Last night's closing night at Les Ephemeres was a regular celebrity-fest. Lucy Liu was sitting one row over from me. Tim Robbins was there. Oskar Eustis. Lots of other folks...
but there's one i wanted to talk about specifically... although this is going to hard because I can't name her. I'm going to call her The NC. Anyone who works in box office or related activities in Off-Bway non-profit theatre will know who I'm talking about.
The NC is an elderly woman (and mother of a semi-famous TV and film actor) who sneaks into plays. She sees just about everything-- she's even seen one of my plays!-- and she uses a variety of tactics to sneak into shows. Her photo is posted at many off-bway box offices along side strongly worded notes about how you should not seat her or give her tickets or listen to anything she says lest you fall under her comp-searching spell.
I first noticed her sitting the front row of Audience North. I turned to Anne and asked "Isn't that The NC?" To which she said "You're right, Oh My God!" We then recounted the many legends of The NC. And recalled that one of them is that she always, after sneaking into shows, tries to sneak into the front row.
And sure enough, ten minutes later, two ushers came to the front row with that Ma'am, is this your seat? Can we see your ticket please? Body language. Watching the exchange, it because pretty clear that The NC had both snuck in and suck into the front row and claimed to have lost her ticket, at which point they seated her in an empty seat.
At intermission she snuck back down to the second row, presumably taking the seat of someone who didn't return.
I find The NC fascinating on a lot of different levels. She a great Theatrical Creature, a being of lore whose reputation proceeds her. And she is not to be tussled with by the faint of heart, as shows by the great Vanquishing of the Ushers of 2009.
Beware, those of you who would dare fight The NC! Her mind is shockingly swift, her elderly body terrifyingly nimble! Close thy ears lest you be felled by the cunning seductions of her many tactics for getting into plays! BEWARE!