Monday, December 31, 2007

Back on Dry Land...

I'm back in LA, and on dry land, thank goodness.  My final night on the boat left me feeling unwell, and even though it's been a couple of days since our leaving the cruise, my legs still feel the sensation of swaying.  My head is trying to tell the rest of me that we're on terra firma again, but I guess my body just needs a few days to hear the truth.

Anyway, I wish you all a very Happy New Year!  Stay safe, everyone... we don't need any more emergency room stories.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Cruisin', Part 2

Thus far the cruise has been a mix of great and not-so-great... the cruise itself has been wonderful, and we have been treated wonderfully by the Filipino members of its crew, from our stateroom steward to the wait staff to the guys at room service.  We've been greeted by ear-to-ear smiles and warmth that can only be found on our islands, and it's been a fantastic holiday to be surrounded by it.

The not-so-great part has been the less than calm seas when the ship does set sail, which makes dinnertime an interesting adventure.  Beyond that, we've been having a good time.

Right now we're docked in Kauai, so the internet is a bit more stable.  I should be heading to bed soon though... just because Nicole gets up relatively early, and I'd better be ready for her when she does.

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Our family is on vacation, and I'm blogging from a cruise ship sailing on the Pacific!  I just thought to wish everyone here a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year!

No, I won't be making any resolutions this year... I mean, I don't have any bad habits to kick... I'd like to think that whatever negative addictions I may have had in the past have been gotten rid of long enough ago.  However, I do have my positive addictions... my work and my family, both of which have been blessing me a millionfold since their coming into my life.  Add to that the people I've been fortunate and honored enough to work with, my fans who are loyal, kind and incredible, and my friends both in and out of the bizness that have kept me laughing, grounded and happy.

Enjoy your holiday season, however you celebrate it.  Let's all have a fantastic 2008!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Class of 1992

Earlier this afternoon I had the pleasure of attending the ADMU 92 reunion held at the high school covered courts of the Ateneo de Manila.  In spite of the threatening weather, the turn out was respectable, and I was able to see my old friends... a few from English, Biology, Math and Filipino, plus others I hung out with during my lunch breaks.

Our batch is a varied and interesting one... one is the spokesman for the United Opposition, while another is the daughter of President Gloria M. Arroyo... there are doctors (a bone surgeon, two nephrologists and a thoracic-cardiovascular surgeon)... lawyers... a photographer... others have decided to be stay-at-home moms or work from home... artists, economists, and entrepreneurs.  We all got together amidst pizza booths... ice cream... beer and soda... activities for the kids... strollers... monobloc chairs... high winds from the typhoon that never came... and many memories of dorm visits and uniformed teachers.  We tried to figure out what had happened to those that couldn't attend... who was overseas or who was still home...

All in all, it was an afternoon well spent, and one I shall remember for a long time.  Thanks to Heaven Torres for getting us all together!

No, I didn't graduate with the rest of my class (actually, I didn't graduate at all), but it didn't matter... as far as I'm concerned, I am from the Ateneo de Manila University... Class of 1992.

Friday, November 23, 2007

November 23, 2007

Today, I took Nicole to see her first musical, Seussical.  Tita Bernice is to our left, and Tita Chari took this picture.  She was a fantastic audience member, remaining focused through the show and not having any sort of meltdown as the performance was going. 

Let the indoctrination begin!  Hahahahahaha!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Up late...

It's almost 2 AM in Manila (yes, folks, I'm home!).  Just came from the baby's room... she's teething... her molars are coming through so she's the most irritable little person right now.  I've just done a bit of research regarding her current circumstance, so everyone at home has to exercise patience and much understanding.  Once these molars are out of the way, the canines should come in uneventfully.  Or so say the websites I've been perusing.

So far jet lag hasn't really hit any of us too hard, thank goodness.  But it does have a way of creeping up on me.  I haven't set any early appointments for myself, and don't plan to for a while.

I've been busy mostly with work-related meetings and spending time at home.  Our home is looking really beautiful, thanks to our working with an incredible interior designer who's reachable by email and text, and a patient husband who did an excellent job on his own before mommy and baby came home.  Our aesthetic taste is similar, so there wasn't too much guesswork to be done... there were a few disagreements here and there, but nothing to kill each other over.

That's about all from here... I just thought to write to let you all know that I'm home safe and sound... alive and kicking.  I'm also loving that I have my highlights back and can sport red toenails again.  Yeah!

Friday, November 9, 2007

A message from Tarrytown

I got an email from Björn Olsson, Executive Director of The Tarrytown Music Hall this evening... I thought to share pertinent excerpts of it with you.


In hindsight, I wish we had filled you in right away. I know how difficult it can be to figure out what is happening in the house as a performer. At The Music Hall we are more accustomed to loud rock concerts or theater performances where it is more difficult to communicate with performers during a show, so it didn't really occur to me until it was too late that I could have simply walked up to you and "briefed" you.

Once we had moved Eileen to the back of the house, I also thought I managed to assure her assistant that you would never make derogatory statements against anyone from the stage, least of all about a disabled patron. It is the sort of thing that is so obvious to me that I had a hard time believing that anyone would actually perceive  the situation differently.

The contacts I have had with Eileen's family and her center seem to all have ended on a more positive note.  The person at her center agreed that it was the correct choice to remove Eileen from the house when she got really loud. I have also learned that her mother is a very active spokesperson for disabled people, so I have invited her to come advise us on the many issues we have in terms of accessibility. There's some lemonade to be made here, for sure.

Let's put this one to rest, move on and make some beautiful music happen.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Tarrytown *** UPDATED ***

This has been edited to include the Music Hall's side. 


Dear Everyone,

Let me be brutally frank... I think things have gotten a little out of hand.  Allow me first describe what happened from my perspective.

It was the second half of the show... I was in the middle of singing "I'd Give My Life For You" when the strange and unfamiliar noise first emerged.  I was startled and a bit frightened.  After the number was completed and when the applause died down, I asked the audience where the sound was coming from, and those seated on the house left side all pointed to the outside.  So, in the spirit of levity and humor, I said, "I thought Halloween was over, that's scary" and "I'm a Filipino-Catholic, I get spooked easily."  I was scared and, quite frankly, a bit spooked.  My remarks were aimed at a noise, not at any individual.  Anyone that was there would say the same.

No one at any point and time during the show or even immediately afterwards made me aware that there was a young lady named Eileen in attendance who was a special person, touched by my singing, thus reacting to it in the way she's accustomed.  And additionally as I've just learned, no one from the Tarrytown Music Hall asked Eileen and her companions to leave the theater... it was the choice of her residence hall staff members to go.  The Music Hall made every effort at ensuring her and her companions' comfort... and this was not their first visit to the Hall.  To everyone at the Hall, I apologize for not finding out from you guys first what happened that evening.

I apologize for unwittingly making fun of Eileen and her co-resident.  I didn't know that anyone like her was in the audience.  If I and the rest of the audience were made aware that we had guests with special needs in attendance, I believe that much understanding and compassion would have been exercised.  I apologize for the seeming lack of it, due to our own ignorance of the realities of the evening.

To Eileen and her staffers, family and friends, I do hope you find it in your hearts to forgive me, and that one day you will be able to once again attend my concerts and shows.  As for me, I'll know to be more aware and sensitive at my future performances.

Yours truly,
Lea Salonga

Monday, November 5, 2007

Biting the dust and walking away

First of all... to everyone that saw my Tarrytown concert last Friday, THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH!!!  I had an incredible time in that beautiful theater.

Now, back to my late night ramblings...

Prior to the Tarrytown performance I received news of yet another theater couple becoming uncoupled... needless to say I was angered and incensed.  The reason for their separation is a third party with whom the husband's doing a show.  My agent had to say, "they went by the way of the showmance."

Ah, the showmance... it can be heady and intoxicating.  You don't always think straight and the temptation is so great, that you feel almost compelled to give in to your baser instincts, without any consideration for your outstanding and pre-existing commitments.  It's the theater equivalent of the office romance... when two people meet at work and get it on.  Sometimes it's magical... sometimes it's raw and animalistic... the chemistry's undeniable and the relationship so intense... the two people involved have stars in their eyes and feel like they can conquer the world together.

That is, until the show ends its run, or when someone leaves the show for another.

