Saturday, 29 June 2013

Day One in NYC

Inside the nave of The Cloisters
This morning we arrived in New York City when it was overcast but the clouds parted and the sun shone through.

One bumblebee of many keeping busy pollinating the flowers
After a well-needed nap (but of course more would have been better!) we headed out to The Cloisters. We took the subway over, where we were treated to a dance show by three Korean girls in the carriage we were sitting in. It was interesting seeing Asian girls doing robotic dance moves, and were not bad, but not America's Got Talent quality.

Then we walked through a gorgeous garden filled with roses, daisies, hydrangeas, thistles and many other flowers we couldn't identify. What was really amazing was seeing lots of bumble bees congregating around the white hydrangeas.

The Cloisters was originally a monastery and in 1925 John D Rockefeller Jr bought it and donated it to the city and is a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The Cloisters was donated to New York City
Inside is full of religious artifacts, some are paintings, sculptures, carvings and even tombs. There is also a courtyard garden with a small fountain in the middle. Wandering around is a delight, not knowing what's around the corner, upstairs and down in the basement.

After a bite of dinner we headed to Booth Theater and watched the Divine Miss M in the one-woman show I'll Eat You Last.

As soon as the stage opened, the audience clapped and hollered loudly and in character, Bette Midler was fantastic. She played the real-life Hollywood agent Sue Mengers who was one of the best in the profession in the 1970s.

Jesus on a donkey
For an hour and an half, Midler as Menger talked about her history, how she came to Hollywood, as well as dished out about various clients, such as Gene Hackman, Barbra Streisand, Julie Harris, Faye Dunaway and Ali McGraw. Her other clients included Candice Bergman, Joan Collins, Cher, Sidney Lumet, Peter Bogdanovich, Burt Reynolds and Michael Caine.

And Menger didn't hold back with her biting, profanity-laced sarcasm or criticism of people which was what got people cracked up with laughter. She went through lots of cigarettes, though many only puffed one or two times before she stubbed them out and lit another one.

Because she didn't want to get up from the couch, she pointed at an audience member to get up and go on stage. And because she claimed the carpet was recently cleaned, he had to take off his shoes to walk across the living room to give her a silver box of cigarettes. He also bowed to her a few times to add more fun to the show.

And later in the show she rang the bell, signalling the same guy to come up again, take off his shoes and walk across to get a decanter filled with water.
Bette Midler gets a standing ovation at the end of the show

But in the end he was duly rewarded when she finished the show, came out again and invited that audience member-turned-servant to get up on stage with her.

When we emerged from the theatre, lots of people waited for the backstage door to open because Midler's car was waiting for her. We waited for a while, but gave up came home.

1 comment:

  1. The Cloisters are wonderful, aren't they? I went there on a winter's day years ago. The gray of that day sure added to the atmosphere!

    Also, teehee -- are you starting to look to make critter spottings now? ;b