Woke up this morning with a tune in my head. Not unusual for me. This time it was from yesterday’s opening performance at Mayor Tom Weisner’s Memorial Celebration at Paramount. I got up and found myself humming this version of the great Hawaiian singer IZ’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World” as it was sung by Tommy Vendafreddo to Michael Kurowski’s accompaniment on the ukulele. It was simple and special, sweetly rendered by these guys. It set a tone of magic and whimsy to this occasion. Tom would have liked it. I’ve no doubt he was there in spirit. A beautiful crowd was gathered for him. Many moving stories and tributes to the mayor’s lifetime of public service were shared.

He is missed and hopefully will be watching over us, taking care of us from above as he did as a great champion of our theater since the very beginning of the Broadway Series.

Mayor Weisner loved to joke and make folks laugh. (I just wonder if he’s hovering above watching us in rehearsal for The Producers!) We had a jam-packed week of laughter, singing and dancing putting this zany musical into the hands of our supremely talented cast as we began rehearsals last Tuesday! You can plan and plot ’til the cows come home but ya never know what you’ve got until the actors begin to bring everything to life. And this cast is “bringin’ it” every day and in every way! Brenda Didier is making a smashing debut as choreographer here with her bevy of fan-dancing beauties enveloping our “Leo Bloom,” Jake Morrissy. Blake Hammond, as our “Max Bialystock,” is hysterically leading the charge and together, Blake and Jake, (pretty cute, huh?) are turning into a ready-for-prime-time comedy team! It’s a slice of heaven! Musical Comedy Heaven!

Off to rehearsal! Keep a good thought!

Love & thanks,