NYC: David Drake at the Laurie Beechman Theater in TAWNY TELL ME TRUE

Don’t miss David Drake in TAWNY TELL ME TRUE for three performances only beginning tonight at The Laurie Beechman Theatre at West Bank Cafe, 407 West 42 Street, in NYC.

Drake returns as bubbly starlet Tawny Heatherton, a lovably eccentric showbiz survivor and “one hit wonder” of the disco zeitgeist of the early 1980s — famous for her memorable international pop hit “Run Crazy Man.” Tawny brings her singular blonde-swept brand of sunny, funny optimism while singing songs and recalling stories of alien abduction, her days as a child star on “Dark Shadows,” and reuniting with her long-lost aunt Joey Heatherton at the Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino.

Click here for ticket info.

You can check out my recent interview with David on The Candi & Randy Show below. David shares the history and “philosophy” of Tawny, plus his recent 20th anniversary gala performance of his iconic, Obie Award-winning play, THE NIGHT LARRY KRAMER KISSED ME.

David Drake on the “evolution” of Tawny Heatherton

Brandon Voss at Gay.net has a fun Q&A with the brilliant David Drake, whose fab theatrical creation “Tawny Heatherton” is appearing at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in NYC until January 26th.

Here’s just a “touch of Tawny” for you:

Tawny has a very colorful and detailed backstory. How did you fill in those gaps?
Oddly enough, Tawny’s evolution was a kind of act of grief transference: Farrah Fawcett’s death was the underlying motivation for Tawny’s personality. She was the magic angel. And she died that summer when Tawny was born. As soon as I had the blonde hair falling in my face, I could just feel all that carefree Farrah-like energy bubbling up, and I just went with it.

Joey came into the picture because I’ve always been fascinated by forgotten blonde starlets. I’m a Marilyn hag, so anything that echoed off that image — Jayne Mansfield, Carole Wayne, the Landers sisters — grabbed my interest. Tawny became my way of creating one of those Hollywood girls — the ones we loved, then forgot — and figuring out the “Whatever happened to…?” story. Being Joey’s niece, of course Tawny went into the family business: showbiz! And like Joey, Tawny has been on the tail end of all of it.

You’ve previously explored Tawny in My Tawny Valentine and A Very Tawny Christmas. What are some new stories and songs she’s sharing in Tawny, Tell Me True?
The new show is about Tawny’s becoming keen to the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. Along the way, she ponders whether her whole crazy, zig-zag journey has added anything to “the greater good” of mankind. This includes Tawny’s abduction by aliens… her sleepwalking jaunts on her bike… and a chicken who she believes has been following her since her brief stint as a “Honey” on the final season of Hee Haw.

There’s lots of talking with the audience in this show as well, which I love. And a very funny onstage relationship with her musical director, Lance Cruce.

Plus we’ve got some great new songs — classics by The Carpenters, Talking Heads, Eurythmics, B-52s, the Disney ballad “Somewhere Out There,” and a jaunty old country song that’s actually the flip-side to Jeanne C. Riley’s “Harper Valley P.T.A.”

Head over to Gay.net for more “Tawny.”

Tawny, Tell Me True runs through Jan. 26 at NYC’s Laurie Beechman Theatre.

NYC: “Tawny, Tell Me True” by David Drake

Tonight, January 12th, in TAWNY, TELL ME TRUE, Obie Award-winning
playwright/performer David Drake (The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me) will
bring his latest theatrical creation Tawny Heatherton back to the stage
of midtown Manhattan’s Laurie Beechman Theatre, where the legendary
starlet made a critically acclaimed debut last winter in MY TAWNY
VALENTINE.

As directed by Robert La Fosse, with musical
direction by Lance Cruce, TAWNY, TELL ME TRUE is an evening of songs and
stories where Tawny discovers the meaning of the dawning of the Age of
Aquarius. Along the way — with videos by Ned Stresen-Reuter, and
original music by Trevor Kuprel — our loveably eccentric showbiz
survivor and “one hit wonder” of the disco zeitgeist of the 1980s
recalls such indelible moments in her globe-trotting journey as her
stint as a HEE HAW Honey, her unexpected tryst in Hollywood with Burt
and Loni (as well as that unusual encounter with Joan Van Ark on the set
of KNOT’S LANDING), and Tawny’s ongoing quest to reunite with her
long-lost aunt Joey, whom she last saw in the parking lot of the Mohegan
Sun Casino. And of course, her abduction by aliens.

