Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Billy Christopher Maupin as Billy Christopher Maupin

Posted by Bruce Miller
Theatre people have so much love to give. Not all theatre people, I guess. Not all the time. But quite often I see and feel such a genuine and open outpouring of affection from and among my colleagues and friends, that it reminds me of what makes this world where I’ve lived my last 33 years so touching.

People who need people are the luckiest people in the world. Everybody sing along. I’m being sincere here so please don’t read in a tone of sarcasm or cynicism.

All this love and need are our greatest strengths and our most endearing weaknesses.

Billy Christopher Maupin’s cabaret, Mad About the Boy(s), presented for one night only last Sunday evening at ComedySportz, was one of those times when the love felt almost palpable. That was not a banker on stage, or an insurance salesman. Billy Christopher can seem like a raw nerve. He practically explodes with talent, and the rawness and exuberance are as much a part of the performance as is the talent. The extent to which you love it or are a little taken aback depends on your willingness to accept someone who gives his all plus. The filters and controls are sorta set aside, and the love and emotions and pride and raw talent are sent up to the trapezes with no net in sight.

Being someone who’s always been all about the safety net, I can’t help but envy and admire someone who lacks such stifling caution and reserve. I enjoyed BC's performance very much. I’ll give him some notes (he’s asked me to), but the first note will be to pay no attention to my notes. It was Billy’s show, Billy’s truth, Billy’s spotlight and Billy’s high C. And that’s as it should be. (That's Billy Christopher above and to the left, by the way, playing the earnest reverend in Smoke on the Mountain at Barksdale Hanover Tavern.)

Three cheers for Mr. Maupin, for his talented pianist Stephen (who wouldn’t you know is moving to PA), and for ComedySportz for making the evening possible. Three cheers more for the large audience that filled the space almost to capacity and embraced BC with an open heart.

If you missed it, that’s too bad for you, but you can catch his final number, Maybe This Time --

And the next time Billy Christopher sings, consider going along for the ride.

--Bruce Miller

1 comment:

Emily said...