Robin Blau Greenwald's Account of the Norfolk Concert

June 3, 1995

Benefit Concert for the Primetime House

Norfolk, CT


I'm thrilled to report that I now have my own story to tell about my
enchanted evening with Mandy!!  I'm glad to have you guys to tell all the
details because I'm just sooo excited about everything that happened.
Well, here goes....

I'm referring to his benefit concert for Prime Time House in Norfolk,
Connecticut, on Saturday, June 3.  Anyway, my husband Michael and I went to
the concert and to the patron's dinner beforehand.  I had written a song
for Mandy, to the tune of "Rock-a-bye Your Baby," called "Don't Call Geiger
Crazy"  (I posted it on the CH and MP newsgroups), and I had hoped, against
hope, to somehow get it to him before the show on the offhand chance that
maybe he'd get a kick out of singing a little bit of it if he liked it
enough.  My attitude for the evening was, "Nothing vetured, nothing
gained."  So as soon as I got there, I walked past the tent where everyone
was having dinner, and went to see if I could find someone at the Music
Shed (theater) who'd either let me give it to Mandy or give it to him for
me.  I wasn't successful in getting it to him before the show, but I WAS
lucky enough to spot Paul Ford around the side of the building, and so I
went up to him and said, "Hi.  Are you Paul?"  He said yes, and I
introduced myself and said that I'd just seen them in Philly two weeks
before and that I'd loved the show.  "Well," he said, "we'll be doing the
same show tonight, I'm afraid. "  I said, "You know what?   That would be
just fine.  The show was terrific."  He said, "Since it's a special
occasion, he might change a song or two or do something different with the
encore.  He might go on and on, or he might not."  I told him I'd written
Mandy a song and asked if I could give it to him.  Paul introduced me to
Josh Rosenbaum, the general manager, and so I told him about the song.  He
took it and said, "Terrific," and said he'd give it to Mandy.  When I asked
if he'd get if before the show, though, he said that Mandy doesn't accept
anything before the show, flowers, cards, anything, that he doesn't like to
know anything about who's in the audience.  But Josh did tell me I could
meet Mandy after the show, and he told me where he thought it would be.  I
had a second copy of the song to give him myself after the show so I left
the first copy with Josh and went to have dinner.

When we were finished eating, we decided to take a walk around, and when we
got close to the Music Shed, we heard Mandy singing through the windows!
He was in there rehearsing.  So we both went in to use the restrooms, and
Michael spotted a hallway where I could get in to see Mandy!  So I ended up
watching him for a few minutes , until someone came over and said the
theatre wasn't open yet.  But he was singing stuff he didn't sing in either
of the shows I saw.  One I remember was "Pennies from Heaven."  There were
two others from "Flower Drum Song" that I didn't recognize but someone else
pointed out.

Before the show, Sarah Krupnik and I met up as we had planned.  It was
great being at the show with a fellow MP board fanatic!  Cleveland must
have been so great with all of you guys there!  So we took some pictures
together and then went to find our seats, which weren't in the same
section.

Michael and I had great seats, off to the side, but in the third row.
There was a column right in front of us that I was afraid was going to be
in the way, but once Mandy came out,   I could see it wouldn't be a
problem. And there was no prohibition of flash photos, so I got a whole
roll plus some!  He sang basically the same songs he'd done in Philly, and
from what everyone says, Cleveland.  One that I don't think anyone
mentioned, though, was the one that goes, "Nya, nya, nya....She's a crazy
person..."  Does anyone know what I'm talking about?  Something about
Rebecca or Roberta?  And another one that had something to do with
trumpets.  Can anyone help me out here?

