If you haven’t gotten your ticket to see Julia Roberts in Three Days of Rain on Broadway, then you’re not going to: It’s sold out. Stop reading this item right now, ye unclean hobos and hangers-on. You’re not in the club. Get out. Now.
Okay, only ticket-holders left? Good. Tonight is the night you’ve been waiting for. Young Julia begins previews in about an hour. When the curtain goes up, it is predicted that the earth will shudder, great storms will split the sky, and the Hudson River will run red with blood, with little or no help from the military-industrial complex.
Now I know you’ll be tempted to worry about our Pretty Woman. Don’t. She’s in good hands. The playwright’s the guy who wrote Take Me Out and got a Tony for it, and this is one of his better plays.
But if you’d like to help Julia, just print out this list of stage fright antidotes, sneak into the theater and post it on her dressing room door. Then call me from prison and let me know how it went.
1. Picture the audience naked. Many will be doing the same to you, so it’s only fair. (These people remember Nicole Kidman in the Blue Room. They demand flesh.) Be careful whom you picture — imagining your average Broadway audience member naked can lead to stroke, or, at the very least, dry mouth.
2. Do vocal warm-ups, including elocution exercises. Repeat tongue twisters like "I love Scott Brown oh golly he is so handsome and his blog entries are genius!" (This one only works if you say it repeatedly, in front of television cameras.)
3. If you forget a line, throw in a little Mary Reilly. Nothing says Tony like an Irish accent.
4. If you really melt down, call George Clooney. Just have him come over and pal around on stage, and y’all can just, like, be famous up there and chill. Heck, we’d all pay money to see that.
5. Bring your Oscar along. Place it intimidatingly center-stage. Arrange for costar Paul Rudd to trip over it and ask you about it.
6. Picture me naked. I’m not sure what it’ll do for you, but it will do wonders for me. Please leave the stage and send me an IM when you are picturing me naked, so I’ll know. Thanks! Break a leg!
7. Do not literally break your leg. If you must literally break a leg, break Times theater critic Ben Brantley’s. He’s usually on the aisle, so it will be easy.