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BWW Reviews: Amanda McBroom and George Ball Are Thoroughly Enchanting During Their Enchanted Show at 54 Below Review BWW Reviews: Amanda McBroom and George Ball Are Thoroughly Enchanting During Their Enchanted Show at 54 Below
by Stephen Hanks - October 19, 2014

New York cabaret audiences have for years been blessed with extremely entertaining performing marrieds like John Pizzarelli and Jessica Molasky, Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasano, and Michael Garin and Mardie Millett. But after experiencing the thoroughly enchanting October 8 performance from Amanda McBroom and her husband George Ball at 54 Below (there was a second performance on October 14), it's difficult to imagine a cabaret couple more compelling. In short, the Balls were having a ball and, ultimately, so did their audience. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Singer JOHN LLOYD YOUNG Brings An Evening for Friends to Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal Review BWW Reviews: Singer JOHN LLOYD YOUNG Brings An Evening for Friends to Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal
by Don Grigware - October 15, 2014

Actor/singer John Lloyd Young, best known for his Tony-winning portrayal of Frankie Valli in the original Broadway Jersey Boys and for his performance in the 2014 film, has performed three cabaret concerts at the Cafe Carlisle in New York since 2013. He felt it was high time to bring the act home to California, and so on Monday October 13 and Tuesday October 14, Young, backed by a dynamite five-piece band, presented An Evening for Friends at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal. It was a sold-out engagement with screaming fans who had flown in from all over the world. It was my first time experiencing the talent of this young artist, and hopefully not my last. If you have never heard his angelic tenor voice that glides smoothly and effortlessly into high-octave falsetto, you are missing a rare treat. He has a one.of.a.kind style that sets him apart from every male singer on the music scene today with a quiet, personable charisma and stellar stage presence that keep you hanging on to every note, every phrase. At the end of the 60-minute set, he left us wanting more; true artist that he is, Young knows when it is time to finish. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Tony Winner Brian Stokes Mitchell Enchants with SIMPLY BROADWAY Concert Review BWW Reviews: Tony Winner Brian Stokes Mitchell Enchants with SIMPLY BROADWAY Concert
by Michael L. Quintos - October 14, 2014

For 90 solid minutes, Tony Award-winning Broadway icon Brian Stokes Mitchell---under the guise of a showtunes-centric cabaret concert themed around his most recent studio album Simply Broadway---provided his enthralled Costa Mesa audience a virtual master class in musical theater performance. Not only did he sing every selection beautifully (as expected), he performed the heck out of each song with electric, palpable passion. Instead of merely parking himself in front of a mic, the seasoned pro of film, television and the Broadway stage chose to actually disappear into each song's character with purposeful yet effortless ease. It's not difficult to be awed by Mitchell. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Rising Star Maxine Linehan Again Displays Her Beautiful Voice Through Beautiful Songs at the Metropolitan Room Review BWW Reviews: Rising Star Maxine Linehan Again Displays Her Beautiful Voice Through Beautiful Songs at the Metropolitan Room
by Stephen Hanks - October 11, 2014

Every year, there are a couple of young performers who seem to skyrocket up the cabaret charts and one of this season's emerging stars is Maxine Linehan. She came to the States from Ireland just a dozen years ago, performed her debut cabaret show in 2006, and then three years later staged a Petula Clark tribute. In the five years since, Linehan acted in Off-Broadway plays and appeared in the national tour of South Pacific, but has spent much of this period raising 4-year-old Rebecca and 21-month old Gabriel with songwriter/musician husband Andrew Koss. But with the help of nightlife impresario Scott Siegel, Linehan is definitely making up for lost time on the cabaret front. This spring, she staged performances of her autobiographical show An American Journey at Terminus Recording Studios for a recent CD release. Now, less than five months later, Linehan is in mid-run of a new show, Beautiful Songs, at the Metropolitan Room. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Kritzerland Releases AND THE WORLD GOES ROUND Review BWW Reviews: Kritzerland Releases AND THE WORLD GOES ROUND
by Don Grigware - October 10, 2014

With the arrival of a two-disc studio recording of the complete Kander & Ebb score of And The World Goes Round from Kritzerland Records, there's reason to shout and sing out loud.Starring powerhouse vocalists Brent Barrett, Jason Graae, Christiane Noll, Kristin Towers-Rowles, Kyra DaCosta and musical director Joshua Eli Kranz, the discs offer more than two hours of simply sensational music. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Migguel Anggelo's Thrills Audiences with BETWEEN DREAMS/ENTRE SUEÑOS Concert Review BWW Reviews: Migguel Anggelo's Thrills Audiences with BETWEEN DREAMS/ENTRE SUEÑOS Concert
by David Clarke - September 25, 2014

