Two Voices’ Celebrate Summer at Bay Street
Brian D’arcy James and Ana Gasteyer “go way, way back,” Ms. Gasteyer said in an interview on May 16. “We’ve always loved each other.” Putting them together for an evening of song was the brainchild of the Bay Street Theatre.
Ms. Gasteyer and Mr. James will take the theater’s stage on Saturday night at 8 in “One Night, Two Voices, Three Cheers,” an event she described as a “fun, easy summer night, to get everybody in the mood and celebrate the kickoff of summer.” The two vocalists will perform tunes from Broadway and the American songbook, including musical theater favorites, with some Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond thrown in, she said. “Mostly we’re going to have a good time.”
Both Ms. Gasteyer and Mr. James have earned rave reviews for their work on Broadway. Mr. James has appeared in such productions as “Next to Normal” and “Time Stands Still,” and he was nominated for a Tony Award for his performances in “Shrek the Musical” and “Sweet Smell of Success.” Ms. Gasteyer’s Broadway debut was as Columbia in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” Since then, she has also appeared in “Wicked,” “The Royal Family,” and “The Threepenny Opera.”
She loved working on Broadway, she said, for its regular routine, its artistic and musical challenges, and its “perfectionism.” It is the opposite of television, she said, where everything goes as quickly as possible.
Having created some of the most famous “Saturday Night Live” characters in her years on the show, as well as impersonations of Martha Stewart, Celine Dion, and Hillary Rodham Clinton, Ms. Gasteyer is enjoying television again in a much less stressful workplace. Without the pressures of delivering “laugh after laugh,” her new starring role in “Suburgatory,” a single-camera ABC series, is “easy and fun,” she said, thanks to a “great writer and creator, Emily Kapnek.” The show delves into interesting family dynamics and issues such as American affluence, she said, and working on it is one of her “favorite jobs ever.” The “cast is stupendous.” The finale aired on May 16, and the show has been renewed for another season.
Ms. Gasteyer started as a voice major in college in Chicago, the birthplace of improv comedy. She later dropped out of music to focus on speech, but picked it back up again in New York. She loves to sing, and said, “I have my own cabaret act.” As for combining singing and comedy as she did on “Saturday Night Live” with Will Ferrell as Bobbie Mohan Culp, a high school music teacher, she said, “You use what’s in your trunk.”
With homes in Brooklyn and on Fire Island, Ms. Gasteyer has spent “quite a few off-season vacations” in Sag Harbor visiting close friends and is looking forward to spending Memorial Day in the village for the first time this year.
Tickets to Saturday’s show start at $65, with the option of $100 tickets that include an after-party with the stars, and are available at the box office or online at baystreet.org.