Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Special Report: An Intimate Evening With Zachary Quinto And BD Wong

I know many of you have been waiting for the details on that special intimate "special invite" event that Zachary Quinto was attending at BD Wong's home recently.

Twitter pals Sara and Csilla were both lucky to be there with Zach who was feeling very relaxed with the small crowd that day.

I shan't say more and will let Sara tell you what happened that wonderful night.

-------------------------

Let's start by making this perfectly clear: I love Zachary Quinto.

The term "fangirl" might even apply (read: definitely does).  So when I read that Zachary Quinto was taking part in an "intimate Q&A style conversation" with BD Wong at Mr. Wong's home, my first question was "Where do I get tickets?"

The answer to that lead me to the reason behind the evening: it was a fundraiser for Rosie's Theater Kids, an organization that was founded by Rosie O'Donnell. Its mission is to enrich the lives of children through arts education.  I learned a bit more about the organization, and decided that it was definitely something I could get behind, and that, coupled with Zach's participation prompted me to purchase a ticket, and I am definitely glad that I did.

Initially, I was planning to go to the event by myself.  I had asked some of my friends and fellow ZQ fans to accompany me, but due to short notice and work constraints, none of them were able to make it.  I was a bit bummed about that, but was still anticipating a good time.

I hopped on a bus out of Pittsburgh and made my way to NYC.  On my way there, I was checking Twitter and getting more and more excited about my trip.  I saw a tweet from @BroadwaySpotted and discovered they were holding a contest for a ticket to the fundraiser the next night.  I quickly entered with the intention of giving the ticket to my friend Csilla (a NYC native and fellow ZQ lover) if I won.  I then texted Csilla and told her to enter as well.

I was pretty sure neither of us was going to win, but about 5 hours later @BroadwaySpotted tweeted that Csilla had won!  It was meant to be!  Now I was even more excited for the event as I was going to have one of my best friends there with me.


The fundraiser was scheduled to begin at 7:30 pm on June 13. The day before, I had been emailed address of Mr. Wong, and had plotted out my trip step by step so I was sure I knew how to get there. Stupidly, I had worn heels and by the time I got there my feet were already killing me, but I did not let that stop me from enjoying the evening.

When we arrived at the address we were given, Csilla and I stared at the building, then stared at each other, then stared at the building again.

I'm not sure what exactly we were expecting, but this was definitely not it!  Csilla even asked me to double check and make sure I had gotten the address correct.  I had, and when we started to see other people arrive it became apparent that we were in the right place.  We were asked to wait in the lobby area of the building until they were ready for us inside.  They finally let us in around 7:35 pm.

Mr. Wong's home was absolutely stunning.  High arched ceilings, wide open spaces, and a piano in the living room.  It was just beautiful.

There were about 40 people there total, and we were served cocktails and canap├ęs while we mingled with each other.  Zach arrived shortly after 8 pm, and he went directly to a back room to speak with Mr. Wong and the event coordinators.  We were then asked to find a place to sit for the Q&A portion of the evening.  Csilla and I found a spot on Mr. Wong's couch and sat down to enjoy hearing Zach speak.

I've read, watched, and listened to many interviews with Zach.  I've heard him speak in person on multiple occasions.  Despite this, he shared information that night that I had never heard him speak about before.


He was very engaged, and seemed excited to be there and to be able to share this with all of us.  I do believe Zach does better in small gatherings.  I think he feels more comfortable and more able to share.  Couple that with the fact that this had to do with theater, and he was even more open than usual.

He shared about two teachers he had had in his youth. One he had at age ten that saw something special within him and sent a note home to his mother encouraging her to allow Zach to audition for the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera.  He did, and he was cast in his first theater role as a munchkin in the Wizard of Oz.  The other teacher he spoke about was one he had in junior high into high school, who Zach stated taught him that it was much more important to be a good person than it was to be a good actor.  Zach even spoke a bit about the death of his father at the age of seven and how much this impacted him.

The conversation began to turn to more current happenings in Zach's life, and he spoke on the difference between television, film, and theater.  He talked about J.J. Abrams, and how Zach is inspired by him as a director and a creative thinker.  Zach stated that he has been very lucky that he has been able to work with people at the top of their game, and he has been grateful for the work that he has been able to do.


Finally, the conversation turned to theater and to Zach's upcoming Broadway debut in "The Glass Menagerie".  That's when Zach's face lit up in a big smile.  He said, "I have never been more excited about anything in my professional life."  He is so happy about this, and it made my heart smile to see how obvious that was.

The Q&A wrapped up, and then the event coordinators took some professional photos with Zach and BD Wong.  Afterwards, Zach and Mr. Wong disappeared to a room in the back for a little bit (Zach was gathering up his things and speaking to a few people he knew).  Csilla, the other fans, and I waited patiently for our chance to speak with Zach and Mr. Wong.  Mr. Wong came out first, and he was very kind and gracious. We thanked him for allowing us into his beautiful home and for hosting such an amazing evening. 

Next, Zach came out of the back room.  I've been lucky enough to meet Zachary a few times, and he recognized me right away.  "Hey Sara, how are you?"  he said with a big smile on his face.  He came up to me and we hugged.  He turned to Csilla next, who he has also met before but not as recently as the last time I saw him.  He hugged her as well and acknowledged that it had been a little bit since he had last seen her.

We talked about Star Trek and he asked us if we had enjoyed it.  He wanted to know if we were going to be seeing him in The Glass Menagerie, to which we responded, "Of course! It's your Broadway debut!"  He laughed and asked us what the date was for which we had tickets.  We told him, and he informed us that that would be a good time to see it because they'll have all the kinks worked out by then.  hehehe.


He talked to us for a good 10 - 15 minutes.  He signed a photo of him and me that had been taken at Ojai Playwrights' Conference, and he took photos with both Csilla and me.  He was very laid back and seemed very happy.

Afterwards, Csilla and I grabbed a cab back to my hotel (it was pouring down rain by this time) and squeed to each other about what a wonderful night it had been.  As I mentioned, I have been lucky enough to meet Zachary on a few different occasions, but this was definitely one of my best experiences.  He was so sweet, so happy, and seemed very comfortable.

It's obvious how much he loves theater, and how much he loves being a part of that environment.  I am ecstatic for him that he has been able to make his dreams come true, and I wish him continued success in all he does.  It is an absolute joy to be his fan, and I love every minute of it.

-------------------------

Thank you SOOOOooo much to Sara for this lovely report  on lovely Zach  :D
Plus the piccies, of course!

2 comments:

  1. Excellent! I'm happy you had this experience.

    ReplyDelete
  2. How wonderful!! And you got great pictures of him!! He mentioned something in Utah about wanting to talk to groups more. Maybe he's exploring different venues. This sounds like a really good one.
    Thanks for letting us "tag along" vicariously.

    ReplyDelete