ANDREW GANS, Playbill.com Senior Editor
I was a senior in high school in New Jersey, and my parents had gotten tickets for my sister and me to see Bernadette Peters in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Song and Dance. My mom and Claire, a close family friend who had also been both my nursery school and Hebrew teacher, were seeing the show next to the Royale Theatre — Lily Tomlin in The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe — and during their intermission, they happened to strike up a conversation with Peters' assistant, Patty, who was standing near the Royale stage door. They told her that I was a huge fan of Bernadette and was seeing Song and Dance for the third time, and we were invited to come backstage after the show. It was the first time I ever met Bernadette, and I believe I smiled for about a week afterwards. She was so gracious to us all, posing for photos and autographing a Song and Dance poster that hangs in my New York apartment. A true class act, offstage and on.
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