Wednesday, January 7, 2009

WELCOME TO THE TOUR BLOG

Greetings to everyone from cold and (now rainy) Cleveland, where we've been hard at work putting all the technical aspects of our production together. Last night was our first performance, and I honestly was curious to see what the response would be like compared to the response Adam and I got when we returned to the Broadway show in 2007. Would people clap as loudly? Would they cheer? Would they moo? Would they stand at the end?

Well, the answer to all those questions was a resounding yes. The theatre here -- the beautifully restored Palace -- is more than twice the size of the Nederlander, and the sound and feeling of 2700 people cheering when we walked onstage was more than a little overwhelming. They mooed with the best of them, and leapt to their feet at the end of the show. It was an amazing way to begin our eight month odyssey across the country (not to mention Tokyo).

I've already said so many things over the years in interviews, the Rent bible, and my own book about how much I love performing in this show and telling this story, and that was just as true last night as ever. We have an incredible company of actors who have come together to take this journey, and our great good fortune is that they are not only supremely talented performers, but they are all also incredible people offstage. The spirit and camaraderie and love and mutual respect and support we all have for one another is palpable. Last night during Life Support I looked around at all my fellow actors up on that platform and was so grateful that *these* are the people I'll be spending this time with.

Only two people in our company are brand new to Rent -- Lexi Lawson, our adorable Mimi; and Adam Halpin, our Gordon -- and not everyone of us has done the show together before, but now we've all fused into an ensemble with its own textures and energy. Having a rehearsal process allowed us to create our very particular chemistry, and that will only deepen as we go.

Hopefully last night's rapturous response wasn't an anomaly, and the rest of the tour will be met with such warm, open arms.

We are all so fortunate to be a part of this amazing piece that continues to change and shape our lives, and to get to share it with all of you.

Hope you're having a great and happy new year. See you in a city near you...

Take care--

Anthony

44 comments:

michelle said...

OMG love itttt!!! go anthony!

samantha said...

can't wait to see the show; i've heard nothing but great things about opening night. thanks for keeping us all posted! see you in february :)

Dee said...

That was beautiful Anthony. I am soo happy for you that you (and Adam and Gwen) have this chance. I have seen RENT many times over the years but I must say I am extrmemely excited about seeing this tour :) Enjoy this time. And Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

Dani said...

Thanks Anthony for the blog. I'm glad that show went really well last for you guys. Also, I'm looking forward to see Adam, you, Lexi and the rest of the cast. =)

Elizabeth said...

You shouldn't expect anything less from the show-goers. RENT is a beautiful thing - the response will always be the same. Glad to hear it went so well. I'll be there for both shows on Saturday. Can't wait.

Lisa said...

Anthony - I was in the audience last night and I am glad that we were able to clap, cheer, moo and stand for you with such vivacity. Your performance, the cast as a whole, was wonderful! Lexi and Adam H. were great in their roles, and actually Lexi became my favorite Mimi to date.

I wanted to wait at the stage door last night and meet you and Adam P., but with the freezing rain / ice, and the roads as terrible as they were we had to get home. :(

Good luck on the rest of the tour - I hope you receive the same response on the rest of the tour as you did in Cleveland last night!

songster said...

So happy that opening night went well! I know that every night will be just as wonderful!!
I can't wait to see you in Philly in Feb. :)

just_lori said...

Thanks for posting Anthony! I can't wait to see you all in Mpls. I so completely am . . . lol i guess i am now just a renthead. you know how we feel. Blessings to you all on this journey, and say hi to adam from me. :D

Eliza said...

That was amazing Anthony! I'm glad you had a good opening night, and I can't wait to see you guys in Newark!! =]

Kelly said...

Hi Anthony! I was there opening night, and it was such an amazing and literally breathtaking experience. I'm so honored to have been there for the tour kick-off and to see you perform your signature role in person!

Break a leg through the rest of your tour!

Marla said...

Thanks for the amazing blog Anthony!! I really can't wait to see the show, I'm so excited. From what I've read so far the show seems like it's pretty amazing. I'm so happy about this cast and I'm so excited to see them. Plus I love how theres not only original cast, but new cast and some former cast, its pretty awesome.

Thats all for now. Thanks for the beautiful blog entry. See you in buffalo on Januaray 17th at 8pm.

<3

gogbobin said...

I don't know about the rest of the people that will be in the audience on January 31 but I for one will most definitely be on my feet and clapping at the end of the show. You should expect nothing less. I don't know if you and Adam realize how much people love this show because of the way that you guys broadcast the message. I can't wait to read the next blog. Good luck and i'll be seeing you in Charlotte!

E said...

