Playwrights Horizons was filled to capacity for The Night of 1000 Judys, a combo concert/comedy show benefiting the Ali Forney Center.
Host Justin Sayre–who’s sort of Oscar Wilde meets Whoopi Goldberg–was hilarious, with his offhand monologues about the need for Judy Garland worship (and any other topic that popped into his fertile mind).
The singers were stupendous–Karen Akers, Molly Pope, Tonya Pinkins, Jessica Molaskey, Darius de Haas, Bridget Everett, Summer and Eve, Ashley Brown, Daniel Reichard, Howard McGillin, Colleen McHugh, and Nellie McKay. Each one delivered a Judy number with power, wit, and extraordinary skill.
And in between their showstopping homages, we acted out a sardonically retold version of The Wizard of Oz–written by Sayre–in which Dorothy knew she wasn’t in Kansas anymore because there were no bigots in sight.
Erin Markey was the wide-eyed Dorothy, Frank DeCaro was the dandy lion, Dan Fishback was the slow-witted scarecrow, Flotilla DeBarge was a sass-talking Glinda (“Get your skinny white ass back to Kansas, girl!”), Murray Hill was the imperial Wiz, a greenish Jenn Harris played the scary wicked witch, and Sayre narrated as the scampy Toto, who said the Twister was scary, “but no scarier than when you people run the vacuum.”
I was the scarecrow, who said nasty shit to Dorothy like “A gingham dress? I can smell the poor on ya!”
I wore a sparkly silver jumpsuit I just happened to have in my closet, and we kicked it.
Thank you, Judy. Your memory is still helping the homeless gay kids.