Home-Spun Philosophy

Through Fathom Events, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) recently hosted a local screening of Rear Window, which I attended. TCM — bless their nostalgic hearts — book-ended the film with talk-show variety commentary and anecdotes about the making of the film from Ben Mankiewicz (a TCM regular, or so Google told me). He mentioned how this story wouldn’t even exist these days because no one watches their neighbors or even looks out of their windows; we’re all on Instagram, etc. I think he’s got it wrong….

“We’ve become a race of Peeping Toms. What people ought to do is get outside their own house and look in for a change. Yes sir. How’s that for a bit of homespun philosophy?” – Stella (Thelma Ritter), Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock)

This, right here, is why Rear Window is still quite relevant. What are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr (yes, even Tumblr), but windows into our neighbors lives? We peep on friends, family, and strangers across the courtyard of social media. We are Jimmy Stewart’s L.B. Jeffries, peering into the lives around us. “Nah, this is different,” you say. “With social media, we all acknowledge that a little harmless social media stalking [how is that not more sinister?] is perfectly acceptable. Spying into someone’s open window is different!” Now, as Grace Kelly’s Lisa says, “I’m not much on rear window ethics,” and I’m not advocating tom peepery, but if you leave your window open, you are also silently agreeing to the fact that others will look. And just like Jeffries, we make all kinds of assumptions about what we see through our LCD windows. We assume that our friends lead far happier lives, that internet silence means someone is depressed, that a lack of “likes” actually means something in the real world, or that a delayed response after our words have been “seen” implies that we aren’t wanted. Sure, just like our open windows expose some truth about our lives, sometimes our online assumptions are correct, but what happened to the adage, never assume? Yes, Thorwald was guilty, but Jeffries wasn’t right about all of his neighbors: the Composer wasn’t doomed to failure and drunkenness, Miss Lonelyhearts wasn’t hopeless, and Miss Torso surprised us all with her military man.

This whole subject deserves much more than I can give it at present, but for now, here’s my point: maybe we should take Stella’s advice and shut down our digital binoculars, go for a walk, and (this part’s mine) ask questions of our friends and neighbors instead of making assumptions.

“How’s that for a bit of home-spun philosophy?”

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Crossroads Recording Project

Support local theatre artists (and some of my friends) by giving to the Crossroads Recording Project. Ryan Anderson is a talented young force, and a friend of mine. Please help him make this happen!

“Crossroads Recording Project is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. Contributions for the purposes of Crossroads Recording Project must be made payable to Fractured Atlas and are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.

The purpose of creating “Crossroads” is to collaborate with the phenomenal theatre talent of Seattle, to create a recording to give back to the education programs that are prominent in the Pacific Northwest and to offer the world a new version of classic showtunes in an artistic format that is tangible.

We hope to raise $30,000 to make this special and unique recording of Broadway show tunes and we are trying to raise 2/3 of that budget through this campaign.

The recording will feature collaborations of some of Seattle’s finest theater artists – along with members of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

Once the album is completed, 40% of sales will go to the 5th Avenue Rising Star Project and the Northwest Choirs education programs so that young actors, singers and dancers will continue to have opportunities to perform and grow artistically.”

(from Indie-Go-Go Page)

Charlotte’s Web at TMP

Charlotte’s Web at Tacoma Musical Playhouse’s Family Theater opens this weekend, November 1st! It is a sweet little show, we’ve got here, so grab the kids and join us for this classic tale set to music.

The show runs Saturdays at 11am and 2pm, Sundays at 2pm.
November 1-9.

Tickets available here.

Photo Credit: Steve Barnett
Photo Credit: Steve Barnett

Here’s to You

We closed The Drowsy Chaperone last night. I am sad to see that show end, but I woke up this morning to find a heartfelt note from a couple that saw the show last night and The Sound of Music the night before. Here are their kind words:

“Hello Sarah….

