Rock of Ages has always been one of my absolute favorite Broadway shows. In a million years, I never would have thought I'd have a shot at being in this musical!

(Liz Jeressi)

But every once in a blue moon, dreams really do come true. This was the most magical night I have ever had.

Having followed this show for so long, and being in love with some of the actors in it, it became more than just the chance to feel what it's like to be a performer on stage in front of a live audience...it was the chance to work with some of the entertainers that I have been fan-girling on.

The biggest thanks in the world goes to producer Barry Habib, who has been a loyal listener of our morning show. If you follow "Lou & Liz in the Morning" you hear me talk quite often about how I consider myself an actor and being in a Broadway show has always been on my bucket list.

(Liz Jeressi)

Leave it to Barry Habib (financial expert, motivational speaker, author, producer, rock star and overall superhero, among other titles he holds) for giving me this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play a Bourbon Room bartender. I was in 4 scenes!

AND he came to the show to support me all the way through from dress rehearsal until backstage after the show! Barry...you have my gratitude forever and always. I have always been your biggest fan, but not many people would be so generous as to make someone's dream come true like you did for me.

A huge thanks to Zak (who arranged everything!), Jeff, Tiffany Engen, Michael Mahany for the tattoo (lol), and the rest of the cast and crew.....I felt welcomed, embraced, accepted, and supported the whole night. These professionals took time they didn't have to out of their job to make me smile, laugh, hi-five me, and even, when the night was over gather in a dressing room to take a cast photo with me.

(When I arrived stage manager, Jeff, had a whole station set up just for me...complete with 8Os-style wardrobe accessories and props. Photo by Liz Jeressi)

My hair got crimped, I was given 80s wardrobe, spiked bracelets, pink extensions, was personally tattooed by Joey Primo (lol), handed guitar picks by the on-stage 'pit' band, shown the different backstage lighting prompt and singing 'booths', and allowed to dance center-stage for the finale! Whaaaaaaat???!!! How did that happen to "just a small town girl?"

CJ, Kirsten, PJ, Matt, Dane, Tom, Mekhai, Michael, Tiffany and Matt -- you are all super dreamy up close!!! I mean, this cast is BEAUTIFUL inside and out, with and without their wigs. And Matt....there is just a special kind of category for your physical humor alone!!!

If you had to ask me to pick a favorite character in this show, I honestly could not. I adore them all for their humor, singing, dancing, and acting. And the live rock band is TREMENDOUS and it was super cool to watch the keyboard player lead them from my vantage point backstage.

(Photo courtesy of Rock of Ages)
(Looking at the theater from the perspective of the stage before dress rehearsal was mind-blowing. Photo by Liz Jeressi)

I have never loved the theater more.

If you haven't seen Rock of Ages, tickets are still on sale through mid-January. Bringing this show back after it's successful Broadway run and world tours has been such a treat for fans like me, but knowing that it's only got a limited run and then we may never see these performers in this kind of role again makes me NEED to go back at least one more time (I think I said that the last 4 times ago, lol!)

So if you are looking for a show that will make you laugh and sing, nails the best rock songs and big hair of the 80s, and brings the whole audience along for the ride, get to Rock of Ages at New World Stages in NYC.

(With my brother and my son Christopher)

 

Back to reality...the train ride home after all that excitement. And I still had lines on my forehead from that bandana I wore all night, LOL! Photo from Liz Jeressi
(Seeing the original Bourbon Room set up-close was awesome. Photo by Liz Jeressi)
(The infamous bar set, photo by Liz Jeressi)