Friday, July 31, 2009

4431 South 36th St. 2003-2009. RIP.

Today we handed in our keys to the old place. I walked around the old place one last time taking in the memories that these walls held. All of the things that have happened here in the past six years. It was a little overwhelming.
In case you didn't know, Matt, Ryan and I moved to this place in late December 2003, after our house on 16th Street burned down. We paid the deposit/first month's rent with money that the cast of Signature's "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" gathered together. It was furnished with furniture that our friends fave us. Furniture that Signature Theatre gave us. Furniture that my clients with Happy Hounds gave us. We were truly rescued, and this home was our safety net that we landed in.

Random memories that just floated back with that:
...Sitting on my then inflatable bed with Tracy Olivera as it slowly deflated (it never held air that good) as she had a meltdown over holiday shopping yet to be done. After much discussion I took her to the Target and between the two of us we got it all done. The popular song of the time was No Doubt's "It's My Life". I recall that blaring in my car as we drove down the road...

...Realizing that I had kind of missed decorating for Christmas that year, since the fire was December 5th, and putting up my boughs of lighted garland on the railway of the steps to downstairs, reasoning that it was kind of wintry and January-esque and could stay up for awhile. Thus beginning a tradition of putting the lighted garland up first ( like on Thanksgiving) and taking it down last (like on February 1st)...

...Moving all our gifted furniture in and what an incredibly hard job that was...and then sitting there and looking at all of the furniture and seeing not furniture, but friends and loved ones who gave these pieces out of the kindness of their hearts. It was another truly overwhelming moment....

This house was home to Matt Conner, Ryan Dean Halbrook, Stephen Gregory Smith and Buddha the pug. It had its ups and downs along the way...
The flood of Summer 2006, later dubbed the "300 Year Flood". Our entire downstairs (where Matt and I lived) was underwater. We were relegated to our living room, sleeping on the floor for weeks after, until we took matters into our own hands, ripped the carpet up and took it out ourselves, as we feared that we would get sick from the growing black mold festering in the ruined carpet one floor below us. The flood hit on Pride Night during a performance of Assassins. It's sudden onslaught and aftermath will never be forgotten to me...

...But it was our home. Period. It's backyard lent me millions of hours of delight. Watching tv out there, planning the water garden. I loved every second of this back yard.

...All of the holiday decorations that this place harbored. The pumpkin carving parties, the Easter egg coloring parties, the Christmas get togethers...

I refinished many a piece of furniture in this backyard, did many a craft project here, read many a book here. ...reading The Ruins jumps out to me...then The Stand. And growing lily pads in our aquatic garden...and laying in my big boy chair...
How many discussions of new shows or cabarets took place there? Hundreds.

We always lived at the mercy of our friends' fellowship. They were always there. We loved each and every one of you, and our door loved your shadows.

...Eleasha and I singing in the basement rehearsing for Ebony and Ivory 1 and 2, her voice ringing through the rafters...

It is hard to let go of such a place. Even if it was not always the best, It offered so much fun and great times. We had/have the best of friends who always came out and had a great time with us.
So here we are on tidy endings. And it is very emotional for me. All over again. I have not lived there since April, and it was very hard to let go of all of this. But that is always it, isn't it? The letting go. In the final analysis, I thank 4431. All of the love it gave. All of the hope it gave. It was fun while it lasted. But now it is done. And I have to be ok with that. Which I am. Thank you 4431. For everything. Goodbye, Fairlington.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Boy Detective Fails - Final Performance tonight at 6PM!

Tonight is the last chance to catch the staged reading of "The Boy Detective Fails" at Signature Theatre. It is tonight at 6pm. Following the performance of Boy Detective, stay and watch Matt Conner and Hunter Foster's new show, "The Hollow" at 8:15. Both pieces are really amazing, and the response that they both got last night was overwhelming. So come out and see us! Visit for more details!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

(2) - AKA The Stephen Gregory Smith Show - Wednesday, July 15th at Signature Theatre

Just FYI - My cabaret is now titled - (2) - AKA The Stephen Gregory Smith Show, and will feature duets with Washington DC's and NYC's top performers...singing with me.
Artists featured are:
Stephen Gregory Smith with...
Tracy Olivera (Casey)
Felicia Curry
Hunter Foster
Eleasha Gamble
James Gardiner
Will Gartshore
Amy McWilliams
Chris Mueller
Chris Sizemore
Bayla Whitten
Weslie Woodley
With Gabe Mangiante on piano.
Wednesday, July 15th at 8:30pm
- all tickets $20.