We did not have a Cole Porter moment on our last day but it did…
Words Fail Jake Gyllenhaal
Or so says the NYT. We found he handled them quite well.
As for the four day weekend, I could get used to this.
|In 1927 the entire cast (all 57) of the Mae West production The Pleasure Man was arrested for indecency between the first and second act|
On our final day SS braved the cold (-10C) for Starbucks and upon his return we sat in our hotel room reading the Sunday New York Times which is just about as perfect a Sunday morning as you can get. And when all is said and done a maid tidies up.
We did not engage in vigorous exercise, but instead took lunch at Parker and Quinn, off the lobby. Checked out and left our bags then headed up to see Constellations. The wind chill was a killer! The play we choose to bookmark our vac is a short, intellectual contemplation between a beekeeper and a physicist. The review in the Times is pretty much spot on, so rather than regurgitate, here is the link.
|The Biltmore. Burnt out and decrepit at the turn of the century|
|A famous play in its day|
Constellations is showing just north of the Times Square hubbub at the Samuel J
Friedman Theatre. It started life in
the 1920s as The Biltmore. Mae West’s
play Pleasure Man opened here for one night; the cast was arrested. It was edited to appease morale of the day,
but during the matinee the following day the cast was re-arrested. Which I guess is ironic given that the
longest running show in the theatre was Hair, its 1700 plus performances
topping out Neil Simon’s (Mike Nichols directed, Robert Redford starred) Barefoot in the Park which
capped just over 1500. Wikipedia has a
reference to the nude scene in Hair, which was so short and dimly lit that Jack
Benny once quipped “Did you happen to notice if any of them were
Jewish?” I guess the most famous
thing about the original cast is/was Diane Keaton, who refused to take her
clothes off. As with many things in
Times Square, the mid-20th century took its toll. Opened and closed a couple of times as a
theatre and cinema until a fire lit in the 1980s, set by vandals, kept it shut for
14 years. The Manhattan Theatre Club
subsequently renovated, to a tune of $35 million, and renamed the venue. This is a hugely successful renovation on so many levels but particularly in the phenomenal sight lines, exit corridors, welcoming foyers and exceptional acoustics. Somehow, though, Biltmore is just so much
more Broadway; SFJ sounds like a disease wing at private hospital.
|The SJF neè Biltmore renovated; just a glossy $35m re-do|
|Just ordinary people, like us|
I expected Constellations to be a cerebral tour-de-force in the style of Art by Yasmina Reza, but in fact once you got past Jake G doing an English accent (quite believably; a guest commented in the lobby that he did an accent better than Ruth, not realizing Ruth is English) it was immediately captivating and weirdly emotional.
After the play we went to Macys where we scored a sweet deal on 600 thread count sheets. The theatre, the shopping. Then we retrieved our bags and headed out to JFK. Our 9 p.m. flight was held up several times due to late arrival of the previous aircraft, etc., etc., but given the myriad wind delays, the potential for snow delays, and all the other weather havoc, we were both happy to be airborne at all. We had the very nice CP business class pods on the way home but there was both a crying baby in front of SS and a ten year old behind me. Ah, the HK wealthy. The dinner (a salmon salad, lamb chops, cheese course) was not picture worthy. We both got about an hour shuteye before deplaning at YVR a little bleary eyed.
|Another trip down…|