COLUMN | Everything old is new again

Every summer our movie reviewer Roger Walker-Dack re-locates to Provincetown on the tip of Cape Cod in Massachusetts. In fact he is there right now to cover their International Film Festival exclusively for THEGAYUK.

This rather stunning small coastal town that is a prime vacation destination has a fun packed calendar that has literally special events for everyone from Bears to Circuit Boys, to Women of Color & Gay Family Week to ensure that all shades of LGBT people are catered for. But away from silver screen I have noticed a surprising new trend in the roster of entertainers who are flocking to perform on all the main stages here. Whilst there are still most of the regular stars such as the impeccably hot Well Strung Quartet who play as well as they look, so many of the new stars this year are very old indeed.

So old in fact that it’s a wonder that these legendary Broadway stars can, and are still, performing. At the top of the scale is the original Hello Dolly Miss Carol Channing who is now 92 years old. She is at least sharing her stage with a much younger performer, the long-legged Tommy Tune who’s barely 75 years old. The potty-mouth Joan Rivers who clocks in at 80 years old will be here, so will jazz singer and favorite guest on the late Johnny Carson’s Show, Miss Marilyn Maye who will be 86 years old.

Donna McKenrick who won a Tony in the original version of A Chorus Line is still doing the high kicks at age 71, and then the week later Helen ‘I am Woman’ Reddy, the queen of 70’s pop and who is now 72, will be doing her stuff.

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One of the youngest of this bunch of Tony Award winners is Liza Minnelli with just 68 years under her belt is probably the most likely one to send a sick note instead especially as she is now more famous for the concerts she cancels than the ones she performs. And then there is Andrea McArdle the original Annie and who is STILL singing The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow as she has done for the past 36 years, is a mere 50 years old.

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P Town does have this wonderful joyous spirit and real sense of community that is both embracing and encompassing. I’m sure then if one of these Grand Dames doesn’t show then they will be generous and forgiving, and at the very least send out one of the plethora of the local talented Drag Queens who can probably do a better Liza (or Carol) than they can do themselves.

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