It’s mid-July and the weather isn’t all that is heating up the Fox River Valley!
Today begins our third week of rehearsal for Paramount’s Fun Home, this summer’s musical theatre offering for our BOLD Series’ inaugural season at the freshly refurbished Copley Theatre. Alison Bechdel’s 2006 graphic memoir, subtitled by her as a “family tragicomic,” is proving to be a challenging and revelatory work. Our remarkable cast is bringing her autobiography to vivid life mining great richness as it demands so much extraordinary skill and personal dedication – laughs, sweat, and tears!
While we have been reflecting on our own families and our own lives in this storytelling, last week a blast from my past appeared at the rehearsal room doors – Heather Headley dropped by! Heather and I go back to our days on Broadway together in Ragtime and seeing her enter to greet our company, cast a warm glow over everyone, her being so gracious, generous, and glamourous as ever! She just happened to be in town and came by to say hello! What a rush! We hugged and reminisced, and shared a couple quick stories with everyone as they came up to introduce themselves and meet her. Something I never knew was that back during the run in Toronto, Heather was impressed by my escape artist maneuver as Harry Houdini, disappearing out of an exploding crate onstage in midair and reappearing at the back of the theater – she laughed saying she couldn’t believe how I wasn’t out of breath as I entered singing walking down the aisle through the audience! I remembered and spoke of standing in the wings seeing Heather, my friend and fellow Chicagoan, go on as Sarah and singing “Your Daddy’s Son” … I can see it still, how she wept while lifting her voice in this lullaby, and the flashback of her singing the words, “Forgive me.” Golden memories.
And before I sign off here, be sure to get in on this fall’s Broadway Subscription Series available now presenting four unforgettable productions: Dreamgirls, The Sound of Music, Into the Woods, and School of Rock! Preproduction is looking astounding promising full, live orchestras and the highest caliber of artistry and performance possible rehearsed, designed, and built right here in Aurora! Pre-covid, Paramount achieved the ranking of becoming the second largest subscription based theatre in the country and with our growing audience enthusiasm and support, we have come back better than ever!
Off to rehearsal now to ready Fun Home for its final week before Tech and then Preview Performances beginning August 3! This theatrical gem, the 2015 Best Musical Tony Winner, is one you will never forget!
Love & Thanks,