On Friday morning I took the train from my parents place in Pennsylvania up to New York to meet my friend Megan (of FabAudrey.com) for a brief weekend in the city. We’d booked tickets to see the new performance of Breakfast at Tiffany’s on Broadway. A pricy commitment – mezzanine seats were $127 plus an online fee. Eek.
On Saturday morning I managed to jab myself in the eye with an eyelash comb, and was weeping the entire day (and still am. Owwww). But I managed to keep my eyes open for the show (ok, 99% of it). We went to the 2PM show, entering the theatre at about a quarter of. We had read about the bathroom situation in other reviews of the Cort Theatre online so I hopped in line as soon as I could. Behind about 20 other women. The mezzanine restrooms held only two stalls. Although the downstairs bathroom supposedly had a few more, I heard the line was even worse. Luckily I got back to my seat before the show began.
The sets were lovely, and our seats were actually very good. Third row back, aisle seats on the left hand side.
When “Fred” began talking, I was a bit surprised by his accent. I don’t know my accents but I suppose it was a New York accent of some kind. It took me a couple of minutes to settle into. But after that I started liking Fred. He definitely had more personality than George Peppard did in the film.
When Holly is introduced (not counting the African carving they speak of in the beginning at the bar), we first hear her off-stage, replying to Mr. Yunioshi’s plea to stop ringing his bell. My heart sank to hear her lines said almost exactly the way Audrey Hepburn spoke them. I’m not here to see someone imitate Audrey Hepburn, I want to see the book come to life. I was also frustrated to hear all of her lines throughout the play said with a British accent. I’ve read the book several times, and I think Holly would have had more of a Grace Kelly accent. Why? Well, it’s mentioned that she had such an awful hillbilly accent that they taught her “to imitate French” so that she could “imitate English.” And I believe it’s also mentioned that she had a sort of Hollywood accent. Sounds like what Grace Kelly did, to me!
Anyway, it didn’t really get better from there. I thought she recited her lines slowly and deliberately, which didn’t mesh with my idea of Holly. Maybe it works for others. I see Holly as someone who has to keep talking and keep moving in order to avoid thinking about her life. She’s quirky and intriguing, which draws people in, but to avoid getting close to them she keeps it light and doesn’t open up about herself. She’ll talk about herself, for sure, to try to shock people, but she won’t open up about why she ran away at 14 or anything like that. Did I use too many commas? Well, maybe you can see a bit of what I’m saying about her performance in this clip:
I actually auditioned for the play, myself (for a standby role, which went to Elisabeth Gray). I’d heard about the casting, contacted the casting director, and she agreed to let me send in a video. So I grabbed a boy, a cat, and a camera and sent in an audition. I had the sides for Mag Wildwood as well, but 1. I’m not 6 feet tall and 2. I ran out of time. So this was my audition for Holly:
Of course, with a director and coach and lots more rehearsal, it’d be better, but seriously, I still even preferred my rough little performance to Emilia Clarke’s. I found her to be very one-note for most of the show.
Perhaps I’m a little critical of the way she played Holly because I see a bit of Holly in myself. And that’s not an “oh, cool” feeling, that’s an “oh, f*ck” feeling. Being a wandering soul, living out of suitcases with no stability and nobody by your side except your cat (and dog. Both of whom sometimes you have to part with to try to figure out where you want to be and what you want to be doing) can get tiring. It’s fun to set up camp, but when it comes time to tear it down and move on, you wonder how many more times you’ll do that, and how long you’ll be doing it alone. Holly, under everything, is looking for security. She’s looking for a guy with money so that she can take care of her brother and live happily ever after with him again on a ranch in Mexico. She doesn’t want to struggle for the rest of her life, which is why she refuses to let herself fall in love with someone who can’t get her out of her situation. There’s a desperation to Holly that I think comes through in subtle ways, but I didn’t see any of it in Holly yesterday.
To be fair, they’re still in previews. I’d love to see how far it comes in a couple of months. Unfortunately (or fortunately? I don’t know) I was on the east coast only this week. Then it’s back to L.A., then back to France, then….? I was happy I was able to schedule to see it at all!
About 2 weeks after we booked our tickets though, we got a discounted ticket offer. Why they didn’t put it out there from the beginning, I have no idea. It’s disappointing to be one of the first in line for something, one of it’s first supporters, and not get “rewarded.” We weren’t able to apply it to our tickets, but if you are planning on seeing the show, please make use of this discount! Shows are so terribly expensive, and this will save you enough to go out to dinner. There’s also the possibility of getting rush tickets for $32 by showing up after 10AM on the day of the show. But I wouldn’t count on those if you’re just in town for the weekend with the intention of seeing a show. But what do I know, I’ve never done it!
So below is your discounted ticket to Breakfast at Tiffany’s on Broadway. I’d love to hear what you think of the show.