“No actor likes falling on his ass,” actor Ryan Tramont told The Observer. Especially while under the glare of Emmy-nominated Jeffrey DeMunn, who plays the RV-driving Dale on Walking Dead.
Mr. Tramont, who one might recognize from his appearances on Law & Order and 30 Rock, recounted his on-stage blunder (complements of a missing page in the script) after performing in the Frog and Peach Theatre Company’s celebrity reading of King Lear on Monday, staged to benefit the Shakespeare ensembles’s future performance of The Taming of the Shrew.
“[Mr. DeMunn] is staring at me and I’m like, ‘You’re looking at me for the cue. I’m screwing this up, oh my god,’” he divulged, giving us a peek at an actor’s inner monologue. (For the record, the audience didn’t even notice, and Mr. DeMunn, who read the part of King Lear, told us he didn’t have any problem with Mr. Tramont’s lost script page.)
Despite the slipup, the audience was enraptured by the emotive reading by Mr. DeMunn and other actors, which included BeBe Neuwirth, Darrell Hammond, Rich Sommer of Mad Men, Peter Gerety and Eric Doss.
Another focal point of the night was the plush venue, The Player’s Club, where Frog and Peach has hosted several of its performances.
Lynnea Benson, director of the performance, said the venue came to them through the suggestion of Mr. DeMunn, a member of The Player’s Club.
“The architecture, the location–heroes of mine are hanging on the walls,” Ms. Benson gushed, shifting her gaze throughout the room as if to emphasize the history-rich detailing. Upstairs from the club entrance, pictures overtook the burgundy walls. A vintage black-and-white rendering of Kim Cattrall fixing her makeup hung next to photos of Kevin Spacey, Tom Hardy and Sinead Cusack–all of them taken while the actors were backstage prepping for live performances.
The top floor houses the former bedroom of Edwin Booth (brother of President Lincoln’s assassin), and in fact the building was a donation from Mr. Booth.
Ms. Benson, who said she first became intrigued with Shakespeare at the age of nine, said she enjoys directing Shakespearean plays and readings because they’re appropriate for her New York audience.
“We starting turning Shakespeare on its ear,” she told us. “Make it very immediate, not fancy, not prim and proper, but down in the trenches–very ballsy and American.”
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