Thursday, April 30, 2009

Herod in the original Broadway Production

Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar on Broadway
So this is what Herod looked like in the original Broadway production of Jesus Christ Superstar. This is a photo from Time Magazine. Now that's what I call a Swishbuckler. See the entire article and photo spread.

Nasty pile of IHOP MESS

IHOP serves some seriously nasty shit. I went there with some people after the show Thursday night and pigged out. Charlie is below eating his pile of nasty mess. See all my IHOP photos & videos from the evening.

The Casey Dairy Queen

We have sweet tea!
A brief stop at the Dairy Queen in Casey, Indiana was a hoot. See the flower arrangement. The manager was very nice and asked my roommate and I about our show. I lied and he told the truth. They now have sweet tea.

Bus ride- Muncie to Chicago

View the slideshow of the 15 photos I took riding the bus from Muncie, Indiana to Chicago, Illinois today. And as a lil' erotic teaser, in one photo my legs are spread and I am eating a ham sandwich.

St. Louis, Missouri

Take a few minutes to view the slideshow of my 250 photos (and 3 videos) of St. Louis, Missouri. The photo above is right outside what was either a yet-to-be-finished art museum or condo. I couldn't tell. But isn't this public area lovely?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Rolla, MO

Jesus is the way in Rolla, Missouri
April 28, 2009: I did an eight-hour nap on the bus, a one-hour walk in Rolla, Missouri (View my 17 Rolla photos) and a three-hour walk in amazing St. Louis, Missori (View my 253 St. Louis photos). Here's a bit of arch trivia: to make room to build that arch and its accompanying park, (see my photo) the city demolished 40 city blocks.
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Springfield, Missouri

April 25-27, 2009: I did three days in a town called Springfield, Missouri. (View my photos) Every day I was at the hotel they left the a/c off in the lobby and hallways, kept the front doors propped open, allowed the housekeepers to eat breakfast with me and never gave my shower any hot water. However, my three days spent in a town with a three-story "outdoor arts" store and a convenience store chain called "Kum & Go" was not a total debacle: Ryans Steakhouse was right next door to the hotel.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Clinton Presidential Library

I got the chance to see my very first presidential library April 24, 2009, and for free! (View my photos here) Much to my faux-intelligence's surprise, the Clinton Presidential Library experience was a complete shock and letdown to me: a recreation of the Oval Office giving off the air of a theme park, a three-story hall with enough tvs spouting narration at you to be unable to concentrate on anything and two rotating art galleries showing Peter Max crap. And did I mention the building is stunning, but plopped in the middle of parking lot like Wal Mart? Avoid.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

My photo collage: Little Rock, Arkansas

4/19-23/09: My time in Little Rock, Arkansas
Here's my collage of my time in Little Rock Arkansas.

Need a prom dress? Go to Jimmy's.

Prom Dresses for Sale in Gas Station
I saw this gas station during a day-long bus trip (photos) from Little Rock Arkansas (photos) to Springfield, Missouri (photos).
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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Peter Pan and Wendy hook it up

April 23, 2009: A nice cast member from "Disney On Ice: Mickey & Minnie's Magical Journey" gave our cast $7.50 tickets to Thursday night's performance, so I went. It was fun, light and family-friendly. Nice ending to three days in Little Rock, Arkansas. See all my photos I took at the show.
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One big happy family

The 08/09 JCS cast, crew, band and management team

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Short Film: Do not enter the wind

April 22, 2009: Little Rock, Arkansas "Do not enter" sign

Seeing JCS in Chicago? Get cheap TIX

If you are in the Chicago area and seeing Jesus Christ Superstar at the Rosemont Theatre, Ticketmaster has a $20 off offer. Look at me. I'm a one-man sales force.

David J. Sanders: Twitter Superstar

David J. Sanders, an Arkansas News Bureau columnist, “Arkansas Week” panelist and host of AETN’s “Unconventional Wisdom,” left the following tweet Tuesday April 21, 2009: "Thank God! I don't have to interview the guy from Jesus Christ Superstar."

