Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Salon Wrap-Up for November 17, 2013 "Crooners & Swooners"

What a great night!  Hello, Salon gang!  This is your guest Blogette, Candice Oden.  If you missed this last Sunday's Salon, you missed a good one!  We didn't have a huge crowd, but that didn't stop anyone from bringing their A Game -- and our co-host, Frank Dain, was no exception.

MAC AND Broadway World Award Nominee Frank Dain opened our night as the embodiment of "Crooning & Swooning," himself.  He was the perfect person for the job.  He started the evening singing "Hello, Young Lovers," and left us anxious to hear what he had in store of us later.

The very talented Jennylind Parris started the open mic portion of the evening, showing us her skills by singing "Happily Ever After" by Marshall Barer and Mary Rodgers.  She has two upcoming gigs -- one is her show A Woman of Character: A Tribute to the Incomparable Carol Burnett at the Metropolitan Room on 12/6 at 7pm and 12/21 at 4pm, AND SHE IS NEXT WEEK'S SALON SPOTLIGHT!  Best of luck, Jennylind -- we can't wait!

Next was the bubbly and fantastic Caroline Kearney with "The Way You Look Tonight" by Jerome Kern and Dorothy Fields.  Her beautiful talent and commanding presence was such a delight.  She has just started working with Natalie Douglas on a project -- hurry up, Caroline!  We want more of you! :)

Matthew Martin Ward came up next to the piano and touched us all with "Say You'll Remember" by Tom Toce and Peter Millrose, which he pulled from the show that he musically directed of the lyrics of Tom Toce, Hopelessly In Love.  Such a beautiful choice, Matthew.  The album of the Hopelessly In Love performance, which took place on October 10, is now available on iTunes and other retailers.  Congrats, Matthew!  This is fantastic!

A chunk of talent (and I mean TALENT) that is performing in Rob Lester's Humpty Dumpty Cracks Up: The Nightmare Of Cabaret came up to the stage next.  First was our gorgeous and talented Marnie Klar singing "Glitter In The Air" by Alecia Moore (Pink) and Billy Mann.  It has been such a privilege to watch and listen to Marnie grow as a singer, and we are all looking forward to her doing another show with the amazing Tanya Moberly!  Newbie Remy Block graced the stage with a voice and presence so warm and welcoming, it was as if she'd welcomed us into her home.  She is performing her beautiful rendition of "Tennessee Christmas" by Amy Grant in her upcoming show Pull My Mistletoe with her cabaret trio, Impending Bloom, at Don't Tell Mama on 12/11 and 12/15.  Then it was the fabulous Wendy Russell (with whom I've had the great pleasure of working with recently with Bobby Cronin and Alan Mogul), singing "Who Are You Now?" so beautifully, silencing everyone in the room through her very last note.  This is a song from the Broadway show Funny Girl (as opposed to the film version) that was, apparently Barbra Streisand's favorite -- and it's obvious why.  Beautiful job, Wendy.  We are looking forward to your Lovely Ladies of Cabaret performance as part of Cabaret Cares on 11/20 at 7pm!

Up next came the amazing Cynthia Farrell, singing the epic "Being Alive" as though she was born to sing it.  She is a force to be reckoned with.  You can see her in action in Cynthia Farrell For Real 2.0 on 12/7 at 9:30pm at the Metropolitan Room.  Her amazing friend Carla Bianco (#1 Billboard songwriter and former Maureen in Broadway's RENT) was next at the piano playing and singing her own "Lean Into You."  Catch her tomorrow, 11/18 at Klimat Lounge.  You will NOT regret it.

And it was time for our server/singer/BMI songwriter extraordinaire, David Ballard with "On The Street Where You Live" by Frederick Loewe and Alan Jay Lerner.  David is always such a privilege to hear, as you know, and, if you can make it to Massachusetts in March, you can catch him reprising his recent cabaret debut, Having It All.

As you know, David Ballard is followed by the Etcetterettes!  I sang "Gold" by Frank Wildhorn and Nan Knighton (from the musical Camille Claudel), and the amazing and beautiful Sarah Rice followed with 1918's fantastic "Loves' Cigarette" (music by Harold Fraser-Simson), which was in the 1933 film A Southern Maid. Sarah will be performing among a slew of other outrageously talented singers in the Zani's Furry Friends benefit on 11/30 at 7pm at The Laurie Beechman Theater, and she will be performing her Noel Coward and Ivor Novello show Glamorous Nights & Careless Rapture at Urban Stages on 12/6 at 7pm.  Both events should be absolutely amazing.

