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ldyjocelyn

# 64: A super smart, caring, determined, classy, easy-going, and genuinely good, likeable guy

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:GM_FCA:

10 Days until Clay is on stage in NC! :yahoo:

12 Days until Clay is on the Office! :yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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Ldyj, I'm so glad you got to see George Jones that last time. I remember an earlier concert you were scheduled to go to that was postponed due to his illness, and I was happy to see him get back on the road for what turned out to be his final tour.

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Actually, our concert was rescheduled not once but twice! It was originally set for March 2012, but cancelled at the last minute due to illness. Then it was scheduled for June, but about a month before the show, it was finally rescheduled in November. THAT is the show we finally saw. George was not in great voice, but it was still neat seeing a living legend like him.

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:GM_FCA:

9 Days until Clay is on stage in NC! :yahoo:

11 Days until Clay is on the Office! :yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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:GM_FCA:

8 Days until Clay is on stage in NC! :yahoo:

10 Days until Clay is on the Office! :yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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Hey everyone! Life is crazy because it's the end of school -- when this week is over I'll be happy, because the online group project is done. (Hard to do a "group" project when only two of the four group members do any of the work...)

How many from here are going to Drowsy Chaperone? I will be there in spirit.

In other news (especially for couchie): Jason Collins (NBA basketball player) becomes first pro athlete to come out It's a very well spoken article and I am glad that time has made it into society.

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Clay Aiken ‏@clayaiken 52s

Oh what a difference 10 years makes! Ten years ago this day:

My mother finally showed up to see me!

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Ah. BMOB. Many were enthralled with Solitaire...I loved BMOB. So much fun, and it showed he could have a sense of humor.

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:GM_FCA:

7 Days until Clay is on stage in NC! :yahoo:

9 Days until Clay is on the Office! :yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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Solitaire was the night that it really hit me hard. Wow, has it really been 10 years?

I am driving down for the first two performances of the Drowsy Chaperone, with my daughter, leaving Monday morning at 6 a.m. I am looking forward to a nice, relaxed road trip, warm temperatures, and no work for a week! :) Does anyone know if there is anything planned for a get together for opening night at all? Maybe it'll just be the usual bar gathering after the show at the Marriott?

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New tweet. It looks as if CBS This Morning must have dropped the ball somewhat on announcing the Tony noms:

I'm a huge @CBSThisMorning fan!! But way treated the Tony Awards noms was disrespectful! Knew nothing about them and didn't care. #dobetter

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New article found via Openly Clay:

waltermagazine.com

Coming Full Circle with Clay Aiken

Coming full circle With Clay Aiken

ART AND CULTURE,ARTIST SPOTLIGHT

APRIL 30, 2013 6:00 AM

When Raleigh-born American Idol star Clay Aiken, 34, takes the stage this month to star in North Carolina Theatre’s The Drowsy Chaperone, he will be coming home in more ways than one.

“My first audition ever was at North Carolina Theatre,” he says. Aiken was 17, the production was the Declaration of Independence musical 1776, and the odds were long. The part in question was several years too old for Aiken, and he had to sing for an intimidating director: celebrated Broadway veteran Terrence Mann. But Aiken’s choir teacher told him it was a perfect way to get some auditioning experience. “There was no pressure, because I couldn’t get it anyway,” Aiken recalls.

He not only got the part but also ended up performing in three shows with the company and forging a career in the process. “I sort of found a home with NCT.” One that would prepare him for bigger stages, including the glaring limelight of American Idol and national tours for the multi-platinum record (and four others) that would follow. As it does today, NCT took its mission seriously to nurture local talent and to stage professional productions. A homegrown company started by De Ann Jones 30 years ago, NCT today puts on half a dozen acclaimed shows a year and maintains its local flavor.

Aiken’s first role with NCT was a dream come true, one sparked when his mother took him to see his first musical, Big River: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, also at NCT. It was 1991; Aiken was 13, and he was bowled over.

“Marty Moran was playing Huck Finn,” Aiken recalls. “I was sitting way up high in Memorial Auditorium, and I remember seeing this guy dancing around and singing on stage, and it was the first time I realized in my life that people could make a living off of singing, that people could make a career out of it. I knew I wanted to make a life out of it at that point.”

