Thursday, July 30, 2015

BryonySeries Throwback Thursday: "Oliver!" Recap...Finally!!!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

"Oliver!" Recap...Finally!!!

On September 8th, Christopher, Rebekah, Daniel, and me celebrated Timothy's birthday in a most unusual way. A few people chipped in to take him to see the 1968 musical Oliver! on the big screen and to meet three of its stars before the show: Mark Lester (Oliver), Shani Wallis (Nancy), and Ron Moody (Fagin).

And we didn't tell Timothy.

The fun began while Christopher stood outside smoking a cigarette with Timothy and Daniel keeping him company while Rebekah and I went inside to claim our reserved tickets. I saw a car pull up just a yard past them--a regular car, mind you, not a limo--and Ron Moody stepped out.

The boys, of course, were oblivious.

I rushed outside just in time to see Mark Lester help Ron up the curb, and I drew Timothy's attention to it. He grew excited at the coincidence, so I admitted that was the entire reason we were here. By then, Christopher and Daniel had turned around, but Mark and Ron had already entered the theater.

Because money was tight; because we had no working well and consequently spent much money on bottled water and laundromats; and because we were soon to be homeless, we decided to chip in evenly to buy just one poster with all three stars' photos on it, to the tune of fifty dollars (GROAN), and let Timothy be the one to keep it.

Then we waited patiently in line, until I got woozy and remembered I hadn't drunk much water that day (I take massive amounts of antihistamines and am prone to dehydration). It wouldn't do to pass out in line (not the way I prefer to attract attention), but the bar was nearby so Christopher bought me a three dollar water bottle, which I consumed in about three swallows.

For those of you that know Christopher, he had plenty to say about the cost, to the bartender and to anyone in line that couldn't avoid listening to it. If you don't know Christopher, I'll just skip to the next part.

Mark Lester was professionally polite, until I told him we were huge Melody fans, proving it by gesturing to Daniel and saying, "I like Daniel much more than I like geography."

He perked up at that point, said Melody was quite a good film and that he couldn't understand why it didn't do better at the box office. He chatted a bit more until I could feel the impatience of the line behind us. So we thanked him and moved on, but I couldn't help saying, "Please sir, I want some more...."

To which Mark pointed his finger at me with a grin and said, "Popcorn!"

Next stop was Shani Wallis. She was friendly polite and even more friendly after I introduced my children (She loved their names!) She stopped signing, disbelieving I was their mother.

Shani looked straight at me and asked, "How old are you?"

"Fifty-two," I replied.

She gaped, recovered, and then said, "How old do you think I am?"

"Fifty-two," I quickly answered.

Shani said, "I'm eighty."

Eighty! The woman is a complete knock out!

I blurted out, "I want to be you," and I meant it.

Shani kissed Christopher and chatted to the kids. I stepped back as a man approached me from the side. He introduced himself as her husband and manager, so I introduced myself as a freelance writer. Long story short, he asked if I'd write a story about Shani, and we traded phone numbers. And yes, I've been researching possible venues. Hoping!

Finally, we made it to Ron Moody. He had a hard time grasping that we really had come to the theater to celebrate Timothy's birthday. When he finally understood that HE was my son's twenty-third birthday present, he started singing Happy Birthday to him.

I couldn't grab my phone fast enough. So I interupted Ron and asked him to start over. He stopped in mid-note, really surprised at such a daring question. But he did start over, and my phone promptly stopped recording.


Christopher quickly took out his phone, and we recorded most of it. The movie was almost--and they key word is "almost"--anticlimatic. To see it again in such context was really amazing and certainly a most wonderful way to  spend the last semi-family outing before we no longer had a home.

A physical home, that is. The home we have in our hearts...well, that, my friends, is everlasting.


1 comment:

Denise M. Baran-Unland said...

And for one very special rendition of "Happy Birthday," visit this: