I loved this city! When we arrived I was thrilled that we were staying downtown at the Holiday Inn right across from the theater. We were surrounded by tons of restaurants, stores and parks. This city offerered the best of both worlds…a business district (think a little Manhattan) combined with a small town feel.On our first day of exploring Gizel and I discovered a quaint little park attached to the back of St. Peter’s Church. The park had a small meditation and reflection section covered with carefully positioned trees to block the sun. It was beautiful.
The Blumenthal Performing Arts Center is my favorite theater so far on this tour. It was small but very high with four tiers. During the shows it allowed for intimacy with the audience and had an old opera house feel to it. The orchestra played the music beautifully. The best part was the acoustics! The theater was wonderful to sing in. I could even hear my softest note bounce back at me. Never did I feel the need to push my voice. My dresser Janice, was lovely, good at her job and very social. I’m happy to have met her!This week we had one radio interview with an NPR affiliate and one television interview with Charlotte NBC. Here is a link to our performance: http://www.wcnc.com/charlotte-today/The-musicale-West-Side-Story-133165688.html Not bad for an early Thursday morning with very little warm up, right? It was my first time on television for the show and I’m happy I did well! The theater publicist who escorted us, Danny Knaub, was very friendly and supportive. He even helped me discover a new morning treat: cranberry orange scone from Starbucks. Thanks Danny!
We had two parties thrown for us this week. One at Newk’s for opening night and the other at Enso Asian Bistro and Sushi Bar, courtesy of Danny, as part of their "Out On The Town" gatherings. The first gave us a yummy buffet of pasta, sandwiches and rice crispy cakes! The second cuisine offered us sushi and tasty spring rolls. They even had drinks named after some of our characters!
In addition to the places mentioned above, I ate at a few other restaurants this week:
BlackFinn Saloon: GREAT SERVICE. I recommend the Ranch chicken salad, the flat bread pizzas and the BlackFinn hot chocolate dessert (a warm chocolate peanut butter soufflé with vanilla ice cream, topped with caramel sauce and whipped cream. So. Good). I don’t recommened the mozzarella sticks. Cheese wrapped in spring rolls did not make a good combination.
Mert’s: If you want soul food in Charlotte, this is the place to go. Get the cornbread.
Fuel Pizza: Good pizza even for this New Yorker (we’re snobs about our pizza :) But be prepared to wait a while for your food if you go there late at night.
Five Guy’s Burgers and Fries: This was my first time as Five Guys. If you like thin burgers this place is for you. Each burger is made to order so you’re getting a fresh patty. The cheeseburger was tasty! It’s a somewhat healthier way to eat fast food because there is no trans fat in the food and the ground beef is fresh and never frozen.
Thank you to Mom and Aan for visiting and seeing the show. Our late night search for dessert was fun!
And a big THANK YOU to my dear friend Scott Willis who drove three hours to come see the show on his day off from rehearsal. He’s playing Santa Claus on the Radio City Christmas Spectacular tour!
Thank you Charlotte, NC. You were lovely!