Last night I hosted two fellow buskers (and fellow Coxcomb alums) from Philly who came to Brooklyn for a photo shoot. It's always lovely when we get together because we all get "transported" to Pennsic "chust a little bit".
"Dottie" and "Lorraine" perform together as "Bag Lady / Wandering Gypsy Theatre" (example at http://www.sidetracked.biz/Site/Watch.html
) in and around Philadelphia, in addition to group and solo acting gigs. They have mostly quit their day jobs 8) They've also booked me in Phoenixville a time or two or three... They stayed overnight, which was a good thing since the shoot ran kind of late and meshed nicely with my getting off work late. I saw them rehearse a work in progress, a story about cats. Just before they started, Jamie came and sat down in front of them as if to say "TEL STORREE PLZ?" -- it was adorable. This morning after breakfast (out -- coffee shop has coffee, I don't) we all went to the Central Park entrance at Columbus Circle early (10 am IS early to a theater person) and busked until they had to meet their Megabus at Penn Station. They were both really jazzed to be working in NYC. I know exactly how they feel--I've never lost the thrill of driving/walking on this or that street for some routine activity and catching sight of the Empire State Building / WTC / Statue of Liberty, or doing a show in Grand Central Station, the place where they shot that dancing scene from "The Fisher King" (although if I were stupid enough to actually set up IN the hall where the ceiling mural is I'd be trampled by rampaging commuters 8).
They did okay tip-wise, for working just over an hour. I got a lot of smiles but not much money, which is how my above-ground experiences in NYC have gone in the past. Both of them definitely want to come back and do this again, for a longer shift. We talked about the one other busker-friendly site I know of, Washington Square Park of the maddening performer crowds. After we said goodbye I relocated my (more passive) act into a subway station nearby for a while, then came home to treat a pounding headache. (I might have worked longer had I remembered to bring food and take a bathroom break. sigh. I do really know better, honest 8)
After a nap and some dinner, I learned about the unexpected death of "Meet The Press" host Tim Russert. My memory of him is mostly surprise that someone could have such a sincerely enthusiastic smile, so often, for the potentially soul-numbing experience of immersing oneself in politics and politicians. Nice guy. Too soon.