11:30pm: August Wilson Postage Stamp Ceremony The U.S. Postal Service, along with Constanza Romero and Sakina Ansari, will honor August Wilson with a commemorative Forever stamp in the Black Heritage series.
6pm: Classic Conversations: Chris Martin By Classic Stage Company Classic Stage Company continues its free, online version of their discussion series Classic Conversations, hosted by Artistic Director John Doyle.
6pm: Tigress of San Domingue (African Caribbean Mixfest 2021) Atlantic Theater Company is bringing back MixFest, its annual free reading series exploring and celebrating the abundance of diverse stories in the theatre.
The second of France-Luce Benson’s Haitian Revolution trilogy continues the journey of Cécile, an enslaved African healer turned rebel soldier, and Valentine, a French expat caught between two worlds.
7pm: Theatre@Home Winter Festival at Irish Rep Based on Noel Coward’s songs, stories and personal letters, Steve Ross and KT Sullivan transform into some of the many characters that made up Coward’s unique life…Gertrude Lawrence, Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo, Elaine Stritch, Lynn Fontanne, Virginia Woolf, Edna Ferber, the Queen Mother, and of course Noël Coward himself.
7pm: Looking for Tiger Lily By La Mama Part of Reflections of Native Voices Festival
Written and performed by Anthony Hudson—the human vessel for Portland’s premier drag clown Carla Rossi—Looking for Tiger Lily utilizes song, dance, drag and video to put a queer spin on the ancestral tradition of storytelling. Asking what it means for a queer mixed Native person to experience their heritage through white normative culture as they recount growing up watching the 1960 production of Peter Pan featuring Sondra Lee’s blonde, blue-eyed “Indian Princess” Tiger Lily, Anthony (and Carla) draw from a songbook sketching across Disney’s Pocahontas to Cher’s Half-Breed.
Available through Feb 7.
7pm: The Homebound Project: Sixth Edition available until Sunday Jan 31. Given the prompt “2021,” the following performers will appear in short works by the following playwrights:
Christopher Abbott and Dylan Baker and Becky Ann Baker in a work by David Lindsay-Abaire, directed by Paul Mullins
Jojo Brown in a work by Cece Suazo, directed by Jenna Worsham;
Michael Chernus in a work by Adam Rapp
Dalia Davi in a work by Ren Dara Santiago, directed by Jenna Worsham;
Nicholas Gorham in a work by Brian Otaño, directed by Tatiana Pandiani;
Emily Kuroda in a work by Kate Cortesi, directed by Jenna Worsham;Eden Malyn and Catya McMullen in a work by McMullen
Carolyn Ratteray in a work by Bekah Brunstetter
Stacey Karen Robinson in a work by Sharon Bridgforth
Paul Sparks in work by Brian Watkins, directed by Danya Taymor
Babak Tafti in a work by Colette Robert, directed by Taylor Reynolds
Daigi-Ann Thompson in a work by Julissa Contreras;
Special guest appearance by Amanda Seyfried musical performance by Sting.
7pm: The Black Queen Screen Tests, Act 2 By The Tank Created by Jerome A Parker. An ALL-BLACK, virtual, workshop production of “The Black Queens, or House of Dinah” built to elevate the theatricality and explore the “live.” On November 20th, 2020 – after a series of in-house workshops – the Tank hosted a live stream of our experiments. But most importantly, this endeavor was created and entirely run by a 20+ team of BLACK creative artists, artisans and technicians.
This absurd musical, which taps into the art of drag, mixes lip-syncing and live moments of dance and music to tell an intergenerational BLACK, QUEER story of self-reliance, resilience and survival. Songs from jazz legend, black/queer icon Dinah Washington’s catalogue were celebrated here – and new, hybrid, virtual theater positions were created and built by an ALL-BLACK TEAM!
The cast of The Black Queen Screen Tests includes Amanda Moreau (Wilhelmina), Joshua Josey (Lady), James Edward Becton* (Felicia), Joyia D. Bradley (Gladys), Suzanne Darrell*† (Tamika), Theodore Alexander (Wilhelmina Double) and Marcus L. Braggs (Lady Double).
7:30pm: Lungs By Old Vic Last July, stage and screen stars Claire Foy and Matt Smith reunited for a string of socially distant performances of Lungs at the Old Vic in London.
Now, the ticketed production, directed by Matthew Warchus, back for a live playback.
In Duncan Macmillan’s Lungs, Foy and Smith, who co-starred as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip in the first two seasons of Netflix‘s The Crown, portray a couple grappling with the decision to bring a child into today‘s world.
The streams are available to watch internationally via Zoom. After purchasing a ticket, a login is sent at least 24 hours in advance of the live streamed performance.
7:30pm: Verdi’s Falstaff Verdi finished his sublime final opera when he was almost 80 years old, capping a fruitful career with a bawdy adaptation of scenes from Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor and Henry IV. His classic operatic farce charts a knight’s gold-digging efforts to seduce two married women, leading to belly-flopping failure on both counts.
Starring Lisette Oropesa, Angela Meade, Stephanie Blythe, Jennifer Johnson Cano, Paolo Fanale, Ambrogio Maestri, and Franco Vassallo, conducted by James Levine. From December 14, 2013.
7:30pm: Beirut MCC Theater Available through January 31
Marisei Tomei, Oscar Isaac and Patrick Breen star in a reading of the play by Alan Bowne that launched MCC in 1987 (a rebroadcast of the virtual event from April.) Set in a dingy Lower East Side apartment in the 1980s, Beirut follows the story of Torch (played by Oscar Isaac), a young man who is in quarantine after testing positive to a nameless disease. His girlfriend (Marisa Tomei, reprising her award-winning role from 1987), refuses to leave him isolating alone.
7:30pm: The Nourish Project WP Theater available each night through Feb 7th. A 70-minute show conceived and directed by Rebecca Martinez has a large cast and uses music, dance, and poetry, with the intent of allowing the virtual audience “to follow their curiosity and explore their own paths during the experience.”
8pm: The Lambs’ Virtual Conversation with Melisa Newman. The meeting ID # is meeting ID: 863 0777 3703 and the passcode: 1874112.
8pm: Stage Door Sessions: Ratatouille The TikTok Musical By Playbill Broadway Roulette Join us at the “Stage Door” to celebrate Ratatouille: The TikTok Musicaland meet three of the artists who helped the musical turn into a viral sensation. Ask questions, interact with other fans, and learn new things about this show. It’s kind of like getting your Playbill signed… without leaving the house!
8pm: Stars in the House It’s Guest Host Week! Join host Jack Plotnick for some… Games & Shenanigans with guests Wilson Cruz, Merrin Dungey, Lesli Margherita and Tom Lenk!
8:30pm: Theatre Alive: A Celebration of School Theatre. The gala in support of the Educational Theatre Foundation will feature performances and presentations by Tina Fey, Wayne Brady, Audra McDonald, Amber Riley, Jennifer Hudson, and Samuel L. Jackson, along with current high school students, and present the Craig Zadan Theatre for Life Award to Kenny Leon.
Kelli O’Hara, Renée Fleming, More Sing Adam Guettel’s Myths & Hymns (Episode 1) By MasterVoices The central project of MasterVoices’ 2020-2021 season will be a virtual rollout of award-winning composer Adam Guettel’s theatrical song cycle, Myths and Hymns, in an online staging conceived by Ted Sperling. Inspired by Greek myths and a 19th-Century Presbyterian hymnal, the 1998 cycle is a kaleidoscopic collection of musical genres as it explores the nature of faith and longing in a secular world. New short musical films will illustrate the protagonist’s attempt to seek answers in four ways – through Flight, Work, Love, and Faith. The four chapters of this personal voyage will be released in free digital installments throughout the winter and spring.
Molly Sweeney Lantern Theater Company through February 14. This Philadelphia company’s newly filmed performance of Brian Friel’s gentle tale from the shifting perspectives of Molly Sweeney, her husband Frank, and the surgeon who values his skills above his patients.
The Niceties Forward Theater through February 7. In this Wisconsin theater company’s production of the play by Eleanor Burgess, Zoe, a Black student at a liberal arts college, is called into her white professor’s office to discuss her paper about slavery’s effect on the American Revolution. What begins as a polite clash in perspectives explodes into an urgent debate about
Cathy Belton, Derbhle Crotty, and Aisling O’Sullivan portray three women, two of them sisters, who have drifted apart and are now catching up over coffee. Over the course of three conversations spanning five years, we learn that they have allowed relationships with their partners to come between their relationships with each other. Gradually, a common secret of tragic consequence is revealed.
Bernadette Peters, David Hyde Pierce, More Star in Jerry Herman Tribute From Pasadena Playhouse Pasadena Playhouse will pay tribute to the late composer of Hello, Dolly!, Mame, and La Cage aux Folles with You I Like: A Musical Celebration of Jerry Herman.
