Staff Remembers: Best of Broadway

By Josh Hinkle

Originally published on Advocate.com February 03 2012 5:00 AM ET

"My parents usually bought most Broadway cast albums of the bigger shows as soon as they came out. When the cast album of My Fair Lady with Rex Harrison and Julie Andrews came, I was a star-struck 4-year-old. I was not allowed to touch the record player at that age, so I had to ask my mother to play it for me. Over and over and over again. I became obsessed with both the music and with Julie Andrews. I would dance around the living room for hours on end to all the songs, making up my own interpretations of what they were about, as George Bernard Shaw was a little out of  my reach at that point." —Christopher Harrity, Manager Online Production MEMORIES MY FAIR LADY 1956 X560 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COM"I'll never forget seeing AIDA on Broadway, sometime around 2002. I was working as a publicist with Josh Ryan Evans, the diminutive star of the soap Passions. Josh was on the Rosie O'Donnell Show and managed to get tickets for us to see AIDA, though it required us staying another day in New York; I had a cold, it was freezing, and I wanted to be home in L.A. But we stayed and, to my surprise, I really enjoyed the musical. Josh passed away a few years later, so it's a nice memory I keep of him." —Neal Broverman, Senior Editor MEMORIES AIDA X560 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COM"The first show I ever appeared in was a college production of The King and I. At 8 years old, I was one of the children. I loved the show so much that when Yul Brynner appeared in a revival in 1983, my mother ordered tickets and drove me two-and-a-half hours to see it. It was truly magical seeing him perform. She did the same when Rex Harrison brought My Fair Lady back. The opportunity to see these two legends in their iconic roles was an amazing gift and something I will always be grateful for." —Winston Gieseke, Managing Editor MEMORIES THE KING AND I REVIVAL X560 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COM"I got into an epic fight with my boyfriend the week of our four-year anniversary.  I completely screwed up.  I mean, it was truly a dumpable offense. But weeks beforehand, he bought tickets for us to see Wicked on our anniversary. I felt incredibly guilty, and he was barely speaking to me, but money was really tight back then, so we got dressed up, got in the car, drove down to the Pantages Theater in Hollywood, and ended up having the most amazing night. I was so compelled by [the] story, and he couldn't stop singing the songs. We even sung a little in the car on the way home. Wicked is one of my favorite musicals on its own, but I also give it a little credit for keeping us together." —Michelle Garcia, Associate Editor MEMORIES WICKED PANTAGES X560 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COM"I should say upfront that this isn't my story; it's my husband's. But I've heard the tale so many times at gatherings of two or more that I feel I've vicariously lived the whole embarrassing moment. As a young teen, he went to see a touring performance of Hair. But Dad had to fill in as chaperone instead of Mom, who was sick or something. The Air Force colonel didn't have a reputation for much interest in musicals. But he took his thrilled son on the long drive from Vermont to Boston, where the show was playing. And when suddenly the women on stage appeared wearing only their hair, the teenage boy looked to his father beside him, mortified to find him glued to the performance with a pair of military-issued field binoculars." —Lucas Grindley, Advocate.com Editor