It was an evening that would make any performer green. Tony winner Idina Menzel, famed for her emerald-skinned turn as Elphaba in Wicked, made her New York Philharmonic debut Saturday night at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall. Yet in an environment of elegance and sophistication, Menzel was geeking out over her conductor. Well, in her defense, the conductor was Marvin Hamlisch.
The EGOT winner (30 Rock-speak for someone who has won all four Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony awards) and composer of A Chorus Line and many Barbra Streisand standards was on the receiving end of many gushings from Menzel throughout the concert. At one point, she asked for permission to climb up onto his conductor’s podium so that she may kiss him. Hamlisch obliged, and the embrace evoked a collective “Aww” from the sold-out house.
In addition to her songs, which included musical theater classics and selections from Rent and Wicked, Menzel was in great comedic spirit. Taking long breaks between songs, she told stories of her youth (her family’s most requested song of hers was “The Way We Were”), her life with husband Taye Diggs and 17-month-old son Walker (she and Diggs compose original lullabies and argue over who gets to vocally shine), and of her career (singing for Streisand at the Kennedy Center and being upstaged by Beyonce).
Menzel’s comedy was well received by the Lincoln Center audience, which can typically be an upturned-nose crowd. She embodied a jovial attitude that mixed well with her elegance. Menzel took the stage (barefoot) in an elegant and simple white dress with a thin black belt. Her radiance was a reflection of the night—a special achievement in her career. Read more
Happy birthday to me! Joining me for this special edition of Stage Rush TV are my dear friends Georgina and Kym, along with some other very esteemed guests who open the episode.
- At the Powerhouse Theater at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY to see Michael Mayer’s On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, featuring Brian d’Arcy James and Anika Noni Rose
- When friends and theater combine to make a cherished tradition
- Congratulations to the winners of the Night Music/Promises, Promises ticket giveaway
- Broadway grosses
Do you have any theater traditions with your friends, Rushers? Let me know what it is, and what your special memories are. Have you ever been to Vassar’s Powerhouse Theater? Will you be seeing this concert production of On A Clear Day this weekend, or are you waiting for when it comes to the Vineyard Theatre in January 2011 (or both)? As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, (and birthday wishes) in the comments!