We’re back in Los Angeles after a whirlwind tour of NYC, and I have to say it’s really nice being a tourist in your own town. You know where everything is, you get to see everyone you want, and you leave before the contempt of your familiarity kicks in.
Opening night of FLEET WEEK was a stunner. Ovations at the end, and a huge swell of adoring throngs in the street. My take is this: I think you could use FW as a proving ground for your friends. If they find it offensive, then you can dump them with a clear conscience. I was prepared for a lot of foppish double-entendres (and got them), but there is a core of sweetness at the center of this musical that separates it from the snark that is the benchmark of the Fringe Festival.
Sean (in purple shirt) outside after the show
Mac’s book is solidly funny, and Sean has written two of the best songs of his life (I can’t remember what they’re called, but see the show and tell me which two you think they are). But I have to call out my sister-in-law Jordana, who has written the best lyrics of any show south AND north of Christopher Street, and that includes YOU, Broadway. There are so many little turns-of-phrase so clever that, to borrow a line from Pee Wee Herman, you forget to laugh. If someone bothers to post the show’s lyrics to the Web, you must peruse them at your leisure. Not safe for work, by the way.
Reviewers have always taken delight in savaging innocent works of art, and the critics of my generation (save Va. Heffernan, natch) seem to be so self-loathing about their brethren’s crop of creative endeavors that they go out of their way to piss on any parade within their purview. If the reviewers came to opening night of FW, saw the joy in the audience around them, and resolved to put a stop to it, then they can try and do that.
No reviews have come out yet, but it’s a dreadful pity that so much is at stake with the single, variable, objective opinion of one audience member. If they loved it, then we’ll trumpet it from the top of the Chrysler Building. If not, then Sean, Jordana, Mac, Lindsay and the cast need to know they accomplished what they set out to do. Tessa cried with pride during each song (despite it being a comedy) and I smiled for 1.75 hours.
In the last few years my friends and family have teetered on the edge of wild success without a tipping point. I hope this summer proves to be the tiny shove that gets us all where we need to be.
cake at the after-party