that girl allison

I'm Allison. I see a ton of theatre. I'm a huge fan of Green Day, Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, Weezer, Oasis, Adam Rapp, Emily Giffin, and Shakespeare. I run sometimes, and do yoga always. My life has changed a lot in the last year, so this is my account of it all.

Email me at:
thatgirlallison08 at gmail dot com

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reviews // Green Day // theatre // books // dating // broadway // movies // food // recipes // cooking // off-broadway // restaurants // upper west side // upper east side // american idiot

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Don’t you hate that question in interviews? You’re supposed to turn it into a positive, right? “Working too hard!” “I can never leave before the job is done!” I think most interviewers can see right through that crap nowadays though. 

In my last interview I decided to be honest about this. And what was my answer? I sometimes feed off my colleague’s stress. I’ve gotten pretty fantastic at managing stress (through therapy and meditation, mostly) but when my coworkers get stressed out, I sometimes have trouble not letting it affect me.

I’m fine in stressful situations, but watching someone next to me crumble and huff and puff over something that’s not life-threatening? It’s not necessary and it’s not helpful, to themselves or anyone in the room. 

So next time you’re getting stressed out, think about how you’re effecting the energy of the room and take a breath. Unless you are saving lives, it’s not a life-or-death matter. 

Oh, and I got the job. I start on Monday and I’m super excited to be transitioning from finance to digital media. Sometimes it pays to be honest :)

Before seeing the late-late performance of Hedwig… on Saturday night, we had purchased tickets via TDF for the matinee of Mothers and Sons. Another 90 minute show? Music to our ears. I’m not a huge Tyne Daly fan (she’s good, but I wouldn’t go see something just because she was in it) but I was excited to see Bobby Steggert.

The play, by Terrence McNally, was about a mother (Tyne Daly) dropping in on the partner (Frederick Weller) of her deceased son and how she reacts when she learns he has a new life, including a husband (Bobby Steggert) and a son (Grayson Taylor). Her son died 20 years prior (due to AIDS complications) though his former partner’s new life is still confusing to her. She’s also still in denial about her son and thinking that New York City “turned” him gay.

There were solid, great performances throughout and I was never once bored or checking my Playbill. This is definitely one I’d recommend (and, come on, it’s only 90 minutes).

Rant: Four cell phones went off in 90 minutes. FOUR. When Steggert was giving the BC/EFA speech, he called one out too, “And if your cell phone went off during the performance, feel free to give $75,000! Yes, sir, you!” Appropriate? Yes.

Am I the only one who doesn’t care that it snowed a tiny bit (more like an ice storm, really) in New York last night? I was inside with no need to leave my apartment, which I suppose helps, but people are still complaining today about it.

Put on your big person boots and deal with it. It’s been a funky season so we should’ve been expecting this. Luckily I’m a procrastinator sometimes and my boots were never packed away, so they’re still out front and center for me to use today.

Come on, New Yorkers, you can get it together.

Manhattan Theatre Club’s production of Casa Valentina (written by Harvey Fierstein) was both educational and thought provoking. Inspired by true events that took place at the Chevalier d’Eon Resort in the Catskills in 1962, it was about a small group of men (all claiming to be heterosexual with wives and children at home) who would come to the resort to spend the weekends dressing in drag. It is an interesting notion to think that there are men who like dressing in women’s clothing just for fun who are straight and vice versa. it’s one that I’m still trying to sort through in my head.

Brilliant performances were given all around, starting with Patrick Page and Mare Winningham as George and Rita, the resort’s owners, to John Collum and Tom McGowan as some of the regulars at the resort.

Though I found it a bit slow during a couple of moments, I still enjoyed it. It showed me something new, something real.

In my opinion, word of mouth and internet hype is a large part of what makes or breaks a show nowadays (yes, even a Disney show). Do you remember when bad word of mouth basically killed Spider-man before it started previews? The New York Times rave can never hurt for native New Yorkers but word of mouth is a driving force in a shows success. I know you think you can rely on your brand alone for success but as you’ve experience before with Tarzan and The Little Mermaid this isn’t always the case. (Though I hear your latest is much better than those.)