And where does that leave the aggrieved party?  Last I heard, she's doing just fine.  I don't know if she and her husband will eventually reconcile... I can't blame her if she decides to go the way of divorce, nor would I wonder why if she and her husband decide to put the transgressions aside and work things out.

In an ideal world, a marriage is greater than the sum of its parts.  It's never about one or the other anymore, but of the two as a unit and a team.  It's about reaching a state of grace... it's about unconditional love... it's about forgiveness and patience.  It's the recognition that this is a union that a Higher Power has forged, that no one should disprespect and try to break.

Realistically however, it's about two imperfect beings attempting to reach a state of divine perfection together.  And in this real world, not everyone is successful.  However, I believe that it's enough to try, and try very hard.

We're all human... we'll all have our failings and foibles... we'll all have that moment of "I f****d up big time".  But God in His perfect grace will always be ready to forgive us... hopefully, we and our partners will be willing to do the same.

If and when the fight is worth fighting, it's worth swinging and swinging hard, the figurative broken jaw and split lip notwithstanding.  However, sometimes, one must also know when to hang up the gloves and walk away.

I wish this couple the best of luck, whatever they decide.

Nic's Word of the Day


I am being totally and completely serious.

Cool Theatre-related Survey

Got this from Johann's website... who knows where it started, but I like it!  (Italics are my own comments.)

1. You’ve said countless times, “I can’t. I have rehearsal.” [x]

2. Anyone who says Macbeth has a death wish. [x]

3. You realize theater is your social life and you don’t have any friends outside of theater. [x]  Kinda sorta... more so now than at any other time.  I do have friends outside of theater, but my theater friends far outnumber everyone else.

4. If you're an actor, tech people become your heroes. [x]

5. You think the Reduced Shakespeare Company is hilarious and understand the jokes while other people watching it are confused. [ ]

6. You want to shoot people who think putting on a production is easy. [x]

7. Stress is a way of life. [x]

8. Cast parties rank right up there with birthday parties. [x]  Sometimes higher.

9. You never realized how much fun you had at rehearsals until you don’t have any more. [x]

10. You’ve been quoted on the Quote Wall. [ ]

11. You can’t seem to memorize your lines, but you know everyone else’s lines verbatim. [ ]  I know EVERYONE'S lines verbatim.

12. You have the urge to be in character in public. [ ]

13. Once the production is over you don't know what to do with your time. [x]

14. You complain about how ugly your costume is. [x]

15. You absolutely love your costume and want to steal it from the costume room after the play is over. [x]

16. You think your director is the coolest guy ever. [x]

17. You think your director is an idiot. [x]

18. You love going to see other productions just to compare them to yours. [x]

19. You argue with your director about which play to do next. [ ]

20. You go see other productions and cringe when you see people that can’t act. [x]

21. Homework? Never heard of it. [ ]

22. You could easily set up a cot and live in the theater. You’re there all the time anyway. [ ]

23. You dread the thought of having rehearsal, but the second you get there you don’t want to leave. [x]

24. You meet someone from another theater and instantly become best friends. [ ]

25. You beg all of your friends to come see you in the play when you are only onstage for two minutes. [x]

26. You have lost count on how many times you've died. [x]  Well, almost.

27. You don't think twice about seeing guys in make-up or tights. [x]

28. You're in public and look like you're talking to yourself because you are reciting your monologue. [ ]

29. You are a techie and want to strangle the actors because you have their lines memorized better than they do. [ ]

30. You think Shakespeare was a genius but dread putting on one of his plays. [ ]

31. You know what Hell Week is. [x]

32. If you put on a musical, you randomly sing all the songs at any time of day even if it is a musical you hate. [x]

33. Sleep? What is sleep? [x]

34. Techies and actors don't understand each other, but they pretend that they do. [x]

35. You swear like a sailor. [x]  F*** yes!

36. You've been dubbed a "Stage Nazi" or a "Tech God." [ ]

37. There's more drama backstage than there is onstage. [x]  Applies only to comedies. 

38. Actors and techies argue about who has more work. [ ]

39. You're on your deathbed and miss school, but you somehow manage to go to rehearsal. [ ]

40. You quote lines from previous plays you've done when you have casual conversations with friends. [ ]

41. You suddenly realize that your entire wardrobe is black. [ ]

42. Theater sex. Enough said. [ ]

43. You know what spiking is, and it's not what you do to hair. [ ]

44. You've been working with the same people so long that you have blackmail to last a lifetime. [ ]

45. You've been injured so many times it's a miracle you're still alive. [x]  Sprained ankles, a smashed hand, a coccyx injury, bruises and bumps.

46. Applause after a show is the best sound ever. [x]

47. You have a sigh of relief when you are doing a comedy and you hear the audience laughing. [x]

48. You can't remember what a home cooked meal tastes like, but you can remember every single way Taco Bell makes a taco or burrito. [ ]  Or tasted every Starbucks coffee flavor.  That was my poison.

49. You know you're a theater guy when you can put on makeup better than half the girls in your production. [ ]

50. Modesty is long forgotten. [x]  Naked in theatre isn't the same as naked in the outside world.  I'll make sure I cover up in public, but for backstage quick-changes?  Fuhgetaboutit.

51. You pride yourself in how fast you can strip your clothes off and change costumes. (Or help people strip!) [x]

52. People who aren't in theater just aren't cool. [ ]  They just have to love it as much as I do.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

New Nic Pics

These were taken in the last week... at West Point and at home. She's good with that broom!

Grandma's Little Helper

Awwww... she sure knows how to use that broom!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Les Miz is Closing.

That's right... the show's run is coming to an end, and very soon.  Click the link above.

I guess it's time for this limited engagement to end.  What began as a 6 month run turned into what will be a 1 year and 3 month stint.  Not bad, given its initial intentions.  It's been a fun time, and I had a great time in it.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Another 20 Things

Hey... why not keep going?

1.  You're far better off without him.  If you stayed, he would have dragged you straight to hell.

2.  You reek of insincerity and ulterior motives.

3.  It would have been better off if you'd done it sooner... why delay the inevitable?

4.  It could have been you, you know...

5.  I wish I had your life.

6.  You need mouthwash!

7.  You weren't thinking, were you?

8.  Why you gotta be so mean?

9.  Thank goodness you never had children.

10.  Karma bit your ass.  Serves you right.

11.  You know what... I never really liked you.

12.  Just come out of the closet already... who are you trying to kid?  No one's buying your "straight guy" act.

13.  Shut up already... you're just way too loud.

14.  You need deodorant.  Right now.

15.  Stop being such an ass... no one here likes you and you're making it worse.

16.  I don't think you've completely forgiven me, so don't say you have.

17.  All that backbiting will get you nowhere.  You have any idea what other people are saying about you?  If you only knew...

18.  You could have destroyed perfectly good relationships with what you revealed... stop being so stupid and stop pretending to be clueless.

19.  I can't blame her for how she felt about you... if I was her, I'd have seriously maimed you by now.

20.  Be happy and satisfied with what you have... in case you haven't noticed, you are incredibly blessed.  You have no reason to search elsewhere or want more.  For once in your life, do the right thing.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Transition from Yahoo 360

I have way too many blog sites...

You might be noticing a sudden appearance of "oh God where did they come from" blog entries... well, those were my Yahoo 360 blog entries that I'm transfering to Multiply.

It's going to take a while to import my old blog entries from there to here.  After reading an official Yahoo 360 blog entry that they are themselves transitioning into something else, I felt it was time for a change.

Change is gonna come... and change is good.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Concert at Tarrytown Music Hall

Start:     Nov 2, '07 8:00p
Come join me for a night of music. I shall be performing some of my favorite songs to sing. Hope to see you then! For more details, visit

USMA at West Point Concert

Start:     Oct 26, '07 7:30p
I shall be performing a few selections with the Army Band up at West Point. Should be a fun night for everyone! Please come!

All done

After 7 months and 3 weeks of Fantine, I'm all done... and what a magical afternoon it was. 

I don't think the show ever felt as comfortable and as electrified as it did last night.  From start to finish all of us felt it was a special show, as it was the last one we would ever do with the line-up as it was.  Emotional... raw... energized... I had tears in my eyes for many moments of the show (even in places where I don't ever cry).  I was saying good-bye to a part of my life that was incredibly special, a part of my life that, chances are, I won't experience again.

