I was relaying this story yesterday to Little Love when it occurred to me that I've never told you all about this. I saw the fourth preview of the 2005 revival of Sweeney Todd. I was hesitant to attend because I loved the original so much and could not imagine what this one would be like - the actors played the instruments...huh? However, my friend Mandy hooked me up with a ticket and the rest is history, as you well know.
I couldn't resist going to the stage door just to prolong the glorious evening. Every cast member came out and greeted us, except for Patti LuPone. I had never seen her perform live and I was completely blown away by her Mrs. Lovett. I just couldn't wait to meet her. And wait is just what I had to do. We waited so long that the crowd dwindled to just me and three theatre kids. It became like a game to see who could stick out the wait. The stage door cop and Patti's driver were still there so we knew she was inside. Finally, at a quarter of midnight, the door burst open and out came Patti like a tiny Tasmanian Devil. I was standing closest so she approached me first. She grabbed my face and kissed me right on the lips! She kissed the other three kids and then made the rounds again. She was full of apologies for making up wait, explained that she was getting notes from John Doyle and thanked us as well. She talked to us about playing the tuba, having to keep her lipstick from smearing due to the mouthpiece, the role itself and being back on Broadway. One of the kids was so excited, he said, "I can't wait to call home tomorrow and tell my Mom and Dad that I made out with Patti LuPone!" She went to him and gave him another kiss.
Say what you will about Patti's infamous diva behavior, but I'm here to tell you that being kissed on the lips by Patti LuPone is an unforgettable experience and I'll never forget how wonderful she was to four determined theatre kids that fateful night.