Last night I was reading a book (I know, this shocks so many of you!) and in it Liza Minelli describes “second acting the shows” because she didn’t have enough money.
For those who don’t know, second acting a show is where a person will linger during intermission, mingling with the other people who have stepped outside to have a cigarette between acts. Someone who couldn’t afford theater tickets themselves could then walk into the theater with the other theater goers and at least see the second act.
Hence, second acting the show.
My mother used to do this. I never asked her what shows she saw but she once told me that, before I was born, she would go to the theater where there was a show she wanted to see and just walk in with the other audience members as if she belonged.
This stirred up memories of my own theater going moments so, in no particular order, here is a list of those shows I clearly remember seeing. If I remember one later, I’ll come back and update.
Cabaret (original production but probably not the original cast)
The Wiz (I actually saw this several times because people kept taking me)
Godspell (I saw this with Pia)
Dracula (starring Frank Langella--I also saw this one with Pia)
Harold and Maude (opened
7 Feb 1980—closed 9 Feb 1980 . . . ouch)
Feiffer’s People (an off (or possibly off-off) Broadway production inspired by the works of Jules Feiffer)
, I also saw (with Rob) Georgia
For the sake of keeping this reasonable, I am not including ballet, opera, or other stage type productions. As I said, I may have forgotten something and hopefully I’ll come back and rectify what I inevitably left off. Should I do so, I’ll asterisk (*) the addition with a date added note.
Oh . . . and for the record, I myself never second acted a play although I did see a show or two standing room only.