Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Tuesday, March 6th
Look at these two. Shouldn't they be cruising together?
Well, they aren't.
Steve is gone.
Our shipmate Dave wrote a pretty great account of the whole deal, so I'm just going to post it right here: "Halfway through Tuesday, our second full-cast rehearsal (the other three having put in a few hours a day for four days in Chicago), Steve gets a call from his agent, telling him he’s to be flown to LA to test for a pilot written by Bruce McCullough of The Kids in the Hall, and starring Jerry O’Connell. Great news.
He’s to fly out that day if possible, or Wednesday if not.
We open Thursday. We’re in Puerto Rico. It’s too late to replace Steve, and even if he does get the part, he’d be back in three weeks because his partner is already on board.
Beth Kligerman, our producer, makes the call to let Steve go, which none of us begrudge…it’s a tremendous opportunity, and in the past, Second City burned many a bridge with their performers when they refused to let them take a leave for a golden chance like this. Steve’s success would reflect well on Second City.
Rehearsal is canceled, and Beth and our director Matt Craig huddle up to make some decisions. Steve prepares to pack and tries to get out of San Juan before 6 p.m.
More drama, as he can’t get confirmation from the network (don’t quote me, but I think it’s NBC) that they’ll pay for his flight. Katie Rich is, at this point, the most conflicted person in the world: her boyfriend is about to get a great shot at a steady gig on television…but she’s stuck on a ship with people she barely knows and a show that is nowhere near ready for its opening night in 48 hours.
So, with everything up in the air, we gather for a much-needed beverage in the Crystal Atrium on Deck 7 to discuss our options…assuming Steve even gets to leave. Do we:
a) Have Matt himself step into Steve’s roles? He knows them well, has seen them all played (and wrote a couple when he was in Chicago’s mainstage), and is one hell of a performer.
b) Move down to a 4-person cast until Steve comes back, reassigning the guys roles to Cody and myself, with gender-neutral roles up to anyone not already in the scenes requiring it.
Much discussion ensues, but we opt for the four-person cast: if Steve books the pilot, we won’t have him for up to a month, and Matt can’t stay beyond this week. Besides…it’s probably better to have the director look at lighting and pacing from OUTSIDE the scenes.
Parts are reassigned, and we then separate to study our new lines, and think about blocking. Steve goes to re-pack and spend time with Katie. Matt, who doesn’t drink, seriously contemplates ditching sobriety for an epic bender."
So, yeah. I'm alone, but for the best reason possible. And no one deserves it more than Steve, even if he has to get it the hard way.
Soon, these two will be back together. For now, I'm just ordering too much room service. Maybe I'm eating my feelings. Who cares? Break legs, Stevie!