Monday, December 31, 2012


Supposed to be confetti
So it's the last day of 2012, huh?

How about that?

It's like the end....of 2012. Good thing I got (had) to write a check today so I could use my well polish 2012 year writing abilities.

End of the year? Should I do a wrap-up? Oh what? What do I have to wrap up? I really don;t like wrapping presents. Or frosting cakes.

But I can tell you that I did achieve my goal of seeing 100 shows this year!


And I wasn't sure I could do it. But on Saturday I saw three shows, which got me exactly to 100.

Here's the breakdown:

77 scripted shows (plays, dance shows)
19 improv shows
5 other types of shows  (awards shows, tributes, combo improv/scripted, etc)
(I know this totals out to 101 because I just realized I forgot to write down that I saw Show X with Andrew Zimmern on 12/10, I don't know how I could have forgotten about that. I wrote a whole blog post about it.)

To help you know my rules, I'll tell the to you. I had very few rules. The show had to a type of art that needed an audience at a location at a specific time and place to work. For example, I counted my trip to the Haunted Basement as a show because I paid admission, saw actors (improv and scripted) and the event requires and audience to work. I also count seeing the Holidazzle Parade as a show because it only consists of costumed performers and was a type of performance, I don't know if I would have counted the Macy's parade. (But really, if I had gotten to see the Macy's parade in person I would bet to put in on any list.)

So many people ask "What were your favorite shows you saw?" and that is such a great question. I know there are a number of top ten theatre lists out there (Pioneer Press, Star Tribune, City Pages, Daily Planet) that have put out some really nice lists. So I'll make up my own categories.

Shows I saw the most: (not counting the upwards teen of times I saw the Rainbow Election because I was working on it.)

1. SuperHappyMelancholyexpialidocious by Seth Lepore
I saw Seth's one man show three times to become the winner of the most often show I saw. I first saw it during it's Minneapolis run in March and then again in the MN Fringe Festival twice (the second time because the first show I was trying to see sold out, then the second show I tried to see cancelled and I had little time and by magic got into Seth's show before it sold out. Not saying Seth's show isn't worth seeing three times, i just wanted to share this fact that I was DESTINED to see Seth's show three times. Also Hi Seth! I see you've found my blog! I figured you would have a Google alert out on your name. Does this make me seem like a stalker knowing that about you? I seriously just guess you might. I mean I have one out on my name but usually I just get alerts about all the other folks named Heather Meyer and their successful marathon times and criminal records.)

2. Pretentious Conversations by Laura Buchholz
I think I can count this live on stage TV show show as having seen it more than once, but the more I think about it, I realize it might not count. I saw this show in it's spring run in Minneapolis and then again in the MN fringe. In the MN fringe it had new guests and actors and some of the same guests. So parts were the same by, parts were different. Since it is a TV show style live show is has different episodes, but I think this was one episode. So I am counting it as seeing it twice. Besides, I know the folks making this show and I think they and this show is delightful.

3. Bump in the Night by Erin Shepard.
This show I saw two times because I loved it so much! No one realizes how much fun a horror themed dance show can be! I was creeped out, tickled (not in the literal way) surprised and impressed by the whole thing. I discovered new music I love and a secret passion to be a dance. This show incorporated dances with Courtney McClean's (Hi Courtney!) special brand of storytelling to make some of the most fun I had as an audience member in theatre all year. I really wanted to join in the zombie dance at the end. 

4. Chicago Avenue Project "It's Raining Cats and Dogs." By the Chicago Ave Project 
I saw this show three times. It is a collection of short plays written for the kids in the Chicago Ave Project through Pillsbury House Theatre, I was fortunate to be able to write one of the vignettess with and for one of the coolest kids ever. Then each of the kids works with a professional director and actor for the play and then the plays are presented for free to the public. I went to every performance.  Adorable, awesome and amazing!!

5. Off-Book at Huge Improv Theater 
It's hard to say that I went to an improv show more than once because each time the show is different, because it is improv. But with Off-Book, there is a clear structure of what the show is. In this show an actor is assigned a script and memorized their lines (just like a play) their scene partner is an improviser who has memorized no lines and doesn't know what their actor is going to do. So you put those two together and it is hilarious magic. My favorite game is to try to guess what play the scene the actor is reading from based on only one half of the lines. I saw Off-Book twice this year, and performed in it two additional times and had a scene I wrote performed in one of them. 

Improv-wise I also saw Show X at Huge Improv Theater multiple times if we are still counting.

I feel like I am talking about improv a lot. Especially when most of the things I saw were actual plays. I realized even though I saw 76 (1 was in Chicago) plays in the Twin Cities this year, I came no where near seeing all the shows that were offered this year. I only focused on shows I wanted to see. I didn't have to work hard to find shows that I wanted to see to fill my quota (though sometimes I worked hard for the $$ to do so, thank you Goldstar and friends with comps). This would be the cue to go off on some sore of tangent about how theatre rich the Twin Cities is and blah, blah, blah, but my fingers are tired and folks more prolific and eloquent than me have written essays about that. Google one of those. 

So there you have it. 2012=100 shows. Go team me.


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