Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

Not a fan of doing anything half-way, Meg Flather fills The West Bank with people and profundity.

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

It's time for Meg Flather to put together a new act.

Sunday night the poetess laureate of the cabaret community got dressed, brushed her hair, put on a fresh smear of lipstick and headed over to The West Bank Cafe to join Tracy Stark, the Thelma to her Louise, where they would perform two sets of dinner music for the patrons of the Midtown West eatery. Upon her arrival there, Flather discovered that the establishment was completely at capacity, every table occupied by people who were there expressly to watch her sing. Was the pressure on? No. Flather's last two shows in a cabaret stage were in 2019, so the singer-songwriter might have been a tad rusty, but it didn't show, because this was no mere set of dinner music that the home shopping diva brought to The West Bank - it was an act with a story arc, a message, patter, guest artists and choreography. It was like when I was a young 'un tuning in to the Helen Reddy Show to catch an hour of feminist entertainment.

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe Actually, feminist might sound a bit militant, a description that is the polar opposite of Meg Flather, a woman who personifies the concept of catching flies with honey; it cannot, though, be denied that Flather is also a strong woman whose goal (among many) is to empower other women. With stalwart Stark by her side, Flather grew, like the Grinch's heart, three sizes in one hour, like a bloom leaning into the light, the people, the applause, and the absolute joy of being on a stage once more, there to sing songs by (you guessed it) women songwriters like Carly Simon, Donna Summer, and Nanci Griffith... and Meg Flather. Sharing some comments about quarantine, some stories about her mother, some hopes about life, and a lovely, emotional yet in control, not-to-be-contained singing voice, Meg had her audience grinning the grins of the artistically nourished and clutching at their hearts in blissful ardor. The experience may sound a bit twee, given all the warm, sun-shiny vibes, but it really wasn't because here's the other factor in the evening: Flather is funny. She's not afraid to goof out, to be silly, to make herself the butt of the joke, and get nerdy because all her friends showed up to hear her sing (this writer hopes they all bought expensive dinners because West Bank owner Steve Olsen had to actually turn people away at the door due to table unavailability). A brief glance around the room was like a who's who of the cabaret community - everyone from Karen Oberlin to Laurie Krauz, from Michael Kirk Lane to Kristoffer Lowe, from Gerrilyn Sohn to Lennie Watts was in attendance, a fact that speaks volumes about Meg Flather and her place in the arts community.

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe Flather, a songwriter whose musical observations about life are always eloquent and accessible, represents connection and humanity, whether the audience is made up of her music fans, her HSN followers, or her cabaret community. While colleague Sue Matsuki has been called The (present-day) Godmother of Cabaret, Meg is The Big Sister - so much so that her 2019 show A Cabaret Sisterhood has spilled over into real-life, creating an honest-to-goodness sisterhood among the women of the industry, and those sisters weren't just in the house on Sunday night - they were on the stage for Meg's second set. During their first hour, Flather and Stark shared the stage with each other and with guest-artist Rosemary Loar, with whom Meg and Tracy have been known to appear, but the audience for the second hour of music was treated to a special moment when the women of the sisterhood rose from their tables to join Meg at the piano for a rousing group number. It would be nice to name them all, but it simply isn't possible to do without this article becoming one of those award show acceptance speeches that is reduced to a list of loved ones. Suffice it to say, it was a perfect, joyful, harmonious finale to Flather's appearance at The West Bank... but dinner music acts don't usually get a finale - they just get a last song. Do you know what gets a finale? A show. A nightclub act, a cabaret show, a concert. And while the crowd at The West Bank Cafe has been enjoying every musical act playing dinner music for them, Sunday's music experience proved two things: that Meg Flather (and all the sisterhood) belong back on the stage...

And that it's time for Meg Flather to put together a new act.

She has been missed.

Meg Flather and Tracy Stark will return to The West Bank Cafe for future performances to be announced at a later date.

The West Bank Cafe dinner music shows are Wednesday through Saturday from 7 pm to 9 pm with two shows Sunday from 5 pm to 7 pm and 8 pm to 10 pm. For information on The West Bank and a schedule of performers visit The West Bank Cafe website HERE.

Visit the Meg Flather website HERE.

Visit the Tracy Stark website HERE.

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe

BWW Review: Meg Flather and Tracy Stark Bring Life, Love, and Girl Power to The West Bank Cafe


Buy at the Theatre Shop

T-Shirts, Mugs, Phone Cases & More
Branded Broadway Merch

Related Articles View More Cabaret Stories

From This Author Stephen Mosher