This year cabaret was filled with some amazing performers. Newcomers had a hard time making this list, because the talent that was out there was out of this world. This was a fabulous year for cabaret
At number 1 is Farah Alvin. Her show at The Green Room 42 was the best of the year. Thanks to her musical director, guitarist, pianist, arranger, the amazing Michael Holland. This show was well put together co-conceived by Marc Tuminilli and Ms. Alvin, with Ms. Alvin showing, just what her amazing voice can do. She is a singers singer and returns to The Green Room 42 March 1st.
Jason Robert Brown Residency at Sub Culture: I am late to this party, but Jason Robert Brown’s monthly gigs at SubCulture are like musical nirvana. He has two shows in the best list. His 5th anniversary and his concert with Betty Buckley. How do you choose between perfection. If you have not experienced his monthly shows, you are missing out!
The Carneys: Make no mistake, this family is full of musical savants. Singing on perfect pitch, playing an array of instruments and taking melodies to really interesting places, watching the Carney’s breaks the barriers of talent. Reeve is a musical genius and rock God, Zane takes playing a guitar to new levels and Paris lends her smokey vocals. You can catch Reeve at The Green Room 42, February 2nd and I heard rumor the family is trying to do a March gig as well. Reeve was on last years list too, and he just keeps honing his craft!
Frances Ruffelle: The superbly intoxicating Frances Ruffelle made last years list and is back. This energetic ball of fire easily casts a spell when she sings. With talent in abundance, she makes you love life. Look for Ms. Ruffelle to be writing a new musical with Alan Cumming for The New York Theatre Workshop. The Green Room 42 is on a roll.
The New York Pops With Jeremy Jordan: One of my favorite nights out to review is the fabulous New York Pops. When they added guest star Jeremy Jordan the show rose to a new level. Jordan’s voice exquisitely filled Carnegie Hall and his version of “Soliloquy” from Carousel, was dedicated to Jordan’s 6-month-old daughter Clara. Jordan’s version was raw, honest, melodic and perfectly sung.
The Broadway Series with Seth Rudskey Jessie Mueller and Megan Hitley: Broadway @ Town Hall was on last years list with six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald. This year Rudskey out did himself with Tony nominee Megan Hilty and Tony winner Jessie Mueller. The insightful stories, the musical backstories and the songs themselves make this one special night of musical and theatre. Seth Rudetsky’s Broadway continues February 3 with special guest Patina Miller and April 13 with special guest Brian Stokes Mitchell.
Liz and Ann Hampton Callaway: Broadway the Calla-way at Feinstein’s/ 54 Below brought back Ann singing a fabulous “Blues in the Night,” and Liz, recreating David Shire and Richard Maltby Jr.’s “The Story Goes On”. For this alone they rated the best of the year. I would love to see these two alternate roles in a revival of Mame.
Mark Nadler: I am amazed mark is not a Broadway star. In his newest cabaret act “The Old Razzle Dazzle: an evening of Lies, Lying and Liars”, Nadler pulls out all the stops. In a political climate where everyone is pulling the wool over our eyes, at the Laurie Beechman, Nadler gives us a fresh perspective.
Joan Ryan: In order to be a great singer you must also be a great actor and Joan Ryan has that under her belt. Besides an impressive four octave range, Joan knows how to get into the heart and the soul of a song. Birdland knew what they were doing when they booked this petite talent and this coming year you can catch Joan March 7th at The Green Room 42.
Sam Harris: Feinstein’s/ 54 Below brought to the stage Harris’ smooth stylings. Harris brings a simplicity to the lyric that cuts to the bone. His rifts, connection to lyric and soulful renditions made him a must for this years list.