2012.01.15: Making the most of NYC

Liz met me after work tonight and we grabbed dinner and took in a Broadway show. Dinner was Korean food at Food Gallery 32, a block from my office. Strange place–eating there, you could almost believe you were in Korea somewhere. The food was good, though, and affordable by New York standards. That’s something I’m still getting used to. I had meatball pho, while Liz had some kind of crazy elaborate sushi. We both resisted the urge to get Red Mango on the way out.

The show was The Mystery of Edwin Drood, a fun and fairly wacky musical presented by Roundabout Theatre Company at Studio 54. This was my first time entering the famed venue, and looking around I would never have guessed that it was anything but a theater. Roundabout has restored it to an elegant and classy theater, and while the leopard print carpet is a subtle reminder of its former life, I was sort of hoping to spot the moon and coke spoon hanging somewhere near the back of the mezzanine. For the record, it is not.

Drood is the first show I’ve seen wherein the audience chooses their own ending. Based on the novel Charles Dickens was writing at his death, the show’s approach to the unresolved murder mystery is to allow the audience to decide what really happened. According to Roundabout, the various choices available to the audience allow for more than 500 possible combinations. By formatting the production as a show-within-a-show (the Dickensian adaptation is presented by a fictional Victorian English music hall), the production smashes the fourth wall and makes interaction with the audience an entertaining part of the show, rather than a necessity.

Oh, and it’s written by Rupert Holmes, the Pina Colada Song guy. So there’s that.

I expect we’ll be taking in more shows–one benefit of dating an actor is that we get cheap tikets to Broadway and off-Broadway productions, so I’m about to get a lot of culture. I was hoping to get tickets to see Al Pacino in Glengarry Glen Ross, but apparently that’s closing on Sunday. I guess I should have moved on that sooner. Coffee is for closers.

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