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BWW Blog: Patti Murin of Goodspeed's HOLIDAY INN - Happy Holidays!



Greetings once again from East Haddam, CT, home of the Goodspeed Opera House and the world premiere production of Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn. This is our last week up here, and therefore my last blog. Don't be too sad though. I will be recapping the new season of "The Bachelor" beginning in January for BroadwayWorld! Every. Single. Week. I'll let you decide if that's threat or not.

So this week, I shall tell a classic Christmas tale with a twist.

Once upon a time, in East Haddam, CT, there lived a lively, happy group of actors who were preparing to celebrate the holidays, New Year's Eve, and the closing of their show (sad face). One of these actors lives alone with her faithful puppy, Milo, and has been hard at work all month writing her blog for a very popular theatre website. Her name was Ebeneezer Patti Murin Scrooge. No relation to the mean one though. Patti is much nicer and has way less money than that guy. She's also really funny and sometimes pretty, when her hair decides to behave itself.

Patti Scrooge wanted her last blog installment to be a special one, so she sent her three best friends out to ask the cast members some very important questions.

First came the Ghost of Christmas Past, who wanted to know what everyone's absolute favorite memories from the past four months were. Many people cited similar things, such as going to see the Sea Shanteys sing at the historical Griswold Inn in Essex, Opening Night of the show, and apple picking in the beautiful fall weather. The one, pretty much unanimous, favorite memory was one of the final run-throughs of the show for one of the last times in the studio for the cast of Fiddler on the Roof. It was the moment where you realize you actually have a show, and a truly magical one at that. To share it for the first time with such a supportive group of friends was just what everyone needed to keep them going through the horror that is tech.

There were many individual memories as well. Darien Crago has a great memory of when she visited the Haddam Neck Fair (the same fair of Baby Contest notoriety, for all three of you faithful readers - hi mom!) and guessed the exact number of bouncy balls in a giant mason jar. She received a personal congratulatory phone call, and gained a new Connecticut pen pal named Marge. As Darien says, "These things don't happen in New York City." And she is correct. Juliane Godfrey has one very specific favorite moment in the show. The fantastic choreographer of the show, Denis Jones, came up with an incredibly ingenious and thrilling section of the number "Shakin' the Blues Away" where three girls tap dance WHILE JUMPING ROPE. Seriously. And somehow, Darien, Juliane and Amy Van Norstrand do it flawlessly every single night. Juliane is especially fond of the "flap ball change" that comes at the very end of that because it signifies that no one has died and she can resume breathing again. If it were Patti Scrooge up there? Tears. Black eyes. Sadness. Death. Fired. Those girls are heroes.

Jeremiah Ginn remembers the very end of Act One during the first performance, when Tally Sessions comes out to greet the audience for New Years Eve and says "Welcome to the first ever performance at the first ever Holiday Inn. We're glad you're here." The audience applauded, and Jeremiah got the "Broadway chills." Such a special moment, and so very meta for this world premiere production. Tally listed a few favorite memories, but I'm PRETTY sure his favorite one of was singing "White Christmas" for the first time with Patti Scrooge. He just loves that moment so much, she can see the tears in his eyes every night. Yes, it's really just sweat dripping down INTO his eyes, but let her pretend. Gavin Lee, who just joined the show a few weeks ago, says his favorite memory is the cast. He expected them to be slightly jaded when he came in so late in this long run, but found the opposite to be true. He immediately fit in with his quick sense of humor and contagious optimism.

Next up was the Ghost of Christmas Present, who asked what everyone wanted for Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/I think that's it unless I missed a serious cultural movement in the past year. Tally (man he talks a lot) wants a free lifetime membership to Broadway's favorite gym, Mark Fisher Fitness. Good luck with that, Tal. Similarly, Karl Skyler Urban wants a whole bunch of henleys that show off his muscles. Karl, maybe you can give Tally some tips!

Caley Crawford is using this blog as a platform to send a hint to her parents that she needs money for her Equity dues, as she is a new member of the union! Hayley Podschun wants to be home at her apartment in New York City for longer than two weeks at a time. Good luck with that Hayley! You're too talented to stay home for long. Darrell T. Joe has a short, yet expensive list, and is hoping Santa will bring him a Chromecast, an iPad, and a new iPhone. Maybe just finding a wealthy boyfriend would be easier. Juliane also isn't asking for much this year. She simply wants everything inside Lululemon, an all-expense paid vacation to Harry Potter World, and a pomsky puppy (which if you don't know what that is, Google it immediately). Or just January's rent, which in NYC is approximately equal value to all of those things put together. And John T. Wolfe wants St. Nick to bring him a puppy carrying an engagement ring. John, you can borrow Milo, but you have to give him back.

And last up was the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come. Normally this ghost is the scary one that basically signifies death and unhappiness, but in this version of the story, she looks a lot like Meryl Streep, cause who doesn't want to be Meryl Streep when they grow up? This ghost asked what everyone's New Year's Resolutions were, that age old question that everyone forgets by January 5th. Although I think Laura Harrison will have some success, because she wants to stay in touch with all of her new friends. Laura is the only one of us who lives in LA, so there won't be as many opportunities for coffee dates and such. But that's why we have technology! Alissa Alter is on the same page, as she wants to make more time for friends. As everyone does, she finds it easy to get caught up in work and auditions, so she loses track of time. Let her inspire us all to live in the moment!

Sarah Fagan resolves to dance every day! Being a swing in Connecticut makes her want to curl up in her bed after watching the show every night, so she's determined to get those muscles working regularly. Bryan Hunt wants to floss more, which sounds boring, but is actually pretty smart, since it actually seems like an achievable resolution. Susie Mosher's resolution is to practice detachment. She wants to have glorious moments, and then let them go. Such a beautiful sentiment, and one that everyone can relate to.

And as for Patti Scrooge? One of her favorite memories was tap dancing alongside the brilliance of Noah Racey and Gavin Lee and not feeling completely out of place. She doesn't really want anything for Christmas because she already has everything she could ever ask for. Vomit inducing, I know. But true. And her New Year's resolution is to keep writing because, hey, she feels like she might not be that terrible at it.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to read and follow along with our adventures up here. We are all incredibly fortunate to have had this experience, and we can only hope to meet again in the future for more fun at the Inn. Love to all!

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