Fantine was the role of a lifetime thus far in my existence and experience as an actor.  I was never given the opportunity to sink my teeth into anyone like her, to take a journey that was at times terrifying and exhilirating.  I was driven into near obsession... at first just to make sure I wouldn't make a fool of myself on stage, but as things went on, it was to make the audience (hopefully) feel something real.  I've read amateur as well as professional reviews of my performance, and I took each one as a benchmark for how I was doing at any given week, and how much else I could do.  Thank you for posting your opinions... you have no idea how much you shaped my performances.  It kept me humble, grounded and sane.

Now, to quote the good-bye card of another cast member that recently left Les Miz, onward and upward.  My own life's adventures continue, and who knows where my path will take me.  All I know is that it'll be an exciting ride, and one I hope you all take with me.

To everyone that came to see Les MIz during my run, many many thanks for supporting me and the rest of the company.  It means a lot to us -- both the old timers and those making their Broadway debuts -- that you came to see our show.  It's one that we love doing every night, and one we hope you love as well.

Till next time!  See you at the stage door!

All done

After 7 months and 3 weeks of Fantine, I'm all done... and what a magical afternoon it was. 

I don't think the show ever felt as comfortable and as electrified as it did last night.  From start to finish all of us felt it was a special show, as it was the last one we would ever do with the line-up as it was.  Emotional... raw... energized... I had tears in my eyes for many moments of the show (even in places where I don't ever cry).  I was saying good-bye to a part of my life that was incredibly special, a part of my life that, chances are, I won't experience again.

Fantine was the role of a lifetime thus far in my existence and experience as an actor.  I was never given the opportunity to sink my teeth into anyone like her, to take a journey that was at times terrifying and exhilirating.  I was driven into near obsession... at first just to make sure I wouldn't make a fool of myself on stage, but as things went on, it was to make the audience (hopefully) feel something real.  I've read amateur as well as professional reviews of my performance, and I took each one as a benchmark for how I was doing at any given week, and how much else I could do.  Thank you for posting your opinions... you have no idea how much you shaped my performances.  It kept me humble, grounded and sane.

Now, to quote the good-bye card of another cast member that recently left Les Miz, onward and upward.  My own life's adventures continue, and who knows where my path will take me.  All I know is that it'll be an exciting ride, and one I hope you all take with me.

To everyone that came to see Les MIz during my run, many many thanks for supporting me and the rest of the company.  It means a lot to us -- both the old timers and those making their Broadway debuts -- that you came to see our show.  It's one that we love doing every night, and one we hope you love as well.

Till next time!  See you at the stage door!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

20 Things

Thank you, Gabe, for your list... now it's time for me to make my own.

The rules are simple: List (20) things you want to say to 20 people but know you never will. Don't say who they are.

1.  Mark my words, one day you'll be found out, and people will see who and what you really are.

2.  What's happening to you isn't karma... God isn't punishing you for your past.

3.  Get over it and quickly... so what if he said that about you?  I know you to be better than that, and better than him.

4.  Your life now is just reward for standing up to everyone who wanted to keep you down.  You are truly blessed, and I am too for having you in my life.

5.  The world does not revolve around you.  I love you, but for the love of God, grow up.

6.  Yes, what happened was indeed your fault.  Stop pointing fingers, it won't land you your next job.

7.  I don't care what anyone else says about you... if it has nothing to do with you and me, then it's all irrelevant.

8.  You are a brave one... truly, truly a brave one.

9.  Is there sadness behind that gregarious exterior?  I've never seen you upset, ever.

10.  I'll smile around you, but I'll never ever trust you.  After what you've done to me, can you blame me?

11.  What you did was unforgivable, but I love you anyway.

12.  I wish I got to know you better, beyond what I found annoying.

13.  God was wise for placing you in my path, at a time when I needed someone like you the most.

14.  You're the biggest asshole that ever walked the earth.

15.  Your strength amazes me... and will inspire me forever.

16.  It might be time to step down... they are ready.

17.  Don't worry... the right one will come, and you will know when it does.

18.  Put yourself out there... you're better than you think.

19.  For what I did to you, I shall always be sorry.  I know you've forgiven me, but I don't know that I've completely forgiven me.

20.  I'm really happy for you.  I hope you're happy too.

Friday, October 19, 2007


-Each blogger must post these rules first.
-Each blogger starts with 8 random facts/habits about themselves.
-At the end of your blog, you need to list the names of 8 other people you chose to tag.
-Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them to read your blog and that they're tagged.

1.  I'm a first class slob, not really caring if my room is clean and the bed made.  However, my dressing room is another story.  Make-up needs to be arranged in the order I put it on, brushes lined up to the right, costumes hung in the order they are worn in a show, and everything else I need in neat clumps within my reach.

2.  I like the taste of liver, not including foie gras.

3.  I was a piano scholar at the UP Conservatory of Music, but stopped because I got bored and unmotivated.  I regret not pushing on, as it actually was fun for a while to play classical music.

4.  I play video games until the sun rises.  Right now, it's Bioshock for Xbox 360.

5.  I have the patience of a saint with teaching someone, but am impatient when I'm learning something.

6.  When focusing on work, the world disappears... I don't hear anyone or anything around me.

7.  I've danced with Ballet Philippines at the CCP.  I was only 8 years old.

8.  My power color is red, which is why I normally end my shows wearing this.

This blog entry has been made visible only to you 8.  Tag!  Have fun!

Getting burned

As much as I love my job, there are things about the industry that make me want to quit.  Over the last many months, the things I'd hear or see or experience through the eyes of people I care about infuriate me to the point of tears.  It makes me question human nature and reel in shock over what the powers-that-be are capable of. 

To paraphrase a Filipino adage, the fly atop a carabao's head thinks he's bigger than the carabao on which he rides.

I thought that after 30 years, things like that wouldn't shock me, that I'd be able to just shrug my shoulders and say, "That's showbiz!  Get used to it!"  However, there are still things that get to me.  Especially when they happen to people that don't deserve it.

Eh, I shouldn't be surprised.  I've seen understudies stripped of their duty... principals fired after 2 months of performing their parts... understudies' performances taken from them after they were promised a particular show... an offer made, then taken back 24 hours later... leaves of absence granted to some cast members and not to others... an actor told that because of his particular look, type or stature, he won't go on often for the part he covers.

I've heard racist comments from company managers... backbiting among company members...

I've felt that gnawing feeling on the back of my neck when I hear that someone from my own team demoralizes me to others in the same show.

Bullshit.  All of it.  Bull-f***ing-shit.

And in spite of all of those things I've seen, felt and heard, I'm still around, 30 years and going.  Because I love the work I do and many of the people I've met and worked with, I keep on.

Chances are, I'll see more bullshit as I go on... and chances are, they won't stop me from doing what I love most.

A really cool survey

1. What bill do you hate paying the most?
Globe Telecom, because I'm currently roaming.  Ouch!

2. Where's the best place to eat a romantic dinner?

Old Manila (Manila Peninsula).  Rob and I went there for our most recent wedding anniversary, and the food was incredibly delicious.  We shall most definitely return!

3. Last time you puked from drinking?
TND Party at the Leonor Compound... may demonyong nag-alok sa akin ng Jaegermeister.  Nampucha talaga.

4. Have you ever gotten drunk and danced on a bar?
Oh dear, no.

5. Name of your first grade teacher?
Miss Mary Tabaquero and Mrs. Lillian Rivera.  They were great!

6. What are you doing right now?
You mean besides answering these questions?  Winding down from a night at work.

7. What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I wanted to be a psychiatrist from when I was 9.  I like being an actor and singer much better.

8. How many colleges did you attend?
Ateneo de Manila (didn't finish) and Fordham University (for a few classes).  Yes, I like Jesuit schools.

9. Why did you get the shirt that you have on right now?
Because it's comfortable and reminds me of my husband.  I sleep in his large t-shirts... on me they look like nightshirts.

10. If you could move anywhere and take someone with you where would you go?
Oh I don't know!  Anywhere quiet and peaceful, and I'd take my daughter and husband with me (of course!!!).

