One of the benefits of living here—one of the reasons I moved here—is the opportunity to be thisclose to those types of creative endeavors that bring me, as they say, unalloyed joy. Could I be such a snob as to call it "culture"? I am officially from the Midwest, so I think I can. I think I've earned that right by virtue of my smalltown America Wisconsin-ness. And this summer, for better or worse, such joy was manifest in this Broadway production of Mary Stuart, and also in the oddball roundabout lineage that brought into being the Summer of Harriet Walter, factors that have only tangentially to do with either Harriet Walter or Janet McTeer and everything to do with the small, cherished band of dear friends who accompanied me on this adventure and the memories we keep of it. At the same time, if you see a lot of theater you'll surely understand—much like anything else—how little of it strikes something within you and is actually worth remembering—and even less revisiting and celebrating—and therefore how regrettable it is to finally see it go. Thus, today, the end of Mary Stuart. Alas.
Here is SarahB inquiring, rather bossily, after the the window card the Earl of Leicester (John Benjamin Hickey) somehow managed to procure for himself, when in fact such things were nowhere to be had by the general public. Undoubtedly she would have snatched it out of his bag had it been dark outside, and not 1000 degrees in the shade.
Here is the delightful Maria Tucci (who played Mary's nurse, Hanna Kennedy) with the Real Harriet Walter.
This photo was taken just after I actually said, "Harriet Walter, you were my favorite thing about this summer," to which the Real Harriet Walter replied, "That's very sweet; then you'll be my favorite thing, too." P.S.: That is Sir Mortimer (Chandler Williams) in the background. But this was not "The Summer of Chandler Williams."
Here are Roxie and Chelsea with the Real Harriet Walter. This was taken after Chelsea shouted "HEY, HARRIET WALTER!" out loud in the public sphere, right there on the sidewalk at the Broadhurst stage door. Chelsea PR's things for a living, so she knows how to get the word out there.
After dinner—where we were seated for a short time at a table next to Janet McTeer and Marian Seldes, and were later told to pipe down by a certain crabby apple at another nearby table—we were strolling up 44th St. when Roxie suddenly glanced at the sidewalk opposite, spied the actual Janet McTeer, and hollered, "Oh hey, Janet McTeer, WHAT UP?" Which is not typically what one does when one spies a famous person at random in New York City but might in fact be the single most fabulous thing I have ever been lucky enough to witness in person. Truly the perfect Harriet Walter close to the perfect Harriet Walter summer.
It pains me to say this, but: THE END.