At Wagner College Theatre's Golden Jubilee Gala, Professor Gary Sullivan was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his many contributions to the theater program since 1975. Prompted by that occasion, he shared this story:
The car was a little Honda 600, so it conveniently rolled down the theatre aisle. I had built a ramp for getting the car onto the stage. I started its engine and was driving it up the ramp, while a tech crew was coaxing it from behind. Halfway up the ramp, the car couldn’t muster enough traction and began slipping backward. I thought, “Well, that could be very bad.” So I mashed the gas. The tires spun, sending off billowing clouds of smoke, in true drag strip fashion. In a moment, the car literally leaped onto the stage. The large adoring crowd that had assembled cheered. As I braked and shut the car down, I thought, “Well, that was a scream.” It could have gone badly, but didn’t. Maybe we planned it out fine. Maybe we could have done differently. But from that day forward, the entire campus knew we were doing a production of Grease.