Monday, June 21, 2010

K2 opens at BTF and Sara has a that order

Saturday night was Opening Night for the Berkshire Theatre Festival production of "K2".   There is a really good preview video up on YouTube for you to check out.

Tim McGeever and Greg Keller in Berkshire Theatre Festival's 2010 Unicorn production of "K2" by Patrick Meyers. Directed by Wes Grantom. Photo courtesy of BTF.

Seriously, where can you go to see mountain climbing on stage IN A THEATER?  Excellent production.  Don't take my word for it.  Check the reviews.

Larry Murray at Berkshire On Stage writes: "The play is about men, not mountains."
Charles Guiliano at Berkshire Fine writes: "This is an awesome and fascinating production, tightly directed by Wes Grantom...."
J. Peter Bergman at Berkshire Bright Focus writes: "Keller is excellent as Harold. He matches intelligence and drug culture insights brilliantly.......McGeever, as said, wears his role proudly. He scales mountains, literally..."

As always, there was a fun opening night party at the theater after the production so that the audience can meet the actors, director, and designers.  Later many of us adjourned to another party to continue the celebration. 

And while all this drama was happening on stage, a real life drama was taking place in New York City.  Just a week ago The Countess went to Sara's baby shower as reported here and on Saturday she went into labor.  She wasn't due for two more weeks but as luck would have it, her mother had flown in from Florida that day and the Godfather was also able to be there to coach the Faery Princess into this crazy world.

Baby Azzurra and Mommy Sara

Summer in the Berkshires has started off with a BANG!  Looking forward to more good times next weekend when we have weekend guests, another BTF opening night, and maybe a Glenlivet or two :)
Countess Bedelia 6/21/2010 11:09:00 PM | 1 comments |

Monday, June 14, 2010

A visit to the Emerald City in the wonderful Land of Oz...

WOW!  It really doesn't get any better than this past weekend trip.  In chronological order:

Thursday night:  Meeting up with Halley to see Jack Ferver's original choreography "Death is Certain"...

Jack Ferver, Liz Santoro and Darrin Wright

Jack had told me that I needed to see him dance and so Halley and I went to the LaMama Annex for the Rosso Bastardo evening of dance pieces.  Interesting performances and always a delight to see Jack.  After the performance Halley and I went out for a bite to eat and a Glenlivet....

Jack took Halley's card so maybe she will get an audition out of this!  I hope so...she is so talented.

Friday afternoon:  When my 'adopted son' Matthew Wilkas is in a movie showing at The New York LGBT Film Festival NEWFEST, The Countess must go and see.  "Curious Thing" won Best Narrative Short in the Jury Awards. 

Matt Wilkas and Danny Bernardy in a scene from Curious Thing

Friday night: The invitation for Sara's baby shower/dance party read....Disco ball. Laser light, 25 yards of gold lame', AND Sara !  The fact that it was being held in Brooklyn was not going to stop The Countess!  My car driver from Manhattan was in the Romanian Mafia, I think :)  Anyway he proceeded to tell me that he had been held up at gunpoint in the area that I was going to about 20 years ago and was I sure that I still wanted to go there!?!  I tried to tell him that things had changed but he still insisted on walking me to the door to be sure I was sweet is that?

The Golden Girl shined throughout the night. 

She even had a Golden Throne to sit on....

Many gifts were bestowed upon her Golden Child, or The Faery Princess as I call her.....

Such a fun evening and so many wonderful friends to share it with.

The Countess danced up a storm....

And then was sent back to Manhattan in a limo.....a fairy tale ending to a fairy tale event.  We cannot wait to meet the Golden Child when she makes her debut into this crazy world we live in.

Saturday afternoon:  Back to the The New York LGBT Film Festival NEWFEST, this time to see "Gayby",  starring Matt Wilkas and Jenn Harris.  Here are Matt and Jenn just before Gayby played on the big screen...

After the movie we had a photo op....

