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Tuesdays with Corti: Producers Callbacks

Had a late night last night after a full day at the Copley for callback auditions. It’s time for Paramount’s production of The Producers next season. Jam packed as it was, it never felt like a long day. “Time flies when you’re having fun!” I haven’t laughed this hard since, well, ever! Rib-tickling, side-splitting, thought I’d bust a gut; I’m experiencing every cliche to describe laughing so hard your sides ache, even the tears! Ya know, I guess we needed it too. Casting Director Trent Stork, got myself, Choreographer Brenda Didier, and Music Director Tom Vendafreddo gathered together with Sawyer Smith on hand as our reader, and at the top of the session, we reflected on the sad time of it we’ve been having lately. Many special people, dearly loved and admired, have passed so recently. 

We remembered Rachel Rockwell as Brenda spoke of her memorial on The Tony’s Sunday night. We shared the heaviness in our hearts and at the same time celebrated her and how, with her passion for her family and her work, “she did it all.”

 

Then, right from the start, the very first actor began, and it seemed like Mel Brooks just picked us up and carried us away to his hysterical world of Broadway musical comedy! It was not lost on us how lucky we are to be working on this right now.

How much we needed this. How everybody does! We all need to laugh! And what a gift all this crazy, ridiculous silliness is!

 

One after another, the actors walked in and put on a show! I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like it. The material is so technically difficult. Lots of words, rhythms, comic timing, high energy and crazy characters! (Comedy is the hardest!) These artists came in prepared! Mel Brooks’ comedy is a genre unto itself and they know it. They own it. And they want it. A highly competitive field manifested a belly laugh-fest at these auditions! And then they sing! Belting out these catchy tunes, I imagine the sound of them filling our theatre.

I think of our audiences just eating this up, having such a blast! What perfect timing! And so much gratitude to these actors for their hard work and joie de vivre!

 

Love & thanks,

Jim

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