For his encore this time, though, he didn't do "Yossel, Yossel."  Instead,
he did this bidding thing to raise more money for Prime Time House.  He
said he was going to perform a song that he'd never done in public, with
someone he'd never performed with in public before.  It turned out to be
Kathryn!!  And he got people to offer money and stuff to PTH so she would
sing with him.  She was right there in the third row center with Isaac and
Gideon!  She went up onstage and explained that she is not a singer and
acted kind of embarrassed that he was going to make her sing.  He told her
to sing the song about the pink pajamas, and the boys, especially Gideon,
started laughing and cheering.   She said she couldn't sing it without
telling the story that went with it, so she told about how, when she first
arrived in NY to become an actress, she was auditioning for someone who
asked if she could sing.  She figured she'd eventually learn how so she
answered yes.  Then he made her sing, and the only thing she knew were camp
songs.  So she sang (something like this):  "I wear my pink pajamas in the
spring...I wear flannel pajamas in the fall...And sometimes in between, I
get between the sheets wearing nothing at all."  I don't have that exactly,
but you get the picture.  Anyway, finally, after he'd gotten quite a few
contributions, they sang.  Well, actually, he sang.  She only had one line,
and the first time through, he stopped because I guess she didn't say it
right.  It was something like, "How's the weather, honey?"  (Sarah...help
me out here.  Did you know the  song?)  Anyway, it was something like that.
Oh, and at one point earlier in the show, he'd blown her a kiss and then
promptly sang the wrong words to the song he was singing.  He explained
that he forgot the words because he'd just blown a kiss to someone he loved
very much, but he didn't reveal that it was Kathryn till the end.

(Sorry for going on so long, guys...and I haven't even had any contact with
him yet.  But if I can't tell my online buddies every detail, who can I
tell?)

Finally, he brought his chair up to the edge of the stage and began to sing
"Experiment."  "Before we leave these portals, to meet our fellow mortals,
there's just one final message I would give to you.  We all have learned
reliance, on the sacred teachings of science..."  And then he stopped.
"Oh, no," he said.  "I can't forget the words on my last song."  He sat
there stumped for a moment, so I yelled out, "So I hope through life you
never will decline."  He turned around and said, "What was it?"  I said
again, "So I hope through life you never will decline," thrilled at the
chance to help him out and have some contact with him (no, I didn't get a
hot dog...sigh).  So he said, "Thanks," then turned back to me and said, "I
should give you $100 now...and you could give it back to Prime Time House."
Then he sang the song again from the beginning, and when he got to that
line, HE TURNED AND SANG IT RIGHT TO ME!!!!  I was so excited!  Even
Michael said, "Good job, dear," and he'd usually be embarrassed if I did
something like that.

So, as soon as he left the stage, I beat it out of there and down the same
back hallway as before, and I passed by his dressing room on my way to the
ladies room JUST AS HE WAS COMING BACK FROM THE STAGE!!  And I was the ONLY
one back there with him.  So I said, "Hi Mandy!  You were terrific!"  And I
touched his shoulder and his sweaty T-shirt!  He said thank you, and I
asked him if he'd be meeting folks after.  He said yes but that they hadn't
told him where yet.  So I went to the lounge of the ladies room where Josh
had told me he'd probably be meeting people.  Meanwhile, outside, there
must have been at least 200 people waiting to meet him, probably more.  The
lady selling tickets, I think, had told everyone that he'd be willing to
meet fans, so EVERYONE wanted to meet him.  But when Josh came out, he saw
me and told me to wait in the lounge for him, said he hadn't given him the
song because he figured I'd give it to him when I met him.  So it was me
and maybe 3 other people waiting for him in the lounge, while everyone else
was outside in this mob!

When he came out, one of the women asked him to sign her program, and so I
asked him if he'd do mine too.  Then I showed him the song and told him
what it was about and he said something like, "Great.  Thanks."
Unfortunately, with so many people waiting outside, he didn't have much
chance to look at it, so I don't know what he thought of it.  I hope he'll
look at it later on.  Then I asked if I could have a picture with him, and
he posed with his arm around me.  Then I looked up into those gorgeous,
dark eyes and smiled, "Can I give you a kiss?"  He gave me that dashing,
drop-dead smile out of one side of his mouth and said, "Sure."  Then...my
heart's beating faster just thinking about it...I kissed him and he kissed
me, not on the lips (no lip bruising  la Bev, alas), but sort of to the
side of the lips.  Sigh...