God I can't WAIT...Will be there tomorrow (Sunday) and can't wait to see you and Adam (and my old high school friend Michael McElroy--so excited to see him perform finally!) Already plotting out how to hit more dates on this tour--this one is once in a lifetime.

Thanks to you and Adam so much!! for staying with the show for the tour--you are sharing your magic with so many people who might not have gotten to see you in NYC, and that is a real gift!

Kaye said...

ahhhhh still going to Tokyo yay! am excited to see Rent there on tour. yayness

Ashley said...

Anthony-For months I was so excited to be seeing RENT again, especially because of you and Adam being part of this tour. I have never gotten to see you two perform it onstage, so this was my last chance to ever do so. And I'm very fortunate that I had the chance to see the show in Cleveland<3. I was there on opening night on the 6th:) It was such an amazing night! I'm glad you weren't disappointed with how the fans reacted:)You really shouldn't because I believe the reaction will be the same everywhere!!

I've only been a fan of this musical for about two years. But from that first time I saw it on the national tour of '06-'07, I fell in love with it!

Good luck to you, Adam, and the rest of the cast tonight on your last performance in Cleveland. And of course good luck on the rest of the tour!

Stephani said...

I'm beyond excited about the RENT tour coming to Houston in March. I just hope I can get enough money together by then to get a ticket. What can I say? I'm a broke college student and unfortunately textbooks are required and very expensive. I'll try my damndest to be there even if I have to pay in pennies! :)

Anonymous said...

Saw the show on Thursday in Cleveland and it was magnificent. Everyone did go crazy when Anthony and Adam walked on stage! Incredible performance - Thank you so much for sharing your talents!

Bette said...

I have to totally agree with him your have a great cast with great voices and you all have your own personalities and quirkiness. MiMi is GREAT!!! everyone is great!! So glad we went to see the tour .. even through all the snow it was SOOO worth it!

Shada said...

Anthony,

A couple friends and I were able to take the time this past weekend to drive to Cleveland and catch you on this first leg of the tour. I'd heard stories from both of my friends about you and Adam and your performances of Mark and Roger on Broadway. However, I was never able to catch you back then in New York, and I figured that this would be my chance.

And what a chance.

You both blew me away; that’s the best way to put it, I think. Truly there are no words that can describe how real and *honest* you made your roles come across to me. When everything was said and done, I sat quietly in tears before leaping to my feet at the end of the show. Even as I’m sitting here recalling each and every nuance of the performance that night, I have to keep myself from crying.

We were able to catch you at stage door, and I'm so sorry that you had to brave the cold. But your appearance was appreciated more than you could know. I was very thankful to get your signature on my poster, and even though I couldn't thank you personally (there were so many people!), I wanted to let you know that I appreciate you giving your time to the fans.

So because I didn't get the chance to say it then, I'll say it now...

Thank you - from the bottom of my heart - for such a wonderful show, a beautiful memory, and the fantastic song that's singing in my heart even days later.

That means more than you can know.

~Aerika

Super said...

Saw you Saturday, Jan. 10 in Cleveland. Words can't contain the emotions I felt. I cried, laughed, mooed, cheered and then wished for it to never end. 4 hours through the snowstorm for what was the best theatre experience of my life. Thank you for a completely unforgettable performance!

Jillian said...

Hey Anthony!!! I was in the Audience Saturday for the first time on stage...it was sooo amazing; beyond any words I know. Kudos. When Over the Moon came, I looked over to my friend and said, "I'm going to Moo...Moo with me." And sure enough when the time came, I mooed and so did everyone around me....and that was the greatest ever! You all are fantastic and keep up the good work!!!

Stephanie said...

I saw the show on Sunday in Cleveland and it was amazing! I have been a fan of Rent ever since I saw the movie. My only regret is that I didn't get to see it on Broadway. The show was better than I could ever have imagined! I am hoping to maybe go to Pittsburgh so I can see it again!

Angie Barr said...

The show is in Buffalo tomorrow night and my brother and I have second row, left side orch....I CANNOT wait for this! This is a dream come true to hear Anthony and Adam sing together live.

Evie said...

Your writing is poetic, Anthony, and always a pleasure to read. Isn't it a nice life to get so much satisfaction from what you do?! I hope the rest of the tour is just as great for you all!

Taylor said...

See you in Charlotte on the 29th!!!!

Anonymous said...

i was at the show sunday during the day and even though i've seen the show many times before, it was like watching it with new eyes! getting the oppertunity to see anthony rapp and adam pascal play mark and roger was something i never thought i'd see in my lifetime! thank you so much for putting your heart and soul in your preformance!

Renthead4life said...

Anthony, I am so glad to hear things are going so well! I can't wait to see you guys in Charlotte!! I am counting down the days. This is a dream come true for me. Thank you for doing this!!!