11. First thought when the alarm went off this morning?
It didn't go off this morning; I let myself sleep in when I have only 1 show to do.

12. Last thought before going to sleep last night?
It'll all be better tomorrow... it always is...

13. Favorite style of underwear?
Low waist bikini

14. Favorite style of underwear for the opposite sex?
Boxer briefs.


1. What is your opinion on sex without emotional commitment?
It's fine as long as neither party is already in a committed relationship.  But I have to say, sex with someone you really love, respect and think the world of is better than any other type of sex known to man.  Better than anything those pornstars can dish out.  Seriously.

2. Do you bite your nails?

3. Are you a jealous person?
I'm jealous and wrathful of any woman that dares get too close to my man.  That's all I'm gonna say.  But generally, no.  I'm not covetous of possessions, physical attributes, or friends.

4. Are you allergic to anything?
Only certain foods, and to certain cosmetics when I'm pregnant.  Oh, and to Flanax, aspirin and any other pain reliever that isn't Tylenol/Biogesic.

5. What books, if any, have made you cry?
The Notebook.  I bawled like a baby.  That, and Tuesdays with Morrie.

6. Does it get annoying when somebody says they'll call you, but doesn't?
No, not really.  I don't care either way.

7. What is your favorite simple ice-cream flavor?
Haagen Dasz's strawberry... anything Ben & Jerry's (Oreo Cookie is yummy).

8. Whose car were you in last...?
The car service that drops me home every night.

9. What would you rather be doing right now?

10. What song lyrics, if any, are stuck in your head at the moment?
None.  Fortunately.  I hate "last song syndrome".

11. What will you dress up as for Halloween?
I won't be... I've been in costume everyday for the last 8 months.  But my daughter will be a black cat.

12. What is your favorite TV show?
Heroes, Grey's Anatomy, Brothers & Sisters.

13. Do you get along better with the same or opposite sex?
Opposite sex.  I don't feel that sense of competition with men.  Having said that I have some really fantastic women best friends.

14. Can others make you cry easily?
It depends on the time of month.

15. Who was the last person to piss you off?
Let's not go there, lest you want me to get homicidal.

16. Are you picky about spelling and grammar?

17. Do you pay attention to calories on the back of packages?
I used to, but when I stopped that's when I started losing weight.

18. If you could be any type of fruit, what would you be?
Durian.  Only the brave would venture anywhere near it to enjoy it.  Heck, not even I would!

19. How many hours of sleep do you need to function?
3 to 4... just to function.

20. When was the last time you slept on the floor?
Does a mattress on the floor count?  If so, on my last holiday in Manila in August.

21. Have you ever been attracted to someone, but not physically?
No.  Attraction involves the physical as well as the mental and emotional.

22. What are some things that are needed in a relationship?
Tons of respect.  Without that, the relationship will cease to work.

23. Do you like traveling?
I like it enough to do it.  I don't love it necessarily as I do it so much for work.

24. Would you ever date someone covered in tattoos?
Nope.  Sorry.

25. Do you believe the guy should pay on the first date?

26. Are you currently wanting any piercings or tattoos?
I want to re-pierce my left earlobe.  It closed up just when I got pregnant.

27. Which do you make: dreams or plans

28. Can you speak any languages other than English?
Filipino.  But my English is far better.

29. What is your favorite salad dressing?
Ranch, sesame vinaigrette, raspberry vinaigrette

30. What movies do you know every line to?
None.  That may change once I start watching Disney movies with my daughter.

31. Has anyone told you a secret this week?

32. Have you told someone else that secret?
N/A.  But I'm generally a great secret-keeper.

33. Would you rather take the picture or be in it?
I'd rather take them, as I'm in photos a lot for work.

34. Do you wear flip-flops?
When the weather's warm, I live in them.

35. If you could eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Any one of these things: pepperoni pizza, mildly spicy squid with string beans, tuyo, fried eggs and garlic rice, foie gras, rib-eye steak with creamed spinach and garlic mashed potatoes, pasta of any kind with pesto.

36. What's the sweetest thing someone has done for you?
My daughter giving me a hug, anytime she does.  She pats my back too, which makes me giggle.  She's a sweet little girl.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

October 17, 2007 - I...Am...Fucking...Upset

I am not having a good afternoon. (Yes, the show is still ongoing, I'm already in my dressing room blogging via my Treo.)

Not too long ago I found out that the Valjean that was scheduled to perform tonight has been told that he won't be going on. Our Javert is sick and our Marius has a personal day, which means the men's ensemble would have to cover for all the missing spots as understudies would have to perform. There would be only one extra hole to fill, which the boys have done before.

I'm upset because Jeff (our Valjean cover) invited industry people as well as friends to watch his portrayal. I'm upset because said invitees won't be able to watch him on any other day and can't get their tickets refunded. I'm upset because everyone here was under the impression that those performances were promised to him, and confirmed. I'm upset most of all because we look forward to his being on as Valjean because it happens so few times in a run.

This is one of those times that I hate the industry I'm in, when it steps on and chews up really good people.

I am upset... I am so fucking upset.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

October 17, 2007 - Breathing Room

It's now my last week over at Les Miserables, which means that I can now expect the number of Filipino audience members to rise at every performance. It's great, to be sure, but I have this sense of dread when it comes to the post-show stage door situation.

Last night, after the performance, I have a Sharpie in my hand prepared to sign autographs behind the police barricades set up by the Broadhurst to keep the actors safe and the fans at a safe enough distance. The barrier was successful in keeping a wide enough berth for us to sign happily enough, but once I got to the far end, I found myself surrounded, flash bulbs in my eyes and screaming and screeching in my ears. My personal space was invaded... people were way too close to me... I felt claustrophobic. I voiced my feelings, and thankfully, people gave me enough space to continue until the last autograph was signed, and the last picture taken.

But for a few moments on the sidewalk near the stage door of the Broadhurst, I found it hard to breathe.

Yes, I do realize that it's part of my job... yes, I do know that there are other performers that get it much worse... yes I do have to exercise patience and much understanding. My mother constantly reminds me of this... it is these people that enable me to do the work I love to do.

In this life, there will be moments when the world seems to just come at you from all sides... when you don't know which way to look... when things get so overwhelming you just want to drop to the floor and cry. Asking for some space to breathe when that happens is never a bad thing, and perhaps you get exactly what you ask for: a little room to get things done.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Thank God.

I'm relieved that I'm going to have my last 8 shows intact and without a threat of a lockout.  However, that's no guarantee that a lockout or a strike won't happen at all, and yes, I'm still worried even though I won't be in the show anymore.

I'm hoping that reasonable heads will rule the day, and a fair contract agreed upon very soon.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

*** UPDATE ***

No strike today... I'm in my dressing room getting ready for the long day ahead. Supposedly, if anything is to happen, it'll happen tomorrow.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Will Broadway go dark today?

Before I continue, here are some links... they are a read of considerable concern for all those working on Broadway, and the audiences on their way in to see shows:

Needless to say, I'm worried.

Last night, I arrived at the theatre not knowing if we were going to perform or not, and the last bit of news I heard was that it was very possible that a lockout could take place, effectively shutting out everyone that's reponsible for putting on a show every night: cast, musicians, wardrobe people, and the stagehands.  The stagehands are members of IATSE Local 1, and are currently in contract negotiations with the League of American Theaters and Producers.

At the moment we're going day to day... we don't know if we're going to have a performance today... we don't know if we're going to be allowed in the theatre or not.  We don't know what the rest of the week will hold if a lockout takes place.  I had to take home my more important personal items from my dressing room, just in case.

Keep your fingers crossed that the curtains rise on all the Broadway shows that fall under the League.  No one wants to see Broadway go dark.

Monday, October 8, 2007

More Comings and Goings...

There's a lot going on as far as people coming into the show and leaving, so here goes:

- Ivan Rutherford will be taking over the role of Valjean in the two weeks of performances between Drew Sarich's departure and John Owen-Jones' arrival.  Welcome back!

- On October 21, Ali Ewoldt will be leaving the show with me.  Leah Horowitz will be replacing her.  Ann Harada leaves the show October 30.  Jenny Galloway will be returning to the Broadway as Madame T beginning November 1.

- Judy Kuhn is coming in to replace me, and begins performances on October 23.  She rocks.

