I capped off my April 17 As the World Turns fan weekend experience by attending Martinis With Henry at Latitude on Eighth Avenue, between 47th and 48th Street. What a fantastic gathering! This year, to accommodate a bigger head count, the fabulous ladies who run Trent Dawson‘s fan club went with two rooms instead of one, spanning the bar’s upper level. It was perfect! As most of the cast, Mr. Dawson himself included, were still at the Marriott Marquis signing (well after the official luncheon had ended, which was so cool of them all), it afforded me a great opportunity to find a spot at the bar in the back room and get to know some of the people who had come to New York City for this wonderful weekend.
The martini menu was hilarious, full of theme drinks like the “Maddietini,” the “Barbaratini” and the “Dr. Reidtini.” (The latter was gin and vermouth, so, no I didn’t drink it.) I had to give in and try the “Bloody Stenbeck,” which involved Absolut Citron, blood orange puree, Triple Sec and sour mix. You don’t have to worry about me “drinking on the job,” because about five minutes after I ordered it, I accidentally hit the glass with my elbow and spilled it all over the bar. That, my friends, is the kind of klutz I am! You can’t take me anywhere! With indulging in libations thus scratched off my list, I occupied myself talking to people. And that was a lot easier after spending the whole morning gabbing. By the time the actors arrived, I had acquainted myself with a lovely couple from Boston. From our vantage point, we could see across to the other room, where everyone was trooping up the stairs. And given that Eric Sheffer Stevens (Reid) and Jon Prescott (ex-Mike) both wore red plaid shirts that day, I remember thinking, “Wait, which one of them is that?” They actually both showed up, along with Ewa da Cruz (Vienna), Colleen Zenk Pinter (Barbara), Marie Wilson (Meg), Todd Rotondi (ex-Bryant), Tom Pelphrey (ex-Mick, who was also wearing plaid…it was a plethora of plaid up in there!), Terri Colombino (Katie), and Austin Peck (Brad). Austin had actually just finished up the matinee performance of The Irish Curse and decided to come hang out before the evening performance. I thought that was so sweet! He is, sincerely, one of the nicest guys I’ve had the pleasure of working with, and I always enjoy seeing him.
I mostly just observed, noshed on the appetizers that the wait staff was circulating with, and talked to people who came up to me. As events like these are for the fans to spend time with the actors, I don’t like to monopolize too much of the cast’s time. However, I did hug Ewa, chat with Colleen, see how Eric was holding up after his first-ever fan event, and snap a picture with Austin. Anne Sayre, who played Rose’s pal Mitzi Matters back in the day, dropped in, and even affected a costume change! She looked absolutely smashing and was so nice.
I dished with many more fans over the course of the evening, discussing everything from Henry and Katie to Simon and Katie to the sad state of soaps. Later, I caught sight of Marnie Schulenburg (Alison), Evan Alex Cole (Hunter), and “the kids”: Ben Levin (Gabriel), Valentina de Angelis (Faith), and Sarah Wilson (Liberty). They’re all actually well out of their teens, and this is when Sarah and I talked about how she’ll soon be out of the hats. I think they all headed over to Billy Magnussen (Casey) and Tom Degnan‘s (ex-Adam) show at Sullivan Hall. I’ve heard great things about the band, Reserved For Rondee, but I was so dead on my feet that I just wrapped up the evening there at Latitude and then caught the train home! Of course, I couldn’t leave without raving to Trent about what a wonderful time the event was, and joke with him a little about upcoming story. Let’s just say that Metro is becoming Oakdale’s version of the local VFW Hall. Every shindig in town happens there!
But I’ve got to tell you, by the time I walked out out the door with a couple of the awesome volunteers from the luncheon, I barely had a voice left. Y’all know how I normally sound like a valley girl? I sounded like Harvey Fierstein!