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April 28, 2018:

THE SHELL GAME

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I watched a rather excellent documentary last night on the Flix of Net entitled Bobby Kennedy for President, four one-hour episodes.  Why they treat it like it’s a TV series is anyone’s guess, but I suppose it makes Netflix happy in some way.  First off, unlike most of the multi-part documentaries they’ve aired, this one never overstays its welcome and never feels repetitive.  Second off, watching it is sometimes very emotional because one’s mind immediately plays the “what if” game – what if Mr. Kennedy had not been assassinated?  Who would be alive, who would be dead, how would the course of history have changed? What a time of turmoil that all was, but what’s fascinating in light of what politics has devolved to, basically an Internet fueled reality show where one simply can’t tell the real from the bogus, and even when the bogus is repeatedly exposed people still believe it’s real – back then it was a whole different world and ballgame and a better one because there was none of this crap that goes on today.  Yes, politics has always been politics, but at least the playing field was pretty level in those days.  You watch Kennedy out among the people, with virtually almost no security, shaking hands, getting up close and personal – and all without Twitter.  But in the end, one is left with nothing but sadness for such a world gone mad that in a period of five years, a president, a civil rights leader, and a candidate for president could all be killed like that. And who all basically kind of stood for the same thing.  I’m not a conspiracy theory person in any way, but you do have to wonder sometimes. You do have to wonder why a police department would destroy hundreds of pieces of evidence in an assassination case, and never ever be taken to task for it.  Anyway, I recommend this documentary – it’s very well done and the vintage footage is astonishing, actually.

Prior to that four hours, I’d gotten a little over five hours of sleep.  Once up, I printed out orders, and then got ready for the meeting.  Before going, I went and had some chicken tenders.  Then I moseyed on over to the Hills of Beverly and the Wallis at the Annenberg theatre, to meet with their production folks and people from the city who are coordinating this event.  I made my needs very clear right off the bat, in terms of space.  There was one issue that came up having to do with the big orchestra that has two five-minute segments in act one and two in act two.  That gentleman wants what they call the orchestra shell – wood paneling and a ceiling.  I spoke up vociferously about it and even more vociferously when we were actually in the theatre.  I feel strongly that that kind of setting gives the complete opposite effect of what the evening is, as if it’s going to a symphonic concert in a symphony hall, whereas I want it to look inviting and elegant and more like a theatre concert. Having the shell plays havoc with trying to do any kind of nice lighting, especially on the cyclorama that we’ll be projecting on.  When there aren’t any projections we want pretty lights – that would not be possible with the shell.  So, I think I made a good case, but the point person, who is Richard’s son, will deal with that aspect and I’m fairly certain we’ll get it the way we like, since the non-orchestra stuff, i.e. all our singers and songs are the major portion of the show.  It’s never easy dealing with all these things, because I’m not out to bruise anyone’s ego or needs, I just know the kind of evening I’m putting together and what will serve us best.

That was about ninety minutes, then I hurried back to my car to try and beat the horrid traffic, but it was horrid nonetheless, at least going up to Mulholland.  Once past that, everything moved quickly.  I went to the mail place and picked up some packages, including the latest test books, which fixed the last issue and now seems fine.  So, they’ll now ship the replacement books and I should have those by the end of the week.

I printed out more orders, did a tiny bit of work at the piano, made some popcorn for my snack, and then watched the four-hour documentary.  And then it was time to write these here notes.

Today, I’ll be up early and at ten we do our three-hour musical theater singing workshop at the Group Rep. I’m told we have between twelve and fifteen people, and that’s a fine number.  After that, I’ll hopefully pick up some packages, eat something, then relax.

Tomorrow is a ME day and night and no one’s going to tell me differently.  Oh, I may write a new set of liner notes if I’m feeling so inclined and I’m sure I’ll do some work at the piano, since my goal this week is to finish at least two more songs, which will give us ten so far.  Monday is our first Kritzerland rehearsal, which I’m looking forward to, and the rest of the week is writing, meetings and meals, our second Kritzerland rehearsal, our stumble-through, and then sound check and show.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up early, do a workshop, hopefully pick up packages, eat, work at the piano, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: Where were you and how did you hear about the three assassinations of the 1960s? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy that we will most likely win the shell game.

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