Monday, June 10, 2013

Awards and Cyndi Lauper

 If I had a Fashion Blog...
Eric, Me and Jim at the Bobby G awards. I would like to point out that my pants, while made to be uber-large elephant pants, are falling off of my body because I lost 13 pounds. Which makes them just look like a sad puddle instead of a hip stylin' kind of arrangement. The top I purchased that day at Charlotte Russe for $10.00, the sparkle jacket is ten years old from a consignment shop.The scarf, from the set of Legally Blonde, one we bought for the department store, and the leather bag from Italy, given to Genoa by her grandparents. You cannot see the rockin' orange 1970's wedges, which is a damned shame, because they are awesome. Jim intentionally wore this western cut shirt because he thinks he's funny. Eric is clearly the fashionable one of the three, he looks like he's the host of some sort of Makeover Show and we are the sad sacks he talked off of the fashion/house/restaurant ledge.

 If I had a teacher blog...
This is me and my student as he accepts his Special Achievement Award at the Bobby G's  (The "Tony Awards for High School Musicals")at the DCPA. His commitment to taking care of both dogs on Legally Blonde was impressive, particularly cosidering the wealth of talent he possesses. He easily could have simply not auditioned and walked away. But no, his college auditions interfered with the final show, but not enough to keep him completely away. His application for a job he was ultimately creating for himself was an 8X10 of a chihuahua, handed to me wordlessly.

 However I do not have a fashion blog, or a teacher blog,
I have a hot Melted Crayon Mess Blog of past lives crashing in on this life and severe moments of self doubt and a desire to explain Who I Was because I misguidedly believe it explains Who I Am, but it doesn't because Who I Am changes moment to moment depending on the needs of those around me or my audience.
     I can hear voices from my senior year of high school.
     My mom, showing family and friends photos from People Magazine (my mom bought a People every week at the grocery store. I was raised on it and Reader's Digest)  of Cyndi Lauper and exclaiming "If you didn't know any better, you'd think that was kryssi, wouldn't you?" At the time I did not wish to resemble anyone, because I Was An Individual, so I Poo Poo'd it and snorted loudly, but now, when I look back at the photo I'm like...daaayyuummm, I looked like Cyndi Lauper.

    One of my teachers, whose name and subject taught I have unforgivably forgotten, going around the room and asking the seniors that Age Old Question: What Are You Going To Do With Your Life?
    I had no freaking idea. My theatre teacher had scared me out of trying to go to  New York, so I figured I'd maybe be a language arts teacher? A strange look crossed my teacher's face, and she surveyed the room, as if looking for support of her next statement. "Really?" she said, sounding both surprised and disappointed. "I thought for sure you'd be the next Cyndi Lauper, or Bette Midler." I remember being shocked that she would say that because, whatever class it was, I was not successful in it at all. So why would she think I'd do anything successful? I also do not recall ever speaking or participating in that class, I didn't know she was aware of my existence. And lastly, she was old, how did she know who Cyndi Lauper was?
   And then there's the voice of Mr. S ____, my math teacher, who flat out said "What are you, stupid?" 
    It turns out I'm not stupid, but I am dyslexic. I didn't find that out until college. Certainly that's information I could have used earlier in my life.
    While that seems like a non-sequitor to you, it makes perfect sense to me. On the heels of every "You could be somebody" statement is another voice telling me I'm stupid.
      So, Awards are what is dragging this up. The Bobby G's, then the Tony's. I really hate awards, I watch the Tony's to see the performances. Which, may I say, the last two years have been Lame Sauce, what is with all the freaking revivals? And seriously, Phantom has been around for 25 years and they've changed nothing? I texted my sister to see if she was watching and she replied "Blah blah blah gay boys. Blah blah blah statue. Blah blah dance dance. Blah blah talk talk." Which was fabulous, so I replied "Blah blah blah seen it blah blah oh lame intro concept blah blah thank you Edward Albee blah blah blah seen it." Which sums up the evening nicely.
    Anyway, in spite of myself I find myself occasionally rooting for someone to win, and this year it was Harvey Fierstein and Cyndi Lauper and Kinky Boots. Not just because Annaleigh Ashford (who is in Kinky Boots) is from Colorado, but because I happen to love Harvey and was just thrilled to see Cyndi. The last time I saw her she was doing "Elmocize" on Sesame Street. She's always been my secret sister. She has no idea of course, that's the "secret" part.
     Theatre is a beast, a living, breathing beast. No two audiences see the same show. No two shows are "alike"---although I'm not the only one who watched Matilda perform last night and thought it was actually Spring Awakening Junior: The Middle School Version.
     You cannot put a powerhouse classic like Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf  in the same category as A Trip to Bountiful. They are completely different shows! Which is why I hate awards. Too subjective. Look at the musical category! Matilda and Kinky Boots in the same category? How is that possible?
      Well, the Bobby G's did it, they follow the Tony format. They put Legally Blonde in the same category as Les Miserables. Just because a show is a musical doesn't mean they are all the same, any more than straight shows are all the same. And I know there are those who protest to phrasing plays as "straight" shows, because that suggests that musicals are gay,but I say own it, musicals are gay.
      So then I start to ponder the purpose of the awards. The Tony's are clearly about the community, it's the one night everybody gets to see everybody else 'cause they're all working. Which is AWESOME. The acceptances are very different than any other awards, they are clearly grateful but also know it's subjective, and everyone graciously ackowledges everyone else in the category as a peer, not competition.    
      That is not something I experienced at the Bobby G's The Tony Awards For High School Musicals, unfortunately. There were a few kids from other schools  who were a bit snarky to our kids. Which was disappointing, but only reinforced my feeling that we were out of place at the ball, just like Cinderella, and everyone knew it. One of the other kids openly mocked Legally Blonde suggesting it wasn't even a real musical. (The joke is on this kid, I know their director and they're doing Legally Blonde next year.)
      My kids were so excited to see the other performances, and so willing to talk to everyone else there and be Theatre Geeks together, and they were sooooo sad when someone threw them a dirty look or snarky comment. If the Bobby G's wants to be more like the Tony's, then they'll have to not invite snarky teenagers to attend. HA. That's funny. 'cause it's an award for high school musicals...heh heh.
      So, in conclusion, all in all, to sum up: kryssi's name is spelled like Cyndi's, they share a hair history, Awards Are Stupid and the Bobby G's are not at all like the Tony's.
         Thank you.

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