ONSTAGE & BACKSTAGE: Cruising With Lewis Black, Jason Danieley, Christine Ebersole, Marin Mazzie and Sherie Rene Scott

By Seth Rudetsky
17 Dec 2012

Christine Ebersole
Photo by Krissie Fullerton
Speaking of Hollywood, in the early '90s, Christine moved from L.A. to New York to do Paper Moon at the Paper Mill Playhouse. If you recall, the show was slated to go to Broadway (the marquee was already up) but it never transferred. Perhaps, Christine should have had a clue of the bad ending when she and her husband Bill arrived at their new NYC apartment and met the truck full of furniture that had moved across the country. The moving men got out…and none of the furniture was able to fit through the front door or their building! It had to be shipped back. Then, after the show closed, New York was freezing, so she decided they should immediately get back to beautiful, sunny L.A. They hightailed it back to California and on the night they arrived, the Northridge earthquake happened!

In Christine's solo show she started with "Welcome to the Theater," which I saw her sing when she played Margo Channing in Applause for Encores! at City Center. She then did standards like "Right as the Rain" and an amazing coloratura version of "Beyond the Blue Horizon." She did a thrilling version of "Around the World" that made the Grey Gardens fans in the audience go crazy. I'm obsessed with that song and here's proof, in a Deconstruction video. Before her encore, she played a recording of herself at three-years-old singing "Jingle Bells." Totally on pitch! She then made a joke by saying, "And that was recorded 75 years ago!" After her performance, an older woman walked up to her and said, "Wow. You look great for 78." That's right. And, I recalled that at one point during the show, Christine mentioned that her mom is 95 years old. Everyone applauded and she added, "But the real miracle is that she gave birth to me at 60!" I told Christine that she had made two jokes about her age, but the age the woman chose to believe was 78. Christine shrugged and said, "Well, whichever one's more realistic."

P.S., Christine and her amazing voice will be at Feinstein's at the Loews Regency (with Michael Feinstein) for the rest of this month. Go see her!

Lewis Black was also onboard and did a great evening of comedy. One of my favorite lines happened when he was raging about all the television options we now have but how every show still sucks. He talked about a fishing show featuring bass, and said, with an amazing line reading, "If you…are watching a show about bass fishing…then you….have had a stroke." I thought it was hilarious!