One of the DOLLY! cast members was driving in to New Haven to see a show after Saturday afternoon's rehearsal so we leapt into action, found seats online for the show, STUCK ELEVATOR, booked a nice hotel room (that took two hours in itself) and organised to be collected at Old Saybrook station after the train trip back to Goodspeed the next day. One normally has to request pick-ups 48 hours in advance but our company managers took pity on us. So we were off on an adventure to the big city!
The show was terrific, a "rap opera" with a cast of five based on a true incident when a Chinese food deliveryman was trapped in a Bronx elevator for 81 hours. The piece has been in development for over seven years and came to the Long Wharf theatre with the cast from A.C.T. in San Francisco led by opera singer Julius Ahn.
With music by Byron Au Yong, the terrific libretto by Aaron Jafferis brings to life the fevered imagination of the hapless deliveryman as he imagines his wife and son back in China, the torturous boat trip to America which took the life of his young nephew, the shrewish Boss's wife and his Latino co-worker Marco, the muggers who robbed him on a previous delivery in the Bronx, his own bladder, and the elevator itself which engages in a Transformer battle with the Fortune Cookie Monster. The ending is very moving as our hero sings a "Floyd Collins" like ballad when he thinks death is near.
Hopefully this show will continue its journey to Off-Broadway and beyond.
After a lovely night at the Study Hotel at Yale we embarked on a long walk to find a health food shop (no such thing in the Goodspeed area)
We quite liked Elm St which had a faded grandeur but otherwise we were reminded of what a depressing and somewhat scary city is New Haven. At one point we were actually targeted by two gents on the street who nodded to each other as we passed. I quickly grabbed TT and dragged him into a shop until they moved on.
TT was thrilled to see he'd made front page of the local paper
There was some sort of half hearted festival in the city square. Not many people in attendance, sadly.
We toyed with seeing this but opted for the new Brad Pitt film instead
This stage was set up for....something
Even the Gourmet Lady wasn't pulling the crowds
This caught our eye as the possible location for a Vogue-ish photo shoot
We liked this window display
As the day dwindled we took one last look at the legendary old Shubert Theatre, tryout house of many a Broadway bound show
This is the back view. Sadly, the rest is now a rebuilt glass monstrosity.
But the nearby Taft Hotel still brings memories of Anne Baxter and George Sanders strolling by in ALL ABOUT EVE.