Behind the Stage Door of the Hampton Playhouse - 40th Season 1988
I'M NOT RAPAPPORE
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The three musical productions were all terrific with LA CAGE registering very strongly with audiences. The costumes were fabulous, and the performances by Woody Howard and David Green outstanding; indeed the entire cast was brilliant. It is now another much requested show. Jessica Sheridan was a fabulous Reno Sweeney in ANYTHING GOES... later she would be a very valuable asset in Liza Minnelli's show at Radio City Music Hall and also on tour. Company members and apprentices Peter Huk, Ron Trenouth, Keith Wilson, Elizabeth Geraghty, Greg Athens, Laurie Beach, Tom Hume, Debra Messing, Doug Kruse, and Sarah Christie were featured this season. Musicians Connie Meng, John Buccini, and John Schneider.
Karri Nussle remembers... "Although I performed in 7 seasons at Hampton, my first is somehow the most memorable because it was the start of not only a long, heartfelt relationship but a relationship that would shape my entire career. it was 1988, and I was cast in my first Equity contract as Nanette in NO, NO NANETTE, Ann in LA CAGE AUX FOLLES, and Hope in ANYTHING GOES. That first summer, lightning struck the theatre during NANETTE, and not just because I was on stage! I was in the middle of my first song and dance number when, after a thunderbolt, the theatre went black for what seemed an eternity. When the lights come on (in only a minute or so) we all finished the number with only the spotlight. There was lots of scurrying and whispering going on backstage, but we kept singing. In a way lightning struck again during LA CAGE in the form of thunderous applause. We played to enthusiastic, full audiences every night who stood and screamed as each Cogelle removed his/her wig. Even with all the excitement of LA CAGE, ANYTHING GOES is perhaps the most memorable because I appeared on stage with Sarah Christie, Alfred's mother. It was my last show of the season and her last ever. What memories."
Connie Meng remembers... "During a performance of NO, NO, NANETTE lightning hit the theatre and the lights went out. 'Tea for Two' continued with only a follow-spot on and smoke drifting out from backstage. When the lights came up, I looked up from the keyboard to see water (rain) pouring down the wall behind the drummer on top of all the power cables! I was sure the entire band was about to be electrocuted. Needless to say we all survived!"
Web editor's note:
Susan Peirez wrote us on Halloween in 2005 to say... "I recently did a search on the Hampton Playhouse where I, too was a featured performer in 1988, having played one of the character roles in /No, No Nanette/. Actually, the featured performers were only: Laurie Beach (featured in /No, No Nanette/) Elizabeth Geraghty (featured in /I'm not Rappaport/), Tom Hume (featured in /I'm not Rappaport/) Debra Messing (featured in /Anything Goes/), Susan Peirez (featured in /No, No Nanettte/) and Keith Wilson (featured in /La Cage Aux Folles/). The remaining performing apprentices had very limited roles that season onstage and are: Greg Athens, Peter Huk, Doug Kruse, Chari Topol and Ron Trenouth. There were also two other female interns: Kelly and Hillary, whose last names escape me.