- Blake Ginther leaves the show October 3, Carlos Encinias will be taking over.

- Marya Grandy departs on October 14.  Christy Faber will be starting that track on October 16.

That's about it for right now.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

October 06, 2007 - Familiarity

As the old adage goes, familiarity breeds contempt. Someone must have gotten pissed off enough by a best friend, family member or lover to have come up with that zinger.

I've always been one to keep just about everyone at arm's length, certain filial relations included. Enough shit has happened in my life that my DNA now includes a "proceed with caution" warning that flashes periodically when I meet new people. Proceed with caution... this person may just f*** you up later. Happened to people I love, I've witnessed; could also happen to me.

Yes I've been described as transparent by people closest to me as I don't hide my emotions of the moment. Whatever pops in my head will come out of my mouth... sometimes my brain will be bypassed completely. However, there will always be parts of me that will remain inaccessible to the world because I don't want to get hurt. In case you didn't know, getting hurt sucks ass.

Familiarity runs both ways, however, and I don't like getting too, too familiar either. My knowing too much... the dirty little secrets I wasn't supposed to hear... the dark truths that should never be seen by my daylight... that screws me up too. I don't know why that is, it just is I guess.

So everyone I know, knows me only so much... only to a certain point... hanggang diyan ka lang. And everyone I know, I know only so much.

No exceptions... no special considerations. It's not about wanting to keep an air of mystery, it's all about staying safe.

And happy.

Friday, October 5, 2007

October 04, 2007 - Again

Nic said "again" yesterday for the first time. I am constantly amazed by my little girl.

And yeah, she loves... loves... loves to dance.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


Category:Video Games
Genre: Role-Playing
Console:Xbox 360
This game has me staying up till the wee hours of the morning. I don't think I've ever played an RPG that has me hooked to this degree. I'm not normally one to get lost in FPS-land (first person shooter), but in the case of Bioshock, I'm lost, and happily so. The graphics are incredible, the design is so beautiful, and the gaming itself so addictive. Warning: some of the images can be scary, so I suggest that, if you're skittish, to play it in daylight and with company in the room with you.

This game is just so awesome... I don't know what else to say.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Sunday, September 23, 2007

September 22, 2007 - An odd kind of melancholy

Funny, but these days have been marked by an odd kind of melancholy, a mix of confusion, anger, sadness and disappointment. There is no one cause or reason for it as there are quite a few things that have brought it on. Additionally, singing eight times a week about a great love lost and a daughter far away can take its toll.

Some days I putter about feeling as sunny as a fine spring morning, whilst on others the clouds roll in to signal the arrival of a storm. I'm usually able to blow the clouds away most of the time, but on occasion, I find myself spent and exhausted trying to keep them at bay. I don't always understand why they come at all... there's no reason to feel this way, right? Right?

Whatever. They happen... it just is. It isn't wrong, or right. It just is.

Sometimes I wish the source of all sadness and anger would just evaporate into nothingness, but the world doesn't work that way. There will always be a cloud lurking away hidden and unseen, waiting to appear just when we least want it to.

I gotta go home, Bioshock awaits. I need to shoot something... pistol, shotgun, machine gun, chemical thrower or grenade launcher? Or how about an old-fashioned monkey wrench to just beat the living shit out of whatever gets in my way?


Now I'm just numb. Not sad, not angry, just numb. Now, I just don't care.

Hmmm, I wonder which is worse... actually giving a damn or not. I can't decide, I'm way past tired to give a rat's ass.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Little Girl Dancing

I love the nightlife... I got to boogie...

September 21, 2007 - Milestone for the week

Nic can now say "Hi". Needless to say, this mommy got a little verklempt.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Happy Spirit

Last night and today were spent in the company of my best friends in New York.  It had been so long since we were in the same room together, and it was then that I remembered exactly why we all gravitated towards one another... we all just "clicked".  It's something that I can't explain, it just is.  And it's wonderful.

These are my champions... confidantes... shoulders to cry and complain on... we warn each other of danger... encourage each other when opportunities arrive... are each others' cheerleaders... sickbed visitors... road trip, food trip and whatever else trip companions... sometime bedmates... sometime sublessors... all time best friends.

And I love them all to pieces.

Friday, September 14, 2007

September 14, 2007 - Weary

Tonight, I just didn't want to be doing musical theatre.

Goings-on of late have me weary... faithless... wary... tired... doubtful... angry... confused... my usual objectivity is being tested, as I try to let reason rule over emotion and passion. As the saying goes, there are three sides to every story: side A, side B, and the truth.

I have 5 1/2 weeks left in Les Miz.... methinks they will be the longest 5 1/2 weeks of my life. Thank goodness for a nice long break from this before starting work on Cinderella, and for sure following that, I'll need another hiatus to rest and recharge.

Yes, I had to remind myself tonight that this is what I love doing most, more than anything in the world. It takes something pretty major to make me not want to do this. And... well... yeah... pretty major.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

September 11, 2007 - Friendship

It's worthy of mourning when one finds out that a friend isn't there for the tough times... that someone you'd consider a comrade-in-arms runs out on you in your time of need... that your teammate ditches you when you need him/her the most.

I know of so-called friends like these, and I have no qualms about dropping them from my circle. I can be heartless (and have been), not ever thinking twice about the dismissal of someone I can no longer, with any sincerity, call my friend. It's not an act of cruelty, but of self-preservation. It kills me when I'm betrayed.

That's my stand. I have a feeling the next year is going to bring about a shift in who my friends really are... who to keep close and of who to let go. Fuck with me, and you're gone. As simple as dusting my hands after a fall.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Honey, I'm Home!

Yes, after two wonderful weeks in Manila, I'm back in New York and into Les Miz.  While I was home, I saw a show, a rock gig, rehearsals for a musical opening this weekend, ate some great food, got some important errands done, spent quality time with my loves, did a gig, sang on TV and got myself some much needed rest.  Two weeks is never enough time... then again, two years isn't either.


On to Les Miz comings and goings:

- Nehal Joshi and Nikki Renee Daniels are leaving the show this Sunday... replacing them are Anderson Davis and Rona Figueroa

-  The Valjeans on Broadway and the West End will be switching!  John Owen Jones will be coming to Broadway whilst Drew Sarich will be joining the West End company in late October

And that is all!!!

Sunday, August 26, 2007


Start:     Sep 2, '07 12:00p
Location:     ABS-CBN
I'll be appearing on ASAP today, singing LAND OF THE LOVING, then receiving a Platinum Record award from Sony BMG for outstanding sales of Inspired. Coolness!

Friday, August 24, 2007

August 24, 2007

Respiration rate down...

Stress levels tapering off...

Sleep schedule regulated...

Pulse steady...

... and the smile plastered on my face is wide and permanent.

It's soooooooooooo wonderful to be home.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

August 22, 2007 - Manila, Manila

Yes, we're back! I think I've gotten over jetlag just enough to function and go about my usual day. Today, all I'm going to do is get my hair cut and colored, have dinner with my husband and watch a rock gig. I am officially on vacation, and it's time for Nic's yaya to get to work.

Two weeks... well, a week and a half left now, really.

That really isn't enough time for a stay in Manila, coming from New York. One truly requires two days to shake off the jetlag before getting in some fun time. No, I haven't really had much fun time since I arrived Monday night, but you can be sure that I will. At the very least, a couple of dinners out and lots of laughing.

I did visit my brand new nephew yesterday and he is one handsome little buggeroo, with a righteous cleft chin, big eyes and dark skin. He's going to break more than a few hearts once he starts dating, I'm sure.

This is all I can muster for today... my brain still needs to catch up to the rest of me. Perhaps a couple of beers will do the trick.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

August 19, 2007 - Not the best start to my weekend

I am a woman of almost infinite patience, except for matters of professional incompetency or indifference. In other words, I can't stand someone who just doesn't give a damn.

At yesterday's matinee, an oafish lumbering idiot of a backstage crew member flicked off the hat of one of the guys in the cast, letting it lay on the table on which said cast member was sitting, as our turntable was turning to reveal us. Later, this said hat was then taken by said oafish lumbering idiot and hidden.

Needless to say, I was livid.

You flicked off a costume, mother f*****. What part of that does your primitive, underdeveloped brain not understand?

