Today was a staged reading of Wendy Wasserstein’s “Pamela’s First Musical,” with music by Cy Coleman and lyrics by David Zippel, to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and the Open Doors mentoring program. Based on Wasserstein’s children’s book, the musical was completed after both she and Coleman passed away. What a lovely tribute it was to them both, and to Broadway and New York, to the power of imagination, blank stages, blank pages, children who feel out of place and those larger-than-life grownups who help them find their way. Starring little Lila Coogan as Pamela and the ever-fabulous Donna Murphy as her fabulous Aunt Louise, with special appearances by Gregg Edelman, Carolee Carmello, Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, Tommy Tune, Lillias White, Sandy Duncan, Donna McKechnie, Kathie Lee Gifford, and even—yes—Michael Riedel. The perfect antidote to a rainy day, the perfect wish to build a dream on. The minute the lights came up, Sarah said “I want to see it again.” Except there is no again: that’s where the magic comes from.
And ooh, darling! Please bring Donna Murphy back to Broadway! How many times do I have to ask?