On October 28th, 2016 The Knockturnal had the opportunity to attend the launch of The Players’ new performance series, Live From 16 Gramercy Park.
Last night we experienced the rare treat of attending The Players’ club as they kicked off a new series of concerts with a performance from Tony winning actress and musician Alice Ripley. For those who don’t know, The Player’s is a members only social club for actors and artists that has been housed in the Booth Mansion at Gramercy Park for 126 years.
Between the regal architecture and portraits lining the walls of the (not quite haunted) mansion and the many patrons arriving in costume, the Halloween spirit was definitely alive and embraced by The Players’. Attending the club’s pop up restaurant Edwin’s for a delicious pre-show dinner, sumptuous October treats like pumpkin risotto were delightfully served within hollowed out mini-pumpkins. Coupled with the fact my table was situated next to a woman dressed as a giant banana and another man dressed like Harry Potter its clear The Players’ do Halloween right.
The concert itself consisted of two performance sets from the enormously talented Ms. Ripley within the mansion’s dining room. The first half of her performance saw her treating the crowd to some original compositions while accompanying herself on acoustic guitar, before transitioning to a selection of her favorite show tunes as she was accompanied on the piano by music director John Fischer. In between each song, Ripley delighted the room with stories from her career and even joking about the many portraits’ eyes following her wherever she goes. She closed the evening with a stunning performance of the song “I Miss The Mountains” from her Tony-winning role in Next to Normal.
The Live from 16 Gramercy Park series will continue on select Fridays throughout the coming months and is open to guests.