I Capture the Castle

I Capture the Castle
I Capture the Castle based on the novel by Dodie Smith Book and lyrics Teresa Howard music Steven Edis

Thursday, 20 November 2008

The Public Theatre


Yesterday was one of the most exciting days in New York. I had somehow managed to get a meeting arranged at the Public Theatre to talk about Possessed! Above is a rather bad photo of the theatre which is covered in scaffolding at the moment but is housed in a rather magnificant building on Lafayette Street. The Public was started by Joe Papp, but it's new Artistic Director is an amazing charismatic man called Oskar Eustis. This theatre has always had a special place in my heart. Way back when I first came to New York, a play called The Normal Heart by Larry Kramer was on there. it was one of the first plays to deal with the issue of AIDS and HIV. I was so moved by the show that I called a producer friend in London and told him that he had to get this show on in the UK, whatever happened.... well, he did!

The Public puts on shows of great integrity, runs a free Shakespeare festival in Central Park in the summer, there are special 'rush' tickets for only $20 if you come by the theatre at about 6.30pm before the shows start. It has grown from a new idealistic space for theatre to become part of the establishment because of the fine work they put on there. So you can imagine how exciting it felt to be going up in the lift to talk about our show to the guys working in musical development. No one here knows anything about the Pre-Raphaelites, but they don't seem to mind about that, they also don't seem to mind about period drama. What matters to them is the story and the passionate relationships of the characters, the music and yes, that this is a show about inspiration. I think I rather like the Americans!

In the evening I managed to get a $20 'rush' ticket for Stephen Sondheim's new musical Road Show which had opened at the Public the day before. The book is by John Weidman and British director John Doyle directed the show. There were some wonderful performances by Michael Cerveris and Alexander Germignani as the Mizner brothers and Alma Cuervo as their mother. I will go into more detail about this show in another post, because it really deserves its own page - it was a brilliant show and another 'awesome' day in New York!!

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