This is Part 6 of a multi-part series of posts. I suggest that you start with Part 1 if you have the time and really want to appreciate the full effulgence.
The plane ride to London was a blast. An excited cast of twenty some gorgeous theatricals hangin’ over the seats, yellin’ and laughin’ back and forth and so excited about flyin’ to London.
I always kept my guitar in the overhead when I traveled and at one point I took it out and we serenaded the passengers for about a half hour with songs from the show. At one point half the ladies were struttin’ up and down the aisle singin’ and doin’ their makeshift choreography to a bewildered, but totally entertained and enthralled audience of passengers.
A number of those people on that flight even came to see the show and came backstage afterwards to reminisce about that memorable flight. Two months later on the flight back to NYC everyone slept the whole way home.
Theater in London is a whole different world than in the U.S. There, there is history – a rich deep culture to draw from that the people – especially London’s theater lovers – are proud of and most knowledgeable. After all we were now doing our classic show in the home city of one Will Shakespeare and this was a fact that meant so much to all the members of our cast.
Also at the time, Vanessa Redgrave was largely considered to be the leading actress in the Western world and everyone knew she lived in London, and on top of that her pictures adorned the walls of the Old Vic where she had starred in many of their productions. So the girls were always a-buzz about Vanessa this and Vanessa that.
There was also some nervous speculation by all of us Americans as to how our show would be accepted in London, this great city of culture and theatrical history. Would they put us down for being American and trivial? Would they castigate us for turning Euripides masterpiece into a rock opera? Would they turn up their British noses to us? (more…)