TAWNY,
TELL ME TRUE performs on Saturdays at 7:30pm on January 12th, 19th &
26th, 2013. The Laurie Beechman Theatre, downstairs at the West Bank
Cafe, 407 West 42nd Street (at 9th Avenue). For more info call:
212-695-6909.

Tickets are $20 and available at https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/cal/495

20 Years Ago Today: “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me”

Twenty years ago today David Drake began his moving and powerful run in his Obie Award winning one man show “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me.”

I had the privilege of standing by for David in the off-Broadway show Pageant the summer before, and had attended readings of “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me” during development.  But I was not prepared for the play that awaited audiences at the Perry Street Theater in NYC.

I saw the show many times, and was blown away at the passion, depth and creativity of not only the writing but David’s courageous performance.

When David ended his run in the show I auditioned and was called back to possibly “replace” – as if anyone really could…  While it wasn’t meant to be,  being called back for such an important piece of writing is a favorite theatre memory for me.

As regular readers of The Randy Report know, today David is still creating memorable characters like his current creation “Tawny Heatherton.”  Gifted, I tell you, gifted!

We can’t go back in time, but do yourself a favor and either buy the book or better – buy the DVD and treat yourself to some powerful talent.

Tawny Heatherton returns in “Tawny, Tell Me True”

Here at The Randy Report we love all things Tawny.  So I was thrilled to receive the news that Tawny will continue her acclaimed “come-back” this summer in Provincetown.

Following on the heels of her sold-out holiday show in Provincetown last Christmas, and her critically acclaimed debut at the Laurie Beechman Theater in New York City this past February, David Drake’s newest theatrical creation ‘Tawny Heatherton’ will bring her blonde-swept brand of sunny, funny cheer back to the tip of the Cape for her very first summer-long engagement – with the premiere of TAWNY, TELL ME TRUE at the Crown & Anchor in Provincetown, MA.

With onstage musical direction by John Thomas, TAWNY, TELL ME TRUE opens June 17th and performs every Sunday at 10PM thru Sept 2nd in the Crown Cabaret Room of the Crown & Anchor, 247 Commercial Street. Tickets are $25, and can be obtained in-person at the box office, or online at www.onlyatthecrown.com. (Note: *No performance on July 8th.)

Written by and starring Obie Award winner David Drake (The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me), TAWNY, TELL ME TRUE marks the unheralded return of Tawny Heatherton, a lovably eccentric showbiz survivor and “one hit wonder” of the disco zeitgeist of the 1980s. In the show, Tawny sings and regales the audience with hilarious tales of her globetrotting life-on-the-road – including her headline-grabbing turn as the unwitting “Pyro Girl of Long Island,” her short-lived stint as a Hee-Haw “Honey,” and Tawny’s quest to reunite with her long-lost aunt Joey Heatherton, whom she last saw in the parking lot of the Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino. Oh, and of course, her abduction by aliens.

Check out video highlights of Tawny and her world.

And don’t miss Tawny’s music video of her 1980s hit “Run, Crazy Man”

Tawny Heatherton’s long lost music video “Run Crazy Man”

From David Drake’s recent sold-out run of “My Tawny Valentine” – Tawny’s 1985 Euro Disco smash “Run Crazy Man.” Go Tawny!

For those who haven’t kept up, “Tawny Heatherton” is the brilliant David Drake’s newest theatrical creation. The niece of 70s icon Joey Heatherton, Tawny is still following butterflies and rainbows. She may get a bit lost every now and then, but her public finds her.

How could anyone top the lyric “paper or plastic? both are fantastic…”

Directed by Ned Stresen-Reuter
Music by Trevor Kuprel
Styling by Christopher Mathieson
Featuring Tawny’s back-up boys, Aaron Tone & J.Stephen Brantley
Announcer: Joseph Addeo

NYC: “My Tawny Valentine” starring David Drake opens tonight!

Obie Award-winning playwright/performer David Drake (The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me) returns to the New York stage in the premiere of My Tawny Valentine, which begins a limited run tonight – Feb. 17 – at The Laurie Beechman Theatre.

Written by and starring Drake, this drag tragicomedy with music is directed by Robert La Fosse (Tony Award nominee for Jerome Robbins’ Broadway).

