What’s In A Number?
I know it’s really supposed to be “what’s in a name” but you try coming up with hooks for these weekly blogs! So let’s talk about the number 52. It’s a pretty cool number. There are 52 cards in a deck. There are almost 52 ways to leave your lover. I mean Paul Simon says, “There must be fifty” which suggests lots more ways… although he can only seem to come up with five...hmmm? And of course, there are 52 weeks in a year. So if you were born in 1959 then this year on your birthday, you would be 2,704 weeks old or the more natural sounding 52 years old…I’m talking to you; Val Kilmer, Kevin Spacey, Allison Janney, Hugh Laurie, Rebecca De Mornay, David Hyde Pierce, Marcia Gay Harden, Judd Nelson, Rosanna Arquette, Linda Blair, Jason Alexander. Now according to Wikipedia the number 52 is also considered an “untouchable” number. We all know that Wikipedia has been known to have its fair share of bad information but this is a mathematical fact. At least it was until yesterday (September 4th)! That’s because I not only personally touched it yesterday (the number, the number!!!) but am also are excited to report…(drum roll) that “Hereafter Musical” has not only touched $52,000 but also PASSED it!!!! That’s right, we have now sold $52,475 worth of tickets (the difference between the online Kick Starter number and the actual number is in checks that we haven't posted yet)! That leaves us having to sell just $7,525 worth of tickets in 19 more days. Can’t have a better birthday that that!!!!!!
Roll Call Tease For Week Five
One of them runs her fingers through Howard Stern’s hair every morning (and they are NOT married)…One of them actually pays women to spend a day with me, one of them makes a real bet with me every year as to whether I live or die (true!!!) and one of them slept with me when he was a young boy (think about it before you jump to conclusions).
Meet The Cast - Meet The Characters [Part 3]
Meet Alma Cuervo [Christina] – First, let’s state the obvious…Alma has one of the coolest names we have ever heard. We once got drunk on a bottle of Alma Cuervo. And she certainly lives up to the coolness of her name. She’s a true Broadway veteran and is way too young to have been in FOURTEEN Broadway shows!!!! She played fellow “Hereafter Musical” cast mate Pierce Cravens’ mother in “Beauty And The Beast”! She was in “Titanic”, “Cabaret” and “The Heidi Chronicles” (among many others). She starred in Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's, “Road Show”. She most recently appeared on Broadway in “Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown” and just finished a sold out off-Broadway run in “The Shoemaker” with Danny Aiello.
Alma On Working With Vinnie & Frankie:
“Vinnie and Frankie are two of the most generous and passionate musicians I've ever met, and I've loved every moment in their presence.”
Here’s Alma with the rest of the cast performing “How Will She Remember Me”.
"How Will She Remember Me" - Company [Rehearsal Space 111410]
Meet Ilene Grossman [Ana] – I think of all the actors in our show, Ilene is probably the furthest away in personality from her character. She is one of the most upbeat, sunny people we know…perfect casting to play a dark and moody suicide girl! At Skidmore College, she decided to pursue both business and theater, playing Lucy in “You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown” her freshman year and joining the tribe of “Hair” her sophomore year. Her business degree landed her a job at Sirius XM Radio as an accountant, where she has the opportunity to use her math skills while listening to “Hereafter Musical” updates on The Howard Stern Show. She’s been with the show for five years and she might be playing Eddie’s mother by the time we get to Broadway!
Ilene On Working With Vinnie, Frankie & Bill:
“I have had the pleasure to be a part of this amazing creation from the beginning. It all started out with lyrics on a page and even at that point I had a feeling Hereafter was going to be something big. Vinnie put his heart and soul into this show and his talent and passion continue to amaze me. With the addition of Bill Hindin, the lyrics on the page turned into beautiful music. Then came Frankie- this wonderful woman's talent and heart took Hereafter to another level that I couldn't even imagine. I feel so lucky to be a part of the Hereafter family and can't wait to see what's ahead!”
Here’s both the studio and live version of Ilene’s show stopping number “Take My Life”.
"Take My Life" - Ilene Grossman
"Take My Life" - Ilene [Rehearsal Space 111410]
Meet Christina and Ana. Christina is a forty something, deeply religious woman whose daughter Ana committed suicide three years ago. She is now having a crisis of faith. She is very skeptical of psychics, but the tragic circumstance of her daughter’s death has taken her down this road. She has come to the session without her family’s knowledge because “they would never understand”. She has mixed feelings at what she hopes to get out of the reading. As she puts it, “Part of me wants to hold her in my arms and the other part just wants to berate her for the cruel and selfish thing she did.” But most of all,Christina is hoping to make contact so that her faith in God will be restored. We first meet Ana when Christina flashes back to the evening her daughter took her life from an overdose of anti depressants. We witness a rare touching moment between a mother and daughter who have been at odds over the years due to the daughter’s depression. But what Christina thought “was a beautiful moment, was in fact Ana’s way of saying goodbye. Ana deeply regrets what she did and the pain that she has caused her mother.
Ana and Christina
ROLL CALL OF THANKS FOR WEEK #5
Lauren Flick – Loved her within minutes of meeting her. She’s an Odd Couple fanatic, has corresponded with Woody Allen and has had what I think is one of the best “strange but true” stories involving messages from “the other side” (and I don’t mean Europe!). She also wrote AND directed a great film starring Rita Moreno called “Play It By Ear”
Dorothy Hess – How much do we love Dorothy? There must be 52 ways! One of them is for giving us her beautiful grand daughter Shea Hess. Here’s an awesome photo of Dorothy, Shea and I from a few years back. I’m about fifty pounds heavier AND I have worst sweat stain ever (but it was really, really hot and I was so nervous meeting Shea’s family for the very first time!!).
Dion Georges – Mystery solved. Dion Georges is responsible for hiring an endless stream of woman to spend the day with me because she runs the temp agency we use…gotcha! And she’s pretty, pretty great at what she does because we’ve met an impressive group of people over the years. Some of them even ended up working on our show!
Steve Bartlow – Talk about lifesavers! The first time we did a concert of music from the show, we had trouble finding an actor for the Jason part (which sucked because that character sings one of the best songs in the show). We we’re weeks away from the show and we still didn’t have a Jason…until Steve showed up. He jumped right into it with little preparation and he nailed it! Here’s a great video of Steve from that concert.
Anthony, Stephanie, Stephen, John & Alec Favale – Yes, Anthony is the little boy I slept with, but we were just kids (I even think we took a bath or two together but that was a few weeks ago). Because I am his older brother, I was able to get him to do just about anything. But now that he’s a proud member of the NYPD and carries a gun, it’s the opposite! Here’s an example of when I was in control. It’s a thirty five year old recording of a song that we wrote together called “Rock & Roller Child”…dig his lead guitar work! I think we won the amplifier at the St Finbar Bazar! Check out how it dies out in the middle of the song and then comes back on when he gives it a whack! Also check this GREAT performance by my nephew Alec on this cover of “Heartbeat”…who says talent skips a generation!
Maria Pope – Yep ANOTHER 15-year co-worker…WTF!! Wait a minute, what if we really don’t work together but just think we do. Maybe it’s like that Twilight Zone episode “Five Characters In Search of an Exit” where they don’t realize they are just dolls…now I’m scared, thanks a lot Maria!