Puppet shows, plays and parades
Even though I maintain that the “Three Ps” are my bread and butter, I’m not really complaining (go figure), but rather attempting to encapsulate what would otherwise be a very lengthy explanation of what I do for those who dare to inquire. For that matter, I could likely use “Three Cs” (concerts, cabarets and corn mazes) or “Three “Ds” (dance recitals, dog contests and doll shows), but the gimmick is already (IMHO) tortured enough. Suffice it to say that with “the season” upon us, there is enough entertainment exploding around the Catskills and Upper Delaware River region to keep my dog employed (paws crossed) for another few months.
Last Friday, concert season at Bethel Woods began with Roger Daltrey and a tribute to The Who’s “Tommy,” featuring the Hudson Valley Philharmonic with Daltrey’s musicians, touring with him as The Who Band. I found the evening to be nostalgic, entertaining and musically satisfying, as 74-year-old Daltrey held his own, displaying a vocal prowess that belies his years. The Philharmonic, led by masterful conductor Keith Levenson, was so completely in tune with the material, Daltrey and his band, that the thousands of “Tommy” fans cheered in approval, rising out of their seats and singing along to mega-hits like “Pinball Wizard” and “The Acid Queen.” Rubbing elbows with the opening-night crowd, I massaged my camera arm, cursing my fate, and went home, confident that the concert season shows promise.
“Yes, it hurts like crazy!” I said to anyone within earshot last Saturday as folks enthusiastically greeted me (and you-know-who) with a hearty handshake, or (OMG) a strong embrace, before remembering that I’ve been whining about my shoulder injury for weeks on end. My favorite “P” was about to commence, and I was determined to wince my way through it, be a big boy, show a brave face to the world, and endure physical agony (cue tiny violin) in order to bask in the glow that is all things Trout Parade. For years, I’ve gone on and on about this annual cavalcade, which encourages wild, trouty abandon, always describing it as “bigger and better than before”—but the thing is… it always is. Ideal (albeit a bit sticky) weather and more volunteers than ever before created a “perfect storm” of marching bands, fishy floats, live music and puppets, puppets, puppets dancing down Main Street with such zeal that I ignored (well, sorta) the searing pain and took scads of photos to commemorate the day. Next up: “Steel Magnolias” at the Forestburgh Playhouse, which is a play, so—I’m right on track.