Our revels now have ended. Tonight was our second and final performance of Night of the Living Show Tunes. Both nights went phenomenally well. This was our fourth show at the Sheldon and we're used to getting 100-150 people a night. But this time we got 258 the first night and 225 the second! And what audiences! We could not have asked for better crowds. They listened, they laughed, the cheered -- quite often, in fact. They were so tuned in. I included several story songs this time ("A Trip to the Library," "Fathers and Sons." "And They're Off," "Madeleine," "The World Was Dancing") and the audience just sat riveted. They caught everything, every laugh, every surprise. It was very cool.
Judy Newmark even gave us a mini-review on the Post Dispatch website, singling out several performers and songs for praise. I believe we'll also be getting a review on the KDHX website in a day or so.
I think this was the best of our four outings at the Sheldon so far. I think I'm getting better at putting the song list together, we did the most interesting (and most difficult) material we've ever done in a concert, we had sixteen really talented performers, and there was some wonderful alchemy among this cast. I won't start talking about particular songs or performances because that'd take all night, but it really was amazing.
The part the audience doesn't know is that both nights there were tons of tiny little mistakes, from pretty much everyone, including me on the piano. It kind of freaked some of the newbies last night -- they were beating themselves up over little mistakes. But that's the nature of this particular beast. We put together about thirty songs, including quite a few very challenging group pieces, in a very short period of time. I asked some of our veterans if this material was harder than in years past -- they all said yes. Loudly. Emphatically even.
Hey, I never claimed to make performers comfortable.
Well, it's time to get this tired old body stoned, but let me conclude thusly: It is a genuine big-ass joy to work on material that rich, to perform in a hall that magnificent, with a cast that talented, and to share it all with audiences that warm and receptive. You heard me, a big-ass joy!
Now I'm high on two things! Thank you, cast! You ROCK!
Long Live the Musical!