The eighth annual Outfest Legacy Awards took place in Los Angeles last night, and guest presenter Darren Criss, on hand to bestow Broadway producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron with a Visionary award, performed a unique version of “Happy To Keep His Dinner Warm,” a number from Zadan and Meron’s recent production (and Darren’s Broadway debut,) How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying.
“Happy To Keep His Dinner Warm,” as fans will know, is not a number performed by Darren Criss’ character, J. Pierrepont Finch, in the musical. It’s a song performed by his love interest Rosemary, daydreaming about marrying Finch moments after they first meet. According to Darren, this song was his first introduction to How To Succeed as a child:
“I heard this song and said ‘That’s great! Such a bummer I’ll never be able to sing it though, because it’s a girl’s song, a very popular one at that.’ I didn’t know that fifteen years later I would be on a television show where pronouns didn’t really matter, and I could sing all kinds of female or male songs – it didn’t really matter. And I think it’s very apropos and very serendipitous of the political climate we’re in right now, socio-politically.”
Perhaps because of the nature of Outfest and the fact that he was there to honor his Broadway producers with an award in recognition of their contribution to LGBT arts and media visibility, Darren went on to perform the number not simply, as the lyrics imply, from a female perspective, but instead from a gay male perspective about the character of a house-husband – even adding in his own little twist about marriage equality!
We think this is a great performance, hats off to Darren Criss as usual! What did you think of Darren’s interpretation of this How To Succeed song?