Greatly enjoyed your Trix performance last night as well as Schraeder the night before. Great stage presence and a fun transformation between the two very different roles. What really blew us away was the unexpected the “bigness” of your voice, in particular after the sub-dued and classy role in “Sound..” Congrats and many thanks. You are a great talent.

We are visiting from NY which we do a couple of times. . . . Do keep us posted of you upcoming roles and we’ll be on the look-out. Next visit to Seattle will be Christmas later this year. And should you be in NY.,…

All the best, Karin & Al”

Thank you, Karin and Al. Your kind words have lifted my spirits, encouraged me during this week of endings, and reminded me that I have many people to thank.  Most of those people I can talk to, keep in touch with, hug. But there is one group that I cannot reach so personally: the audience.

I hope that some of you who came out to see our shows this summer will find this note and know that you were just as much a part of our summer as anyone in the cast and crew. Five nights out of the week for two months, you showed up, supported the arts, and shared this beautiful summer with us. I’m sorry that I only got to meet a few of you and thank you in person. I’ll never forget the small family that spent a weekend introducing their young children to live theatre or the people that took the time to remember my name and thank me personally. You have overwhelmed me in the best sense.

So, here’s to you. To your handshakes, your laughter, your warmth, your jokes, your reactions, your applause, your ovations, and your smiles. To each of you, thank you for allowing us to be a part of your memories. It means more than you can know. And as you exit the theatre these last few nights with “thank you” on your lips, I say from the deepness of my heart, it has been a pleasure.

LST: The Drowsy Chaperone

Tonight, we open our third show in the Leavenworth Summer Theater season: The Drowsy Chaperone. This lesser known musical will leave you in stitches, grinning ear to ear (I promise). I am proud to be a part of this rare, wonderful, energized, and side-splitting musical. There are only nine performances, and I urge you not to miss it.

Photo Credit: Frank Cone
Photo Credit: Frank Cone

June Update

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I’ve been in Leavenworth for almost three weeks and in rehearsal for all three shows for two weeks. Things are really coming together, and on top of learning the shows, I’m meeting some truly delightful people. It’s a pleasure and a blessing to get to spend an entire summer doing what I love with other people who love it, as well.

We’re about to head into tech for The Sound of Music (eep!). The amount of work that we, the cast and crew, have accomplished in such a short period of time is incredible. It’s going to be a lovely show, and I hope that you decide to make the small trek to see it.

With The Sound of Music opening soon, we’re shifting rehearsal focus to Fiddler on the Roof, which will open July 16th. I spent an hour this morning screeching away as Fruma Sarah, surrounded by a slew of Jewish Undead. I’m having far too much fun playing with different vocals, sounds, and movements with that character.

Though it’s been a few days since we’ve worked on it, PUT The Drowsy Chaperone ON YOUR CALENDAR. It’s going to be SUCH a fun/funny/fun-tastic show. Be there, or be there.

Last I heard, tickets were flying, so call the box office ASAP to reserve your seats: (509) 548-2000

 

Tickets on Sale Now! – Leavenworth Summer Theatre

Tickets for Leavenworth Summer Theatre’s 2014 shows are on sale now! I’m performing in all three productions this summer: The Sound of Music, Fiddler on the Roof, and The Drowsy ChaperoneSound of Music and Fiddler are both outdoor productions.

I hear that tickets sell out (and there are no wait lists), so get your tickets while the getting’s good! It’s sure to be a wonderful summer.

Buy Tickets Here

Leavenworth Performance Dates

The performance dates for all shows are listed on the Leavenworth Summer Theatre website. I’ll go ahead and list them here, for good measure.

The Sound of MusicJuly 4, 5, 11, 12, 17, 19, 22, 24, 25, 31 and August 1, 5, 8, 14, 16, 19, 22, 27, 30, 31

Fiddler on the RoofJuly 16, 18, 23, 26, 30 and August 2, 7, 9, 12, 15, 20, 23, 26, 29

The Drowsy ChaperoneJuly 29, August 6, 13, 21, 28 at 8:00 p.m. and August 2, 9, 16, 23 at 2 p.m.

I hope to see you there!