I spoke to stage management about his antics, and it turns out this oafish lumbering idiot has already been complained about numerous times by other cast members and crew... but he's still working there backstage, because his father is our production manager (and ironically, a well-respected member of the theater community and a pretty nice guy too).

My pre-vacation matinee was thus turned into a hell for me. I was pissed off and frustrated. People like that shouldn't even be near a theater, much less work within its walls.

Yes, I complained... yes, I vented... yes, I let out as much of my ire as I could, as I didn't want to carry it around for the rest of the day. Thankfully by the evening's arrival, my temper had waned to minimal and I was ready to have a good time again. And yes, I steered clear of the oafish lumbering idiot. I didn't want to look at him... talk to him... have anything to do with him.

So... I have seven weeks left once I return from Manila. He'd better stay out of my way, lest I get postal on his sorry ass.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

August 15, 2007 - This is me.

I am 36 years old and a work in progress, but I've got a pretty good handle on who I am.

I speak with honesty and frankness, sometimes to someone else's consternation. I shoot from the hip and have no censors; you'll know exactly where I stand. I do try to phrase things delicately when facing a sensitive issue, but for the most part you'll get me unfiltered.

I've wined and dined in finer places, but am more comfortable with an ice cold beer in my hand and my fingers greased from beer food. I'm loud and happy when I'm intoxicated, and am never belligerent. I would much rather avoid confrontation than to launch an all-out war, but am not afraid if the latter is necessary and called for. I speak softly and respectfully, and I see no need to hurl expletives, especially with people I love (except when they're being total and complete jackasses).

I'm fiercely loyal to my loved ones, and would put them first over any business associate. My family comes first before all else, excepting God. I'm not above hearing juicy gossip, but I won't ever spread it around as I wouldn't want the same done to and about me.

When someone wrongs me, and I see that person in a public setting, you can bet that I will ignore rather than greet. If you don't like me, then leave me the hell alone. Chances are I don't like you either.

I abhor unprofessional behavior and any violation of this business's spoken and unspoken ethics. No one has the right to behave like a diva. I demand excellence from everyone I work with, but want everyone to have a good time too. I'm a great partner, and will never steal a scene from someone else, as I'd rather make him or her look good. Although I'm great fun to work with, I do my job with the utmost seriousness. I will get things done. I take pride in my work and strive for nothing short of perfection with each attempt.

This is me.

August 14, 2007 - The nature of love

Before I continue, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOM!!! We ladies went out for lunch at one of her favorite restaurants in the city. Now we're home again... Nic's napping, I'm blogging and my mom's talking to her sister that lives in Texas, who called to wish her a happy birthday.


Love is a strange and wonderful thing. It manifests itself in many different forms, showing itself in different levels and intensities. However, I believe that one truly loves unconditionally when a person is able to forgo, rise above and move past another person's imperfections and occasional misdeeds. It's the kind of love God has for each and every one of us.

In other words, it's forgiveness.

It's sifting through anger... it's letting go of a foible... it's loving despite everything. It's not easy, by any means, and anyone touched by the grace of forgiveness is truly blessed. I've been on both sides of that fence, and am fortunate to have the friends I have.

I land in Manila on August 20... I can't wait to get home to see the friends I've left behind there, to reconnect and catch up on what I've missed. And I know that I've missed a lot in the last 6 months.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Official Website of Lea Salonga
It's up! Yeah, it isn't a graphics-heavy site just yet, but we're working on it. Blogs are still here though.

August 10, 2007 - Did I read that correctly?

That's right, 254 salacious seletions!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Due to technical difficulties...

More like "in spite of".

Our barricades didn't work last night... well, they eventually did.  After On My Own was done, the barricades didn't connect and join like the two perfectly fitting puzzle pieces they normally are.  Our lights were also acting strange, putting us in dramatic lighting instead of the bright yellow-orange light we had grown accustomed to.  I thought, "wow, a little romantic lighting for the barricades tonight... ohhhhhhhkay."  I then noticed that no one was climbing the stage left barricades... upon closer examination, it was majorly slanted.  It wasn't fitting right with the stage right one, which was just fine and being climbed as normal.  So, for a large chunk of the scene, those who would normally be clambering up were on the floor.  Whilst the scene was going, the barricade driver backed his unit up a bit, fixed the incline, and parked again.  Once we got clearance from the stage manager that it was safe, then we started up and down it again.

Live theatre... how I love thee.

(Yes, I'm still up... besides that I'm normally still awake very, very late into the night, my little girl woke up.)

Nic at brunch again

Nic at brunch

Drinking from a straw

She did this for the first time at Sarabeth's!!! Yay, Nic!

Brunch at Sarabeth's (Aug. 5, 2007)

We headed to the Upper West Side for brunch with my older sister LuAnne. She suggested Sarabeth's, a very in-demand breakfast, brunch and lunch restaurant. I highly recommend it!!! It's located on Amsterdam Ave. between West 80th and 81st. Arrive ready to wait, and hungry!

Sorry about the photo quality, I forgot my camera so I had to use my phone.

Monday, August 6, 2007

August 06, 2007 - Taking things in stride

Amazing... sometimes, you just happen to hear about things when you need to. That's right... right when you need to.

I was in the car with Les Miz's chief publicist on the way to a telethon taping when he told me about one of our mutual friends, an actor that I had worked with on numerous occasions. Apparently, said actor took the closing of his last Broadway show very hard, in the wake of lukewarm reviews and poor ticket sales. He slammed the critics on his blog blaming their reception of the show for its failure, and this of course reached enough public media that he was perceived as a sore loser and a crybaby.

I can't honestly blame him for taking it personally... I was in the lead of a Broadway show that could be seen as a flop (it ran for 5 1/2 months to small audiences, and other shows made fun of us for having no one in our audience). My name was above the title, so I felt I had to the fall. I tried not to take it too personally, as there were things beyond my control that could have contributed to the show closing early. Besides, I had far more important things to take care of... my fiancé (now my husband) needed me in Los Angeles.

Sure, I could look at the show and find everything wrong with it, but I choose not to. I made some incredible friends there, many of whom I've kept in touch with since it closed. I learned about not taking things too personally, how not to let my pride get hit by a failure and how to find the positive in less than ideal situations.

To paraphrase one friend on a mailing list I subscribe to, "You learn more from losing." He's right. What's the point in crying over spilt milk? Just wipe it up, move on and be ready with more paper towels, as there will be more milk (or juice, or beer) to wipe later on.

Friday, August 3, 2007


“I don't think anyone has the right to intrude in your life, but they do. I would like people to separate the actress and the woman.” -- Ingrid Bergman

Obviously the late Ms. Bergman has never seen the likes of Philippine showbusiness... how colorful, intrigue-laden and downright ridiculous it can be.

I've been in this business for nearly 30 years, if you can believe that.  I started as a wee little girl in the ensemble of a musical and it kept going from there.  My world was theater and the adults I emulated were those from the theater.  I was not much of a movie fan, and wasn't really into what was happening in that world.  But, I did enter the more mainstream areas of the business, including film, TV, and music.  And... and... well...

I know that things that happen in our world get blown up and multiplied many times over, simply because we're in the public eye, and thus are open to public scrutiny and criticism.  It's human nature for people on the outside to want to peer into our fishbowl and watch us swim.  I've grown used to it by now, although I must admit, when I'm having a bad day, it takes a while for a smile to come to my face.

As a person from showbusiness, I accept that the public at large will be curious and want to know about what happens in private.  But what I don't appreciate is when people from showbusiness inflict their private lives upon the rest of the world.  Their scandals... their dirty laundry... the things in their worlds that no one else has the right to know.  It's one thing when you're found out; it's another thing altogether when there's an onslaught of way too much information from an actor or a singer or a TV host.  Heck, I feel violated when bombarded with stuff I didn't want to hear or see.

Yeah, showbiz is a place that the faint of heart must steer clear from.  It isn't for the onion-skinned or the garden variety crybaby.  But I'd like to think that it isn't for those who are so starved for attention that every single family fight, every affair gone bad, every shabu pipe counted is plunked on our collective lap.  Hopefully, it's for those who want the attention based on the quality of their work and not on the darker, shadier sides of their private lives.  I'm a showbiz fan too, and I really don't care to hear about a colleague's dirty laundry.  It's none of my business, and I like keeping it that way.