Kathie said...

Tonight I attend the opening night at Sheas in Buffalo. My fantastic husband bought me front row seats for tonight....and for Thursday. I feel so blessed and so fortunate to be able to see this show with you, Anthony, and Adam. I'm so thankful for the whole cast, but especially you two, for doing the tour. I know it will be fantastic and that you will receive a warm welcome in Buffalo.

Marceline said...

I saw the show on 1/8 and thought it was utter magic. How amazing that almost everyone on the tour has done the show before. That's got to be daunting for Lexi and Adam H. But this (six-time) audience member can attest to the fact that they were both wonderful.

And although it's nothing like NYC, I hope that your stay in Cleveland was a positive experience. As positive as Cleveland in January could be!

Jessica said...

I can't wait for St. Louis!!!!!

Nicole78 said...

I cannot wait until you come to St. Louis! I'm counting down the days and plan on seeing this show a couple of times while you're here. I saw you perform RENT in Chicago and it is still one of the best theatre highlights in my life. I can't wait!!!! I'll be standing, clapping, cheering, and mooing!

Kaity said...

Yeah! =]
I'm so excited to see it!
I'm glad everyone's having a good time! =]]

~Kaity*

kls89 said...

Anthony - I was in the audience opening night on Tuesday and at the matinee on Saturday. I was also lucky enough to be at the Q&A at Barnes & Noble 1/8. The shows were amazing and it was an honor and priviledge to meet both you and Adam at the Q&A. The entire week was a wonderful, emotional experience. Thank you for bringing your talent back to the show for all of us to enjoy.

Ashley said...

Saw it in Cleveland on Saturday and I have to say that it was a dream come true for me. Way better than any other production, the cast was awesome! I am already looking for tickets for another venue! Anthony and Adam- thank you.

Kathie said...

What a thrill. I'm still in awe over the performance last night. One of the greatest experiences of my life. I'm so grateful to be able to go again Thursday, front row again, and bring my 27 year old daughter with me. The talent on that stage...amazing. Thanks so for all of the hard work. It shows.

Joyce said...

After viewing the movie, I was a little concerned about seeing the stage presentation and how it would compare. I saw it Saturday in Cleveland and it just blew me away. No comparison whatsoever. The theatre experiece was totally involving. Instead of 2-dimensional "observer" it felt like I was truly part of a 3-dimensional performance. Congratulations and thank you, especially to Anthony and Adam for bringing such a terrific cast out on the road. Now I have truly am a "renthead". There is no day but today!

Jenn said...

I'm really glad to hear you appreciate your fans! really, i do. When I met you after seeing you for the second time during your stay in cleveland, you didn't thank us for coming or anything, so I was sort of upset that you didn't seem to care, so reading gave me more peace
I hope I get the chance to see you again soon!

Anonymous said...

It was truely amazing! I saw the show in Indianapolis last year and was actually sick during the whole how, I did enjoy it but when I found out Anthony and Adam were going to be in the show, I without doubt was purchasing tickets. We saw them in Cleveland, drove from Toledo in the horrible snow storm we all saw! When we got to the theater, in the program it said someone else was stepping in for Adam and I was so mad but when him and Anthony came out on stage, I cannot even describe how excited I was! Great show everyone. My fiance and I were so amazed at how great the show was!

bbay72 said...

I was at the Cleveland show on Jan. 10th 9pm... Mom and I were the ones w/the cow head bands on (during Over the Moon).... did you see us?

It was a dream of mine to see Anthony and Adam in NYC but never made it.... NOW my Dream has come True!!!

~~Thank you SOOOO Much for joining the Tour 2009!!!~~~
~Brandi from Toledo, OH

Anna said...

I love rent, good luck!

Courtney said...

I cannot wait to see the show in Charlotte tomorrow! (will be there for the matinee) I teach high school and use excerpts from your memoir to teach memoir writing! I have promised I will return with a picture and signed memoir ;)

Emily said...

Hey Anthony! I'm in Austin, and my mum said she'll let me go see you guys over Spring Break! I have no doubt in my mind that the lot of you will be awesome.

No Day But Today.

suew said...

Saw the show in Chicago 4/11. All we hoped for and so much more. Heard A.R. was really sick. Many kudos to him for performing. Sure couldn't tell he was sick from his 110% performance. Adam, as always, above and beyond. The whole cast was amazing. Thanks to all in the show for giving us such fond memories forever!

Uncle Michael said...

Do Adam and Anthony perform at the Sat matinees? I have an opportunity to get some great seats for the Sat matinee in Austin, but want to be sure (as sure as you can be) they they perform the matinees.