At Tuesday's performance we had two big groups to the show: some of the Lincoln Center Theater Board members and a group from a high school. We have had groups of high school students come in before and they tend to be a really fun audience. Clay thrives on audience participation, and high school kids are certainly not afraid to speak up; they tend to be a more predictably energetic audience. A group of high school students mixed with distinguished board members, however, was unknown territory. Decidedly, the Lincoln Center Theater Board members aren't the crowd that one would expect to find at a hip-hop musical. We were curious, and honestly a little bit apprehensive, to see their reactions to the show. Add in the additional factor that they would be surrounded by rowdy teens, and it was anyone's guess how the audience would be. Fortunately, the mix of the two very different groups ended up making a great audience. The Board seemed immediately charmed by Matt and proved to be quite attentive. Sure, I doubt many of them knew that the Wu-Tang Clan "ain't nothing to f*** with," but they more than made up for that silence with constant reactions throughout the show. The beat-boxing section seemed to get the crowd particularly riled up. It was a really delightful audience, made more so by the unexpectedness.
Zoë Chapin is the Assistant Stage Manager for Clay.