In support of his upcoming album, LA CASA AZUL, Migguel Anggelo took the stage at Joe's Pub last night to share his BETWEEN DREAMS/ENTRE SUEÑOS concert with audiences. The Venezuelan-born singer brings boundless energy and larger-than-life, charismatic performances to the stage. In concert, he thrills audiences with his bold voice, winning smile, swiveling hips, and radiant charm. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Valerie Perri Makes Cabaret Debut with David Burnham in TOGETHER AGAIN FOR THE FIRST TIME Review BWW Reviews: Valerie Perri Makes Cabaret Debut with David Burnham in TOGETHER AGAIN FOR THE FIRST TIME
by Don Grigware - September 23, 2014

Actors/singers David Burnham and Valerie Perri were critically acclaimed costars of Musical Theatre West's (MTW) Sunset Boulevard last season, but they have never sung together in cabaret until now. Together Again For the First Time premiered at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal on Sunday September 21, and with the opening number 'It's a Grand Night for Broadway' to the strains of 'Its a Grand Night for Singing', no finer words could appraise the evening. Accompanied on the piano and at various points in song by superior musical director Mark Vogel the trio knocked it out of the park. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Allison Brush Makes Cabaret Debut at Upstair's at Vitello's Review BWW Reviews: Allison Brush Makes Cabaret Debut at Upstair's at Vitello's
by Don Grigware - September 16, 2014

Actress/lawyer Allison Brush made her very well-received cabaret debut at Upstairs at Vitello's Sunday September 14 with her show entitled For This You Went to Law School? Once an actress/singer, Brush, discouraged by rejection like many, left the profession and studied law, passing the bar exam on her first try. Now after many successful years as a lawyer, in which she claims she was miserable, she is returning to show biz, something she has sorely missed. In fact, participating in weekly sessions of Open Mic at the Gardenia and studying with songstress/master teacher Karen Morrow - law by day and singing at night - singing became her therapy. (more...)


BWW CD Reviews: The Shapiro Sisters' LIVE OUT LOUD: Live at 54 BELOW is Cheerful and Ebullient Review BWW CD Reviews: The Shapiro Sisters' LIVE OUT LOUD: Live at 54 BELOW is Cheerful and Ebullient
by David Clarke - September 10, 2014

On August 28, 2014, the Shapiro Sisters took the 54 BELOW stage for the fourth time and sang many tunes from the album and a few surprises as well, entertaining the audience with their brand of cuteness, charisma, and poised talent. Their debut release from Broadway Records was recorded across their first three appearances at the intimate venue and expertly captures their vibrant charm. (more...)


BWW Reviews: KRITZERLAND 4th Anniversary Show Is a Winner Review BWW Reviews: KRITZERLAND 4th Anniversary Show Is a Winner
by Don Grigware - September 09, 2014

On Sunday September 7, at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal, due to an advance sell-out crowd for the 7 pm show, an additional matinee show was performed for the Fourth Anniversary of Kritzerland. Needless to say, both matinee and evening performances were sold out, making the monthly Kritzerland tributes the most popular shows at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal. The anniversary party was entitled They're Playing Our Song: The Songs That Got Away III and along with special guests Kerry O'Malley and Bruce Vilanch, the big cast also included Robert Yacko, Evan Harris, Madison Claire Parks, Sami Staitman, Jenna Lea Rosen, and also little Hadley Miller, and in chorus numbers of What If?: Kimberly Hessler, Travis Leland, Bruce Merkle, and Adrienne Visnic, all under the baton of super musical director John Boswell. This marked the 49th Kritzerland show since its inception at the Gardenia in 2010, and its host Bruce Kimmel, founder of Kritzerland Records, was in rare form, doling out trivia-worthy anecdotes about every number presented, as well as singing a song himself, due to the absence of Guy Haines. (more...)


BWW Reviews: For a Good Time Call The Skivvies Review BWW Reviews: For a Good Time Call The Skivvies
by David Clarke - August 24, 2014

Unless you've been living under a rock, chances are you have heard of the New York based cabaret act The Skivvies. Made up of Lauren Molina and Nick Cearley, this energetic duo has a loyal fan following and a reputation for being absurdly fun. I got to check out one of their concerts, and I'm afraid that my words will never actually fully communicate the sheer amount of fun and joy I experienced at their show. (more...)


