I replied to the Alamo email that led me to the program manager of the Slaughter Lane location who forwarded my info to the Girlie Night host. We arranged for her to pull Susan in front of the crowd and tell everyone what it was like to be on the set. Susan did not know about the idea so it was going to be a surprise to her!
Last night, we convened at my house in northwest Austin and headed to the polar opposite end of southwest Austin. I knew that it was going to take a while to get there, but I had no idea it would take as long as it did. I started to get pretty nervous on the drive because I had taken the time to set up the Susan Intro and then wondered if we were going to make it in time. After a little over an hour, we walked into the new, beautiful theater and I sent the other 4 in to find us some seats while I retrieved our pre-purchased tickets. When I got into the theater, my usual disappointment of sitting in the front row, was dismissed since I figured it was a perfect vantage point to see Susan interviewed.
After the lights went down, Sarah, the host, was right in front of us talking about how excited she was to see a shirtless Patrick Swayze on the big screen. She then talked about how excited she was to have a dirty dancer in the audience and the look on Susan's face was priceless. I can't tell if it was one of horror or disbelief, but she was a good sport and stood up to chit chat with Sarah. When Sarah handed the mic to Susan to tell about the experience, she was a little disappointed to hear that Susan described it as hot, sweaty, long, boring and that some people on set were rude! After Sarah looked a little disappointed in the description, Susan responded that it was a fun experience to be on a set and that it was going to be fun to see it again in a theater since it had been about 25 years since the last time.
I wish I had brought my good camera, but I was able to get this shot of Susan chatting up front before the movie.
You can see Susan in a green tank top at the 18, 36 and 41 second marks in the 'watermelon' scene below (she is probably in more shots, I can just pick her out quickly at those points).
Final Dance Scene
(I tried to embed both of the scenes, but it was blocked so you will have to follow the link.)
One of the funniest parts of the night was when two different audience members came up to Susan after the film and asked to take pictures with her. On the ride home it was neat to hear Susan talk about the fact that the makers of the movie figured it would go straight to video and that the cast didn't think the movie was going to be big at all. Susan also mentioned that she didn't tell people she was in the movie and that, while filming the scenes in the Carolinas, they didn't know what the movie was really about and that the rude, waiter dude was one of the nicest actors on set. When the credits rolled, I realized the main choreographer was Kenny Ortega who is known for the High School Musical trilogy and Michael Jackson's This Is It concert tour. They seem to underestimate the audience that his dance numbers paired with catchy music will attract.