Jenn Harris, Jonathan Lisecki, & Matt Wilkas walk the Red Carpet

Saturday night:   "Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson" again!  This time my friend Joe Jung was performing.  As the production kept getting extended some cast members had to drop out and so Joe was cast in the play for the final month.  Joe's beautiful wife, Jessi Blue, and I met up to see him strut his stuff on the big stage as well as to see James Barry in his new role as President Monroe.  Little did I know that Joe and James had a little surprise for me!

Gorgeous Benjamin Walker plays Andrew Jackson and always comes out into the audience each night to give some lucky lady a lap dance...

Imagine my surprise when he headed right for me and proceeded to sit on my lap and sing to me!  Joe and James were laughing their asses off while the whole thing was going on. 

A most delightful ending to a perfect time in the Emerald City.  See you again in September.....The Berkshires own me for the summer.
Countess Bedelia 6/14/2010 07:03:00 PM | 0 comments |

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

The Countess Tutorial....

I often tell people who ask how I became a Countess that The Countess was born in a Palace on Ocean Drive way back in 2005.....

The Palace Bar at 1200 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, was managed at that time by my dear friend, The Mrs. Astor.  Of course it only made sense that we should all be Royal....and so, The Countess Bedelia was born.  And yet, Bedelia had always existed inside me....often poking her nose out at the most inopportune times.  As The Countess Bedelia I started to write this blog about my adventures.  Like Alice down the rabbit hole, I have ventured into places that I sometimes wasn't sure of but, also like Alice, I met some wonderful people along the way.

The Castle Bedelia is my main home.  The many servants who run this place keep me organized.  We have the scullery maids, the laundresses, the chef, the butler, and my personal maid, Marie, who organizes my jewels and wardrobe for my many official state visits.

The Summer Palace is located in the Berkshires.  This is the scene of many parties and theatrical events.  The Countess' heart lives here in  rustic splendor surrounded by theater, art, and interesting folk from all walks of life, and most especially, The Berkshire Theatre Festival...

When The Countess ventures out in the Berkshires without an entourage, you can probably find her at Rumpy's Tavern with Prince Troy...

Recently The Countess' official portrait was stolen from the Ladies Room at Rumpy's Tavern.

The whole countryside has been turn upside down during the investigation into this dastardly crime.  If you have any information, please turn it over to the local gendarmes.

The Countess lives a charmed life in a fairy tale completely removed from the everyday cares and concerns of that dreaded world called Real Life.  When she meets a courtier worthy of being in her court, she bestows a title upon them.  The only duty they have is to adore The Countess forever.

You will probably never read anything in The Countess' Blog other than chronicles of her journeys and life among the rich and famous.  I leave Real Life to others.  The world of Bedelia is so much more fun !
Countess Bedelia 6/08/2010 11:04:00 PM | 1 comments |

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Family weekend

June 5th was highlighted in red on my calendar months ago when I was informed that on this date the Baby Countesses would be in their first dance recital.  It is so rare that I spend a weekend at the Castle Bedelia that everyone wanted to be sure that I had lots of advance notice.  Happily this weekend also coincided with the Stoneham Theater's production of "Gaslight" starring Robert Serrell.

The Principessa and I had a mother/daughter night with dinner and a play.  Bobby gave a fantastic performance as the villainous husband; equal parts charm and menace....or as one reviewer said, "Robert Serrell as her handsome, woman-chasing, narcissistic husband is evil incarnate."

Marianna Bassham and Robert Serrell in "Gaslight"

After the play we made a plan to meet up in Salem for drinks with Bobby and his wife, Catherine (my dear friend who started The Wharton Salon at The Mount).  This resulted in the Principessa and The Countess on a comedy tour of the bars in Salem trying to find a place to sit and get a drink.  Apparently even sidewalk tables are outlawed after midnight in Salem.  We did manage to get one drink at Rockafellas before being told that we must go inside or leave.  Still it was nice to sit and chat with Bobby and Catherine, even for a short time.  We will reunite soon in our beloved Berkshires when Bobby takes a role in Catherine's production of "Summer".

