Friday, November 14, 2008

Daniel Radcliffe and the sweaty shirt

I really look forward to the pitches that cast members make at the end of the show this time of year for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

First, it's a great cause and I always drop something in the bucket. The organization helps people with HIV and AIDS as well as those with other illnesses, such as breast cancer. Second, you get to watch the actors you've just seen playing characters break the fourth wall and address the audience as their real selves.

Last night, at the end of Equus, it was especially exciting. Daniel Radcliffe auctioned off a sweaty polo shirt that he wore onstage in New York and London. He autographed the shirt and even wiped his face with it, so the lucky recipient, who paid $550, is assured of getting some of Harry Potter's DNA. How thrilling!

I'll have much more to write about Equus later but let me just say that Mr. Radcliffe gave a mesmerizing performance as a troubled teenager who blinds horses. And at the risk of sounding completely shallow, he has quite a cute little tush!

A lot of people find my blog by searching for Daniel Radcliffe, stage door and autograph, so here's the scoop:

I did manage to get his autograph and Richard Griffiths' at the stage door afterward. It was a pretty hairy experience. The stage door at the Broadhurst is on the front side of the theater. Just make a right turn as you exit. But you can't miss it - you'll see the security guards and the metal barricades.

The security people won't even let you near the metal barricades unless you show them a ticket for that night's performance. And you'll be wedged in like sardines with your fellow theatergoers. It was a bit of a madhouse, with the guards constantly telling us to move back and to not push. But it was kind of hard to avoid pushing when you tried to move back!

I was just behind the front of the barricade and I kind of scoped out the situation while we were waiting, trying to find an opening in the crowd where I could thrust my Playbill at Radcliffe. (He comes out fairly quickly, within 20 minutes. You'll have to wait longer for Griffiths but by then, the crowd will be gone.)

When he got to me, he seemed to take a looong time to sign his name. "Daniel" came out pretty good, but the signature starts to trail off by the end of "Radcliffe." He needs to work on a quick, illegible signature! Update Dec. 1: Okay, now I feel awful. I just heard Radcliffe say on Inside the Actors Studio that he suffers from a mild form of dyspraxia, which can affect fine-motor control, such as handwriting. So I apologize for joking about your signature.

Radcliffe will work both sides of the barricades. My advice is to position yourself on the side next to the giant Shrek poster. That way, when his driver pulls up and the car door opens, you'll be in good position to try and take a picture before he jumps inside.


Amanda said...

How fun! I can't wait to hear your review of the play.

Dale said...

Exciting, I've never waited by a stage door although I secretly have wanted to.

Esther said...

Oh Dale, give in to your secret desire! I love going to the stage door. It's exciting to see the performers up close, tell them how much I enjoyed their performance. Plus, it's fun to talk with with my fellow theatre fans as we wait. Usually they're not as much of a madhouse as Equus!

Esther said...

Hey Amanda,
I'm still working on my reviews. I have awful lot of them!