Around 6pm last night I got a text message from my friend Mike. He informed me that he was in 9 to 5 at Centerpoint Legacy Theatre and wondered if I wanted to check out the show. A person I'd been trying to meet to discuss Comic Con stuff was going to be there, too. Mike thought I'd get a chance to meet him face-to-face, and I could see the show, too.
Turns out, that's exactly what happened.
But before I chatted with Mike's friend, I saw a wonderful show.
I've been doing shows on and off for almost twenty years. And when you do shows, you get to know a lot of other people who share your passion. Theater is a small world, even in Utah. Because it was a preview night, we didn't have programs. They'll show up when the show officially opens tomorrow night. But even without programs, I recognized so many both on the stage and behind the scenes. I'd never seen the stage version of 9 to 5, but I saw the movie decades ago. Good music, wonderful voices, and a women-empowerment message if there ever was one. I recommend seeing it, at least the cast I saw.
As I watched the show, I had a thought creep into my mind. Does knowing and working with these talented people make my experience more enjoyable? I've wondered the same thing before. Since I've gotten to know so many authors, do I like their books more because I know them personally?
Hard to say. I'll never have the opportunity to go back and see the same show with people I don't know. Just an interesting thought.
Having said that, I should point out some individual performances from last night. Jan Smith--fantastic! I've known her since the early 1980s--she was great then and even better now. Lori Rees--the woman can play anything and you'll believe her. She was so good as Doralee, worth the price of admission right there. Mike Brown--as slimy a boss as ever there was one, which proves Mike's ability as an actor.
There was other, of course, who did great, Tara, Collin, Shana, Josh, Sterling, and Maurie's amazing direction. But my favorite performance had to be that of Russell Walker as Joe. I've done one show with Russell. Not only did we get to see a sweet character on stage, but we heard a matching voice in his solo. What made his performance memorable was because Russell is a sweet man, a good man, someone who would do what his character did on stage.
So, I guess (last night, at least...) knowing the actor's personally made it much better for me. Well done cast and best of luck on the run!