My Tawny Valentine, according to press notes, “marks the unheralded return of Tawny Heatherton, a lovably eccentric showbiz survivor and ‘one hit wonder’ of the disco zeitgeist of the early 1980s. Tawny brings her singular blonde-swept brand of sunny, funny optimism while recalling stories of wandering the globe performing her disco ‘hit,’ her headline-grabbing turn as the unwitting ‘Pyro Girl of Long Island,’ her short-lived stint as a ‘Hee-Haw Honey,’ and reuniting with her long-lost aunt Joey Heatherton at the Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino.”

Drake starred in Vampire Lesbians of Sodom (succeeding Charles Busch for 856 performances), originated the role of Miss Deep South in the hit Pageant, and co-starred with Jim J. Bullock in End of the World Party at the 47th St. Theater, and with B.D. Wong in A Language of Their Own at The Public. As a stage director, Drake has twice been a Directing Fellow at the Sundance Theater Lab, and has directed new works at The Public’s Under the Radar Festival, Joe’s Pub and Rattlestick, among others. Most recently in New York, he was a director of the 2009 world premiere of Taylor Mac’s The Lily’s Revenge.

David is brilliant in creating unforgettable characters.  Make sure you see “My Tawny Valentine“!   Due to popular demand additional shows have already been added.

Show times are Feb. 17, 23 and 24 and March 1-2 at 7:30 PM.

The Laurie Beechman Theater is located inside West Bank Cafe at 407 West 42nd Street. Tickets are $20 plus a $15 food/drink minimum. To purchase tickets, call (212) 352-3101 or visit www.SpinCycleNYC.com.

Here’s just a “taste of Tawny” – who finds the light everywhere she goes…

Obie Award-winning writer/actor David Drake’s new NY project

David Drake, star and author of the Obie Award-winning “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me,” is developing a new show for NY.

The Tawny Heatherton Project will be David’s first step in bringing “Tawny Heatherton” to the NY stage.

You can be a part of the project for even just $5 (or more) by joining his Kickstarter fundraising project.

From the Kickstarter page: A blonde wig worn backwards brought Tawny Heatherton to life.

Long before I’d performed my solo shows THE NIGHT LARRY KRAMER KISSED ME and SON OF DRAKULA, I’d experienced the tremendous power of drag — how, as a mask, drag could reveal unexpected truths and bring outrageous joy to audiences. I first found this out when I replaced Charles Busch in his long-running VAMPIRE LESBIANS OF SODOM in New York. Then felt it again when I created the role of Miss Deep South in the hit off-Broadway musical PAGEANT. But I’d never written a female character of my own. Until now…

Imagining a multitude of avenues for Tawny to explore — videos, the web, television, films, live performance — the first major outing of THE TAWNY HEATHERTON PROJECT will be the debut of my new stage show MY TAWNY VALENTINE, premiering in New York City at the Laurie Beechman Theater for three consecutive Fridays this winter: February 17th, 23rd and March 3rd at 8pm. (http://www.westbankcafe.com/beechman_theatre.html)

Performed as a cabaret “evening” with our headliner and an accompanist, MY TAWNY VALENTINE is being presented by the topnotch talents of SpinCycleNYC.

And so I’m asking you to help Tawny get her act together — so that she can begin sharing her sunny, funny, blonde-swept sense of wonder with each and every one of you.

David Drake in “A Very Tawny Christmas”

Just in time for the holidays, Obie Award winning actor/writer/director David Drake announces his latest theatrical creation!

“Tawny Heatherton” will make her cabaret debut on December 23rd at the Crown & Anchor in Provincetown. Spread the word! We’re gonna have a BLAST! — with John Thomas and Tawny Heatherton.

This is a “not to be missed” event! Make sure you attend! You’ll be able to say “I was there when…”

And please remember I told you so.

🙂

Tawny Heatherton at the ATM – all the world’s a stage

Tawny Heatherton is the new alter-ego of the fantastically talented David Drake, perhaps best known as the Obie Award winning actor and writer of “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me.”

I was blessed to work with David in the off-Broadway hit show “Pageant” – with the daunting task of being, among other roles, David’s stand-by. I made a conscious decision to learn as much as I could from David. Night after night, I was tickled and amazed at how David’s “Miss Deep South” was constantly new, fresh, different and committed. The things he found were brilliant, with a total lack of fear.

Check out “Tawny’s” new Facebook Fan page. And check often. David is so creative – sometimes over the top, sometimes so subtle – that you can’t help but watch.

I can’t wait.