Tuesday, May 10, 2011

NYC, Part 9 (OH MY GOD, DANIEL RADCLIFFE)

Friday, Part 2:
After leaving the Central Park Zoo, I headed back to the hotel on 48th street to pick up my bags before heading to the hotel by the UN. Literally, it was right across the street.

So cool! 

However, I couldn't walk there. It was 6 blocks away, but I had a dress bad, a duffel bag and a backpack, and a gift bag for my Mom and another Aunt. So I took a cab.

I was staying on the 39th floor. Buildings that tall don't even exist in Montana. If you looked out the window, you could see this:
 Glorious!

My aunt and I went out to dinner with one of my uncles and my cousin from Georgia. I had some delicious pasta in vodka sauce and soup. I had told my cousin I was going to meet Daniel Radcliffe, and asked if he wanted to come. He said yes, surprisingly.

We went back to his hotel after I changed so he could grab a sweatshirt. In the lobby, we ran into more family members, who were just getting back from the rehearsal dinner. We asked my cousin who's teaching in Dubai if he wanted to come drinking with us. He said yes, and off we went to the subway.

We made it to Times Square, and nothing bad happened to me! It was most likely because I was with 2 guys who can slightly frightening and badass. We wandered past the Mary Poppins theatre, and went into a Mexican restaurant and bar.

The bartender made fun of my Montana license, and said that I looked 16. "If you need a fake, go to Jersey!" and we talked about theatre and Daniel Radcliffe for a bit. When he left to make us drinks, I told my cousins "I bet he's an out-of-work actor."
When he came back, he asked me if I was in 'the business'.
"Um. I'm in the business of journalism."
"Oh, I thought you were in theatre."
"Are you?"
"Sometimes. It's been awhile."

I was right!

My cousins and I chatted over drinks-they had beer, I had a gin and tonic. I looked at my watch-it was 9:50! Time to go to the theatre! I said my goodbyes as we got each others' phone numbers, and they promised to meet me at the theatre when they were done.

I walked to the theatre, where my heart sank. There were at least 30 people behind the barrier already, and they hadn't put up the second one up yet. I'm so damn short, I wouldn't see anything. And there was no way I could elbow my way to the front with those people. I dithered around for a bit, pacing back and forth, and then decided to try my luck with Neal, the security guy from last night.

I walked up to him, and said "Hi, do you remember me from last night?"
"Yeah! Purple coat girl from Montana!"
"How are you?"
"Good, thank you. How are you?"
"Good. What can I do for you?"
"Well, I got here at 10 like you told me...is there any way I could stand behind the other barrier when you put it up?"
He took me to the side, and said "I always say no, but I'll make an exception for you. Just stand somewhere over there, and wait. I'll make sure you're the first person there-just don't make it a big deal."

Oh my god.

So I stood by the posters near the theatre, texting people. About 15 minutes later, they put up the barrier, and I tried to nonchalantly walk over there.

Neal looked me and said "Can I see your ticket from the show tonight?" I had it in my book from last night, and showed it him.
He nodded, and then leaned in and said "Do me a favor. Don't cry." I grinned at him, and said "I'll do my best not to."

People kept trying to join me, and Neal kept telling them to go over to the other barrier-the one that was already crowded.

I felt so damn lucky.
Eventually the show finished, and then actors came out to start signing and say hi to the people who had backstage passes. I had my program from last night, with John's signature. The first actor, Michael Park was signing, and skipped over me because he didn't see me. I asked him if he would "please sign my program" and he said "Oh, sweetheart, I'm so sorry I didn't see you! You're just so tiny." Noticing John's signature, he asked, "Did John beat me out here?" "No, this is from last night." He smiled at me and said "Lucky girl!" and kept signing.

Michael Park (he plays Mr. Bratt):
Right after that, Rose Hemingway came out. I was NOT going to miss this chance again, so as she was speedwalking, I shouted "Rose! Would you please sign my program?" She smiled and walked over to me, and said "But I don't have a pen!" I gave her my pink sharpie. I told her that she was wonderful in the show; that I had come from Montana to see it. I had the first program she signed and she said "Oh, Montana! I've never been there, but I've heard it's beautiful." I told her that it was, and that she was fantastic in the show. Eventually she realized that she still had my sharpie, apologized, and gave it back.

Rose Hemingway (she plays Rosemary Pilkington, the female lead and ingenue)
The next person to come out was Christopher Hanke! He told someone that in order to have an acting career "Be prepared to make no money and love every second." He was very gracious, and I didn't know what to tell him except that he was wonderful and hilarious in the show.

Christopher Hanke (he plays Bud Frump, the...nemesis of the show?)
My Playbill looked like this:
After Christopher left, John Laroquette came out! I asked him to sign my picture of Daniel, and he obliged after asking "You want me to sign a picture of him?" "Yes please, I already have your signature on my Playbill." He did, and smiled at me, and then told the crowd generally that the show tonight was one of the best audiences they've ever had.

John Laroquette (he plays J.B. Biggley, the President of the company and other male lead):
Then....about 10 minutes later....this happened:
My first glimpse of Daniel Radcliffe. He was signing for a group of adorable pre-teens with braces. He kept signing:
After he was finished with that side of the barrier, he came over to my side. Oh my god, oh my god, what was I going to say? I had had it all planned out and now I can't remember anything! Mention my birthday? Tell him he's gorgeous? Oh my god, oh my god, I was silently freaking out.
He was telling a girl that he was sorry she was being squished because of him, and then he was in front of me, signing my book. I just started talking, and realized he wasn't looking at me, he was talking to the squished girl. He then looked at me with those blue eyes and said "Sorry."
Me: "I loved the show, I came all the way from Montana to see it. You're amazing!"
"Oh, thank you so much! Thank you for traveling so far."
Me: "My pleasure, it was totally worth it."
He looked at me and said "You have a pretty smile", smiled at me, and then continued signing.

OH MY GOD. DANIEL RADCLIFFE JUST TOLD ME I HAVE A PRETTY SMILE I'M DYING OH MY GOD. I managed not to scream.
About 3 minutes later, he got in his car and was driven away. I was still sort of in shock. One of the crowd control guys came over as they were breaking down the barriers, and said "I just want to thank you for being so polite. You're so well-behaved, I was very impressed." I thanked him, and then asked Neal if I could take a picture with him. He said yes.
My cousins were waiting for me at the theatre doors, and Matt agreed to take picture of me, thrilled to pieces:
We left to find other bar, and my cousins were making fun of me. "Was that the play he got nekkid in?" "No, it was a delightful musical." As we were walking, my mom called. She was in the hotel lobby, and I needed to go meet her. We took a cab back, and when I saw my mom and started telling her what had happened-that was when I started to cry.

Dream come true!

2 comments:

  1. Aww, that's such an amazing story! :)

    (I clicked on the link to read it in the ONTD entry). You're so lucky!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you! I had been wanting to meet him since I was about 12.

    I was in the right place at the right time, and happened to talk to the right people.

    ReplyDelete