I'd been talking to some other fans--though, unfortunately, I didn't get to
see Sarah again before she left--who asked me to take a picture of them
with Mandy.  I remembered one of you guys saying someone had done that for
you, so I figured I'd do it for someone else, and actually ended up doing
it for several people.  He was probably wondering why I was always turning
up behind the camera.  But anyway, he headed down the hall, madly signing
autographs and talking to people.  I went with this one woman to wait for
her to pose with him for a picture, and I was listening to what he said to
people.  Now, I don't want to start rumors, so I'm just reporting what I
heard, but it disturbed me a little.  One guy said, "We hope the show's
going to be renewed for next season.  We love you on the show."  And Mandy
answered, "They'll definitely be back."  The guy said, "They?" but I don't
think Mandy said anything more.  But since he assured you guys in Cleveland
that he was coming back, I hope it didn't mean anything.

Anyway, one of his production people, Dana, saw me standing there, and she
said, "I'm going to tell Mandy you're the one that gave him the lyric."  I
thanked her and told her she had good eyes for seeing who it was.  She
asked if I wanted anything signed, and I told her I had gotten an autograph
and a picture (don't think I mentioned the kiss), but I told her I wanted
to tell him hi from some of the internet people.   She nodded and said,
"Oh, you're one of them," as if she definitely knew what I was talking
about.  I told her I'd wait till the crowd died down and that I wasn't in a
hurry.  As he was walking across the lawn to the reception tent, she said,
"Mandy, this is the woman who gave you the lyric."  He turned to me and
said, "Oh, thanks for the lyric."  Then I said that I wanted to say hi to
him from his on-line group and said the names of the people who'd
specifically asked me to say hi.  He definitely remembered Jen and sent her
a hi.  Then I said that Laura in Hawaii was dying for him to come there,
and he looked excited and said, "We're going!"  I said, "You're kidding!
She's going to be thrilled!  When?"  I think he said September 22 or 28.
Too bad we couldn't all meet in Hawaii.  That'd be a blast!    I asked him
if he ever goes into his newsgroup, and he said, "Only when someone'll show
me how to turn on my computer."  I said, "Have someone on the set show it
to you.  I think you'd get a big kick out of it."  He said something like,
"Yeah, I usually only get on when we're on the set."

I also offered him a soda, but he said, "No thanks."

It was 11:00 by then, and he seemed exhausted.  I'd have loved to hang out
until everyone left, but there were so many people--though by then most had
gone--and I figured give the guy a break.  He was obviously so tired.  So
Michael and I decided to leave.

But on my way to the car, I spotted Kathryn talking to a few fans, so I
went up and introduced myself and asked about her book.  I told her I'd
heard about it on the internet, and she said someone had told her it was on
there.  She told me all about it, about how it's about being a mother, and
how it's wonderful and terrible all in the same day (Laura, Shelly, do you
agree?).  I told her I undertood that, having a 14-month-old daughter.  She
asked if I ever listen to books in the car because it's available on
cassette.  I answered, "Well, I usually listen to...ummm...what's the guy's
name....ummm....Mandy Patinkin in the car!"  She laughed and said that was
even better.  As I said goodbye to her, she said, "You really should pick
up a copy, Robin.  It's only $7, and I think you'll really relate to it."
So maybe I will.  Has anyone else read it?

Well, it was one of the most exciting nights of my life.  I'm so glad to
have you guys to share it with!!  I hope I didn't go into too much detail,
but it's just exciting sharing it with people who are as fascinated with
Mandy as I am.  Now every time I see him on TV, I'm going to be thinking
about that smile he gave me just before I kissed him.  Sigh.....

Robin <---- "...so I hope through life you never will decline..."

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Last updated on December 27, 1995