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Arkansas Gazette invents new word for me

The Arkansas Gazette said "he completely loses the song" and they invented a new word to describe me in their review: swishbuckler. Freaking love it. Mark "Swishbucker" Baratelli. Oh and they hated my performance. Surprise.
"And heaven help us, but what was director Dalett Norris thinking when he staged "Herod's Song"? Having Mark Baratelli play Herod as a swishbuckler is one thing, but adding a bevy of bossa nova-costumed screamers and camping up the number so much he completely loses the song, destroys what should have been one of the shows most entertaining moments."
-Eric E. Harrison, ArkansasOnline, April 21, 2009

Tour: The Real Tour

"Tour: The Real Tour" is a new video series created by some folks on a non-equity tour currently on the road for 20 more days. Nope, it's not a tour I am on or have anything to do with. I wanted to share it because I think the video editing is great, the topic is timely (more non-equity tours are sure to be headed out onto the roads real soon due to the economy) and perhaps audiences would like to see what life is actually like for one group of non-equity actors out on the road in one non-equity touring production.
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I am the only gripe in Rhode Island

I was the "only gripe" to one blogger in Rhode Island. The photo and caption is from their blog, too.
"My ONLY GRIPE was in Herod, played by Mark Baratelli as a FLAMING gay man, which was HILARIOUS, believe me. I was in tears. But I feel like he wasn’t paying enough attention to his lines–he was going more for comedy rather than truly emoting what he was saying, and some of the understanding of the song was lost."
Yeah I agree.
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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sign: Stocks fall but Jesus rises!

Stocks Fall and Jesus Rises. Halleluia!
I walked by this in Easton, Pennsylvania.
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Waterbury, Connecticut

April 15, 2009: My hotel in downtown Waterbury was a quick walk to several pieces of stunning architecture. (View my Waterbury photos here) The churches were the best. I only went into one of them. While I sat there trying to take in the beauty of it (and take pictures) a homeless woman asked me if I "got" any of her. I said no quickly and she left me alone. Little did she know I had three tasers, a bottle of Scotch and a year-old can of mace hiding in my murse, just waiting for her to return. Photowalking can be dangerous.
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Easton, Pennsylvania

Easton, Pennsylvania was lovely. (View all my photos) I took a four-hour walk Saturday from my hotel to the city (about 5 miles), and then all around it. I found pretty neighborhoods full of old houses (with old street signs to match), a river with two bridges above it, a university and a de-roofed castle. And yes, after four hours in the sun, I got a sunburn on my forehead. Sorry, no photo of that.
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State Theatre Center for the Arts

I did three shows in at the State Theatre Center for the Arts in Easton, Pennsylvania April 17-18, 2009. View my photos of the former bank/Vaudeville house/movie theatre.
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Here we go

This baby is getting the hell outta there.

Here we go
Sunday I have a 630 mile trip ahead of me, starting at 5am. Hey, this is what I signed up for. And yes, this is probably going to have me traveling upwards of 12-14 hours. Monday I travel an additional 500 miles and perform a show that night. Oh yes. I looked into flights from Philadelphia, a town 60 miles from Easton, but I am choosing to be thrifty and just ride the bus. I heard a podcast yesterday where an economist or whatever was giving advice, and the advice was, "In this economy, if you have a job right now, the best thing to do is save money." So, I am taking that advice.

Red Robin
aturday night I discovered the magic of Red Robin, an over-priced, but delicious restaurant chain un-beknownst to me. Their burgers are good and their fries are unlimited. The servers made "friends" with us. One showed us photos of her 4-year-old son (wow), one discussed his upcoming golf game (boring) and both plopped their asses down and chatted while we tried to eat. The food was good and the (invited) company was fun.
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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

This would be cool

So this would be a cool next job to have: one of the two robbers in the upcoming tour of 101 Dalmations. Audition info here. They're part of the ensemble and play multiple roles.
Jasper Baddun: Man, 30s - 40s. Baritone. Comic criminal who’s always scheming (in vain) for the next big heist. Oliver Hardy-type. Doubles as other characters.

