Wednesday, September 15, 2004
'Can-Can' in New York
Well, according to Greg:
The show turned out to be a revelation, not only for us but for the Encores! audience.
Of course, we knew going in how wonderful the score is. Hearing it live, however, rather than on the 50-year-old original cast CD, made it sparkle and sound like new. Truly thrilling! Patti LuPone was a vision of zaftig beauty in the star role of Pistache, the cabaret owner whose girls dance the “forbidden” can-can, and clearly relished the opportunity to sing the glorious Porter standards.
The surprise, however, was the book. Frequently derided as being flimsy, Abe Burrows’ book (in David Lee’s concert adaptation) proved to be funny, poignant, and quite pointed in its condemnation of those who would try to tell others how to live their lives.
This was the week when, back home in San Francisco, Mayor Gavin Newsome was igniting a media firestorm with his gay marriage proclamation, and LuPone’s exhortation to "Live and Let Live" ("Your business is your business and my business is mine…") seemed particularly apt.
At the "talk-back" after the show, LuPone revealed that she was having the time of her life as Pistache, and mentioned how highly the cast thought of the book. The audience, floating high on Encores!’ biggest financial hit ever, heartily showed their agreement.
Wow! Seems like Cole Porter beat Jerry Herman to the grand theme of personal liberty by a few decades. I mean Herman wrote "I Am What I Am", but Porter seems to take that a step further and say, "So back off!"
I'm really excited to hear how the San Francisco crowds respond to empowering message. I'm guessing it's going to realy strike a chord...mo musical pun intended!