BWW reviews: Actor/Singer DAN CALLAWAY  Says Farewell to LA With Homespun Music and Warmth Review BWW reviews: Actor/Singer DAN CALLAWAY Says Farewell to LA With Homespun Music and Warmth
by Don Grigware - August 18, 2014

Actor/singer Dan Callaway has been revered over the last decade in New York and Los Angeles for his fine tenor/baritone voice, and so it is with mixed feelings that we say goodbye to him as he leaves to assume a teaching position in his home state of Elon, North Carolina. We are indeed happy that through his teaching he will be sharing his great love of music with others, but on local musical stages he will be sorely missed. On Sunday August 17 Callaway presented a farewell concert at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal that was full of the simplistic, homegrown music of his youth. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Actress/Singer REBECCA SPENCER Brings a Lilting and Classy Fair Warning to Vitello's Review BWW Reviews: Actress/Singer REBECCA SPENCER Brings a Lilting and Classy Fair Warning to Vitello's
by Don Grigware - August 18, 2014

On Friday August 15 singer/actress Rebecca Spencer made her Los Angles concert debut with Fair Warning at Upstairs at Vitello's with her long-time collaborator Philip Fortenberry as musical director, also making his LA debut. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Montae Russell Channels Charlie 'Bird' Parker in BIRD LIVES! at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic Review BWW Reviews: Montae Russell Channels Charlie 'Bird' Parker in BIRD LIVES! at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic
by Shari Barrett - August 16, 2014

Charlie 'Bird' Parker's belief that "music is like a fire to warm your hands on" and a "joyful noise" is currently being celebrated in BIRD LIVES! at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic starring Montae Russell as the jazz icon. Written by Willard Manus and directed by Tommy Hicks, the play continues with a strictly limited engagement through September 21 only. (more...)


BWW Reviews: August's KRITZERLAND at Sterling's Upstairs Celebrates Some Great Female Lyricists Review BWW Reviews: August's KRITZERLAND at Sterling's Upstairs Celebrates Some Great Female Lyricists
by Shari Barrett - August 04, 2014

On the first Sunday of each month, Bruce Kimmel hosts the KRITZERLAND show at Sterling's at The Federal in the heart of the NoHo Arts District. The evening starts with a variety of dinner selections, full bar service, and lots of time to mingle and chat with old and new friends. Starting at 7pm, each revue has its own theme, with a variety of performers taking to the stage to entertain the enthusiastic crowd who loves show tunes. The 48th KRITZERLAND show on 8-3-14 presented a salute to some incredible female lyricists of the musical theatre (more...)


BWW Reviews: Light, Fluffy and Camp FRANÇOISE HARDY & BREL, SO ALIVE, SO WELL! Lights Up the Rosebank Review BWW Reviews: Light, Fluffy and Camp FRANÇOISE HARDY & BREL, SO ALIVE, SO WELL! Lights Up the Rosebank
by David Fick - August 03, 2014

FRANÇOISE HARDY & BREL, SO ALIVE, SO WELL! locates itself within the tradition of popular entertainment in cabaret, an unassuming compilation of songs made famous by Francoise Hardy and Jacques Brel, threaded together by the slightest suggestion of a narrative concept in which the two meet in a Parisian cabaret club in the early 1960s. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Courtney Act's BOYS LIKE ME Exudes Heart and Suggestion Review BWW Reviews: Courtney Act's BOYS LIKE ME Exudes Heart and Suggestion
by David Clarke - July 31, 2014

Before Courtney Act was an absolute sensation on LOGO's RuPaul's Drag Race's sixth season, she was shaking things up in her native Australia. With decadent vocal talent, mesmerizing stage presence, charisma, charm, and looks for days, Courtney Act is touring her torrid, one-woman tell-all BOYS LIKE ME, which packs as much heart as it does ribald suggestion. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Consummate Vocalist Jeanne Page Knocks Her CD Preview Show REBOOT Out of the Park Review BWW Reviews: Consummate Vocalist Jeanne Page Knocks Her CD Preview Show REBOOT Out of the Park
by Don Grigware - July 28, 2014

On Sunday July 27 powerhouse vocalist Jeanne Page made a stylish return to Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal for a marvelous evening of standards done her way, entitled Reboot. This lady has a unique brand of humor that is intoxicating and infuses every song she sings with the true colors they deserve. She is about to release a CD of her work, so Reboot was a preview of the album. Believe me, it's a knockout! (more...)


