I TRY...to keep on board with 'the chat' here..but sometimes when I have a show come along, I am 'off board'..and I am hoping to keep up with it all, but that may happen, come June.
I will be doing a new show for the Neil Simon Festival in Cedar City, Utah. The show is "45 SECONDS TO BROADWAY" a Neil Simon play I am don't know much about, only that it is about a bunch of 'down and out actors' who have a meeting place where they can share all their troubles. They meet at a Polish Tea House run by me and my wife. I hear it is a funny show...and another to add to my legit theater resume.
I will TRY to keep chatting with all of you, but should I 'disappear' for a while you will know that is the reason. I know Ginger is already aware of me getting the new show, since we are on facebook together, but thought I would let the rest of you know about it..in advance. We will be playing June thru mid-Aug.
I am always 'most happy' when 'on the boards' with a new show!!...
Hey Errol!!! Applause applause on your June gig, '45 Seconds From Broadway!' I recall it opening about 11 years ago at the Richard Rodger's theater on 46th St - the heart of Broadway. Alas, I never got to see it, but as you know, I am a big fan of Neil Simon and I'm always happy to hear that his shows are being performed. They are certainly amongst the most fun for actors. His comedy writing, as you know, has such a 'rhythm' to it and when you get its 'timing,' it's so rewarding to hear the laughter. I just KNOW that you, a master of Simon's plays, will have a ball doing this, and I'd love to hear all about the experience - from rehearsals to opening night!
That said, I sure hope you'll still have time to look in on the Board. You would be seriously missed!
Hello, Errol--and what great news to hear that you're also back on the 'other Boards'--the theatrical kind! With all those rehearsals, it's no doubt going to be such a crazy few months---and so much FUN!
Will you be commuting by car, or is it too far a trip? Do you have any actor friends in this play, who you've worked with before? I love the comraderie that so often forms in a 'tight-knit' group of committed and good-humored actors. It will be an exciting summer, and I look forward to hearing all about it, whenever you have the spare time!
Do let us know more about your role, when you see the script! I've always loved a good Neil Simon play!!
(And, if you look into the audience one evening, and see am empty seat in the front row.....and it appears to have rings of smoke billowing circles all around it.....and a deep, throaty chuckle can be heard at all your funny lines......I guess you will know exactly who has bought that ticket, and come down, so that, at last, Susan can view one of YOUR great performances!!)
Contrats, Errol, on being back on the stage!! But please don't disappear completely, as we will all want to hear your stories and will miss you!
Light the lights!!!
Thanks for the comments you have left me. Yes..I am very happy about this show. I do have the script now. I will be playing (along with my wife in the show0 the owners of a Polish Tea cafe in the heart of Broadway.
Yes...It did play its Broadway run at the Richard Rogers Theater as was mentioned.
The only thing I can tell you, right now, is that I will also be working with EDDIE MEKKA (who played Carmine in LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY on tv) and CLARENCE GILYARD..the black actor who was in DIE HARD, KARATE KID, TOP GUN and on MATLOCK and WALKER, TEXAS RANGERS on tv.
It looks to be a real fun time..for all...!!....
After you mentioned "a Polish tea cafe', I suddenly woke up this morning, remembering the real Broadway place called "The Polish Tea House"--it just rang a bell with me!! So--I went and googled it for more info.
Until 2009, when he died, Harry Edelstein, 91 and his wife, Frances, owned this well-known hang-out where the Broadway crowd (actors, writers, stagehands, etc) plus all kinds of New Yorkers and tourists came to eat his blintzes, pastrami sanwiches, stuffed cabbage and other delights!
It's real name was The Edison Cafe, I think, but the nick-name--"The Polish Tea House", which was housed in "The Edison Hotel", was a take-off on the glitzy, snobby "The Rusian Tea Room"!
It actually did have clientele like Neil Simon, Linda Lavin, Jakie Mason, etc., who came to hang out for the Jewish specialties and to enjoy a good 'schmooze'!
And it was in the heart of Broadway - West 27th or 28th street.
Neil Simon did hang out a lot there, picking up ideas---and that's how the play came about!!! So, if all these theater people found it a cozy and friendly place to spend time---this must mean that the cafe's owner helped give it that reputation!!