This brings me to Aladdin. I hear it’s pretty great but I’m not sure how I’m, and people with a budget like me, are going to get to see it. I’ve been hearing horror stories of people getting to the rush line at 4:30am and still not getting tickets six hours later. This, in short, is ridiculous. The parents and once-a-year show-goer is not who’s going to spread the word of Aladdin’s potential greatness. It’s the person who’s willing to wait for a few hours on a weekend morning for a rush ticket that will blog and tweet about their experience during and after the show. I also recognize that the people who can pay $40 for a ticket aren’t going to keep your show alive financially, but they can most certainly keep the excitement about your show alive and encourage those who can afford a $150 to go drop the cash. 

In short: I hope you start designating seats for rush or, better yet, a lottery. Because even though you’re Disney, your shows still need publicity from the little people.

Edit: Ask and you shall receive:

Two weeks ago I saw the off-Broadway production of Jasper in Deadland at the West End Theater on the Upper West Side. Produced by the Prospect Theater Company, Deadland features a book by Broadway veteran Hunter Foster and music and lyrics by Ryan Scott Oliver. It also starred Matt Doyle which is never a bad thing.

Jasper in Deadland, a modern retelling of Orpheus, centers around Jasper’s adventure into the underworld (deadland, or perhaps purgatory) to save his friend Gretchen who kills herself after revealing her feelings for him.

The music is really good and the story has a couple of plot twists that I didn’t see coming (because I wasn’t familiar with the story of Orpheus). I really enjoyed Matt Doyle and Allison Scagliotti (Gretchen), and honorable mention needs to be given to F. Michael Haynie who brought down the house with his solo. 

I’m not sure Jasper in Deadland will ever see a long run, but I kind of hope it does! 

Last week I saw the just-opened production of Heathers (a musical version of the movie) and I have to say I loved it much more than I ever though I would. I tried watching the movie a few months and I got through maybe 20 minutes of it. I thought it was pretty stupid. I also admittedly like Jawbreaker better (a nineties version with pretty much the same plot). 

As soon as the lights went down at New World Stages, the energy in the room was on full throttle and we were all into it. it was upbeat music, hilarious dialogue, fun choreography, and a cast with a bus-load of energy. 

Albeit it being maybe 20 minutes too long (2 hours and 40 minutes is a little excessive), I enjoyed everything about this musical. it’s really hard to dislike a show when the audience and the cast is equally as excited and pumped. The score is fun and 80’s-ish and everything you’d expect from a musical based on the movie Heathers. The cast gives it everything they have, and the storyline is pretty much true to the movie (except, as my friend informed me, the ending is happier - but come on, it’s a musical!).

I really enjoyed Barrett Wilbert Weed as Veronica and Alice Lee, Jessica Keenan Wynn, and Elle McLemore were all equally as fantastic (and bitchy) as the three Heathers.

All of your favorite lines are intact, don’t worry. Christian Slater was in the audience that night and we heard he really enjoyed it afterward too. Sometimes you just need to go see a fun musical and Heathers is definitely that musical.

Tickets were provided by the production. Opinions are all my own. 

Hedwig and Angry Inch is probably as close to a religious experience as I will ever get. It’s a feeling that’s similar to when you leave a really amazing rock concert. Kristen and I saw a matinee of Mothers and Sons yesterday and played the 5pm lottery for the 7pm performance of Hedwig. We were semi-sad when we didn’t win because that would mean hanging out for another couple of hours and not being home by 10pm. But then we won the 8pm lottery for the 10pm performance and we realized that there was little-to-no-chance that any tourists from Oklahoma would be waltzing in by accident so the show would probably be the most risque it could be. Our seats were great - the Belasco being a teeny tiny house and all. We went and put glitter on our eyes at Sephora (because, well, obviously.) and then returned to the theatre to be rocked out of our brains.