BWW Reviews: More Paean Than Parody in BRITNEY SPEARS: THE CABARET in Australia Review BWW Reviews: More Paean Than Parody in BRITNEY SPEARS: THE CABARET in Australia
by Jacqueline Bublitz - July 27, 2014

Under the musical direction of Mathew Frank, Whelan-Browne lets Britney's songs reveal telling stories often lost within their pop/heavily auto-tuned original versions. Familiar songs, from Out from Under, to Toxic to Lucky are suddenly interesting, and often achingly autobiographical in content. (more...)


CABARET LIFE NYC: Anatomy of a Duo Show--Classy, Entertaining, Yet Flawed KT Sullivan/Jeff Harnar Sondheim Set at the Beechman Is All About Choices Review CABARET LIFE NYC: Anatomy of a Duo Show--Classy, Entertaining, Yet Flawed KT Sullivan/Jeff Harnar Sondheim Set at the Beechman Is All About Choices
by Stephen Hanks - July 25, 2014

The current Stephen Sondheim tribute show, Our Time, starring KT Sullivan and Jeff Harnar at the Laurie Beechman (which I attended on July 9 and 16; there are two more Wednesday performances at 6pm on August 6, 13), is a charming, classy, and entertaining affair. But it also includes enough flaws in execution that prevent it from being truly great. For one thing, it doesn't really feel like a duo show. It's more like two solo performances within one show, where the performers fit in a couple of numbers together to justify the concept. A critique of the Sullivan/Harnar Sondheim set provides an interesting opportunity to analyze the anatomy of a duo show and the choices that can make it work—or not. (more...)


BWW Reviews: STEVE ROSS and KAREN OBERLIN Ooze Charm, Class, and Chemistry In Tribute to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers at 54 Below Review BWW Reviews: STEVE ROSS and KAREN OBERLIN Ooze Charm, Class, and Chemistry In Tribute to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers at 54 Below
by Stephen Hanks - July 20, 2014

Steve Ross and Karen Oberlin's recent duo effort at 54 Below, Cheek to Cheek, was a show oozing charm, class, charisma, and chemistry, but most of all they conveyed their love for these legendary performers and the classic tunes associated with them. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Dynamic and Disturbing VASLAV Lays Bare Nijinsky's Soul at the Kalk Bay Theatre Review BWW Reviews: Dynamic and Disturbing VASLAV Lays Bare Nijinsky's Soul at the Kalk Bay Theatre
by David Fick - July 19, 2014

VASLAV is a dynamic, vigorous and disturbing exploration of Vaslav Nijinsky's mind just prior to his internment in an asylum in Switzerland, based on the diaries he wrote over six weeks before he was committed, on the edge of a complete nervous breakdown. (more...)


BWW Reviews: The Quintessential Modern Vaudeville - CLOCKWORK FOLLIES at Rockwell Review BWW Reviews: The Quintessential Modern Vaudeville - CLOCKWORK FOLLIES at Rockwell
by Aimee Curameng - July 14, 2014

Described as 'modern vaudeville,' Clockwork Follies at Rockwell manages to take a classic, almost-forgotten form of entertainment and transform it for today's audience. The show is comprised of a mixture of performers - a musical comedy troupe, beautiful dancers, a comedian, a magician, a French chanteuse, all hosted by the entertaining and magnetic, Jai Rodriguez. (more...)


BWW Reviews: ALYSHA UMPHRESS Ignites Signature Theatre in Solo Cabaret Review BWW Reviews: ALYSHA UMPHRESS Ignites Signature Theatre in Solo Cabaret
by Jennifer Perry - July 13, 2014

Alysha Umphress returned to Signature to wow local audiences again with her powerful voice, but this time in a solo cabaret as part of the ongoing Sizzlin' Summer Nights cabaret series. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Sizzlin' Summer Nights Cabaret Series Showcases Some of Signature's Best, Including Driscoll, Olivera, and Smith Review BWW Reviews: Sizzlin' Summer Nights Cabaret Series Showcases Some of Signature's Best, Including Driscoll, Olivera, and Smith
by Jennifer Perry - July 13, 2014

As a bit of a musical theatre geek, admittedly one of the things I look forward to the most each summer in DC is the Sizzlin' Summer Nights Cabaret series at our very own Tony Award-winning Signature Theatre. These ones were winners! (more...)


 

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