And, so--your part--the owner--should be a terrific one! You may well know all this stuff already about the cafe, but if not, do google it, and you'll be ready to take the stage before the rest of the cast!
I never ate there, as I was a "Carnegie Delicatessen" fiend, working just across the street from this little bit of Heaven--and intoxicated by its pastrami fumes ! Silly old me not to have tried BOTH places!
Well, Errol, I think that you should tell your Director that if he REALLY wants you to 'embrace' the role and all the 'true ambiance' of the actual "Polish Tea House"---that he owes it to you and to the success of his play to run right out and purchase a round-trip ticket for you to travel to the place where it 'all began'! (And to eat a blintz with sour cream to capture the full flavor of the atmosphere......)
Anyway, Errol, "give my regards to Broadway.....remember me to Herald Square...tell all the folks at 42nd Street that I will soon be there!!"!!!
If Susan was a REAL New York girl (especially from Brooklyn....or the Bronx), then she would have--at LEAST once--graced the presence of either "The Pastrami Deli", "The Stage Door Deli", "The Polish Tea House" of "Ratner's" (by the bridge to Brooklyn)!
And somehow I can't imagine that she would have missed these casual, non-snobby hangouts. I hope her grandkids, now living in Manhattan, will try at least ONE of them!!! (They might even be able to get the Carnegie Deli to name a special sandwich after her--wonder if there are any menus now on google to see which stars they featured?)
Hmmm.....what ingredients do you think that Susan would have chosen to represent HER sandwich? Each sandwich was gigantic--almost impossible to eat all in one goal!!
If all the members here on the Board, had eaten at the Carnegie, wouldn't that be a funny question to ask? "Guess the Ingredients Susan would choose for a sandwich named for her?"!
(You, first, Errol!)
Well...Lynnn...you have found the 'very place' and I SAID...CAFE...but in the script it says...Polish Tea House...so this is indeed the place (on 27th Street) that Neil Simon was setting this play on/and about. You also mentioned Jackie Mason going there and that is the person in the play (named Mikey and played by Eddie Merkka).....is suppose to be 'a Jackie Mason-type'...as it says in the script.
My role is Bernie (an older man in his early 70's)..so this matches the older man that you said owned the Polish Tea House.
I thank you for sharing this with me..and I will tell the cast that the show is actually based on this place you know about.
As for what I think Susan would have on a sandwich named after here would be...
TUNA...(wonder why?) Couldn't be because she loved fishing so much..could it?
PLUS...the fact that it a tuna fish sandwich that this young 'hopeful' actress orders...because that's what her mother always used to order here, when she came to seek star-fame, when she was young. Bernie even finds her mother's picture and tells her..."If you would like to sit with your mother..I will bring her picture over for you."
So...there would be TWO reasons that I would start with...TUNA for a Susan sandwich. (ha)...NOW..>I WONDER if SUSAN really liked to eat fish..or just liked the sport of catching them? BERNIE..hopes she likes...TUNA!! (LOL)
(WHAT an odd topic...???)
So glad I could be of help, Errol. But you'll have to forgive me for putting the wrong address down. The Polish Tea House was on 48th Street--not 27th St! Don't know how I got it so wrong? Where was my mind? WHAT mind!
Anyway, I believe that the place that took the cafe over when the owner died, MAY have been affiliated in some way, but I don't think that all those delectable Eastern European dishes still arrive at your table!
What a funny story in the play about this young woman being encouraged by her star-struck mother to order tuna sandwiches--if you wanted to seek fame and fortune! (It may not win you an Oscar, but funnily enough, tuna (and chicken salad) sandwiches have always seemed to be some sort of 'national lunch staple' for young women working in New York!)
My Mom's generation 'feasted' over these 'exotic' lunches....and so did my own generation......and the one just after mine! For the life of me, I'm not quite certain 'why' the big deal!?!
(More about those Carnegie Deli 'exclusive' sandwiches, named for the 'stars', when I write more in another post! Tuna for Susan, eh? I'd thought, for her, more about blood-red, strips of Porterhouse steak with all the trimmings, etc.!") I shall try to find their menu, which I once saved, because they listed some rather interesting concoctions!
That WOULD be an odd topic, Errol...and fun to match the 'famous' with their food fetishes!