|Tony Torn and Peter Bean in The Velvet Oratorio|
When we performed The Velvet Oratorio at the Bohemian National Hall, we were all very nervous to perform before a Czech audience, many of whom had lived through the events depicted. The show itself was full of gremlins that night. Lots of small things went wrong. In my scene as a drunken police interrogator, I set down my glass of beer a little too hard and the entire table flipped over. Fortunately the glass was plastic and the smell of spilled beer gave the whole scene a atmospheric veracity. But later, in a climactic moment, the chorus in which I was part got confused and completely lost the choreography that Henry had so painstakingly mapped out. It was a hair raising night on stage for sure. But the ovation was so warm, and the gratitude of the crowd so overwhelming, that this performance became one of my most cherished experiences in the theater.