Adrienne Haan Sings Kurt Weill
I am fairly new to going to cabarets; I started a few years ago and the cabaret has opened my eyes to some wonderful talents. I am more of a theater person; musicals, straight plays, comedy or drama. When I saw Adrienne Haan Sings Kurt Weill at the Triad on April 5th. I saw the perfect blending of theater and cabaret. On the small stage of the Triad was a six-piece band (have you ever seen a tuba in a cabaret coupled with a banjo?) lead by Ms. Haan’s musical director, Richard Danley.
Adrienne Haan appears on stage with her bright red lipstick and mascaraed black eyes and lashes and brings to mind the face of a silent screen star. Her facial expressions as she sings tell the stories of her songs in anguish, delight, and betrayal. Her body emotes the music whether she is straddling the back of a chair, kneeling on the stage, or sitting on the top of the piano kicking her legs up.
And her voice… She hits wonderful notes that surprise and holds those notes way into the audience’s applause. I will not go into every song she sings in detail over her 90 minute show but just highlight what she does best and in her doing so surprises me. Adrienne gives us an interesting history lesson of Kurt Weill, a composer best known for Three Penny Opera. Mr. Weill, we learn, was born in Germany before World War II and left for France and then ultimately to the United States. During that journey, he wrote music in each of those countries’ languages and Ms. Haan sang songs from each of those stopping points. I have a friend who is starting a cabaret career and I advised him not to sing more than three non-English songs in his concert; the audience will lose interest. Ms. Haan disproves that assumption as she sings multiple songs in German and French; but the difference is she explains the songs beforehand and with her body and face the audience knows exactly what the song is about and they become enthralled in the stories.
She breaks your heart when she sings Surabaya Johnny but has you laughing and singing along with the Alabama Song; both by Bertolt Brecht. She sings Mack, The Knife after she charmingly talks about her calling her father Mackie Messr (Mack, the Knife) to her young school chums, not knowing who Mackie was. A number of personal stories she relays allow this amazing talent to show her humble side including performing her first cabaret act to an empty room.
Ms. Haan sings fourteen songs during this show, each with a voice to thrill and a stage presence that mesmerizes. As the title suggests all songs are by Kurt Weill including My Ship, Speak Low, Bilbao Song, Pirate Jenny and The Saga of Jenny.
Her band that accompanies her are all top notch and again I am blown away (pun intended) that there is a tuba played by Jen Hodge, who also plays double bass. Richard Danley has done an uncanny job as musical director and plays piano. Dan Levinson, Alt Sax and Clarinet; Benjamin Sutin, violin; Vinny Raniolo, guitar and banjo; and Mike Capenni on drums bring the music alive in all tempos and genres.
Ms Haan will be returning to The Triad in May in a new show, Margo & Juliette – A Dance on the Volcano in Weimar Berlin, which I am sure will bring her audience even more dramatic and exciting entertainment. May 17, 19, 21 and 25; I am sure to be there one of those nights.
My View: Someone Named Storm Caused Lots Of Excitement In New York City Last Night
Storm Large has made a name for herself from tours with Pink Martini to orchestral appearances at Carnegie Hall to the television stage of “America’s Got Talent.” But it is with her loyal and fearless band, Le Bonheur, that she grabs audiences. by the lapels and refuses to let go. Love, Storm her new show played 54 Below last night. It’s a playlist of songs by pop luminaries, rock goddesses, and Storm’s fiery originals. There might be someone in the news with a variation of her name currently causing some political excitement, but few entertainers can create the musical excitement that exists in a Storm Large performance.
Cabaret, Talks and Concerts For April
Spring, makes us gather as much sun as possible, but it also brings rain and it’s time to hop inside and catch your favorite performer. Here are our picks for April.
