Dites-Moi: South Pacific

Going to see the musical South Pacific at The Music Center in Los Angeles, with lunch at Pinot Grill.

In 1987 I made my professional acting debut at Lincoln Center, in the City Opera’s production of “South Pacific.”


Those two months were when I really got “bitten by the bug” (for those of you familiar with the show, I played “Ngana,” the Frenchman’s daughter who sings “Dites-moi”).  23 years later, I’m still acting, and today I got to see the show live, for the very first time.


I even wear my Polynesian shirt for the occasion!

Just like Lincoln Center in NYC, The Music Center in L.A. is a collection of grand theaters surrounding a fountain.


Our Uncle Robert and Aunt Heidi are very generous and treating us to the show, as well as to brunch beforehand. We meet at Pinot Grill, which is basically our only option for a Sunday matinee.


It’s in the middle of The Center. This entire seating area gets packed, all at once, with theater goers about 5 minutes after I snap the photo.


FYI – because it’s outdoors, they don’t have tap water available. You MUST order water in a bottle.


Heidi gets a special “South Pacific” cocktail, the color of the ocean!


I order a Portobello sandwich, subbing the potato wedges for some sauteed kale I see on the menu.


Aside from the mushroom, it also has grilled zucchini, eggplant, sweet peppers, and basil thyme aioli on a brioche bun.


Abe orders an egg/cheese sandwich that comes with meat…


… so I pile some of the ham onto my veggies for protein, and add a smear of Grey Poupon mustard.


Although the food is pretty good, there are some problems with Pinot Grill. It takes a while, some of the food comes out cold, they aren’t able to cook a poached egg longer than runny for some reason, and Abe’s dish comes with meat on it (when he orders it on the side, specifically).

Heidi times it out perfectly – we get there about 11:30 am and are finished just in time for when the show starts at 1pm.


Seeing “South Pacific” as an audience member is surprisingly emotional for me.  I get so nostalgic as I hear all those familiar songs and lines that I remember hearing over the speakers backstage as a kid. And as an adult, I can finally understand the themes of racism, war.  And of course, all the sexual innuendos that go over my head at the age of 10.

The cast is terrific – I think Carmen Cusack does an especially wonderful job as “Nellie.”

We’ve seen more musicals in the last week (In the Heights last Saturday) than we have in years. Thanks, Robert and Heidi for Some Enchanted…Afternoon!



22 thoughts on “Dites-Moi: South Pacific

  1. squigglefloey

    Sounds like a sweet end to a wonderful wknd 🙂
    Nostalgia always hits the spot (sometimes)

  2. Liz @ Tip Top Shape

    I just found your blog and I think it is such a wonderful idea! You really have a unique spin to your blog 😀 I have to ask, though- that meat didn’t really come piled on a small plate did it?? I’m all for meat but it doesn’t look particularly appetizing, haha.

    1. Lynn at The Actors Diet Post author

      So glad you found the blog! No, the meat came on the sandwich, which was bad bc my husband’s a vegetarian! We had to pick it off.

  3. Run Sarah

    What a neat opportunity to see the show so many years later. I love your dress too – gorgeous.

  4. Erica

    What a special treat! Glad the show was good. Bummer about the food at the restaurant though. I’m not sure I understand why eating outside = bottled water? Is this an LA rule ???? We eat outside in SC all the time and have tap water?

    Yes, Justin’s nut butter definitely = crack! So so so so good

    1. Lynn at The Actors Diet Post author

      I think its bc their kitchen was outdoors, so they had no access to running water?

  5. Lauren

    I remember seeing the movie of South Pacific on AMC. It used to be one of my mom’s favorites!

    Lunch looks good. Love the outdoor dining! 😉

  6. Anna

    Awww, how cool! My grandmother was in South Pacific (before I was born), and she still sings songs from it.

  7. aletheiazoe

    This is sooo cool. I love the posts where you give us a glimpse into the history of your acting career/journey. 🙂 It’s pretty remarkable that you made your debut at the Lincoln Center — I’m impressed! Since it was an opera, did you sing, too?

    xo Aletheia

    P.S. Last night I had this dream about you getting your most recent audition. Yup, I’m a creeper!

    1. Lynn at The Actors Diet Post author

      Yes I grew up singing opera at the Met w my mom but south pacific is actually a musical!

  8. Rosey Rebecca

    The first line of this post was so weird to read because I was born in 1987. Meanwhile, you were acting away!

    The restaurant looks nice. Sorry there were some glitches.

  9. lowandbhold

    I love hearing more about your acting career! It sounds like a great show, but sorry about the less than stellar dinner experience.

  10. Anne Marie@New Weigh of Life

    That’s so cool that you got to see the show live! What an experience!

  11. Kim

    I’ve seen so many plays and musicals, but never the South Pacific! I enjoyed your review 🙂 That portabello burger looks really good too! And I love your Polynesian shirt!

  12. Anne

    I probably saw you in South Pacific. I worked at Lincoln Center for Visitor Services and saw almost everything. I remember really enjoying South Pacific in particular so later, in my theater career, I was excited to work a production of it.

  13. SinoSoul

    beyond ACTUAL Patina, it seems the only edible option by Music Center is First and Hope. They serve lunch to the theatre crowd, and has a cabaret. Located kitty corner from the “back” side of Music Center, there’s no reason to eat on the premises ever again. Sadly, I’ve yet to attend 1 single musical this year, despite being a TKTS whore for years even as a B&T guy.

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