Jinx Baddun: Man, 30s - 40s. Baritone. Jasper's dense brother who never seems to get it right. Stan Laurel-type. Doubles as other characters.
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PPAC: Providence Performing Arts Center

As mentioned earlier, here is my set of eighty three photos of PPAC, the Providence Performing Arts Center, in Rhode Island. It's a beautiful old movie "palace" with a history dating back to 1928.
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2009 New York Auto Show

Monday April 13, 2009: On TGD, I happened to walk by the Jacob Javitz Center in midtown and saw that the 2009 New York Auto Show was taking place. For $14, you can walk through acres of new and "prototype" cars in the comfort of air conditioning and the security of knowing there's a bathroom around every corner. I viewed as much as I could before boredom set in and after I took eighty one photos. Go cars!
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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Improv actor (me!) offers comic relief

Improv actor offers comic relief in 'Jesus Christ: Superstar'

I did a newspaper interview over the phone two weeks ago (listen to it here) for an article in "The Valley Breeze" newspaper. The article came out April 9, 2009. Improv actor offers comic relief in 'Jesus Christ: Superstar'. Here's a highlight:
"One thing I found unusual about Baratelli, when I visited his Web site, he had both his good and bad reviews posted. One Variety review skewered him. "They hated me," he said. "They came early in the run, in Los Angeles. It was my first theatrical review in a real paper. At first, I was like, whatever. Then after about two weeks, it bothered me. I mean, it's Variety. So I reread it, and I thought, maybe he's got a valid point."

Instead of letting the bad review eat away at him, Baratelli decided to take its counsel. "Now I feel like I'm doing a better job."
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Providence, Rhode Island

Wow wow wow. The theatre in Providence, Rhode Island tonight had almost 3,000 seats, was built in 1928, is officially one of those old movie "palaces" and was freaking SOLD OUT. During curtain call the screaming was inTENSE. I hate acting* but I love that screaming! Tonight makes me very happy I took this job.

Downtown Providence is lovely. Some of the buildings are cartoonish in their extravagance. They loved their details back in the day. I have off till 11am tomorrow (Wednesday) so I am going to walk around some more in the morning to get more photos. I don't remember what the building is at left, but it resembles Philadelphia's City Hall.

After the show at the stage door, this woman confused her friend when she forced me to not sign a specific page in her program. I said "You want to reserve that for Ted. I understand." She looks at me and asks "Do you? Do you really?" She was very passionate and I just knew I had the right response to ease her worry. I replied. "Sure. I meet a lot of people like you." Oops.

*Acting is hard.
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My Golden Day:

Tuesday April 14, 2009: I did leave my hotel room on TGD* and I did go into the city. You're welcome. No pre-made plans, I just went. Ended up walking through Central Park, walking several blocks near the river, happening across the 2009 Auto Show and going in and then getting dinner at my fave salad bar, Ruby Tuesday. Wee.
*The Golden Day, which was Monday April 13
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Monday, April 13, 2009

Golden Day. Hurrah.

Outside my hostel room, Chicago Improv Festival 2008Today is what, at this company I work for, is called a "Golden Day." To the company I work for, "golden" means no show to perform and no travel to do. Golden = getting paid to do nothing. People are freaking out, doing back-flips all over themselves and promising to "drink their faces off" to celebrate.

So why am I still in bed at 11:30am on this magical, incredible day of gold? And why did I do this exact same thing for three days in Washington DC, a city full of fun stuff to do? I dunno.
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Sunday, April 12, 2009

Love this sign

I walked past this sign on top of a three-story building in Newark.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

April 19-20: 1,163 miles

View Larger Map

April 19, 2009: 630 miles plus lunch breaks= 14 hours
April 20: 500 miles plus lunch breaks = 12 hours

Happy Easter.

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Hilarious clip from 30 Rock: listen!

This audio clip brought to you by the 30 Rock Episode entitled, "Cutbacks" available right now for free on Hushed Rapings!?

