Sunday had been a lot, so I was happy to have a day at home, recovering. Monday, Carol and I got up, had breakfast, and she headed into town to explore. I don’t think much memorable happened that night, I think we ordered a pizza and watched the news and various TV things.
Tuesday, we had theater tickets, so I went into town with her and went to the office while she did her touristy thing. Carol’s pretty definitive about her food preferences, so I was delighted to find out she liked sushi – there’s an excellent sushi place off of Times Square – used to be Haru, now it’s RA Sushi – that was a favorite pre-theater place for me and C – and it’s just a block or so from my office. Of course, after having been left mostly alone all day long, my big boss ran into me in the office kitchen and decided to chat just as I was trying to get out the door to go to the restaurant… but no big deal, I wasn’t more than 5 minutes late. We had a great meal. They had some sort of fancy margaritas that we both tried, and I got a green salad and a special roll, and Carol got a couple of different things. And dessert (I had green tea mochi ice cream).
The show was Into the Woods, one of my favorites. I’d seen it in the two previous Broadway incarnations, and various school and community productions. This particular revival started at Encores and had been universally adored, pretty much – and although the cast kept changing, everyone floating in and out of the cast was Broadway royalty, perfect for their parts. We were in the balcony, fairly close in, and the seats were excellent (although a tad cramped).
Much like Chicago, also an Encores transplant, the orchestra was upstage center, fully visible, and the action played around it. A very simple set – which worked, but feels like cheating the audience at Broadway prices. But a lovely production. We saw Montego Glover as The Witch, Krista Rodriguez as Cinderella, Brian D’Arcy James and Stephanie J. Block as the Baker and his wife, Gavin Creel and Andy Karl as the princes (oddly enough, Andy Karl had played Cinderella’s prince earlier in the run, was now Rapunzel’s prince). Ann Harada (who I adore) as Jack’s Mother, Nancy Opel as the stepmother. Really great across the board. I loved the puppetry, particularly for the giant, I thought that worked really well.
So, bottom line, excellent, except I thought the production values were chintzy for Broadway.
Wednesday, we kind of did the same deal (earlier, so we could get out of the way of my cleaning lady). (One of these days, I don’t remember which, we had breakfast at one of my favorite diners before heading in, and once again, Carol did her magic and made a line out the door move really quickly. I still haven’t figured out why a Jackson Heights diner had a line for tables at, like, 11:00 on a Wednesday or whatever, but it ended up not getting in our way. )
Carol had matinee tickets to Leopoldstadt, and I just went to the office again. We’d gotten Alamo Drafthouse tickets to The Banshees of Inisherin at 6:00. I’d never been to a local Alamo Drafthouse, but remembered having a great time at the one in Austin. This one was way south, around Wall Street. But I managed to find it and meet Carol and we had a fun dinner and enjoyed the movie. I’ve seen almost all of Martin McDonagh’s stuff, and he’s both incredibly entertaining and really shocking. This movie, kind of a followup to In Bruges, simply because it also featured Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell, was an insane mixture of “quirky small town story”, “gorgeous scenery”, and “OMG I can’t believe they’re going there“. I won’t spoil it, let’s just say that a friendship ends, the friend who gets ‘dumped’ can’t accept it, and Events Occur. It’s really good, but I can only recommend it if you understand that it’s actually pretty horrific. We both loved it.
Thursday was another quiet day for me – Carol went out and did fun stuff, and came back for dinner (we went out). And she left on Friday, although she had one more night in the city, spent elsewhere. It was a really great visit!
Ending on a sad note, somewhere in there, I found out that my dear friend Vikki had passed away. This was not a surprise, she had been dealing with cancer for a while and the prognosis was not good. But still awful. I will give her a better tribute in a later post.
Coming up – a melancholy weekend, but in a nice way…