Conceived and music directed by Andy Einhorn, the revue will be available to stream January 10. A live virtual opening night will also take place that night, with guests including Bernadette Peters and David Hyde Pierce.
Available to stream through February 7.
The Haunting of Alice Bowles A new theatrical production streaming online from Original Theatre Company (Apollo 13: The Dark Side of The Moon) debuts.
The Haunting of Alice Bowles by Philip Franks, based on M.R. James’ short story The Experiment, stars Janie Dee, Max Bowden, Stephen Boxer, Jack Archer, Alexandra Guelff, Robert Mountford, Poppy Roe, and Tim Treloar.
In 1918, the recently widowed Alice Bowles is left destitute as she seeks to solve a mystery left by her late husband Francis. Moving to 2020, YouTube urban explorers Matt and Caitlin uncover a mysterious grave in an abandoned churchyard. What starts as harmless entertainment turns darker when their discovery begins to unwrap a mystery which has lain dormant for over a century.
The digital production is co-directed by Philip Franks and Alastair Whatley, designed by Adrian Linford, and edited by Tristan Shepherd, with sound design and original music composed by Max Pappenheim.
Ham: A Musical Memoir Sam Harris’s sensitive and prodigiously talented boy survives the Bible Belt through talent and moxie, which lead to fame and fortune, but when the rocky road of desperately seeking acceptance finally reaches a dead end, he is forced to confront the internal demons that haunt him.
Encores! Inside the Revival: Tap Dance Kid New York City Center. Directed by Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun) dives into the 1983 Tony-nominated musical The Tap Dance Kid, centered around the life of an upper-middle class Black family and a ten-year-old’s dream of being a professional tap dancer despite the challenges posed by his lawyer father and society. Leon, alongside book adapter Lydia Diamond, will give audiences an up-close look at the percussive heart of the story with the help of choreographer Jared Grimes and cast member from the original Broadway production Dulé Hill.
My View: David Marino Makes His Debut at Birdland
Last night David Marino made his debut at the legendary BIRDLAND Jazz Club in the heart of New York City. It was certainly an exciting night for the charismatic 23 year old who hails from Montreal, Quebec, in Canada. David was a finalist on LA VOIX (The French Canadian Edition of THE VOICE).
Birdland was filled with family, friends and plenty of New York notables, including owner Gianni Valenti and we were treated to standards in English and French and learned about David’s journey with music. A journey that first began when as a child his father played Gershwin’s “They Can’t Take That Away From Me” for him. He got emotional while telling that story with his Dad there in the audience, and it was quite moving. This kid would appear to have the right stuff for a bright future, and starting out with Billy Stritch as his musical director with some of the best musicians in NYC was an excellent choice for his first time here on 44th street, at an address the entire world knows. Here are some photos from David’s debut at Birdland.
An A-Mayes-ment in black and white
Imagine the surprise, when expecting the sweet and bouncy lady you’ve known from the Broadway stage—you know, the one who is part Dorothy Loudon/part Anita Gillette—takes the stage and delivers a program that reveals her to be a jazz baby as well. The lady in question is of course Sally Mayes in Now and Then/Jazz Standard Time.
Yep, Sally’s back, bedecked in a black-and-white outfit with just enough subtle sparkle to be seductive. As sassy as ever, with a glint in her eye like the female Harold Hill, she presented a selection of songs that were rousing, heart-rending, funny, and overall fabulous. Fueled by talent we all know and love and coupled with an energy and verve that were enviable, she was entrancing. This was a new Sally and one I was very pleased to meet. With Tedd Firth as Musical Director and Tom Hubbard supporting on bass, a sensational evening was virtually guaranteed.
Sally began with “Cloudburst”, a tongue-twister of a tune that revealed her verbal as well as vocal dexterity. She then switched gears, spoke of her son and his birth which led to “The Way You Look Tonight” sung almost as a lullaby. Her delivery of “Don’t Blame Me” which had been arranged by the much-missed Mike Renzi revealed some of the truthfulness and vulnerability that makes her such a beloved performer. A hint of Peggy Lee was to be spotted, which just added to the magic of the evening. There was plenty of scat and lots of giggles as Sally told stories about her mother, life in Westchester, and other peeks into her life that made her feel like an old friend.