Am I being an idealist?  I do know that tawdry news sells magazines and makes the rounds of the gossip shows faster than a speeding bullet.  But still.

But still.

And that is my rambling for the night.  It's late, so my thoughts aren't exactly that well-organized.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

August 01, 2007 - How do you say I love you?

Those three simple, beautiful, packed-with-a-wallop words shouldn't be too easy to say. (And no, the "I love you's" shouted at concerts and gigs don't count, although no less sincere.)

I've never really been one to just throw those words around. It kinda cheapens things when they're reduced to something perfunctory. I've actually had people tell me that they love me or that they miss me, only to not have me say the same in return (oops). It makes me feel... for lack of a better word... icky. Positively icky, like I just swallowed a bottle of high fructose corn syrup.

For me, I love those "I love you's" that are heartfelt... the ones that make my insides feel warm, like I just drank a mug of hot chocolate... the kind that wraps me like a blanket and makes me feel safe... the kind that lets me know that I'm being looked out for.

So I don't bother saying the words unless I know, deep in my heart, that I really mean it, and I'd rather not hear them if it doesn't feel right. I much prefer the one wallop packed than a million uttered insincerities.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Friday, July 27, 2007

The Audience

Our audiences at the Broadhurst have been incredibly wonderful.  We have gotten marvelous receptions and we up there on stage are revved up by their enthusiasm.


Two days ago, seated in the front row were a man and a woman.  And they gave us a show of their own.

I didn't see much of the action, but our boys sure did, and didn't hesitate to recount and demonstrate exactly what they saw.  There was a lot (as in A LOT) of lip-locking (which I actually did catch)... groping... touching... fondling.  Sure, we made fun of them, but in all seriousness, we all thought it was ridiculous and disrespectful.  Some thought they just didn't care, others theorized they had planned their display.

BUT COME ON!!!  Did they not think that others around them AND us on stage could see them?  HELLO!  They were in the friggin front row of a MUSICAL, not the back row of a movie theatre!!!

After my anger had subsided, it made me think just what would possess anyone to make such a display of themselves.  Were they just horny and couldn't wait to get back to their hotel?  Were they adventurers and wanted to intentionally show off just how horny they were?  Did they have no idea just how stupid they looked (not to mention, not particularly good looking)?

Who knows... perhaps some of you here have engaged in such shenanigans.  My advice: don't.  It angers the performers and audience members around you.  If you want to get into someone's pants, don't do it after spending $250 a pop on premium seats.  Getting a hotel room is far cheaper, and more appropriate.


Sunday, July 22, 2007

Newest Nic Pics - July 22, 2007

Some new pictures! The little girl is not so little anymore!

July 22, 2007 - Comfort Food

1. My laptop, and the places it takes me to on the internet

2. A grande vanilla soy latte from Starbucks

3. Smelling my baby girl (her smell just calms me)

4. Text Twist and Dynomite

5. Poker games with my buddies at work

6. Young chow fried rice

7. A warm embrace that lasts at least 5 minutes

8. Prayer

9. A late-night cartoon fix

10. Feeling blessed and happy

Thanks to Jett for the idea.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

I've not had a great last 2 days...

My baby and I have had tummy troubles... mine happened on Thursday (hence I took the night off), and Nicole's happened on Friday (hence I took the night off).  Hers seemed much more serious though, and given that she's a wee little girl, she can't always explain or understand what's going on with her.  She ate some baby food that didnt agree with her digestive system (I blame the rice husks in the mix... I mean, RICE HUSKS DO NO BELONG IN BABY FOOD!!!) and so as quickly as she ate, she retched.  So I stayed home... my mom and I cared for her.  Our pediatrician came over as well to check on her (after her night at the City Center watching Patti Lupone in Gypsy), so our minds were more at ease.  I also kept Rob abreast of the latest news... right now she's fast asleep beside me as I type this blog.

So to those that went to Les Miz the last two days, I'm sorry I wasn't there, but there were things far more important to take care of.  Having said that I'm hoping that Nic is better today... it's Alex Gemignani's last day, and I want to be there to properly say good-bye.

But... we'll see.  I'm going to watch and wait on my baby.  If she seems well enough that I can leave her, then I'll be at work.

July 21, 2007 - I refuse to age 10 years over...

... things I cannot control.

Right now I am typing this blog beside my daughter as she sleeps. She didn't have a great afternoon yesterday... she ate some baby food that didnt agree with her tummy, which meant she threw it all up. I was at rehearsal while it all happened. My mother called as rehearsal ended, telling me that Nic was throwing up all over the place (she wasn't exaggerating, I saw the soiled sheets, pillow case and clothes). I then ran like a bat out of hell out of the theatre to catch a cab on 8th Avenue, running on the street to the first free taxi I found. The streets were relatively clear, with green lights the whole route to my apartment building. I jumped out of the cab, bounded up the entrance steps, ran to the elevator and into the apartment. Nicole greeted me with a big smile, so I thought that maybe my mother had blown this out of proportion... and then the throwing up happened again, and with each time my little girl retched, she cried. That part broke my heart. I had to take the night off from work to take care of her. My mother also needed to rest... her nerves tend to fray when she sees any of her babies suffering. Including her 36-year-old daughter and 33-year-old 6-footer of a son.

I called her pediatrician who then advised us to give her fluids... little by little lest her tummy rejects it all. Nicole wasn't in much of a mood to eat or drink, at least not while her body continued to reject the food she ate. It all finally ended past 1 AM this morning, and she's now able to keep her Pedialyte down, even asking for more. We just kept our patience with her, taking her for little strolls in the apartment. She didn't want to be physically separate from me or my mom, so we held, carried, hugged, cuddled her. At the moment in this dimly lit room, her thumb is firmly in her mouth and she's off to dreamland. She was able to take some naps earlier as well (interrupted by a sudden heave and cry), but I want this to be a relatively longer stretch.

This is one of those things I can't control... my little girl getting sick. Right now I wanna kill the CEO of Earth's Best baby food, but this particular jar could have been a fluke (a rice husk filled fluke)... Nic had eaten that particular variety before and loved it. But alas, this is one of life's curve balls, one of those things that I can't control. If there's anything having a baby teaches you, it's learning to roll with the punches and letting certain things roll off your back. It was far more important to get her to rest and feel better than anything else.

So there... I refuse to age 10 years over things out of my control. At the end of the day, I have much to be thankful for: a wonderful husband, a beautiful daughter, the greatest job in the world, and a great support system of friends and family. I am very blessed, and I have to keep that at the forefront of my mind. So yeah, I have nothing to complain about.

Having said that, there are forces of evil on this earth that need to be thrust into the light... and hung by the gonads to dry.

Friday, July 20, 2007

July 20, 2007 - A Lesson in Trust

The lesson is: TRUST NO ONE.

I am having a crappy day. And a certain someone needs to be hung up by his bits and pieces. Goddamnit to hell.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

July 18, 2007 - A time for change

The only constant in life is change.

Next week a new Valjean starts his run... on Saturday, our old Valjean will perform his last show, and will be shaving his beard immediately after our final curtain call. Rehearsals to facilitate the change have been called this week, so everyone that has any interaction with that character has been called in. It's been a time of change... a time of evolution... a time that is at once exciting and scary.

It's an exercise in futility to resist change... at times we want to hold on tightly to what we know only too well, even though we know that to let the inevitable take place is what's natural. There are laws to follow, rules that are immutable. To try and counter that which must happen would only result in a painful push and pull. I know what it's like to try and keep a strangle hold on what is fleeting and temporary, to embrace what must leave, to pin down air, to grip a handful of sand.

There's no use in holding on... the time always comes to dust the sand off one's hands. We'll never find those same grains again, so we move on to another shore, to another sunset, to another handful of sand. Maybe then we'll learn how to hold it, cupping it gently to not let even one grain fall.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Les Misérables

Start:     Sep 4, '07
End:     Oct 21, '07
Location:     Broadhurst Theater, 235 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10019
Yep, today and everyday (except Mondays).

--> Tuesday performances are ALWAYS at 7:00 PM. All other evening shows are at 8:00 PM.

--> Wednesday and Saturday matinee performances are at 2:00 PM.