Someone left the Newark in the rain

Sounds like the name of a band

Saturday April 11, 2009: Newark, New Jersey is a photowalker's paradise, even in the rain I trudged through this afternoon before the matinee. I've got 157 photos so far as of 4:38pm of Newark ephemera just waiting for you to flip through.
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Friday, April 10, 2009

Video: Introductions at NJPAC

Thursday April 9, 2009: After the 8pm show Thursday night, ten cast members (including me) got to meet-and-greet with the audience (and eat free cookies and chocolate-dipped strawberries). The video above is us introducing ourselves on the mic right as we walked into the lobby. And, true to my word, the audience is indeed "on youtube." View all the photos from the event.
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I am a black woman in New Jersey

A review from the Newark, New Jersey newspaper, The Star-Ledger, compares me to a black woman who is best known as the high-pitched slave who knows "nothin' 'bout bornin' no babies" from Gone With the Wind. I can die now.
"Mark Baratelli provides the comic relief as King Herod, floating like a butterfly, and sounding much like Butterfly McQueen."
-Peter Filichia, The Star-Ledger, April 10, 2009
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Hulu has Jesus Christ Superstar! Who knew? Watch it for free on Hulu and then come see it not for free on tour.
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Your kids should read this article

This shit is screwed up. An 11 year old middle schooler hung himself because of the daily teasing about supposedly being gay.

I can relate. I was teased CONSTANTLY in elementary and middle school for being effeminate. Kids are absolutely unaware the level of damage they can inflict.

If you have a kid, please sit them down TODAY and explain to them that teasing, for any reason, can damage the kid their teasing, especially if the teased kid doesn't know a way to defend themselves. Have them read the above article. Today.
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Thursday, April 9, 2009

Shea's PAC- Buffalo, NY

I had the opportunity to perform one show in Shea's PAC in Buffalo, NYC. Check out my photos of this dazzling old theatre.
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Palace Theatre- Albany, NY

I did a show at the Palace Theatre in Albany, New York a few days ago, and here are my photos of that beautiful theatre.
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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Drama Already

Wednesday April 8: Wow drama already here in Newark, and its only the first day.

Sunken Bus
Don't worry, this is not about my bus. I walked outside my hotel to find dinner (like a hunter) and saw the fire truck and the cop car. I didn't think anything of it, since the people on the sidewalk around the truck and car were calm and just standing around. And, I just woke up from an 11 hour bus sleep and additional 4pm-9pm sleep. So I was a litle hazy.

On my walk back, with McDonalds in hand, I see the cop car and fire truck gone, and a large bus, the size of ours, with it's tires stuck in the road. It looked like the road turned to mush and the bus sunk into it. That's werid. I walked inside, ate McDonalds and watched Jurrasic Park.

Right now (about 3 hours after seeing the bus) a back hoe is digging what looks like a hole 5 feet deep, where the bus was. Two dump trucks are sitting on either side of it, one full of dirt.

Scared Mom and Kid
My room was not getting a wifi signal when I first checked in before I took my 4-hour post-bus nap. So after the McDonalds and watching Jurrasic Park, I came downstairs to use the lobby wifi. I'm sitting in a gathering of lounge chairs with the street behing me. This Mom and her kid come into the hotel lobby. She's disturbed and the kid is confused. She's in her late 20s and the kid is like maybe 6? She tells him to first lie down on two chairs she is going to drag together to make a bed. He sits and she stares at her bag. Something is going down.

And I am seated right across from it.

With the sounds of the back hoe behind me in the street, she reveals bits and pieces of her story in her weird convo with her kid. She is running away from her husband, the kid wants to know what will happen to his Daddy, she just needs water to drink, she wants the kid to hide under the table. She seemed to want me to know her story. She revealed she only had $10 (which made me think she was trying to con me), she walks to the front desk and tosses $10 at the front desk clerk and calls to her son to follow her up the lobby stairs. They both run away and the front desk clerk calls the guard to the front desk. He says its an emergency.

The security guard waddles u slowly (I see him waddle) to the front desk. After the briefing from the front desk clerk, he follows slowly in the direction of the woman and kid up the stairs. A few minutes later, all three come down the stairs. She comes back to her spot near me, picks up her son's baseball hat and an empty bag of chips, slams the front door open and exits. I am assuming the guard asked her to leave the building. Other than the slam, she didn't show any signs of anger or weirdness.

I sat there watching the whole thing.

The cops came and spoke to the guard, but they didn't ask for a report or anything. They did, however, waddle up to the front desk and ask about room rates for cops.
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Wed 5/8/09 6am

6am Wednesday April 8, 2009: Long bus ride today. I've popped the pills, my bed is made (on the bus floor) and I am ready to be bitter (and asleep) all day.