If you missed this performance, fear not—there’s more to come! Sally will be returning to The Green Room 42 (570 Tenth Avenue in YOTEL). Make reservations early—you don’t want to miss these two:
The Stories on May 16 and The Broadway Extravaganza on June 20
One caution: The overly enthusiastic lighting features the equivalent of headlights flashing, quite disconcerting and unnecessary. It had me yearning for my cataracts. Next time I’ll bring sunglasses.
An Evening With Richard Holbrook and The Tom Nelson Trio
Richard Holbrook along with The Tom Nelson Trio performed at 54 Below in Richard Holbrook: Twenty Plus Four In 2024. This anniversary show celebrated Mr Holbrook’s twenty-four years of singing in New York City. With Tom Nelson on piano; Tom Kirchmer on bass; and John Redsecker on drums they returned to 54 Below this week with his latest show, directed by MAC Award-winning cabaret performer Jeff Harnar.
As always Richard shows his sophisticated style making each song very personal. He can take any song and add his personal touch. Richard is also a four-time MAC Award nominee. My favorite part of the show was Richard’s take on some of Charles Aznavour songs. He shows off his deep understanding of Aznavour’s dramatic songs.
Richard’s debut in musical theater happened when he was a freshman in high school and got cast in a production of How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying. This began a life-long love affair with performing. Richard appeared on such hit television series as “The Sopranos”, “Spin City”, and “Law & Order: (Season 22). No stranger to daytime television, he frequently appeared in “All My Children” and “One Life to Live”. In regional theatre he performed in productions which included leading roles in Deathtrap and The Subject Was Roses.
In 1985 Richard started performing in cabaret venues throughout Manhattan which he continues to do to this day. Over the years, he has done highly acclaimed cabaret shows with musical direction by Tom Nelson. In 2003, he did a tribute to Fred Astaire by focusing on the legendary dancer’s other talents … that of a singer and a musician. The act Richard Holbrook: The Untapped Fred Astaire, received critical acclaim. In August, 2004, Richard released his first CD entitled Richard Holbrook Steps Out. This recording features Richard, accompanied by The Tom Nelson Trio, singing several well-known songs from his Astaire show and other selections by such composers as Portia Nelson, Ronny Whyte, and Kander & Ebb.
Between 2008 and 2015, Richard successfully performed his cabaret act Richard Sings Burton – The Songs of Burton Lane at such venues as Don’t Tell Mama, The Metropolitan Room, and Feinstein’s/54 Below. In March, 2015, Richard reprised the show at Feinstein’s / 54 Below. After that, Richard’s tribute to the legendary composer Richard Rodgers, Richard Holbrook: Richard Sings Rodgers With A Lot Of Heart, was presented in October, 2015 at The Metropolitan Room. It received excellent notices and played to sell-out crowds. All three tribute shows – Fred Astaire, Burton Lane, and Richard Rodgers – were directed by Richard Barclay.
In 2013, Richard was diagnosed with single cell carcinoma (cancer of the jaw) and successfully underwent a thirteen-hour operation in which his jaw was replaced with the fibula of his left leg. After five months of recovery, Richard resumed his singing career. For the past several years, Richard has presented a musical tribute to the lyrics of Alan Jay Lerner, as well as his annual Christmas cabaret fund-raising shows at Don’t Tell Mama for The Cancer Support Community. In the summer of 2024, Richard and his musical director Tom Nelson presented his anniversary show at 54 Below celebrating their twenty-three years of working together. This show was a reprise that show.
Cabaret News: ROSIE: A New Musical, Karen Mason, The Wicked Stage: Songs About Show Business, Lisa Dawn Miller and Late Night Vibing: Asian R&B
54 Below, Broadway’s Supper Club, presents ROSIE: A New Musical by Annika Stenstedt on March 31st, 2024 at 9:30pm. Join us for an empowering evening featuring the songs of this new musical based on Rosie the Riveter and all the “We Can Do It” women who worked on the homefront of World War II. Experience the public debut of ROSIE’s sweeping, emotional score, which both celebrates and interrogates the legacy of the iconic feminist symbol. Featuring a stunning cast, including theater favorites and recent NYU Tisch graduates, the concert will share a special glimpse into a project that has been years in the making.
ROSIE: A New Musical is written and created by Annika Stenstedt. The concert is produced by Annika Stenstedt, Brie Leftwich, and Caroline Lace McPherson. The cast includes Cara Rose DiPietro, Chris King, Demiah Latreece, Amanda Leske, Sean Manucha, Caroline Lace McPherson, Marissa Mitchell, Joey Morof, Olivia Ondrasik, Senna Prasatthong, Annika Stenstedt, Gus Stuckey, Mona Swain, and Hannah Lauren Wilson. The band also features Henry Wolf on Drums and Gus Stuckey on Trumpet.
