BWW Reviews: Singer Terri White Knocks TWO SCORE Out of the Park at Sterling's
On Sunday May 18 at Sterling's Upstairs at the Federal phenomenal Broadway singer Terri White brought down the house with her all new cabaret show Two Score with musical direction by the incomparable Bryan Miller. The slightly under one hour set marked the second appearance, by popular demand, of the singer, whose versatility, powerhouse vocal instrument, striking sense of humor and unbeatable warmth place her among the great night club performers of all time. There isn't anything she can't do. She's acted, sung, danced...played an instrument? Well, she gives even that her very best shot in Two Score.
Two Score represents the 40 years White has graced club and Broadway stages. Most of the songs she chose are from shows she has appeared in. The musical instrument? Well, she's put in a delightful segment in which she attempts to create her very own harmonious orchestra. She lines up a set of bar bottles on a table and plays them with keyboard sticks to the strains of "Under the Sea" from The Little Mermaid, sung delightfully by Miller at the piano... and then hitting the sticks against cocktail shakers for the Beatles' "Maxwell's Silver Hammer". Miller declared after, "And that's how cacophony was born". Funny stuff! Tamer but equally rousing moments included her stirring opener "Starting Here, Starting Now", Sondheim's stirring "Being Alive" from Company, a splendid "Old Devil Moon", her staple song "Everything Must Change", a moving "Here's to Life" and as encore her unforgettable rendition of "Bridge Over Troubled Water", which she sings on her latest CD Upon Request.
White was understudy to Nell Carter in Ain't Misbehavin' from 1978-79, so obviously learned a thing or two about Carter's style and delivery. Essaying "Mean to Me" from the show, she did her best impression of Carter's nasal tones. It was pretty amazing and right on target, raising the roof off the Federal. Hysterical!
Whether she's belting out "When You're Good to Mama" from Chicago or "Who's That Woman?" from Follies, easing up a bit in true ballad style with "It's a Sin to Tell a Lie", or pushing comedic buttons with Cy Coleman's funny, funny "Piece of Cake", Terri White pulls her audience in and keeps them cheering. She is one of those performers whose unlimited talent and heart bring enormous pleasure wherever she performs, which will include Two Score at 54 Below in New York on June 22. Don't miss her!