The Adventure Continues

TT in the Blue Mountains and Sheldy in New York.

Culture Shock.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Farewell Houston

And just as quickly as it was on, VICTOR VICTORIA was off! But another lovely opportunity to work with gorgeous talented people. I have been so blessed in that regard.
Lovely Angel Reda is rejoining the Broadway company of CHICAGO.

A few of us had previously worked with the brilliant choreographer Kelli Barclay on HELLO, DOLLY! or DAMN YANKEES so we sent a special group pic to her.
And six of us were veterans of last year's production of CAMELOT at TUTS so that was reason for another photo op!
John Williford took some great pics of us all before we said our goodbyes.

Thanks to gifted cast member Laura Henning we are now immortalized on the famous wall backstage at the Hobby Center along with every other production. So...until next time....

A Benefit

A Fundraiser for DO40!
Johnny Mercer
Tuesday, November 18th, 7 - 9 PM
at the Triad Theater
Directed by Karin Baker with Guest Hosts:
Tony Sheldon and Anita Gillette...
Tony Sheldon and Anita Gillette
...and featuring DO40 members Joyce Nolen, Juliet Ewing, Bambi Jones and Patti Mariano
with special guests Michael Kerker (ASCAP) and Deborah Whiting
Tickets on sale
        on Brown Paper Tickets (No Box Office) and at the door!
$25.00 for members; $40.00 for non-members; One drink minimum

Friday, September 19, 2014

Broadway World

BWW Reviews: It's A Hit! TUTS' VICTOR VICTORIA Is A Winning Gem

BWW Reviews: It's A Hit! TUTS' VICTOR VICTORIA Is A Winning Gem
Tony Sheldon and Anastasia Barzee
VICTOR VICTORIA has the panache and sizzle of Chicago, the colorful character line up of Guys and Dolls, and the farcical comedy of Noises Off. Throw in some story themes that mirror La Cage A Folles, and you have a musical that has it all. TUTS' production of VICTOR VICTORIA is saucy, hilarious, and tender. The production value is extremely high, with gorgeous sets, lush costumes, and outstanding lighting design. This show is a winner with all the trimmings of a classic musical.
The story takes us to sexy, mysterious, and decadent Paris in the 1934. Anastasia Barzee plays Victoria Grant, an English girl, a soprano, who is down on her luck and looking for work. Her life does a turnaround when she meets the flamboyant and big-hearted Toddy, played by Tony Sheldon. He hatches a plan to help her become a successful singer as a drag queen named Victor. This plot opens a huge door for comedy, high jinks, and farce, creating a story that is thoroughly engaging. But wait, there's more- Victoria falls in love with King Marchan (Joey Sorge), a macho, homophobic gangster who contends that Victor is not a drag queen, but a (gasp!) woman.
The musical is based on the film version, written and directed by Blake Edwards, who wrote it for his wife, Julie Andrews. With music by the legendary Henry Mancini, lyrics by Leslie Bricusse, and additonal lyrics by Frank Wildhorn, this theatrical gem is a musical delight.
Directed and choreographed by Richard Stafford, this production has a cast made in heaven. Tony-nominated Tony Sheldon deserves an award for his portrayal of Toddy. Sheldon's Toddy is warm, adorable, sensitive, and very, very funny. Sheldon has the audience in the palm of his hand, with is masterful comedic timing and an easy connection with the other actors. As Victoria (and Victor), Anastasia Barzee sings with studied sensitivity and depth. Barzee's vocal range is impressive, reaching up into top soprano notes, but then easily nestling into the tenor range in songs such as "Le Jazz Hot". She is at her best in scenes with Sheldon; the pair have a wonderful stage chemistry. Joey Sorge is perfectly cast as the brooding and sexy King; one of the highlights of the show is the hilarious "King's Dilemma", in which Sorge proves his comedic chops and exhibits a powerful voice. Angel Reda owns the role of King's ditzy girlfriend, Norma Cassidy. Reda is completely uninhibited in the role, creating many laugh-out-loud moments in the show. It would be easy to play this character as a complete stereotype, but somehow Reda shapes the role into an interesting and fresh incarnation. As a side note- if there was ever an actress who was born to play Adelaide in Guys And Dolls, it's Angel Reda.
BWW Reviews: It's A Hit! TUTS' VICTOR VICTORIA Is A Winning Gem
Angel Reda and Joey Sorge
Jimmy Kiefer provides balance in playing Squash/Mr. Bernstein. His unassuming portrayal works very well with many of the comedic moments in the show, particularly in a scene in Act ll, in which he walks in on a certain couple, closes the door, then opens it again to apologize for walking in on them. Michael Brian Dunn (Henri Labisse) does a great job playing the petty, driven, and accident-prone Labisse, a man who is desperate to expose Victor/Victoria. Ron Wisniski's powerful stage voice is perfect for the role of Andre Cassell. The ensemble is gifted with gorgeous voices and winning dance ability. Richard Stafford's choreography is a star in it's own right. The Fosse-inspired choreography is especially exciting.
TUTS production of VICTOR VICTORIA is simply outstanding with all the elements of a first-rate production. Get your tickets soon! Go to:
Photo Credit: Bruce Bennet, courtesy of Theatre Under The Stars

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A quick stroll through the Theatre District

Apparently this is how Houston Houston sees itself but I'm finding little evidence of it.
I was amused by this bar in what appears to be an abandoned shop called Bar Not South, a venue so trendy they left the "T" out of "South".
I think it was the deliberately scungy window display that won me. The upside down Barbie doll is a triumph.
And then there's this outside City Hall. Is it perhaps referencing Chaplin's CITY LIGHTS? Or am I missing something?

More V/V

My fave rehearsal shot of me with Anastasia.
With the divine Laura Henning (from "Camelot") and Kristyn Pope (with whom I did "Hello, Dolly!")
And here are the official production shots.

and some video (with Julie Andrews' vocal, for some strange reason.)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

And we're off!!

And thanks for the flowers Jodie, Janet & Alyson!
I think Anastasia and I look like Jane Powell and Huntz Hall.
below, with the impossibly handsome Ian Parmenter
I mean, that's Prince Charming, right?

I was told I was allowed to bring in some personal photos to place surreptitiously on the set of my character's bedroom, so I looked for character shots of Aussie friends that looked in period for the 30s. I've got a shot of Jill Perryman in CAN-CAN, a pic of TT in CANDIDE, a shot of Mum from a Tivoli number and if you look at the blonde on the mirror you'll see it's Nancye Hayes as Sally Bowles in CABARET. A little touch of home in Houston.

2nd Day of Tech

with Anastasia Barzee

with Joey Sorge
and Jimmy Kieffer
Back in the frock

I managed to keep my birthday a secret on the actual day but a couple of days later word got around so I was ambushed back at the hotel after work and given an impromptu party. That's Aussie Leisa Mather in the glasses, with Charis Leos, Ron Wisniski, Lucas Thompson and Kristyn Pope.

Laura Cable was excited!
Robbie Roby less so....
But Lucas Thompson and Kinsland Howell were rapt
And Bernard Dotson gave me a birthday orange!