ROSIE: A New Musical by Annika Stenstedt plays 54 Below (254 West 54th Street) on March 31st, 2024 at 9:30pm.
Birdland Jazz Club will present the return of Broadway, concert and recording star Karen Mason in the debut of a new show “Just in Styne: Karen Sings Jule” – honoring Jule Styne, one of her favorite songwriters – on Monday, March 25 at 7:00 PM. From the first time she sang for Mr. Styne in New York City, to performing in a concert in his honor at Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Karen has made the songs of Jule Styne a part of her musical life. This new concert may include Broadway tunes “Just in Time” and “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend,” and pop standards “Time After Time” and “Three Coins in the Fountain.” Karen will be joined by Christopher Denny on piano and Tom Hubbard on bass. The show will be directed by Barry Kleinbort. There is a $30-4o music charge. Birdland is located at 315 West 44th Street in New York.
Karen Mason was seen playing Mrs. Marsh on Ryan Murphy’s “Halston” on Netflix. On tour, was last seen as Madame Giry in the North American premiere of Love Never Dies, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s epic sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. On Broadway, she starred as The Queen of Hearts in Wonderland and originated the role of Tanya in Mamma Mia! (2002 Drama Desk nomination as Best Actress). Her other leading roles include Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard on Broadway and in Los Angeles for three years; Velma von Tussel in the Broadway company of Hairspray; “Monotony” singer and Mazeppa in Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. In regional theater, Karen starred in Chasing Rainbows (Paper Mill Playhouse), A Christmas Story as Miss Shields; White Christmas (St. Louis Muni Opera); Side by Side by Sondheim (Coconut Grove Playhouse in Florida); Gypsy (Sundance Theatre in California); Company (Huntington Theatre in Boston). Off-Broadway, she won the Outer Critics Circle Award for her performance in And the World Goes ‘Round.
She is a 14-time MAC Award winner, and was the recipient of the 2019 MAC Lifetime Achievement Award. She also won 3 Bistro Awards. Her eight recordings include the single “It’s About Time,” written by Paul Rolnick and Shelly Markham; her 2009 MAC Award-winning Right Here/ Right Now, The Sweetest of Nights, When the Sun Comes Out, Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!, Better Days (featuring the 1998 Emmy Award-winning song “Hold Me”); and Not So Simply Broadway. Also, Wonderland (original cast); the film Jeffrey (Varese Sarabande); Wonderful Town (JAY Records); the cast album of And the World Goes ‘Round (RCA Victor).
New York’s newest hotspot for intimate dining and extraordinary music – will celebrate one of Motown’s most successful hitmakers in “For Once in My Life: The Songs of Ron Miller” on Monday, March 25 at 7:00 PM. Produced by his daughter Lisa Dawn Miller, the show salutes the legendary songwriter and producer, who penned some of the label’s biggest hits including multiple-Grammy Award winner “For Once in My Life,” recorded by over 700 major label artists and inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Some of his other standards include “Touch Me in the Morning,” “Heaven Help Us All,” “A Place in the Sun,” “Yester-me, Yester-you, Yesterday,” “Someday at Christmas,” “I’ve Never Been to Me,” and “If I Could.” Ron’s songs have been featured in numerous blockbuster and Academy Award-winning films, and on countless television shows throughout the decades. This evening, which will feature special guests, features music director Ryan Rose. Tickets are $25-$45 in addition to a service charge and a two-item food and beverage minimum. A livestream option is available for $20. Chelsea Table + Stage is located at 152 West 26th Street.
Lisa Dawn Miller is a singer, songwriter and producer as well as the daughter of legendary songwriter, Ron Miller. She produces and stars as “Frank’s One Love” in the critically acclaimed hit musical “Sandy Hackett’s Rat Pack,” which tours throughout the U.S. and is currently in its 14th season. She also produces and directs the musical comedy “My Buddy,” and has produced multiple recordings and directed numerous music videos. Lisa is set to release three new singles this summer under a new distribution deal with The Orchard, a subsidiary of Sony Music: “I Need Your Love,” “Rhythm of Me,” and “There You Are,” as well as a new EDM dance record, “I’ve Been to Paradise,” an interpolation of her father’s classic, “I’ve Never Been to Me.” In 2022, she signed a new publishing deal with Sony Music Publishing to administer her father’s songs. The new deal expands upon a decades-long partnership between Millers’ songs and the publishing giant. Lisa runs her own music publishing company, LDM Worldwide and record label, J-Wall Records. She manages her father’s vast legacy song catalogue.
