As an East-Coaster, nothing thrills me like a return home from LA. New York City has always been a special place to me. It was where I first saw “The Gates” in Central Park my 3rd form year at boarding school when my entire form went to see the MoMA. It was the place I’d spend Christmases with the women of my family, seeing the tree at Rockefeller Center, dining at the Russian Tea Room with the giant fish tank bear, and dancing along in my head with the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. The Bronx was where I saw my first Yankees game at the old stadium and it was where my Prom date asked me to go to Prom with him. Manhattan was where I celebrated my sister-in-law’s bachelorette party and The Bronx was again where I saw Notre Dame beat Rutgers at the new Yankees Stadium.
I love Los Angeles, but I’ll always be an East Coast girl. And although Philly will always be number one in my heart, there’s no denying NYC has its own heartbeat - its own pulse. So I was thrilled to fly back east again to help cast Funny. It was a whirlwind weekend. I saw ‘Of Mice and Men’ on Broadway, I ate New York pizza for almost every meal, and I caught up with friends from college on the LES.
But the casting process was its own magically, seemingly suspended occurrence in time. While it was happening, it was exciting and stressful, fast but also slow. When it was over, I couldn’t believe it had happened - that this full day of casting was just over. It seemed like there should be more, even when there were no more creative artists left to audition. Looking back, it feels like the most focused blur I’ve experienced. In short, it all came down to the people that were part of the experience. Countless hopefuls filing in and out of the room, craving a chance to be a part of something bigger than themselves. But the ones chosen were the ones that stood out. They were the ones who made us laugh, who pulled at our heartstrings, who had such freedom in their character choices. It makes everything about this project more thrilling, knowing how much talent we’re carrying around in our holster. @JohnyTheGirl