BWW Feature: At Home With Susie Mosher And Her (Finally) Complete Family
In the movie Cabaret, Sally Bowles says "I guess it's the most significant baby the world has ever known" and in the world of cabaret, the most significant baby of 2020 is Hudson, the new bundle of joy that Susie Mosher and Hope Royaltey are keeping safe and sound in their Manhattan high rise apartment. For five months (give or take) audiences of The Lineup with Susie Mosher heard tell of the upcoming event that would change her life. Regularly the call of motherhood would sound as Mosher would sing out "Grandma's having a babeeeeeee!"
Well, Grandma did have a baby (or, to be exact, her wife did) and days later the city of New York was in lockdown, and the social media world has been obsessed with baby Hudson ever since. When the quarantine is over and people gather together once more, Hudson has a lot of Aunties and Uncles who are anxious to meet him. In the meantime, Hudson is At Home With Mommy Mosher.
This interview was conducted digitally and is reproduced as written.
Name: Susie Mosher
First Cabaret Show (Title, Year, Club): The Steve and Melinda Show Early 80s
Most Recent Cabaret Show: Farah Alvin March 1
Website or Social Media Handles: http://www.susiemosher.com/ Instagram: susiemosher
Susie Mosher, what a time you're having! One day you were at the hospital having a baby and three days later you were under quarantine!
Yep. It's been nuts. We went into the hospital for his birth on March 9th, he was born on March 11th and when we came home we went directly into lockdown. As horrid as this situation is for all of us, it's actually ideal for bringing a newborn into the world. All our attention is on Hudson, and having this little perfect human to focus on is such a gift and total distraction from the loss of life and work.
How's Master Hudson?
Hudson is great, he has two mommies at his beck and call 24/7. We chart his every moment, squealing with encouragement when he grabs something or rolls over, which he is in the process of mastering. He is a wonderful baby, only cry's when he needs to eat, be changed, or needs a nap.
So you are two women, a baby, and two kitties under quarantine in a New York apartment. Put me in that picture.
Well our morning starts around 6:00when he wakes up and Hope feeds him, then we all doze together in the bed until Hope gets him up and they go into the living room for Sesame Street, swinging, bouncing and storytime. I get up around 9:30 and feed him a bottle and we do Tummy Time, watch some Finding Nemo or something like that, take a nap, more Tummy Time, play his Kick and Play piano that he LOVES, take a bath, Hope feeding Him, then He and I go into the bedroom and he goes to sleep, And he and I wake up every couple hours for changing and bottles Till 6:00 when Mommy takes over and I get some solid sleep.
You had weeks of The Lineup planned and suddenly they were gone, and this is a show that really feeds your soul. Did the immediate cut off leave you in a state of emotional upheaval?
Not immediately, it was almost a relief. I hadn't really gotten how consuming a newborn can be. I was grateful to stay home and get to know our new family member. I had Killer shows in the pipeline, amazing guests, and it was tough every Tuesday when I thought of how great the show would have been. But my anxiety is higher now, really wondering about the fate of live performance and how long the "pause" may be for those of us who make our living in the clubs and theaters around the country.
Your colleague Jim Caruso has taken his act to the airwaves - is that something you might consider, or is the improvisational nature of your show too specific for a ZOOM effort?
Jim is an absolute master at picking himself up and creating a new vehicle for himself. Pajama Cast Party is fantastic, fun and I watch every week. I admire him and all the artists Who are taking to the internet to continue bringing everyone entertainment. I don't really feel like I would translate well in this medium, so much of what I do is spontaneous and relies on a live audience and live musicians to improv with. For the time being I will watch others be fabulous and sing to Hudson.
How are Freddie and Charlotte adapting to Hudson getting all of their Mommies' attention?
The cats, Freddie and Charlotte, have relinquished their baby position in the family and now both are very protective and affectionate with Hudson, which is so freaking adorable.
Let's talk a little bit about The Changing Table, created by you, and made a movement by Auntie Alice.
The Changing Table is such a funny phenomenon. From my nutty improv song for Hudson, before I changed his diaper, to Alice Ripley covering it on Facebook, the thing exploded with the most creative, hilarious and heartfelt versions of the little ditty by some of the most talented people in the world. Hope and I were so overwhelmed by the covers from the likes of Marc Shaiman, Billy Stritch, Kate Pierson of the B52s, Kevin Chamberlin and Michael Orland, Kathy Najimy, Telly Leung, Jim Vallance, and Catherine Porter to name just a few. We have 53 versions of the song about changing diapers and are so grateful for the opportunity to embarrass the hell out of Hud when he is older.
Play with me for a second: when this is all over and we begin to rebuild the way society and social interaction works, when the clubs re-open and we can get back to our jobs, what would be your dream cast for the grand reopening of The Lineup?
I am so looking forward to a time when we can resume THE LINEUP. I love doing this show so much, working with Brad Simmons, John Miller, and Shannon Ford is absolute heaven. If you really want my fantasy lineup, how about Marilyn Maye, Donna McKechnie, Alice Ripley, Mykal Kilgore, Gabrielle Stravelli, Diana DeGarmo and Ace Young and Leslie Carrara Rudolph. That's a show for ya.
So Susie, how have you changed since Grandma had a baby?
Yes, my signature song before Hudson's birth was "Grammas having a baby" because clearly I am not as young as most first time mothers. I never thought being a mom was something I wanted, but fate has its own agenda, and here I am. Hudson's Mama. But I have discovered huge wells of love and tenderness I didn't know existed. I am loving him with a ferocity I didn't know was possible, and I am fully embracing being a mother. As I write this he is napping next to me and to turn and look at him is to feel the power of love in a new, more profound way. I have spent my life worrying about me and my career and relationships, and now I am so grateful to the Universe for knowing what I needed, to care for someone more than myself, to put his needs ahead of mine. Yes, I guess Gramma is grateful to be called a Mama and to spend the rest of my life caring for this angel beside me.
All photos courtesy of the Royaltey-Mosher family.