That didn’t happen until the second season of American Idol, in 2003, when Aiken, then 24, was transformed from an earnest hopeful with talent into a polished performer with a big Broadway voice. He came in second to eventual winner Ruben Studdard, but a star was born.

None of it came as a surprise to NCT founder Jones. “I have watched thousands of people audition over 30 years, and I have seen a lot of talented kids,” she says. “The number of people who have Clay’s talent I can count on one hand.” It’s more than the perfect pitch she knew he had at 17, or the kind of technical proficiency that is commonplace on Broadway. “He has his own sound. It’s amazing.”

The public agreed. The next years brought several hit singles, 10 successful concert tours, and the emergence of legions of older female fans who called themselves Claymates.

But Aiken wasn’t sure about Broadway when it came calling – insistently – years later. Aiken, at that point, was busy not only touring and recording, but acting on shows like Scrubs, writing a New York Times bestseller (Learning to Sing: Hearing the Music in Your Life), and working on behalf of UNICEF and the National Inclusion Project, which he co-founded to support children with disabilities.

Then Mike Nichols called. The world-famous director wanted Aiken to join the cast of his Tony Award-winning Monty Python musical Spamalot in the key role of Sir Robin. “I thought, I don’t want to do this,” Aiken recalls. He was busy enough. “But they’re giving me free tickets to see the show, so I’ll go see the show. And when Robin came on the stage, who was playing Robin? The same guy who’d played Huck Finn, Marty Moran. I said right then, I’m going to do this part.” The two are now great friends.

Kismet played a role in Aiken’s decision to take the part of “Man in Chair” in NCT’s Drowsy Chaperone as well. The company had asked him for years to come back to its stage, but it wasn’t until they offered him this role – which allows him to interact directly with the audience while delivering a meaningful message about the power of art – that Aiken decided the time was right.

The production is about an unhappy man made happy by his love of a musical, a production that literally comes alive before his eyes as he describes its characters to the audience and listens to its soundtrack on his record player. “He ends up being enchanted by the power of the theatre, which is what NCT has done so well for 30 years now. That’s why I was willing to do it,” he says. That, and the chance to share the stage with co-star Beth Leavel, another Raleigh native who will reprise the role of “Chaperone” she created on Broadway, and which earned her a Tony.

“Some comedies are just trying to make you laugh, but sometimes you find a comedy that has a real message,” he says. It also gives him a chance to do one of his favorite things. “I’ve done a lot of TV stuff, but it doesn’t give you the satisfaction of doing theater.”

Performing in Raleigh is its own kind of reward. The Leesville Road High School graduate moved to L.A. for a while after the success of Idol, but came back home in 2005. He now lives near the border of Cary and Durham and says there’s no better place to be than here, or to raise a family. Aiken’s son Parker was born in 2008, at which point he decided to acknowledge publicly that he is gay. The Claymates showered him with support.

“There’s just no place in the country like it,” he says of his hometown. “It is a testament to the leadership of Raleigh and the city council that they have maintained the ‘park with a city in it’ environment here. It is a great place to live.”

And to perform. Singing on stage with NCT again is a way, Aiken says, of saying thanks to the theatre company that first believed in him: “It’s appreciation for being such an incredible part of my life.” And, “it’s just about 10 years to the day since I did Idol,” he says – as good a time as any to come back to where it all began. -L.R.

The Drowsy Chaperone runs from May 7-12 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. matinees on May 11 and 12. For tickets and more information, go to www.nctheatre.com.

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A tweet from the NC Theater:

NC Theatre ‏@nctheatre 6m

Have you been waiting for a glimpse of @clayaiken in DROWSY CHAPERONE? Tune in to @wral at 5:30 tonight and you just may be in luck!

Hopefully someone can catch it!

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Since I seem to be talking to myself today, I'll just keep adding things, this time about MEEEEE! LOL!

