I saw the revival of Stephen Sondheim’s “Follies” last night. Totally amazing, and a great platform for that class of performer that gay dudes have no natural defense against: aging diva broads. Bernadette Peters has a line where she says she’s 49 years old, and the entire theater had the class to keep their laughter to themselves, which was nice.
Anyway, I went home and immediately embarked on a YouTube binge of various versions of “Could I Leave You?” which Jan Maxwell absolutely slayed. I had a feeling this would be one of those songs that every Broadway lady has to attempt at some point, and I was right! This here is my favorite of the ones I’ve seen so far: Donna Murphy at some televised birthday event for Sondheim. The best part is that she’s on this dais with other performers, so while she’s belting, Elaine Stritch and Audra MacDonald are, like, waiting patiently for their number to come up. Please, please make note of the look on Patti LuPone’s face at around the 2:50 mark.
Patti’s eating it up. Definitely want to check out Jan Maxwell, as I believe she is the Lady Gaga of musical theater at this moment. Seriuosly, she’s a crazy weirdo genius.