Sunday, May 04, 2008

Wild Weekend

So, Dave is going out of town? Guess I'll have a good time while he is away and do some blogging especially since he was such a wall flower this weekend and I am still reeling from all the arts, culture and cheap wine that goes with such events.

The week itself was great! I had the great privilege of interviewing Bruce Miller (Artistic Director of Both Barksdale and Theatre IV) last week- more to come on that on Tuesday when the article comes out in STYLE. Bruce is wonderful! So articulate and full of stories. He got me all geared up for First Fridays Art Walk which was totally fabulous last Friday night hugely due to the perfect weather and the fact that I had two friends who had openings - artists, Will Turner and Karen Kean. The sidewalks of Downtown Richmond were theater unto themselves with the variety of people, street performers, traveling bands, and scads of people. It was so energizing!

Saturday found me and my daughter Elinor at the Empire for "Peter Pan" which you will hear more about in STYLE. I will say that I due to space concerns I was not able to put my thoughts about young R. Cooper Timberline into the review for print but he is truly adorable. He has matured as a actor since December. I mean, let's be real here,just about any kid could have played Randy in "A Christmas Story". Randy is not really a challenge for a little kid. The lines are simple and mostly he just has to follow Ralphie or hide under the sink. But Michael Darling is on stage a lot and has to do a considerable amount of dancing, singing and line delivery. Cooper held his own out there - really. For someone who is what, four years old ?, he demonstrates considerable concentration and focus. During the course of three acts I saw him break character slightly only once. The rest of the time he was seriously "on" and I don't mean in that obnoxious way kid actors sometimes get. He did a great job.

So a play in the afternoon. Rush home. Make lasagna for Elinor and sitter. Put on strapless cocktail dress and a dash of much needed make-up and it was off to stunning Agecroft Hall for Richmond Shakespeare's Bard Bash. RS Artistic Director/Marketer Grant Mudge has the foresight to give press passes to members of the press for their big annual fundraiser. Pretty smart. I got to hang with two TD reporters and schmooze with WCVE weekday afternoon DJ, Bobbie Barahas (please know that I am a fan). The food was fantastic and everyone looked marvelous. Dawn Westbrook (local director/actor) looked especially wonderful in a chiffony floral print cocktail dress with oh-so-sexy blue pumps to match and perfectly matching floral dangle earrings. Andrew Hamm sang (does he ever not find a way to fit that in?) some original and some period works associated with Shakespeare plays. Cynde Liffick was very sexy in a form fitting black lace over skin colored number. She shared about the RS outreach programs. But the highlight of the evening was Grant Mudge's presentation of the premier of RS's new promotional DVD which set this part time Marketing director into swoons - or was it Grant himself? Difficult to tell.

Following the fun at Agecroft I dashed off like Cinderella leaving the ball for Comedysportz to see long form Improv troup Cousin Scheckie. I ran into Roy Proctor and Jackie Jones who were lovely companions and laughed heartily as Cousin Scheckie kept us laughing. I recommend checking them out next time you get the chance.

Today Elinor and I wend to the Amani Peace Concert at Grace Baptist Church. It was a cultural experience I will not soon forget. Nigerian drummer, Nana Frimpong, The American Youth Harp Ensemble, The RMS Honors Choir and the Richmond Symphony Choir. The concert raised money to send Nigerian children to school.

OK- I am missing "Masterpiece Theater" - gotta go.

Chat soon.
Mary Burruss

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