BWW Review: MELISSA ERRICO at The Venetian Room
MELISSA ERRICO at The Venetian Room is a Heartwarming Homage to Errico's Longtime Friend, Mentor And Collaborator Michel Legrand...
Bay Area Cabaret closed its 15th season on a high note, presenting the multi-talented Melissa Errico and her heartwarming homage to mentor, collaborator and longtime friend Michel Legrand. Through personal anecdotes, smart song selections and lovely arrangements, Errico and musical director Alex Rybeck, a three-time MAC award winner, offered an eclectic variety of the late composer's exquisite melodies. Errico, who's worked in film, television, stage and print, won a Best Actress Tony nomination for her role in Amour, a musical fantasy with a score by Legrand and performed the cute "Other People's Stories".
Melissa hit the ground running with a medley of "Watch What Happens", "Windmills of Your Mind" and a lush rendition of "Something New in My Life". My favorite Legrand tune is "The Summer Knows", his Oscar-winning song from the film The Summer of 42, and Errico nails its wistful melancholy. A prolific film composer, Legrand's flirtatious "His Eyes, Her Eyes" from The Thomas Crown Affair highlights Errico's fine vocal chops.
Charles Trenet's "L'âme des poètes", a French chanson celebrating poets and poetry, was part of a loving tribute to Legrand's Paris. A fast and jazzy "I Love Paris (Cole Porter) from High Society and Sondheim's "Everybody Loves Louis" from Sunday in the Park with George" transport us to the city of lights that's served as Legrand's muse. Local bassist Daniel Fabricant added the rhythm to the evening and jazz guitarist Bob Brumbeloe elevated songs like "You Must Believe in Spring" and "How Do You Keep the Music Playing" to new heights. Legrand worked with lyricists Alan and Marilyn Bergman on the later and Errico added in the trio's collaboration on Yentl's uber-romantic "The Way He Makes Me Feel".
By the time she sang her encore of Legrand's Dis Moi" from the 19791 French film Un peu de soleil dans l'eau froide (A Little Sun in Cold Water), Errico had won our hearts. She's talented, charismatic and knows how to work a crowd from her years of theatrical experience. She is and will continue to be the premiere interpreter of the musical legacy of Michel Legrand.