Volume 2 Book 10 Part 5 of "Living In The Bonus Round"
The Online Diary of Steve Schalchlin

A nice publicity shot for our upcoming
Laguna Playhouse appearance Aug. 12

[ Diary Index ]
[ Book 9 ] -- [ Pt 1 ] [ Pt 2 ] [ Pt 3 ] [ Pt 4 ] [ Pt 5 ]
[ Pt 6 ] [ Pt 7 ] [ Pt 8 ] [ Pt 9 ] [ Pt 10 ] -- [ Vol 3 Book 1 ]

May 18-21, 2002.
Great Revelations.
Two significant things happened the last week in Rochester. First, we were doing a matinee of TLS. As we prepared to go back in for Act Two (with the audience all seated in the theatre waiting for us), I noticed two audience members who had been in the front row were talking on the pay phone. Looked pretty serious.

I made my entrance. But then later, when Danette came down into the lobby for Tryshia's entrance with the phone message, she saw the same two girls, both neatly dressed and in their teens, sitting at a table.

Danette asked them, "Why are you sitting out here? Why aren't you watching the show?"

One of them said (according to Danette) something like, "We are Christians and we don't agree with this."

Danette immediately said to them that she's a Christian, too, and that they should sit in the back and see the second half. "You've only seen the set-up. You don't know what happens next." So they did. They sat in the back and stayed for the whole show.

Of course, in the course of doing the show, I didn't know all this was going on but I had remembered them from the pay phone. So we're doing the hugline after the show and both of them practically ran into my arms and hugged me and said how much they loved it.

Significant point 2:
This happened Saturday night. Amy had to be out of town for a gig so we scheduled a solo concert. It was similar to the one earlier this year, starting with a little monologue about finding God in Rochester (which always brings a smile -- and by the way, Susan B. Anthony was born in Rochester so there's a tradition of rational progressive thinkers from this area. And if you don't know who Susan B. Anthony is you should be ashamed of yourself.)

Wait. This is a diary. I know who Susan B. Anthony is. Ah, yes, I was preaching. Well, guess what? My little concert started off with funny stories, sequed into songs and stories about God and being gay and losing your  faith, careened into fear, doubt and depression and then, including an intermission and not a little preaching, found its way back to simplicity and resolution.

It was like we were all in a trance together. I could feel them breathing. I heard them give sonia-moans all through the material. I heard them crying. I heard them laughing.

I don't say these things to brag but to say that it confirmed for me that we had a show on our hands. This is now on the same track that TLS was on. Starting with solo concerts and stories.

I told all this to Jimmy. He's been tied up with 70 Girls at the El Portal. Anyway, I tell him I think we finally have a show and it's time for him to write the book. By Monday evening, he had a concept and now he's hot of the trail of writing what is now being called THE BIG VOICE.

I also called Rick Stein at the Laguna Playhouse and accepted his invitation to sing a concert on August 12 for their new summer concert series. Steve Schalchlin & Friends was the original concept but now, with Jimmy hot on the trail of The Big Voice (TBV), I believe we're going to incorporate a public staged reading as a part of the act.

Then I contacted Barry Fasman and asked him if we could finish the album by August 12th.

See what I mean? Everything is suddenly happening quickly. We have a concert date, we have a score, we have a book in progress, an album in the making and I'm also going to back to Rochester for another three weeks, probably in September.

How stupid of me to think I was coming home to rest. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

One great thing, though. Dickie's quilt has been found thanks to my friend Mage who is a diary reader in San Diego. I thank you, my friend, for helping us with this. I'm sure the Names Project is terribly underfunded in these times and I'm sure they are doing their best so I'm not casting stones. Just thankful that our tribute, loving put together by Linda D., is found.

Dickie, you're just in time to see the new show. Pull up a kitchen chair and sit a spell.

May 22-31, 2002.
Courtrooms, CDs, and Naked Models.
I love modern technology -- well, until it suddenly bites me in the butt and stymies my ability to communicate. Case in point, a little thing called an AC adaptor for my laptop. Just as Jimmy and I are counting pennies to make sure we got the rent/food/etc. my AC adaptor goes on the fritz and when I call to find a new one, not only are they not in stock but they cost $100 to replace.

Now, what we're talking about is a power cord that goes from the laptop to the wall socket. How can a power cord cost $100?? But it does. So we trudged across the Valley and paid for it in advance and then waited a week. It finally showed up and that's why I'm writing my diary now instead of a week ago.

The good news is that I put all the "free time" into working on the new album. Our timeline is as follows, to try to finish all the recordings by June 7th. Get the artwork ready by the following week, and everything to the manufacturer before I take off for Pittsburgh to meet with fellow Youth Guardian Services board members on the third week of June.

Record producer Barry Fasman.

My friend Ernie has offered to design the CD artwork for free (yay Ernie!) and I'm pleased to say that the process Barry Fasman and I "invented" to bring my MIDI files into his studio where I would record the vocals has worked beautifully. Already this past week we've finished eight songs for the album, right on schedule!

After we load in the MIDI files I produced at home, we record the vocals. Then Barry begins "juicing up" my arrangements.

I also have my power cord which is why you're reading this. We also dropped into the rehearsals over in Hollywood where Anthony Barnao is rehearsing a new production of Jim Brochu's "Fat Chance." It's a comedy about a middle aged overweight woman, a sculptor, who suddenly finds that the gorgeous young naked male model (a rube from Texas) who's been posing for her has fallen in love with her. It's really sexy and lots of fun. I had forgotten how FUNNY this play is, having only seen it in a staged reading six or seven years ago.

It doesn't hurt that the guy playing the model, aside from being lovely to look at, is a really good actor. (These things matter, don't you know). The play opens next Friday at the Lex Theatre in Hollywood. Very exciting! And maybe it's because of the subject matter (fat woman, sexy model) but Anthony says the press is really responding. Funny. Put a little provocative sex on stage and reporters go nuts.

Meanwhile, Jimmy has been stuck doing jury duty here in the Valley. He can't tell me what the case is about, but he's an alternate juror and since he loves watching court tv and court movies, he says it's very interesting to watch. My only problem with that is that it takes him away from his REAL job, WRITING OUR NEW MUSICAL! (I just hate it when the world conspires against us).

But who can complain? My days have been filled with music, his have been filled with courtroom drama, "we" have a play opening next week, and we actually played the rent on time. Will wonders never cease.

We also swung around by El Portal Theatre where 70 Girls 70 has been playing.

William Schallert with his granddaughter.

Steve with Jane Kean.

[ Diary Index ]
[ Book 9 ] -- [ Pt 1 ] [ Pt 2 ] [ Pt 3 ] [ Pt 4 ] [ Pt 5 ]
[ Pt 6 ] [ Pt 7 ] [ Pt 8 ] [ Pt 9 ] [ Pt 10 ] -- [ Vol 3 Book 1 ]

[ Hannah, Hospice Social Worker ] [ Shawn Decker's ]
[ Jimmy's Sunday Sermons ] [ My Lynchburg Diary: Meeting Jerry Falwell ]
Subscribe to THE LAST SESSION fan and support group
© 2002 by Steve Schalchlin.
You have permission to print from this diary and distribute for use in support groups, schools, or to just give to a friend. You do not have permission to sell it.