Ron Miller (1932-2007), the legendary Motown songwriter, wrote numerous hit songs which have sold in the hundreds of millions, with recordings by some of the biggest recording artists of all time, including Frank Sinatra, Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Judy Garland, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Michael Bublé, and Celine Dion. His songs have been reimagined for every generation with several recordings by even the artists of today, including Justin Bieber, LeAnn Rimes, Jackie Evancho, Noah Cyrus, and Oliver Richman. Ron’s songs have been featured in numerous top-grossing films and on countless television shows throughout the decades as well as in major ad campaigns by the largest global companies and brands. Ron has numerous RIAA gold and multi-platinum records and multiple BMI awards. His songs have won several Grammy Awards including in 2005 for “Heaven Help Us All,” the last song recorded by the legendary Ray Charles.
The Green Room 42 – the intimate concert venue dubbed Broadway’s “off-night hotspot” by The New York Times – will present the special concert “Late Night Vibing: Asian R&B” on Monday, March 18 at 9:30 PM. From artists of 88rising (Joji, NIKI, keshi) and Kpop (Jungkook, Jay Park) to soulful American songwriters (H.E.R., Jhené Aiko) and more, Asian R&B has had an undeniable impact on both the global music scene and broader Asian community. Experience iconic songs from all of your favorite singers performed by an all-AAPI/BIPOC ensemble of star-studded vocalists.
The creative team for “Late Night Vibing: Asian R&B” includes co-producer, director and vocalist Yu Hin Bryan Chan (“54 Sings Allegiance,” Cinderella), music director Rose Van Dyne (Broadway’s 1776, Spring Awakening), co-producer Cindy Tsai (Producer Hub, New York Civil Liberties Union), and arranger Max Addae (Upper Structure LAAF ‘22). The concert will star Roger Rees Award finalist Cassidy Baltazar (The Vendetta), Cindy Tsai (The Chinese Lady, Jeanette: The Musical), Sushma Saha (Broadway’s 1776, Interstate), George Davidson-Dennis (Carousel, A Chorus Line), and Yu Hin Bryan Chan.
“Late Night Vibing: Asian R&B” will be performed on Monday, March 18 at 9:30 PM at The Green Room 42 (570 Tenth Avenue at 42nd Street, on the 4th Floor of Yotel). The cover charge ranges from $20-$50. A livestream option is available for $20. For tickets, please visit www.TheGreenRoom42.com.
Like a Goddess Dressed by Erté
That was how Lorna Dallas took over the stage Sunday night at one of the newest cabaret rooms, Chelsea Table + Stage. So regal was she that one wished she had entered via the dramatic curved staircase behind the stage, perhaps with some subtle tinkling on the piano of “Beautiful Girls” from Follies. Well, maybe next time. All that mattered was that she finally arrived, and this long-awaited return was greeted with warm enthusiasm by her fans who filled the room.
Lorna’s quasi-operatic voice served well the composers she honored with loving and intelligent renditions of their music. Sometimes a soul needs just a bit of Ivor Novello to brighten the moment, and Lorna delivered just enough to make us yearn for more. She sang of her delight in dressing up, which led into “Put On Your Sunday Clothes”, a combination no one saw coming. When she mentioned Very Warm for May, the prospect of hearing one of Kern and Hammerstein’s most popular songs from that show, “All the Things You Are”, stirred the heart. But again, Lorna surprised us with a haunting rendition of the other song from that show that seemed destined for greatness “In the Heart of the Dark”.
A visit by the Gershwins in the form of “By Strauss” suited Lorna’s talents well, and she speeded ahead a half-century to Sondheim with his song from the film Dick Tracy “Back in Business” followed by his somber and wistful “In Buddy’s Eyes” and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “I Have Dreamed”. A fascinating history of the song “Here’s That Rainy Day” from Carnival in Flanders followed, and then, reluctantly, the evening had to end. Lorna delivered so much in such a short time, and yet we all wanted more.
Cabaret enthusiasts know that the names Barry Kleinbort and Christopher Denny are like the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval on any show with which they are affiliated. Denny supplied is customary skillful piano virtuosity and gentle support, while Kleinbort, in addition to masterful direction, also contributed extra material. Those who recall a time when the word diva had a very positive connotation will agree that Lorna Dallas is one of the few left standing who merit that sobriquet.
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