Every morning, as I leave my apartment, I pass the same exact homeless guy sleeping on the same exact stoop. And every morning, I step off the train and pass another homeless guy camping out on the same exact bench on the same exact subway platform - Every single morning! I don’t know... If I were homeless, I’d travel. Isn’t that one of the perks?
Anyway, speaking of homeless people, Merry Christmas, Bloggities! And Happy Hanukkah, if that's what you're into. I hope you’re all enjoying the festivities and feeling the holiday cheer tenfold. I myself am enjoying a lovely Hanukkah hangover from the party I was at last night, and thanks to half a bottle of Advil, am feeling almost nothing whatsoever. I think it's marvelous!
“Liza’s back” - That phrase seems to have been used rather unsparingly over the past decade or so; back in '99, when Liza debuted at the Palace Theatre in Minnelli on Minnelli; back in ‘02 when Liza triumphantly returned to the stage after a life-threatening bout with viral encephalitis; back on Monday night, when the double doors parted at Splash and I made my entrance… These are but a few instances. Those two little words - "Liza's back" - deliver the hefty promise that the return of one of our greatest living performers is upon us. (Not me; Liza Minnelli. But thank you.) Well Liza’s back once again, and having recently seen her show at The Palace, I can tell you without hesitation that the phrase "Liza's Back" has never been truer. Liza is muthaf****ing back! If you have not yet been to see the show, do not talk to me... I hate you and we have nothing in common. It is absolutely incredible! I haven’t been so satisfied in a Broadway theatre since... well, nevermind about that; we're in mixed company. I'll only say that I was on my feet after every number, and by the end of the evening, my face was bleeding and my teeth were falling out from smiling so hard. Just ask Sam Harris who sat next to me. He must think I'm a schmuck, the way I was carrying on. But I couldn't help myself! Liza looks fantastic, and is in better shape vocally than she's been in years. She did not miss a beat or a note. I'd even be so bold as to compare this performance to her mother's legendary triumph at Carnegie Hall. It was just that special.
After the show, I waited, along with Judith Light, Charles Busch, Stephanie J. Block and Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Names, sweeties! Names!) to meet with Liza in her dressing room. Once escorted inside, I was introduced to her, and she took my hand... My memory of what followed is all pretty much white light. She was so gracious and lovely. And so was I. After introducing me to her director Ron Lewis, she and I chatted a bit. I won't tell you exactly what we said because that's personal Randy/Liza stuff and we're fairly private people. But it was something along the lines of "Thank you for everything.... You're exquisite... You made me what I am today..." (This was Liza to me.)
I was finally able to tear myself away from Liza, and it was off to Joe Allen with my buddy Jim Caruso, who is beyond fabulous in the show! We were joined by none other than Stephanie J. Block and her adorable, talented hubby Sebastian Arcelus (currently starring in Jersey Boys.) Stephanie, of course, brilliantly portrayed Liza on Broadway in The Boy from Oz back in 2003. And I, of course, lip-sync to Liza's recording of "Some People" at Radio City Music Hall whenever I'm drunk. So needless to say, the two of us had a lot in common. Over dinner, Stephanie and I compared notes on our backstage time with Ms. Minnelli. (I was surprised to learn that before that evening, she hadn't met Liza either.) After a few retrospective reenactments of what had just transpired, I think we both felt a little dorky about how we'd handled things. But, ya know... when meeting people like LM who've had such an enormous impact on your life, it's almost impossible to find the right words to express everything you feel you need to express to them in such a short amount of time. And you never wanna throw the moment away with some generic bullshit, like "I'm such a huge fan! *fart* No! You have to make it special! I find I usually over-think it entirely. And in trying to come up with something unique and personal, wind up with something so finely-tuned that it could never, under any circumstances, make sense outside of my head. Thereby only confusing and scaring the crap out of the receiving party. I'll say things like, "You brought me to that place, and I need you to know that... I need you to know that." Or "This moment in my hand...is worth ten moments in my bush...". Or, "Take me with you... You have to take me with you." Like, what the fuck am I talking about??? It always makes so much sense in my head! Oh, well. Next time, I'm just gonna bring sheet music and sing something.
Anyway, Happy Holidays from the both of us!
Clearly, we are very much in love.
Some more cute pics from that evening...