Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

A new cabaret artist has arrived on the scene with a clear intention of what he wants to say.

By: Mar. 19, 2022
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Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

For centuries people have spoken of making a joyful noise, and when Anthony Murphy chose A JOYFUL NOISE as the title of his solo show cabaret debut, he chose wisely because (apparently) joy is the jumping-off place for the recent graduate of The Great White Way. There is, though, every chance that Mr. Murphy might, instead, have named his show A Beautiful Noise because that is what a ravenous Green Room 42 audience got, last night, by way of Anthony's club act: nothing but joy, nothing but beauty, and noise(?)... well, not so much of that - just good, solid, impeccable musical entertainment.

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named With more personality than a Peter Pan bus transporting drag queens to a gig, more personal fashion style than a F.I.T. freshman, and more voice than an entire church choir, Anthony Murphy did himself and his family (Dad, in the house, Mom watching via live stream) more than proud. The singing actor brought his entire being to the show, rolled it up into an enormous ball of joyful energy, outrageous personality, and prodigious musical talent, and hurled it at the audience made up of what would appear to have been friends and family (this writer has a sneaking suspicion of being the only stranger in the room). That throng of people already devoted to the Diana, The Musical actor could not get enough of him and, indeed, neither could this reporter. Anthony Murphy may enjoy acting, he may pursue performing as a character, but Anthony Murphy was born to play the cabaret and concert stage, as well; let everyone cross their fingers in the hope that this is just the beginning of that career.

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Using a generous fourteen-song setlist, Mr. Murphy shares the stories from his life, a life that he details as a happy one, and stories that appear simple and without complication. There is a mother, there is a father, there are dreams, there are awakenings, there are triumphs, and there are blessings. There are no stories of adversity or struggle, only joyful stories appropriate for a cabaret with the word Joy in the title. To sweeten the story being told, Anthony Murphy layers in music from Broadway (a SPECTACULAR "Naughty" from Matilda), the radio (some luscious Stevie Wonder), and the Great American Songbook (the Sammy Davis jr. arrangement of "That Old Black Magic," an evening highlight), each and every composition deftly arranged by growing music superstar, Musical Director Darnell White, and exquisitely performed by a band so gifted that every singer should be noting the names for their own future gigs. And Murphy's own vocals are beyond reproach, displaying tone and technique and a wealth of emotional investment, especially in his tributes to his mother ("I Say A Little Prayer") and father ("Breeze Off The River/Sittin' On The Dock of the Bay"). It is a carefully constructed program that flows, with relative ease, from spoken word into sung, and Mr. Murphy should be incredibly proud to have such a solid cabaret debut.

As a debut show, there are a few elements that Anthony Murphy might consider polishing up before the (hopefully) next outing.

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Last night's audience was, very clearly, made up of friends and family, but not every audience will be; it should be the goal of every cabaret and concert performer to have the people in the seats be made up of strangers who either read a review or heard from someone that they "have to catch the Anthony Murphy show," thus compelling them to make that reservation. Mr. Murphy's script is a simple and pleasant one, and he, himself, is likable beyond measure. The show being a respectable fifty-five minutes and he being an affable human being, the presentation could do with another ten minutes. What better opportunity to warm up the strangers with a few more details in the script? An extra couple of sentences here, another few details there could only deepen the storytelling experience for the audience. Although touching and resonant, the script that presents the tales of Anthony's life is a little superficial, and when one has someone as enjoyable and entertaining as Anthony Murphy, more isn't just more, it is an absolute pleasure. With the exception of the completely perfect segment about bookstores and fishing trips with his father, every one of Murphy's stories would benefit from a slightly deeper detail dive - not a lot, just enough to open the rooms of his heart to the strangers in the house. Additionally, Anthony Murphy is one heck of a dancer, as displayed by one quick segment of terpsichore during an opening number that melds "Welcome to My Party" with "Puttin' on the Ritz." If the choreographer inside of Murphy were allowed to add some specific dance moves to his numbers from Pippin and Aladdin (to say nothing of the blissfully raucous and rowdy finale, Bill Withers' "Lovely Day"), Anthony's presentation could reach amazing heights he might not have dreamed of. Finally, one of the most vital pieces of advice this reporter would like to offer Anthony Murphy is the importance of, when introducing the band, speaking the musicians' names clearly and distinctly, without rushing or embellishing. The musicians are the foundation upon which a club act is built, and Anthony Murphy did not settle when he chose his band - it is made up of some of the best in the business (including his back-up singers), but in his excitement, his introduction of his musical colleagues became garbled. His admiration for each of these artists was abundantly clear - so the pronouncement of the names should be equally so.

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named And with all this talent, personality, heart, and creativity (and this exciting first effort) there is no reason why Anthony Murphy shouldn't take A JOYFUL NOISE and springboard it into a club act that could play New York City and any other city where people have an interest in congregating and enjoying first-rate entertainment by supremely talented musical artists, which is precisely what Anthony Murphy is, now, much to the betterment of an industry that is always in need of noise, both beautiful and joyful.

The JOYFUL NOISE creative team:

Director/Performer - Anthony Murphy

Musical Director/Piano - Darnell White

Guitar - Gordon Bonnett

Bass - John Miller

Drums - Danny Malone

Trumpet - Wayne Tucker

Sax - Andrew Gutauskas

Vocalists - Laura Stracko, Austin Rivers, T.J. Newton

Producers - Jordan Silver, Chas Conacher

Green Room 42 lighting & sound tech director Sheridan Glover deserves special mention for his work on the Joyful Noise show.

Anthony Murphy A JOYFUL NOISE has played a one-off performance but other great shows can be found on the Green Room 42 website HERE.

Anthony Murphy has an Instagram page accessible HERE.

Anthony Murphy gets a five out of five microphones rating for performing his entire show without the use of a lyric sheet, tablet, or music stand.

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named

Review: Anthony Murphy's A JOYFUL NOISE at The Green Room 42 Could Not Be More Aptly Named Photos by Stephen Mosher



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