Posted on October 22, 2013 at 2:21 pm
Last night was really cool. The annual benefit for the Dramatists Guild Fund happened at the Edison Ballroom on West 47th Street, and Marsha Norman and I were asked to participate, along with a whole passel of truly amazing composers, lyricists and playwrights. There are lots of events every year where actors support other actors, but it was really special and unusual to be part of an event where writers were supporting other writers. I wasn’t just on the same program as my peers and heroes, I was in the same ROOM as they were – look around, there’s Steve Sondheim, there’s Stephen Schwartz, there’s Adam Guettel, there’s Michael John LaChiusa, there’s Alan Menken, there’s George C. Wolfe, Theresa Rebeck, Andrew Lippa, John Guare, Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty – and the people who weren’t even on the stage but just there to support the Dramatists Guild and their fellow writers, I mean, Sheldon Harnick and John Weidman and Marcy Heisler and the super-hot Georgia Stitt and Terrence McNally and Gretchen Cryer, and that was just who I saw. I will always have a certain ambivalence about this business, but it is important for me to acknowledge to you and to me that I love being part of that community of writers, all of whom believe in exactly the kind of work that I believe in.
(Also, getting to see Ben Vereen and Bernadette Peters and Norbert and Sherie and Jeremy Jordan and Marin Mazzie and Kate Baldwin and Tonya Pinkins all up close and singing their asses off wasn’t bad either.)
BroadwayWorld.com has photos of the event (I have never taken a good red carpet shot and I never will, but at least Georgia and Marsha look beautiful so there’s something to look at), and here was the rundown of the performances:
STEPHEN SCHWARTZ: “Magic To Do” from Pippin (performed by Ben Vereen)
ALAN MENKEN & JACK FELDMAN: “Santa Fe” from Newsies (performed by Jeremy Jordan)
JOHN GUARE: monologue from Landscape of the Body (performed by Sherie Rene Scott)
MICHAEL JOHN LACHUISA: “A Stranger” cut from Giant (performed by Kate Baldwin)
GEORGE C. WOLFE, SUSAN BIRKENHEAD & LUTHER HENDERSON: “Last Chance Blues” from Jelly’s Last Jam (performed by Tonya Pinkins and Julian Fleisher)
THERESA REBECK: monologue from Bad Dates (performed by Julie White)
ANDREW LIPPA: “Fight The Dragons” from Big Fish (performed by Norbert Leo Butz)
ADAM GUETTEL: “Take Me There” from Days of Wine and Roses (performed by Kelli O’Hara)
LYNN AHRENS & STEPHEN FLAHERTY: “Back to Before” from Ragtime (performed by Marin Mazzie)
JASON ROBERT BROWN & MARSHA NORMAN: “Falling Into You” from The Bridges of Madison County (performed by Stephen Pasquale and Kelli O’Hara)
STEPHEN SONDHEIM: “Move On” from Sunday in the Park with George (performed by Bernadette Peters)
Here’s a recording of Kelli and Stephen singing “Falling Into You” as they will soon be doing eight shows a week on Broadway starting January 14!