Monday, December 31, 2007

Dear Internets,

It's been an exciting year, hasn't it? It was the year everyone in my family moved into new houses. It was the year I moved in with a boyfriend and soon converted him to a fiancé. It was the year of holy shit Christmas is already behind us and I still haven't started my Christmas letter. It was the year Sweeney Todd finally became a movie.

Speaking of, did I mention we saw it on opening night? (Did I mention that the friends we went with knew a secret place to have our parking reduced from $32 down to only $6? BONUS!) Being Sweeney Todd freaks, we of course have all kinds of opinions about the movie—namely: we loved it but we didn't grow-white-forelocks-and-slit-our-own-throats-in-homage-to-Sondheim's-genius love it—but being generally exhausted, I'm not really in the mood to write about it just yet. So the two of you out there who are salivating for my review will probably have to wait a bit longer. Sorry. Have a nice meat pie while you wait.

In the mean time, I've been having fun with my scanner and my old photo albums. Because scanning doesn't require a lot of thinking. This weekend, I scanned through a decade of shows I'd been in. (Why? Because nostalgia is in. And because we finally unpacked the boxes that had my photo albums in them. And because scanning photos was more interesting than doing dishes.)

Here are some scans from my favorite show ever: Forever Plaid. I did the show at Theatre Cedar Rapids in late 1995, and it was such a smash hit that we brought it back five more times over the next three years. For the uninitiated, Forever Plaid tells the story of four nerdy crooners who were killed in a traffic accident on their way to their big breakout gig way back in the 1960s. Which makes it a comedy. But they get to come back to life one last time to perform the concert they never got to give. Which makes it a musical. The songs are packed with tight harmonies, and they're a bitch to sing. And the show was one of the most satisfying and exciting I've ever been in—if not for the material then for the way the four of us really clicked as singers and performers. Here's an early publicity shot, taken just as the first rehearsals were underway. Our costumes hadn't been made yet, so we borrowed plaid jackets from a nearby theater that had just closed the show:

Here's the publicity art we used once our show opened. It's the most kick-assed promotional material ever:

We even made promotional appearances around Cedar Rapids. Here we are at the grand re-opening of Younkers department store in scenic Lindale Mall. Coincidentally, I'd worked in this very Younkers when I was in high school. And I spent every paycheck I earned on the Generra fashions we carried. Some of which were plaid: And here we are in our dressing room on opening night. The plaid jackets don't figure into the show until near the end, which is why we start the show in white. And also because we're technically dead. Look closely and you'll see, though, that we do have matching plaid bowties and cummerbunds:
There's a movement afoot to have a Plaids reunion show in Cedar Rapids this July. One of us lives in Chicago and one of us lives in Hawaii now, though, so making it happen might be a bit of a challenge. Kind of like getting my dishes done. Or writing my Christmas letter. Stay tuned.

In the mean time, have a happy transition into 2008. See you on the other side!

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