Anyway...this evening turned out to be a nightmare. I went shopping at Target after work, and then pulled into our garage at home. As I was bringing my packages into the house, I hear a TERRIBLE noise back in the garage. I go back to investigate, and I see nothing. BUT -- I hear a soft hiss, and sure enough, one of the tires on my car has a screw embedded in it! So, I pull out the spare and jack; my husband comes home, leaving his car in our driveway, and puts the spare on my car. The real tire will be taken to be patched. We then take a walk (as it is a beautiful evening!), and then have dinner. As I am heading to our basement to watch TV, I notice that the garage door is halfway open. Guess what? The door will not close OR open, even manually. The torsion spring broke! (Hence, the noise that originally took me into the garage.) Fortunately, my husband's car is outside, so he we can get to work tomorrow. We also have a repair guy coming for the garage door, and then the tire will get repaired, eventually.

It's been a stressful evening, to say the least.

As much as I'm dying to not be seeing Drowsy Chaperone, the way this evening has turned out, it's probably for the best. Too much money will be leaving our family tomorrow with all these repairs!

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Sorry ldyj what a horrible evening. Except for the walk and dinner.

We are finally buying our house tomorrow afternoon. We've been trying to orchestrate all the workmen so we can move in around the 20th. The buyers of our house want us to get out of here as soon as we can. After we move in we will start the dreaded kitchen remodel. Tomorrow morning we have the awards breakfast for our kindergartners. I always miss them after this, but it is fun seeing them in the school halls as they grow up. My first student is in 5th grade and almost as tall as I am. Next year she is off to middle school. She tells me she is doing well in school. We will probably stick with our 5th graders for the rest of this year. We have learned so much new math and so have they.

I'll be going to two performances of the DC and will report back. Must not pack binoculars. I've already lost several things in the boxes.

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:GM_FCA:

Woke up this morning unable to lift my left arm; I have been doing an inventory at work and all the reaching to get books off the shelves; feels likes I strained a muscle. Being short I have to reach over my head to get the books. This was in the children's department where the shelves are not high enough to stand on a stool, but still all that reaching, ouch! It was very hard getting comfortable to sleep last night because I could not sleep on that side. Guess I will find something else to do today.

Clay looked really good in that clip..so wish I could see the show, but just not in the cards.

6 Days until Clay is on stage in NC! :yahoo:

8 Days until Clay is on the Office! :yahoo:

Happy Birthday to all celebrating!

Everyone have a great day!

Kim

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Got home from Washington DC after being gone for 7 days. Had a great time and saw alot. We were camping so I had wifi for the first three days then we lost it and could not get on the rest of the week.

My mother was put in Hospice while I was gone and then yesterday passed away. She so loved Clay and infact because of her I became more involved. Everytime I would go to her house she had taped something and I would watch. I blame her for my addiction. But it made us so close. I took her to concerts until she was not able to go anymore. She would always be so thrilled when I came back and gave her a recap. When I went to the Gala in 2011 and she said she wished she was well enough to go. I think she would of loved it.

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My sincere condolances to you gbmifan. It's so difficult to lose a mom. I think about mine often and we lost her in 2001.Sounds like you have many great memories.

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{{{{{{{{gbmifan}}}}}}}}}}}}

Sorry to hear about your Mom.

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{{{gbmifan}}} so sorry to hear about your Mom. Hugs all around to those who need them today!

We just had a wrench thrown into our plans for our NC road trip next week. Thinking we were doing a good thing, my daughter took her car for an oil change & to get her tires rotated/aligned today. They said she needs new rotors, new shocks, and the tires are making a horrible noise now, which apparently means they are no good and need to be changed immediately. We may end up having to rent a car instead for the week. I looked into flights and they aren't too bad but we would still need to rent a car in Raleigh so it's just not worth it to do that, money wise.

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Random Clay mention of the day...

A few days ago, Zach Braff tweeted about Clay, and someone at CV mentioned about his using a Kickstarter project to get his next movie off the ground. Since I like Zach, I chipped in a few bucks. I now get regular emails about the project. Today's email had this as a P.S., with a familiar name on it. I swear it wasn't me who made the suggestion...

P.S. Sunday I asked you all who you were listening to. We compiled all the bands into a list for you. We want this to be a community where like-minded people share art they love. So here it is; your sunday music festival line-up. I'd attend this festival:

post-11-0-68255800-1367440785_thumb.jpg

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