And the Etceterette's performing means it's time for the Salon Spotlight!  Tonight's Salon's Spotlight was Rob Lester and Company with a sneak peak performance from Humpty Dumpty Cracks Up: The Nightmare of Cabaret.  The show is filled with Salon alumni and other cabaret pros, and the scenes and songs performed are sure to have cabaret vets laughing from start to finish.  (You will not want to miss Tanya Moberly as Little Bo Peep.)  Humpty Dumpty Cracks Up (written by Robert Lester) will be performed at The PlayRoom Theater on 11/23 at 2pm and 11/25 at 6:30pm and at The Duplex on 11/24 at 3:30pm.

And now ... [trumpets, please] ... Classical Corner!  What an amazing Corner it was tonight.  The focus was on Franz Liszt, who, Mark said, was really the world's first rock star.  He caused something calling Lisztomania in the UK-- people going completely nuts, women literally throwing their hotel keys onto the stage.  He would even play London Bridges Falling Down and have people swooning in the aisles.  The piece that Mark played for us was a funeral march with a subtitle of "October, 1849."  Due to Liszt's known association and admiration for Chopin, it is interesting to note that October of 1849 is the month that Frederic Chopin died.  We assume, then, that this piece is, indeed, for him.  Mark, naturally, had all of our jaws on the floor, particularly with this performance -- quite honestly, from this editor's point of view, the best I have ever heard Mark play.  Mark pointed out the fantastic use of the middle pedal of the piano in this piece, the sostenuto.  On an upright, the value of the sostenuto is not as "grand" as it is on a true grand piano.  The magic of the sostenuto pedal is that it will sustain the note you press while holding the pedal down, but not the other notes you play.  The result from this awesome intricacy combined with the pure talent and magic of Mark Janas' fingers (and the work of Franz Liszt) created a Classical Corner to be beat by none other.  IMPECCABLE work, Mark.  You constantly prove that you are above the rest. :)

Second Set

Our co-host returned to open the second set of the evening, and what an opening it was.  Frank sang "I'll Be Easy To Find," "Call Me Irresponsible," and an arrangement combining "All The Things You Are/The Nearness of You."  Frank delivers his songs like a conversation.  His charm and silky smooth voice invite you into his world, making you yearn to catch up with him over drinks while his record plays in the background.  His arrangements combined with that juicy voice take you to a 1930s nightclub; and when his voice builds, you truly experience his passion.  He is totally free in expressing himself in an honest and vulnerable way that isn't as common as we would like.  Thank you so much, Frank, for sharing your gifts with us.

Our fearless Tanya Moberly was up next to resume the open mic portion of the evening.  She sang "It Never Entered My Mind" from Rogers' and Hart's Higher & Higher (1940), and she did what she does best.  One of her greatest skills is always leaving you feeling as though you've just seen a piece of her soul.  You can see more of that genius in action at her show I Love New York Songwriters on 12/3 at 7pm and 12/4 at 9:30pm at Don't Tell Mama.  Do not miss it.

MAC Award-Winner Joan Jaffe (Best Musical Comedy Performer) followed with a song from her upcoming show, Food, which will be at Don't Tell Mama on 11/30 and 12/1.  In addition to catching this fabulous dame at DTM, you can also see her in a sketch this Saturday night on Saturday Night Live!

Richard Eisenberg came up next to the piano.  That's right -- the piano, not the mic stand.  He swapped his usual witty patter with his beautiful "You Used To Love Me," and touched us all.  Richie is one of the 18 composers whose work Tanya will be singing in her show, and any opportunity to hear the work of Richard Eisenberg should not be missed.  He is a true gem.

It was Barbara Malley who followed with "Old Devil Moon" by Burton Lane and E.Y. Harburg.  I happen to know that she was nervous to sing it tonight, and she was amazing!  Barb, that is the best I've ever heard you sing!!!  Please bring that song back soon and dazzle the crowd again.

Jordan Siwek came to the piano following Barb with "L-O-V-E" by Kaempfert and Gabler.  Jordan shared that he has been heavily influenced by Nat King Cole and Oscar Peterson, and it was clear in this performance -- this kid so talented, it's scary.  He will be joining Barbara Malley, Tanya Moberly, and the rest of the gang in Humpy Dumpty Cracks Up.

Our last open mic-er was the beautiful, talented multi-award-winner Janice Hall, singing "Errol Flynn" by Amanda McBroom (you can catch her at Winter Rhythms on 12/13), followed by the amazing Frank Dain wrapping up the evening with "Misty."  A perfect end to a perfect evening.

Next week is sure to be amazing as we have Sarah Rice as our co-host!!!  The theme is "You Made Me Love You," and, as mentioned earlier, our Salon Spotlight is Jennylind Parris!  This will undoubtedly be an amazing night.  Doors open at 6:15pm!  I hope to see you then! :)

- Candice Oden, Guest Blogette for the Salon.  Please email me if I got anything wrong.

No comments:

Post a Comment