Monday, December 26, 2016

The Pajama Game

Brent Barrett and Karen Ziemba in the Encores! concert revival.

The Pajama Game
Is the game I'm in.
And I'm proud to be
In The Pajama Game
I love it.

I think my love of guys in Pajamas began with my high school production of The Pajama Game. My experience is that leads in high school musicals are not always chosen by voice or talent. Many of us theatre geeks often ended up with secondary roles or in the chorus. I nabbed the role of Prez in our production and had a blast singing Her Is. The leads, especially the male leads at our school, were often popular guys, or good looking jocks the drama teacher could persuade to give 'acting' a try. They guy who got the role of Sid Sorokin in our production was a bit of an ass, but he sang ok, and as our drama couch predicted, was hot enough with his shirt off to draw in an audience who may not have otherwise spent an evening at the school musical.

As most actors who get the role of Sid, high school productions or otherwise, find out, they are supposed to appear in shirtless, in just pajama bottoms in the shows closing number. This tradition was began by the late great John Raitt, who appeared shirtless in both the original 1954 Broadway production, and in the 1957 film version.

Some schools, and some actors choose to keep a undershirt on, keeping Sid's nips covered up, but it sort of ruins the moment. The whole idea was to have the couple sharing one pair of pj's, with a corresponding line in the script. The Sid in my school's production played volleyball and was a swimmer, and although we never became close, I did enjoy standing next to him, and holding his hand at each night's curtain call. (see my update on Harry Connick Jr in the comment section, thanks Dave)

Various Production Finales


DavidAsset said...

Trevor, I think you made a mistake in connection with Harry Connick in PJ Game: he was bare chested and smoking hot! I have video of it, which I'll send to you. Happy New Year!

TyeBriggs said...

Happy New Year to you as well Dave!

You're right, I found a video on Youtube and Harry looks great! When I was researching each and every publicity shot and image from the show had him in an undershirt. Maybe he went shirtless for part of the run, or maybe did not want his shirtlessness used in publicity, odd, but great to find the video.