'Coming up Roses' at the Saint James Theater - Wednesday, June 25
Today is a day that won’t translate into a very interesting journal page, but it’s a day we’ll remember for a very long time. Today we have tickets for a Broadway show, and not just any Broadway show but Gypsy - the musical remake that just won three Tony Awards for Best Actress, Best Featured Actress and Best Featured Actor. It didn’t have a leading man or it probably would have won Best Actor too.
Our Wednesday Matinee is at 2:00 PM, but the last ferry from Jersey City is at 9:50, leaving us with a few hours to kill. We walked from the ferry to Wall Street and caught the #2 red subway train uptown to 42nd Street. From there we walked around Times Square for a while, and Madolyn and her mom did some gift shopping. We found a very nice restaurant a block from the theater and had a leisurely lunch that we managed to stretch into an hour and a half.
By the time we got out of the restaurant people were starting to show up for the various shows and 44th Street was starting to get crowded. We walked back up to Times Square and people watched for half an hour and then returned to the Saint James Theater on 44th and went in. Our seats were second row mezzanine and dead center. I don’t think there were any better seats in the house. The one row in front of us did not block our view in any way, and they had the rail in their view.
The theater is a comfortable old place and by the time the show started it appeared to be sold out. Lead actress Patti LuPone is probably the most charismatic and powerful figure on the stage today. Just before the curtain went up a voice announced over the loud speaker that Patti LuPone had injured her foot. A huge groan went up because she is the one everyone came to see. Then the announcer said, “So she will be performing the whole show wearing Isotoners!” The audience laughed with relief, and the curtain went up for the overture.
The orchestra was on the stage, just behind the actors but hidden most of the time by a curtain. They were excellent. Gypsy is a musical based on the autobiography of famous stripper Gypsy Rose Lee. The show was absolutely wonderful, and in the end I would have to say it is the best production I have ever seen. It was funny, touching, colorful and magnificent. Our first Broadway show did not disappoint.
After the show we caught the subway back to Wall Street, and it was a short walk to the returning ferry. Twenty minutes later we were home in Jersey. Our week here has been near perfect! But tomorrow we say ‘goodbye’ and head for Connecticut.