A. Nervous pacing. B. Sweaty Palms. C. Rapid heartbeat. D. Butterflies in my stomach.
The answer is: "E", all of the above!!!
I made my acting debut on stage this past weekend in the musical "The Last Days Of Doo Wop" at Stoneham Theater. It was a wonderful, original production written, produced and choreographed by Malden native, Richie Willis, a lifelong musician, singer and actor. He does EVERYTHING and does it so well. He's one of the most talented people I've ever met.
The story revolves around two old friends, Richie and Jimmy, reminiscing about their days singing doo wop on Malden street corners with their friends. They enter a doo wop competition to open a professional concert, headlined by Jackie Wilson. Before the competition, Jimmy of them gets called to serve in Vietnam. He leaves his friends and girlfriend behind to go serve his country and they lose touch. They're reunited 50 years later and not only rekindle their friendship, but Jimmy also finds his long lost love!
The show features outstanding singers/actors, many of whom have had great professional success. The original music, mixed with some well known cover tunes, made the show a musical delight for the audience.
My good friend Johnny Pizzi, well known comedian and magician, is the one who got me involved. He'd done the show for the last three years. Comedy legend Tony V, our great friend, was in the show, but could only do the first weekend of the two weekend engagement. That's where I came in, to TRY and fill Tony's shoes. VERY BIG SHOES!! He, then I, played a concert promoter/record label owner, who judges an audition and signs the winners to a contract. Johnny is well known for his comedy and magic talents. As I discovered, he is a FINE actor and performer. He played numerous characters in the show and his physical comedic ability is superb and the audiences went WILD with laughter!!
I learned so much from Johnny, Tony and Richie: the dialogue, timing, cues, maneuvering into position backstage, etc. It was a great experience and I loved it!
Here are some pictures from the show!!