It was a pretty laid back day, but it was nice to have the time to do a few things. We made our way to the theatre that night for another great show, and following that we went to BWW for much needed sustenance. 

We had a very substantial travel day on Wednesday, and rolled into Williamsport, PA in the mid evening. Pretty much the entire cast and crew found themselves at the Bullfrog Brewing Co. shortly after we arrived, as it was close by and served food. David and I thought the beef stroganoff sounded pretty darn good in the cold weather; and we were not disappointed. I was pretty tired after that, so I made it an uncharacteristically early early night. 
I walked around a bit in Thursday, taking pictures of the amazing murals across the street from the theatre, and quite a few of the buildings in town. I also made the short walk I the Wegman's grocery store to get a few things, including a great slice of pizza for lunch and a sandwich for dinner. The lovely historic hotel we were staying at was just feet from the theatre, which made our "commute" very simple. We had a pretty good show that night, though after the past few, the audience was a bit lackluster. Following the show, Frace, Brad, Tyler and I went next door to The Public House for a quick bite, followed by hanging out in my giant hotel room for a while. 

We made the relatively short drive to Morristown, NJ on Friday. I was excited to get to the theatre, as I had a couple of packages waiting for me; certainly not the least of which was my new iPhone 5S. We didn't have much time once we got to the hotel, and there was quite a bit going on that evening. I got dinner with Frace at a brilliantly thought out but pretty poorly executed "health food" restaurant, Muscle Makers. After that, I made my way through town to get a coffee and head to work. Morristown is quite pretty, and I looked forward to taking pictures in the daylight the next day. I got to work, and was met with a number of troubling situations. The crew had had a particularly tough load in; the venue's loading dock and technical capabilities weren't exactly up to snuff. And on a personal note, I was told that my packages had been opened; I was pretty pissed, to say the least. Thankfully nothing was missing, but I was a little perturbed that someone that works at the theatre would sign for, and then open a package and attempt to steal my new iPhone. Thus, my already low view of New Jersey just continued to plummet. And, the week was young. We all pulled together and put on a good show, for another lackluster audience. However, present that night were our management company, representatives from Broadway Across America and The Booking Group, who books all of our venues. They held a reception at our hotel following the curtain, so it was nice to mill around and meet quite a few new people that are integral parts of the promotion and distribution of our show. A good time was had by all, despite the falling temperatures outside.

Saturday proved to be an interesting day, and with some surprises here and there, it was "interesting" to say the least. That afternoon, a representative from James' agent's office was coming to the show. 3 of them had planned to be there the night before, but had encountered accidents and bad weather on their drive and were unable to make it. So, Gary Krasny, as in The Krasny Office (TKO) was in the audience. Susan had planned to take the show off to head to NYC for the afternoon, so I was in the able yet inexperienced hands of Corey Kloos to do my wig for the matinee. After leaving the hotel, I attempted to get a quick something for lunch and a coffee, so that Corey and I could start my wig prep early. I failed miserably. But I was only a few moments later than we had planned. The prep went quite well, but we had to pause for a bit until I received my clean laundry and microphone. And that is when the plot thickened. It seems that the inept and incapable local wardrobe crew had taken our clean laundry, mixed it without dirty laundry, and sent it off site (no laundry facilities at a tour house?? Really???!!!!) to be washed. And as of half hour, it was clear no one was going to have clean laundry. We all resolved to wear our own undergarments and scrounge for appropriate under shirts. Corey and I finished my wig in good time, and with yet another bad taste in my mouth caused by my least favorite state, we went out and rocked the show out with Katie on as Dyanne. Afterward I had the pleasure of meeting Gary Krasny, who not only complimented my performance, but offered me his card and asked me to be in touch when I was in NYC. I was flattered and very surprised. With a short break between our 3pm and 8pm shows, I stopped next door for what turned out to be the WORST pad Thai I had ever had in my life. Way to go, New Jersey. You keep finding new ways to astound me with your awfulness. I trudged through the cold and wind to the hotel, and attempted to sit for a few moments, eat some terrible food, and continue the setup of my new phone. Just as soon as I had arrived, it was nearly time to turn around and head back to work. The show went relatively well that night, but honestly we were all just ready to get the hell out of New Jersey. That night was pretty fun, as Frace had a couple of friends from his Jersey Boys days in town (one I had previously met in Wichita). James' wife Tara joined us, as did Katie's fiancĂ© Ben, so we had a grand old time in the hotel bar. 

Sunday we made the relatively short drive to Lowell, MA, and shortly after we arrived my parents and our family friend Rae met me at the hotel. We were in a bit of a time crunch, but we found a place relatively close by for dinner. It was great to see them, as it had been since New Years since I had seen my parents, and Boston since I had seen Rae. The show that night was a little strange, in that the venue was not nearly equipped for our show, our load in, or our group in general. It was a rough one, but the audience certainly made up for it. That, and the fact that my family was there made up for any unpleasantness. 

So, it was a crazy week, but we have a few more before we have a week sit down. I am trying to take pictures and see as much as possible, but it hasn't been easy. Thanks for tuning in this week, and I hope you will next time as well!

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