14 July 2005

Stupid Rain

I'm normally a big fan of rain. Especially rain that comes with thunder and lightning and a greeny-grey sky. All good things. Lots of big clouds in 200 shades of grey. Love it. Improves the water table, chases away the bugs, breaks the humidity.

But not when I'm watching Shakespeare outdoors. Honestly, has this weather no consideration at all?

I've never seen The Merry Wives of Windsor before and the cast includes an actor I've recently started watching (Bruce) and an actor I haven't seen for years and years -- and years (Lewis). I think that the last time Lewis and I were in the same room, movable type had just been invented, so I was kind of looking forward to saying hello afterwards even though I can't imagine he would remember me. (Oddly enough, the first time I saw Bruce was when he did a reading with Nigel, another actor from way back in my checked past. Hmmmm.)

Anyway, I told Bruce after Humble Boy that I would get up to Baltimore to see him play Ford in Merry Wives. So, acting on one of my casual lobby promises ("I'll come and and see it!" - I should have that embroided or as a tattoo somewhere, I really should), I had a nice seat on the lawn, a nice glass of a local red wine, a pleasant stranger to talk to, and there was going to be a basket raffle at intermission. My kind of evening. But no, it was not to be.... (that's called foreshadowing, by the way).

On the other hand, I got confirmed something that I've noticed recently -- if I am sitting near the front and it's a small house, actors will talk to me. I must look especially engaged or something, but it's happened a few times recently and I find it utterly charming. (In fact, when I saw Side Man recently, Chris asked me afterwards if I'd noticed that he'd been talking to me. Of course I noticed!! It's probably one of the reasons the damned show made me cry!) Merry Wives had lots of asides to the audience and Bruce and Lewis played a fair number of them to me. I know, you're thinking "Sure, Leta, sure they did. Whatever you say." Fine. Be that way. Because they did. Bunch of fun-spoilers, that's what you people are. Kill joys.

Now I can imagine that Bruce might possibly have been thinking "Is that the woman who saw me at the Stage Guild and said she'd come to see this? I think it is. Oh, Lord. Do I have a stalker now?" and Lewis could have been thinking "Does that woman look familiar? Did I know her? Maybe in the late 18th century?"

Or, more likely, I got their attention because it was a Thursday night with predictions of heavy rain and therefore a pretty small house, so I may have been the only unfamiliar face in the "crowd." And because I wasn't a little kid. And because I looked rather fetching in my new purple Ann Taylor Loft tank shell. Let's never discount the power of a new Ann Taylor Loft purple tank shell.

And then the rain got serious. As the producer pointed out in his opening remarks, the show is a pretty active one for the cast and running and jumping about on a wet stage is just stupidly dangerous, so when it was clear that it wasn't going to let up for a while, they called it. I wish they'd hung in there because it cleared up about 15 minutes later. Damn.

Damn, damn, damn, rats.


Casey Jones said...

See, this is what you get for attending theatre outdoors. Stupid furthering of culture in a fresh-air, healthy environment.

And when will the rest of us see this Ann Taylor Loft purple tank shell? How else would we guage its power?

McCall said...

I was attempting to cross the Woodrow Wilson Bridge during that burst of unfortunate precipitation. I was not amused. Strangely enough, during the entire outpouring of Heaven, the sun kept shining. I think it was laughing at me. Apparently, we were both the butt of Mother Nature's joke yesterday. :)