92 Street Y: 1395 Lexington Ave. 4/11: Apple TV+’s The Last Thing He Told Me: Jennifer Garner and Laura Dave; 4/19: Al Pacino in Conversation with David Rubenstein (In-Person); 4/30: Celebrating Balanchine: A Screening, Book Reading, Conversation and Performance with Director Connie Hochman, Heather Watts, Jennifer Homans, Tiler Peck, Unity Phelan, and Calvin Royal III Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of George Balanchine’s Death (In-Person)
Birdland Jazz: 315 West 44 St. Every Monday at 9:30pm Jim Caruso’s Cast Party; Every Tuesday at 8:30pm The Lineup with Susie Mosher; Every Saturday at 7pm Eric Comstock with Sean Smith (Bass) & special guest Barbara Fasano (Voice); 4/1: Eliane Elias; 4/3: Susie Mosher & John Boswell in CASHINO; 4/17: Anita Gillette & Penny Fuller: “Sin Twisters: The Next Frontier”; 4/17: Sean McDermott & Cassidy Place; 4/21 – 22: Tony DeSare; 4/24: Karen Akers and 4/25 – 29: John Pizzarelli Album Release
Cafe Carlyle: 35 E 76th St. 4/1: John Lloyd Young; 4/3: Seth Rudetsky; 4/5 -15; Alan Cumming and Ari Shapiro; 18- 19 Christine Andreas; 4/20-21; John Brancy and Peter Dugan; 4/22; Richard Tognetti, and the Australian Chamber Orchestra and 4/25-29 Candace Bushnell.
Carnegie Hall: 881 7th Ave at 57th St.
Chelsea Table + Stage: Hilton Fashion District Hotel, 152 W 26th St. 4/14: Marieann Meringolo and 4/17: The Skivvies.
Don’t Tell Mama: 343 W. 46 St. 4/ 21: Tanya Moberly and 4/28: Ricky Ritzel’s Broadway!
Dizzys Club Coca Cola: Frederick P. Rose Hall, Broadway at 60th Street. 4/21 -22: Monterey Jazz Festival On Tour
The DJango: 2 Avenue of the Americas. 4/9: Gabrielle Stravelli
54 Below: 254 West 54 St. 4/1: Jennifer Simard: Can I Get Your Number?; 4/1: Bianca Marroquín; 4/4: LIVESTREAM | The Tom Kitt Band; 4/7, 11, 15: Linda Eder; 4/12-14: Kate Baldwin & Aaron Lazar: All For You; 4/21-22: LIVESTREAM | Seth Sikes & Nicolas King with Billy Stritch and 4/29: Darius de Haas: Maisel and More!
The Green Room 42: 570 10th Ave. 4/2: Melissa Errico; 4/13, 15: Sharon McKnight and 4/23: Reeve Carney
Sony Hall: 235 W. 46th St. 1/15:
The Town Hall: 123 West 43rd Street. 4/23: Mariza
Storm Large Brings The Sexual Heat Along With Powerhouse Vocals To 54 Below
Doris Day’s “Que Sera, Que Sera, takes on a hint of sexual subversive overtone as flower child Storm Large makes her way through the audience at 54 Below handing out possies.
If you do not know who Storm Large is, she is a musician, actor, playwright and author, who shot to national prominence in 2006 as a finalist on the CBS show Rock Star: Supernova. Large currently performs nationally with her own band, and tours internationally with the Portland-based band Pink Martini. Large also appeared on America’s Got Talent on June 14, 2021, performing a cover of “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” which is when I became obsessed.
Large is raw, real, human, and oh so female, and her new show has her explaining her life and how she empathize with all of us during being locked down. Her take on Jay Livingston and Ray Evans “Crazy Train” took on a deeper and more profound epiphany.
Lauper’s and Large’s ode to self-gratification, brought back the 80’s “She Bop“. Large talks between the numbers and we learn how Ms. Large dealt with not performing, in Prince’s “Nothing Compares To You“.
You will never think of Grease’s “Hopelessly Devoted to You” in the same way again after the “Carrie: version Storm maps out. You definitely get a glimpse of the demons that she battles or rather plays with.
Connecting so strongly to lyric and having a range that is unbelievable, Paul Simon’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” Shovels & Rope’s “After The Storm” and The Kinks “Strangers” told of heartbreak, longing, loss as Storm played the drums and ukulele. She is multi-talented and it is mind boggling how she is not more nationally and internationally beloved.
A lot of the audience knew Storm’s “8 Mile Wide” from her hit one-woman show Crazy Enough. This song is a female empowerment ode of being who she is and she does not apologize. Despite the song being about her anatomy, this was her father’s favorite song. She sang it to him before he died.
The Hollies “Air That I Breathe” and a song by Storm and her amazing musical director James Beaton, “Angels in The Gas Station” were dedicated to her father. Beaton is also who does Storm’s arrangements including the fabulous “I’ve Got You Under My Skin”, that sadly she did not grace us with,
Playing in her band are musicians that are all stellar in the own rights with Matt Brown on Bass, Scott Weddle on Guitar and Greg Uklund on Drums.
You can catch Storm Large: Loving Storm, tonight at 54 Below and I highly recommend you do. If you have never experienced this super nova you will be glad you did.
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