Saturday night arrived and the theatrical debut of the Baby Countesses went off without a hitch.  The two grandmothers clapped and cheered as our little "Pretty Ponies" pranced around the stage and performed their dance routine.....

We met them at the Stage Door where they were presented with bouquets....

Two happy little girls.  Today a dance recital, tomorrow the Broadway stage !!

Family weekend continues today with big sister Melanie's softball game.  I hope the rain holds off !!
Countess Bedelia 6/06/2010 11:50:00 AM | 0 comments |

Thursday, June 03, 2010

The Countess Ball....after all these years

Several years ago Sir Stew, First Knight of the Berkshires, envisioned The Countess Ball.  We talked about where we would have it, who would attend, and what we would wear.  Each year The Ball seemed more illusional as people moved away and priorities changed.  But finally, this year, our vision happened.  If only Sir Stew had been in attendance, all would have been perfect.  As it happens, it really was a magical night.

"Welcome to BTF" to the new interns and returning staff was the theme.  A little karaoke, some food, and a lot of fun.  Kyle, our Company Manager, took over Sir Stew's role and helped with all the details. (Remind me to Knight him soon.)  As the guests arrived they were greeted by none other than the one person who drives the Berkshire Theatre Festival, Kate Maguire, our CEO and Artistic Director....

Soon Kate was belting out "I Will Survive" with The Countess and several courtiers doing backup honors....

The new "Lavanigans" made their debut....

And Jason sang HIS song "Total Eclipse of the Heart" with photos of The Countess from prior years showing on the screen behind him (LOL)....

Liz got her inner Diva going on....

Steve took lots of pictures....

and we got to meet our wonderful, talented interns who will be working with us at the Berkshire Theatre Festival all summer....

Welcome everyone!  Here's to a great season......CHEERS !!
Countess Bedelia 6/03/2010 02:03:00 AM | 0 comments |

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

"The Whipping Man" at Barrington Stage Company

The Countess has been a very bad blogger lately and some of my readers have taken me to task!!!  I wanted to be sure to give a shout out to the Barrington Stage Company production of "The Whipping Man" which is currently running on their Stage 2 until June 13th. 

You don't have to take my word that this play and the wonderful cast....LeRoy McClain, Clarke Peters, and Nick Westrake...are fantastic.  Just read this review "witness how great actors thrive off each other’s energy and skill", and this one "all three actors, deftly directed by Innvar, seem perfectly in sync and perfectly themselves" !!!

Duke Davo and I went to see this fantastic production last Friday.  What an incredible experience!  Just as the reviewers noted, these three actors completely inhabit their characters and transport the audience back to a dark time in the South after the Civil War.  Don't miss this one !

And then there is always the fun to be had after the show......I met LeRoy McClain several years ago at a party and he told me he was going to be "the next big Broadway star".  I always tease him about that but the truth is that he DID get in a Broadway show the very next year!  LeRoy introduced me to Clarke and Nick after the show and we all went out for drinks and lots of laughs. 

The Countess had a little fangurl moment when I met Clarke because I am a big fan of the new HBO show "Treme" that Clarke stars in.  He is also a star of "The Wire", the HBO show that many people consider to be the best series ever shown on TV. 

And who knew that meeting Nick Westrake would be like meeting an old friend?  We know all the same people and just had the best time together gossiping and dishing the new BFF !!

LeRoy, The Countess, and Nick...with Clarke making funny faces behind us :)

It wouldn't be Friday night in the Berkshires if we didn't end up at Rumpy's Tavern.  Prince Troy welcomed us with open arms and we just caught last call.

So much blogging to catch up on!  Next up, The Countess Ball !!
Countess Bedelia 6/02/2010 10:34:00 AM | 0 comments |