--> Sunday performances are at 3:00 PM.


Start:     Aug 19, '07
End:     Sep 3, '07
Location:     Manila
I shall be taking two weeks off from August 19-September 3. And of course, I'll be heading to Manila. Time to visit my husband and my brand new nephew Antonio!

More Nic!!!

Habunny, here's more for you!

Nic being Nic

Here you go, Bun!

Nic - July 1 and July 11

Here are some new pictures!!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

July 12, 2007 - Eating Alone

After yesterday's matinee (and before my hour-long, much needed massage), I headed to a nearby Japanese restaurant alone to grab some dinner... I was surrounded by other actor-singer-dancers from other nearby shows... some talking quietly about whatever... others speaking more loudly. One in particular was speaking about his boyfriend's being less than successful at auditions for shows. I couldn't help but overhear... then again, I don't think the rest of the patrons could either.

Anyway, I just wasn't in the mood to eat with company. I went to eat alone, by choice. I wanted to not be distracted by conversation, and just enjoy the meal set before me. Besides, it's been a while before I've had any "me" time.

Boy, did I enjoy it. The cup of green tea that started my meal was hot and soothing, as was my bowl of miso soup. The sushi I ordered was just perfect, each piece of fish fresh and delicious (I saved the pieces of salmon for last). I savored every bite, let my tongue roll off every slippery piece, just flavored with a bit of soy sauce and wasabi, and smiled. I'm hoping that none of the other patrons found me strange. Yes, I do love my food.

It was a welcome change to head to dinner solo. No phone calls came in, no texts heading out. Just me, a pair of chopsticks and a delicious meal. I don't think I could have spent a better afternoon alone.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

July 11, 2007 - Knitting

One of my hobbies is knitting... at the moment, I'm knitting a scarf and a baby blanket to help me wind down from my nights at the theatre.

My scarf was progressing quite well... however... I had to take it apart, unraveling it knot by knot, stitch by stitch. You see, I dropped a stitch (or decreased a row), and I couldn't fix it. I tried to find the right holes... tried to go row by row to see how I could repair it... but at the end of it, I couldn't. In my anger, I ripped it apart, taking each stitch out, pulling the yarn, yard by yard, until the scarf was no more. I had invested quite a bit of time and effort in my knitting this article of clothing... a few minutes here... a few minutes there, whenever I could... and it was turning out beautiful. However it was, in the end, ripped apart and disassembled... all because of a tiny little pipsqueak of a stitch that I couldn't find and therefore fix.

Perhaps it was a blessing in disguise... perhaps I needed to unravel my scarf down to its basest elemental level: the ball of yarn with which I started. Now, it's time to cast on, and start fresh. Hopefully this time, the scarf will be clean, and in my eyes, perfect. And yes, I do intend to finish it by the fall, to wrap around my neck and keep me warm.

Monday, July 9, 2007

July 09, 2007 - Easy Guacamole

Last Sunday I hosted a little poker party for a few friends from Les Miz, and one thing I prepared was fresh, home made guacamole. I can't say the recipe is all my own; I culled it from many Mexican dinners and the personal recipe of a good friend. Don't worry if you're never ever cooked or made anything edible in your life... this is really easy, and a great hit with your party guests.

2 avocados
1 lime
1 jalapeño pepper
1 medium tomato
1/2 small red onion
a bit of cilantro (note: not everyone likes the taste of cilantro, so I'll let you decide how much or how little to put... if you do at all)
garlic salt to taste

Chop the tomato (without the seeds), jalapeño (without the seeds), onion and cilantro. Scoop the flesh out of the avocados... put in a bowl and start mashing. Add chopped ingredients. Squeeze lime juice into mixture. Add garlic salt to taste. Serve with tortilla chips and enjoy!!!

This recipe serves about 4-6 people, so feel free to make more if there are more of you (or if you're just extra hungry).

Sunday, July 8, 2007

July 08, 2007 - Relationships

I was just on Skype ( - get it, it's fabulous) with one of our oldest friends in Manila (she's one of my mom's contemporaries, i.e., they're more or less the same age), and she was talking about a married couple whose relationship just went by the wayside... they have a 10-year-old child. I then related similar tales of two other married couples whose marriages didn't work out. In both cases, the husbands left. For whatever reason, they didn't deem it worth it to continue their unions and opted instead to just pack up and leave.

I shook my head (and let out a few choice expletives) when I heard of my friends becoming uncoupled. In one case there were no children... in the other, two little girls.

So my friend had to let out a sigh and wonder what it is with today's relationships that separations (and ultimately annulments/divorces) happen much more frequently. How come marriages seem all the more disposable and far easier to leave, even with the presence of children.

No, dear reader, I don't have the answers. My parents' union didn't work out either (and neither did that of my husband's folks), so I don't have that secret magic formula for a happy, lasting marriage. All I know is, a solid union takes work and the willingness to put forth the effort. Rob and I have been married 3 1/2 years now (and together for nearly 6 years altogether), and we're doing fine. Other close friends of mine have celebrated marriages lasting 20 years and 13 years, which gives me tons of inspiration.

On a lighter note, two cast members of Les Miz have just embarked on an adventure... they are in a brand new relationship and are giddily, happily in love. Both as individuals are wonderful, fantastic people, and I have nothing but good wishes for them. That, and plenty of hope.

Friday, July 6, 2007

July 06, 2007 - Counting blessings

Isn't it great when...

... you get to do what you love for a living?

... you meet wonderful friends along the way in this journey of life?

... you meet the love of your life, and live all the more fully because he/she has made it possible?

... just thinking about someone you love makes the sun shine in your heart at that instant?

... your child smiles at you, in all innocence and honesty?

... a meal is able to satisfy and fulfill all five senses?

... the commute to work is an opportunity to exercise?

... the barista knows exactly what you want when you walk in?

... you find a fabulous pair of shoes?

... your prayers are answered?

... a store lets you return stuff, "just because"?

... that fantastic haircut lasts more than a few weeks?

... online shopping DOES pay off?

... you win an eBay auction?

... you finally figure out who you are, what you are, what you like, what you hate, what you love?

... you finally find what your heart was looking for?

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Start of another week

I have a few minutes of peace and quiet before I head to work, so I thought to write about how the week has been going...

- Chip Zien (Thenardier) is doing very, very well.  Considering that he's never done the show before and had only a couple of weeks to learn the role, he's doing great.  I would give him another week or so before he gets really comfortable, but all of us are having a great time with him.

- Drew Sarich played his last Grantaire on Saturday night... right now he's on vacation for a week, and when he returns, he'll be learning Valjean full time.  I know that there are quite a few of you that can't see him as a Valjean, but I'm going to sit and wait before I pass judgment.  I have a feeling he's going to be fantastic though.

- Our newbies are pretty much all in!  Mike Evariste is now performing, and this week Cortney Wolfson and Michael Minarik will be starting (hopefully).  I love that my dressing room is right beside Kevin Stites's room; I get to hear them rehearse.

And that's about it!!!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

New Cast Members...

I'm sure you already know what's going on at the theatre... so let me just briefly summarize the comings and goings of the last few weeks:

- Alexander Gemigniani is leaving the show on July 21... Drew Sarich will take over beginning July 23.  Taking over Drew's ensemble track and Grantaire will be Michael Minarik.

- Ben Davis exited the show two Saturdays ago... in the meantime, Drew and Ben Crawford are alternating in the role until Robert Hunt steps in on or around July 6.

- Mandy Bruno exited the show 2 Sundays ago... Megan McGinnis is our new Eponine.  Going into her ensemble track is Cortney Wolfson.

- Victor Hawks left the show last Saturday... his track has now been split... Don Brewer and Ben Crawford share certain elements of it... Ben, formerly Courfeyrac, is now Brujon.  Don is now our new Courfeyrac.  Ben retains his other ensemble speciality role of the Factory Foreman.  Oh trust, it was confusing when we first found out how this was going to be split.

- J.D. Goldblatt will not be returning to Les Miz to finish his remaining shows.  Jeremy Hays has been filling in.  J.D.'s permanent replacement will be Mike Evariste.

- Kate Chapman left the show a couple of weekends ago... Lucia Spina has now taken over.

So there you have it, folks!!!  Whew!