Turn Ons: Watching tourists geek out over celebrity sightings & the possibility of being captured on live television.
Turn Offs: Waking up at 6am and being put to work without food or pay.
Rate My Date:
- Not My Type
1 Night Stand
- In Love
- Happily Ever After
I rolled outta bed at the ungodly hour of 6am for a 7:45am call-time at ABC Studios to be an audience member at Live With Kelly. I felt groggy but nonetheless excited for this particular Indie Date because it seems like forever since last being on a TV set. Fun!
But all that excitement diminished as the day proceeded and I began to feel more like an unpaid extra rather than someone there to be entertained. Audience members were corralled into a holding area with limited seating for about an hour before even entering the studio (I sat on a heater). To make matters worse; not only was there no craft service table with the usual on-set sugary treats to keep you awake and distracted from the long wait, but my Starbuck's coffee was banned from entry! All they offered were overpriced bottles of water (irritated). Once finally ushered into the studio by an impersonal personnel member, I took a seat in the front row (score). But that's when the unpaid extra work really began. Gelman, the executive producer, launched right into "warming up" the audience; coaching us how and when to clap the most effectively. Thanks to him, I learned the art of being an audience member; feigning enthusiasm and excitement on cue. I also learned that it's not how hard you clap, but how quickly you clap in order to create the most deafening applause. And that's exactly what they wanted in order to make the at-home audience feel as if they were missing out on something truly spectacular. And so I clapped dutifully and enthusiastically; logging in enough applause to constitute my cardio workout for the day. I hoped and prayed the camera wouldn't pan the front row and reveal my well-earned shiny glow on national television, 'cause makeup artists are never in the budget to powder the noses of mere extras.
Kelly Ripa and her guest host, Kristin Chenoweth, were admittedly charming, witty, bite-sized morsels of blonde goodness, with an obvious gift for banter. And during brief commercial breaks they were personable, approachable and freely engaged the audience with self-deprecating humor. Besides seeing Kelly live ('cause I think she's kinda awesome) I was really anticipating the interview with Alan Cumming, one of my favorite actors. But he was only on stage with enough time to plug his latest projects and proclaim his love for Off-Broadway's Sleep No More (in which he made a guest appearance).
I guess if I want in-depth celebrity interviews, I'll avoid the morning show circuit, and instead, keep my butt at home for a Barbara Walter's Special (with a Starbuck's coffee & sugary snacks!)
77 West 66th Street, Suite 100
Getting There By Subway:
- 1 to 66th Street - Lincoln Center