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Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

During his appropriately named new show, Jason Gotay is a bundle of happiness... and so is his audience.

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

On Thursday night at The Green Room 42, Jason Gotay had no difficulty sharing with his audience the fact that he is still being affected by the pandemic... and the war... and women's rights... and all the alarming alerts. The singing actor had no difficulty being open with the full house about anything that he felt that night or feels in life. The man with the freakish voice had no difficulty being open, honest, vulnerable, and real with the room full of friends, family, and strangers, in his quest at REMEMBERING JOY. That is because Jason Gotay is the possessor of a very interesting and effective characteristic, when it comes to his performance. While some people sing to their audience, and others perform for their audience, and some engage with their audience, Jason Gotay needs his audience to be his scene partner. The ongoing conversation (and subsequent relationship) between Jason Gotay and the people in the seats out front was as natural and as personal as Mary and Rhoda sharing a chat, or Nathan and Matthew sharing a scene, or Judi and Maggie sharing a screen. The flow of energy exchanged between Gotay and the throng (and each individual) was absolutely palpable, and it was unique, and it was exciting. And after the evening was over, it was the audience members that would, indeed, be remembering joy.

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 REMEMBERING JOY, Gotay explained, was a show designed to celebrate that which everyone needs right now (particularly him): the happy moments in life. And that is precisely what Jason did: celebrate happiness. And make happiness. And make memories for himself and for a slew of grateful people. It would appear to be impossible to be in a room where Jason Gotay is performing without being made happy. Mr. Gotay is a great entertainer, not only easy to watch but easy to listen to, as he uses that once-in-a-lifetime voice of his in ways one might hesitate to believe possible from a mere human - maybe a musical superhero, but not an ordinary person. Nevertheless, with those ethereal, powerful, emotional vocals Gotay served up one perfect hour of musical storytelling, glorious and gorgeous.

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Although a musical theater actor with many credits on his CV, Mr. Gotay's act did not limit him to his roots. There were extraordinary performances of works by Dua Lipa, John Splithoff, Lianne La Havas, and Nick Jonas, but it didn't matter whether Gotay was performing hits from the radio or songs from Amelie, A Bronx Tale, or Kinky Boots. Jason Gotay has the great good fortune of being able to make every single story he is telling into a play - not just a scene from a play, not just an act from a play, a whole play - and because of way he uses his voice and his onstage charisma, the entire journey, from concert up to concert down, presents as a rock storytelling show. Of course, it doesn't hurt that Jason's instinct is toward rock singer flair. Every move he makes physically, whether a twisting of a hip or the curling of a lip, says rock star. Every sound he makes, whether singing raucous Hedwig and The Angry Inch or tender Bring It On, is created to thrill. It just doesn't matter what the material is - in Gotay's hands, it is electrifying - and always connected, in spherical directions, to the story, the band, the background vocalists, the audience, and (especially) to Musical Director Benjamin Rauhala.

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Rauhala and Gotay have an artistic marriage in which they understand Jason's ability and aesthetic, completely. They have created a program that allows Jason to rock out to a mash-up of Rent's "Out Tonight" and "Tear Me Down" from Hedwig, just moments after soothing the audience with Splithoff's "Sing To You" and moments before bonafide Broadway belting with "The History of Bad Guys." Throughout the entire evening, this is the kind of versatility the twosome chose to present, both in the material and in the performance styles, and everything suits Gotay as though that were his particular specialty. And even though his skills are prodigious, even the most accomplished of singers must feel safe with so demanding a setlist, which Jason is, as so clearly evidenced by the way Rauhala clocks everything happening on the stage. Ben keeps a watchful eye over three musicians, three vocalists, and one leading man, all the while conducting with his own inimitable flair, and playing the piano to perfection. Jason Gotay is fortunate in this partnership, but so is Benjamin, who beams with pride throughout all of Jason's concert accomplishments, which are bountiful.

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Aside from the plain and simple enjoyment of just being in a room with the positive personality and ebullient energy of Jason Gotay, the highlights of the evening were a layered performance of "Thin Air' from Amelie, a stunningly pretty arrangement that mashed up Spring Awakening's "Touch Me" with Dua Lipa's "Pretty Please," and a musical rollercoaster of "In A World Like This" that gave Jason's special guest and duet partner Aisha Jackson a chance to set some jaws on the floor and some eyebrows to the ceiling. Speaking truthfully, though, these three highlights could have been chosen, randomly, from the twelve song set, one that would have been impressive with just Jason and Ben, but that was rendered memorable beyond belief by the inclusion in the proceedings of bass player Tomek Miernowski, guitarist Eric Davis, drummer Damien Bassman, and three of the best background vocalists in the business: Marissa Rosen, Jillian Soares, and Gabe Violett. Together, Jason Gotay and the entire Remembering Joy team outdid themselves, including Sheridan Glover, whose lighting served as a fascinating additional character in the story. No ordinary run-of-the-mill cabaret show was this. This was a beautiful, indeed a special, night of humanity and of human connection, all at the hands of one man sharing a moment in time with his audience.

And what could be more joyful than that?

Find other great shows to see on the Green Room 42 website HERE.

Visit the Jason Gotay Instagram page HERE.Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42

Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Review: Jason Gotay Has No Trouble REMEMBERING JOY at The Green Room 42 Photos by Stephen Mosher


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From This Author - Stephen Mosher