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February 26, 2019:

TWO REHEARSALS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, we had us a double rehearsal day yesterday.  I had no time to even eat prior to the first rehearsal, but happily I did get a little over eight hours of sleep, which I really needed.  But once up, I had almost no time before we began.  I did answer some e-mails, but then I had to get ready for our one o’clock start.

First up was Daniel Bellusci and we dove right in with his three numbers. First he did a put-together of Watch What Happens and I Will Wait for You from The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. Then he did Someone New in My Life from Micki and Maude, and finally it was Penny by Penny from the Legrand/Harnick A Christmas Carol.  Then came young Ellie Birdwell.  She was the first of several who were mildly sick, so I immediately began my preventatives, as I have no time to be sick.  First she did Sweet Gingerbread Man, and then her second song, Can You Tell the Moment from the concept album of Legrand songs with the Bergmans that Nathalie Dessay recorded.

After that, it was Kerry O’Malley.  She began with How Do You Keep the Music Playing, then did a put-together of What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life and On My Way to You, and finished with Whore’s Song from Amour.  She was followed by Brittney Bertier.  We ran her put-together of Summer Me, Winter Me and The Summer Knows, then it was Other People’s Stories from Amour, and finally Jazz Time from Marguerite.

After Brittney (AB) came RY (Robert Yacko).  He began with You Must Believe in Spring, then did An Ordinary Guy and Street Painter’s Lament from Amour, and finally The Windmills of Your Mind. Then came our last, Jenna Lea Rosen. She’s doing all Yentl songs – she opens the show with Papa, Can You Hear Me and This is One of Those Moments.  Mid-show she does No Wonder and The Way He Makes Me Feel, and she closes with A Piece of Sky.  Those Legrand tunes are amazing and so is this cast of player.

And then I had a whopping ten-minute break before the revue cast arrived for their three-hour rehearsal.  Interestingly, three of the five people are Kerry, Brittney, and Robert, so they were all in close proximity.  We’re putting in two new numbers for this iteration (replacing two others), so we rehearsed those musically first.  Then we began at the top of the show.  Our writer, Joe Keenan arrived for that.  I thought the staging adjustments were going to take time, but they’re so minimal and everyone picked up on them so fast, that we’re in fine shape in that regard.  Kerry couldn’t do the show last time, but now she’s doing the track someone else did and she’s just incredible with the energy she brings to the table.  The whole idea of doing a live presentation of all this material was hers.  I added a couple of tiny staging things as we went along, and also we assigned the who is at what mic when stuff.  In the previous incarnation there were head mics – we’re not using them here and frankly I like that better for a club setting.  There are five hard-wired mics on stands, and then one wireless for just a couple of numbers.

We got through everything and wrapped just before eight o’clock.  The only food I’d had was a Kind bar, so I immediately went to Taco Bell and got stuff, brought it home, and ate it all up very quickly.  It happened to be an excellent batch this time.  Then I had a long telephonic conversation, then watched a really terrible TV special from the mid-1970s – From This Moment On – Cole Porter, starring Steve and Eydie, Ethel Merman, Bob Hope, and The Swingle Singers 2 (the second group). Whoever’s idea it was for the structure of the show, it was a bad idea and typical of what Smith and Hemion did back then.  Eydie, while possessed of an amazing voice, did not translate well to the camera – her eyes have no life at all.  Steve comes off a little smarmy, but what a voice.  Bob is, well, Bob, and Ethel shows everyone just how it should be done, as always.

After that, I relaxed and then it was time to write these here notes.

Today, I’ll hopefully arise after a good night’s beauty sleep, then I’ll do the usual morning stuff, eat, hopefully pick up some packages (not hopefully – there ARE packages but I never got over there yesterday, obviously), and then we have another three-hour revue rehearsal from three to six, during which we’ll review the revue.  Then I have another set of liner notes to do.

Tomorrow, I have a lunch meeting, and then I can have a relaxing rest of the day and evening.  Thursday is our second Kritzerland rehearsal, Friday is another revue rehearsal, Saturday is our stumble-through, Sunday is our sound check and show, Monday I may actually be able to rest, Tuesday is a revue rehearsal, a sound check for the Nick Redman memorial, and then the memorial, and Wednesday we play our revue.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, do the usual morning stuff, eat, hopefully pick up packages, have a rehearsal, write liner notes, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite songs and albums of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, solo or together?  Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have had two good back-to-back rehearsals for the price of one.

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