Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Patti LuPone: A Memoir (Book Review)
Patti LuPone likes to whine. I have nothing against whining per se--it can be a great way to get things off one's chest. But when one has a fabulous career, a shelf full of awards, plenty of money, and a lovely family, the whining becomes, well, tacky--or worse. For example, LuPone refers to Paul Sorvino as "Howdy Doody in Auschwitz" because he is cheerful while the rest of the cast of The Baker's Wife is depressed. Can you say tasteless? The overall theme of the book is that LuPone is hard-done-to and that nothing comes easily to her. From some of her stories, you would think she was working in a coal mine. And to say that she deals with setbacks with class would be a bald-faced lie. She throws tantrums. She disappears for days when she has performances to do! (Yes, Andrew Lloyd Webber treated you badly during Sunset Boulevard, Patti, but no one died, you know?) The fact that most of the other people in the photos in Patti LuPone: A Memoir are not identified might just be a result of careless, or a bad editorial decision, but it comes across as supporting LuPone's seeming worldview: it's all about her.