Friday, August 29, 2003

Last night was a nice trip back into my own theatrical past via the production of Sondheim's PACIFIC OVERTURES at the North Shore Music Theater in Beverly, MA. I designed this musical a decade or so ago here in Boston, one of five Sondheim musicals (also SWEENEY TODD, LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, INTO THE WOODS and MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG) I have been lucky enough to get to design during my career.

It was a really solid production of a great piece of material and a joy to watch. I knew the work of the designers so the visual strength and inventiveness came as no surprise. The production had originated at the Cincinnati Playhouse and was uncommonly well and consistently cast. A huge number of people who love American musicals absolutely loathe Sondheim, who writes intelligent, challenging and literate musical plays. As a colleague at MIT says, "When most Americans think about musicals, the first thing they want to know is 'Where are the girls in the feathers?' and she is spot on.

Anyway, one nice thing is that while I could admire what my designer colleagues had done last night, I could look back on my own production with a real feeling of having honored the material and that felt pretty good.

Today we had our monthly gay lunch with only five guys which made it nice and informal. We usually get between eight and fifteen but for the beginning of a holiday weekend, five was just fine. Tomorrow I head up for my partner's place for the annual Work and Play Weekend. There is a lot of work to be done, especially getting a location ready for an eight
man hot tub that is on order. Evenings are given over to movies, dancing, good food, games and some xxx activity. Interestingly, he phoned me this afternoon with the names of the guys who are expected to arrive tomorrow and suggested an evening of mixed doubles on his queen sized bed. This could be fun. Happy weekend, everyone!

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