Let me backtrack for a second: A friend sent me a copy of the off-Broadway cast recording in 1999. I was almost 13. Being that I was 13, I didn’t really get it. But fast forward to a couple of years later and I’d fully immersed myself in the scores of shows like HAIR and The Rocky Horror Show, so I was now 100% on board with Hedwig. I knew pretty much every word. Which is an odd thing for a 15 year old to be able to boast especially when their friends in Suburbia, USA have never heard of glam rock or John Cameron Mitchell. 

It’s a rock concert from the second Yitzhak introduces Hedwig. I probably would’ve been really annoying to sit next to if not for the fact that everyone in the audience was pumped as could be to be there. The lights, minimal set, and animation for Hedwig were beautiful and overwhelming (in a good way). Lena Hall was the perfect mix of tough and vulnerable with a beautiful, crystal clear voice to match. The Angry Inch band tore it up every second.

And last but most certainly not least, Neil Patrick Harris never once made Hedwig… into The NPH Show and was an amazing Hedwig - vocally and physically. I will never understand how he jumps around the set in 6” platform heels for 100 minutes with ease.

And thank you, NPH, for calling out the latecomers: “It’s a 10 o’clock show! How could you be late?!”

The entire cast onstage pours their blood, sweat, and tears into the show and it’s amazing the watch. Also: not one cell phone went off during the performance which was a refreshing change from the matinee of Mothers and Sons where 4 cell phones went off in 90 minutes. At least not that we could hear over the score. I don’t know how the HIMYM fans will react to seeing NPH onstage but I’m curious to find out. And although I’ve seen him in person before, saying hi and thanks to John Cameron Mitchell afterward was fun too.

I was absolutely wire after the show. It was really difficult to fall asleep. Oh well, totally worth it. I will definitely be back to Hedwig and the Angry Inch again. And soon. It’s not about Neil Patrick Harris (he’s great, but I’m not a diehard fan), it’s about the music and the energy.

I saw The Velocity of Autumn, written by Eric Coble, this week and was it groundbreaking? No. But I enjoyed it nevertheless. It was a lovely 90 minutes with no intermission and I got to watch the mesmerizing Stephen Spinella go at it with the hilarious Estelle Parons the entire time. While surrounded by molotov cocktails. 
The Velocity of Autumn was about a mother at the end of her life wanting to have control of her life and when it ended and where she ended it, and her estranged son who comes to talk her out of hurting herself and others. 
While certainly not groundbreaking, it’s a different kind of play with interesting characters portrayed by two fantastic actors. 

I saw The Velocity of Autumn, written by Eric Coble, this week and was it groundbreaking? No. But I enjoyed it nevertheless. It was a lovely 90 minutes with no intermission and I got to watch the mesmerizing Stephen Spinella go at it with the hilarious Estelle Parons the entire time. While surrounded by molotov cocktails. 

The Velocity of Autumn was about a mother at the end of her life wanting to have control of her life and when it ended and where she ended it, and her estranged son who comes to talk her out of hurting herself and others. 

While certainly not groundbreaking, it’s a different kind of play with interesting characters portrayed by two fantastic actors. 

Giveaway alert!
Currently playing at the the Little Shubert Theater in Hell’s Kitchen is a hilarious new comedy about love and healthcare, Under My Skin. The hilarious and lovely Kerry Butler stars in this musical along with film and TV actor Matt Walton. 
Under My Skin takes the dashing CEO of America’s leading healthcare provided, a single mom from Staten Island, and an outrageous twist of faith to make this hilarious new comedy. 
That Girl Allison wants to give you the chance to win a pair of tickets now! Just reblog, like, or tweet a link to this post to enter. Winner will be announced on Monday!






 

Giveaway alert!

Currently playing at the the Little Shubert Theater in Hell’s Kitchen is a hilarious new comedy about love and healthcare, Under My Skin. The hilarious and lovely Kerry Butler stars in this musical along with film and TV actor Matt Walton. 

Under My Skin takes the dashing CEO of America’s leading healthcare provided, a single mom from Staten Island, and an outrageous twist of faith to make this hilarious new comedy. 

That Girl Allison wants to give you the chance to win a pair of tickets now! Just reblog, like, or tweet a link to this post to enter. Winner will be announced on Monday!