Obamas attend August Wilson play on Broadway — AAPEX

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Obamas attend August Wilson play on Broadway

Photo by Noel Y. Calingasan


Monday, June 1st 2009

Call it the Obama effect.

Patrons flocked to the Broadway show "Joe Turner's Come and Gone" and the Greenwich Village restaurant Blue Hill Sunday after the First Couple stopped by the night before.
Miriam Childs, 38, visiting from New Orleans, said the Obamas' theater choice inspired her to buy tickets to the August Wilson show.

"Their time is about the most precious time in the world, so if they made time to see it, it must be worth it," she said.

She ordered "Joe Turner" tickets at 6a.m. to make sure she and her husband didn't miss out.

"We figured there would be a lot of spur-of-the- moment decisions to come see the play," she said. "[We said,] 'Why don't we get a jump on it and get [tickets] now, because there won't be any later.'"

There were just a few balcony seats remaining for Sunday's matinee.
The line for tickets stretched out the door an hour before the 3 p.m. performance. A week ago, an average of just 65% of seats at the show were filled, according to playbill.com.
Roz McCarthy, 59, of Norwalk, Conn., had bought tickets before the Obamas came to town, but their visit convinced her she had made the right choice.

"I really respect him," she said. "I think he's got good instincts. If he likes it, I'm going to like it."

Some theatergoers lamented that they were a day late to catch a glimpse of Barack and Michelle.

"I said, 'Shoot, I should have got Saturday night tickets,'" said Gayle Jones, 54, of Somerset, N.J.

Down in the Village, tables started filling up early in the evening at Blue Hill, where the President and First Lady had enjoyed their pretheater meal.

"It just made me curious about what kind of food they had," said Kaortini Gonzalez, 20, an NYU student who hadn't noticed the restaurant until she heard about the Obamas' meal there.

The hideaway is on the ground floor of a townhouse a block from Washington Square Park.

"I was curious to check the restaurant out because they came," Gonzalez said. "It's a cool restaurant and it's organic."

Reservations for prime dinner hours were booked through June 22, but early birds had a chance to snag a table when the restaurant opened at 5:30 p.m.

Obama has had much the same effect in the nation's capital, where eateries have reported big surges in business after the popular President drops by.

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