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Marvin Gayatgay Sells Out Urban Stages’ Winter Rhythms and Wows His Audience

Marvin Gayatgay Sells Out Urban Stages’ Winter Rhythms and Wows His Audience

On December 18th at 8 PM Marvin Gayatgay made his cabaret debut as part of Urban Stages’ Winter Rhythms series. Mr Gayatgay has performed throughout the world with world-renowned Philippines Madrigal Singers where he was the bass soloist. He soloed with them in North and South America, Europe and Asia and in 2007 the group achieved a rare second victory at the 2007 European Grand Prix for Choral Singing in Arezzo, Italy.

Currently, he is a vocalist and instructor with both The St. Paul Inspirit Ensemble in Manhattan and as choirmaster of The Voice of Friendship Singers. With his strong bass, Mr Gayatgay sang a collection of standards, Broadway tunes and some Philippine language favorites showing off his marvelous bass.

Starting off stage, Marvin began with a mash-up of “This is the Moment” from Jekyll and Hyde and “The Impossible Dream” from Man of La Mancha. His rich lush voice has a musicality to it that is truly a find.

Mr. Gayatgay knows how to please an audience. His “Can’t Help Falling in Love” brought to mind a more musical Johnny Mathis. This man has a charm about him, as he brings you on his journey.

Picking standards such as “Something Stupid,” and “What a Wonderful World” let Mr. Gayatgay put his own spin, while keeping the integrity of the song.

My favorite of the night was the up-tempo “Its Not Unusual” where he added his own brand of Tom Jones sexuality.

Singing in his own language “Gaano ko ikaw kamahal (How Much I Love you),” was heartfelt and lovely.

Back to standards done his way “Love is a Many Splendored Thing,” “Moon River,” and  “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You” were done to perfection and pleased the audience immensely.

“Huwag ka ng umiyak” (Do Not Cry from A Beautiful Affair) told of Mr. Gayatgay plight of depression and how he speaks to God to get him through. The song was touching and really allowed Mr. Gayatgay to show how music transcends the language barriers.

Mr. Gayatgay was so grateful especially to Craig Horsley, who saw a Youtube video of Mr Gayatgay singing “The Impossible Dream” at an award ceremony and searched him out to create this show for him. “I saw the video of Marvin singing and knew he deserved to be in a venue that allows him to shine; I immediately contacted Urban Stages for a spot in their Winter Rhythm series.

Emotionality took over as Mr. Gayatgay saw a piece of his dream of singing for an audience Off Broadway come true.

“How Did You Know” was a song Mr. Gayatgay was known for in the Philippians and after hearing this I know why. How Mr. Gayatgay is not an established working singer is seriously a universal mistake. He has the kind of voice that singers look for and audiences thrill to. He brings meaning to each word, as his rounded tones add dimension and texture.

As an encore Streisand’s “Jingle Bells” and “The Christmas Song,” to bring on the holiday cheer.

I can not finish this review without mentioning the brilliant John DiPinto accompanying Mr Gayatgay on the piano. If you are doing a cabaret show, I recommend this man, as he knows how to make a singer sound fabulous and fleshes out the underscoring to make it sound like a full orchestra.

The show was well directed by Vincent Scott and conceived by Craig Horsley.

I have already heard that an encore show is in the works and will let you know when. I was sick when reviewing and watching this show, but by the end my spirit was renewed and I felt better. Great music has the ability to heal!

Marvin Gayatgay: Urban Stages Winter Rhythms December 18th.

Due to being sick I reviewed this show through video.


Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email:

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