* Notes *
NPR's Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! returned to Cal Performances last night. Host Peter Sagal was as entertaining as ever, as was official judge and scorekeeper Carl Kasell. Kasell was particularly cute when he high-fived panelists Tom Bodett, Paula Poundstone, and Mo Rocca. The show ran long, so for 2 hours instead of 90 minutes, without an intermission. As one would expect, there were moments of utter hilarity, the Limerick Challenge was particularly funny. Oddly enough, there were also some jokes about Belgium, of all places.
The celebrity guest was mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade, who seems like a genuinely lovely person. Sagal mentioned that opera fans are both highly fanatical and rather elderly. Von Stade told a nice story about someone named Lois who goes to every Met performance. She also commented that new operas are important in building a younger audience, and cited the recent production of The Bonesetter's Daughter as an example of this in action.
* Tattling *
The audience was enthused but well-behaved for the sold-out performance. There were no cellular phones, watch alarms, or even much talking. However, the person next to my companion had a five-course meal during the performance.