Last night the show played a 3,000 seat theatre in Buffalo. And it was sold out. You ever seen 3,000 people standing up clapping in your direction? Wow. I wish it was for me, but as always, it is for our amazing lead.

Yesterday I attempted to take the self-guided (with a guide in y hand from the tourism office) tour of noteable architecture in downtown Buffalo, but it was so God-awful cold, I only made it 1/5 of the way before turning around.

I had dinner at a Canadian chain called Tim Hortons. They serve sandwich combos, but instead of fries, the side dish is a doughnut.

I had after-show dinner at TGI Fridays where a server tried to tell me she gave me one of my drinks for free, and I confirmed politely that she did not "do me any favors." I have never given a 10% tip until last night. She earned it for other transgressions as well, not just for that.
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Monday, April 6, 2009

Horse butthole at Yale Museum of Art

Picture 2
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Short Film: Apple Escalator

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Three days in New Haven CT

New Haven Collage
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Sunday, April 5, 2009

Two-show Sunday: Jesus would be proud

Plastic hand in window

April 5, 2009: I did the Yale Art Museum between shows. The lighting is dramatic and the layout is pleasant, but half the goddamn museum was shut down for renovation. They better be glad admission was free or I would have mailed them one of their postage-paid comment postcards to complain.

On my last tour we did an onstage group photo with the cast/crew/band/management and it was a nice memento to have. I brought up the idea on this tour and it looks like its gonna happen in one of the upcoming venues.

For the past seven days I have not been pleased with my performances. Something was not right. Today after the matinee I go to my stage manager and tell her "I am sucking!" She offers to talk to me between shows about it, but I ask her to just watch me in the next few shows and offer feedback. And then tonight, with the help of the awesome banana-head Amber, Stella (me) got her groove back. She did something on stage that made me laugh and brought something out in me that I dunno, just made me wake up and do the song different. Even the end of the song, the last long note, I sang differently. And the crowd reacted completely different than they had the past week, in all the cities we've been in. Grateful the week ended on an up-note.

I know God Jesus Lord has a plan for me, but sill, I am nervous about being unemployed come May 3. There's rumor this tour will go out again. I want to get my show at UCB in LA and NYC, as well as bring it to NYC for that producer showing. I dunno. It's all nerve-racking.

For the short term anyway, I am going to rehearse my show during May and June. I am in one Fringe show, and a friend asked me to be in one performance another fringe show, and I will be at the festival covering it for my blog. So I will at least have something to do for the next two months while I look for work and collect unemployment.

Ok time for bed. I have a 3 hour bus ride to Albany ahead of me and then 3 hours of bitching mid-afternoon that I did not have time to see the capital building before call-time for mic-check.
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Friday, April 3, 2009

I met Donovan!!!

A young audience member got his photo taken a with a bunch of the cast after a performance and I WAS ONE OF THEM! I'M FAMOUS!!!
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Skip Around the Back Door- Pensacola, FL

A game was invented called "Skip Around the Back Door" backstage in Pensacola, Florida right before half-hour before our show there. I just happened to be walking by and catch four highlights.

Caleb | Greg

Coco | Ray
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Short Film: High Crotch Walk

At a Gainesville, Florida mall on a lunch stop
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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Puppet Slam- Orlando Fringe

So here are the details on the show that I got asked to be in for Orlando Fringe called "Puppet Slam." It's a variety show, and I don't know which performances they will have me in, but here are the times and official description. Cat-Hat!
The Orlando Puppet Festival brings Puppet Slam, puppetry for adults to the Orlando Fringe! Puppets for Adults! No two shows alike! Laugh! Cry! Sing! Veteran Orlando Puppet Festival hosts Chupacabra and Scott Silson add their own schtick as they guide 5-15 minute puppet pieces performed by individual artists!

Show Times (90 min show in the Orange Venue)
5/14 THU 10:20PM
5/16 SAT 1:40PM
5/17SUN 4:30PM
5/18 MON 6:00PM
5/19 TUE 11:00PM
5/21 THU 8:25PM
5/23 SAT 7:30PM
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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Tuesdays with Plaza

Tuesday March 31, 2009: Morning coffee at The Plaza.

The set-up | Looking left | Looking right
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