Who says there’s nothing to do in New York on a cold Sunday night? Every Sunday in December, when the Café Carlyle across the hall is dark, the glamorous Bemelmans Bar is hosting the most enchanting holiday party in town. From 9 p.m. to midnight, ace pianist-saloon singer Billy Stritch and funny, fast-thinking Jim Caruso, the dapper emcee of the popular Monday night “Cast Party” shows at Birdland, are pooling their very considerable talents for a nimble, nonstop, musical show-business bonanza with as much rhythm and class as the feet of Fred Astaire. Read More
Partners on and off the stage, sublime jazz guitarist and cello-mellow crooner John Pizzarelli and his cool, unruffled other half, singer Jessica Molaskey, are churning things up for the seventh standout season at the Café Carlyle. They are terrific. Read More
The second coming of Marilyn Maye continues full steam ahead at 54 Below, where she’s packing in the wild and the worldly wise through Nov. 2. Miss her at your own peril. Read More
A few seasons ago, when he made his dazzling debut at Café Carlyle with a swinging tribute to the late, great Bobby Short—the after-dark icon who used to “own” the space—a few nags found Las Vegas headliner Clint Holmes a bit too forced and glitzy for the close proximity imposed by a sophisticated Manhattan supper club. I found him next door to terrific. In his third appearance, currently brightening up the room through Saturday night, he has mellowed even more and learned the value of palpable intimacy. Read More
New York used to be a swinging town after dark. Now it’s just lonely. After dessert is served, the cafes close. After the boring, obligatory standing ovations that end every show in town whether it’s any good or not, the theaters empty and the audience heads home. Back in the day, you could head for Read More
An Original Classic: Adam Guettel’s Musical Lines Run Deep, But For This Songwriter, It’s All About Carving It Out On His Own
You wouldn’t call him a chip off the old block, but Adam Guettel’s musical genes are unmistakable. Yes, his grandfather was the great Richard Rodgers, and his mother was Mary Rodgers, who wrote Once Upon a Mattress. He works hard not to imitate either of them, but I say if you’ve got the genes, flaunt ‘em. And that is exactly what the adventurous, spirited and always imaginative composer of The Light in the Piazza is doing all this week, for seven performances, at 54 Below, New York’s glitzy nightclub beneath the street where the notorious Studio 54 used to be. It’s the most interesting mini-concert in town.
Actually, it’s less a concert than a kind of kickstarter to raise awareness of this extraordinary young songwriter’s talent and versatility. Read More
The venue 54 Below, New York’s beautiful new cabaret room in the renovated basement of the once-notorious Studio 54 disco, is playing host this week (through Feb. 2) to golden girl Christine Andreas. The ambience still retains the decadence of the space’s former tenant, but Ms. Andreas spreads nothing but sunshine. “Bemused,” the delightful, musically eclectic new act she has written for herself, is carefully designed to illustrate the varied definitions of that all-encompassing word. This gives the charming, multi-talented song stylist myriad moods to explore and a challenging repertoire of songs to explore them in. There’s something for everybody.
Webster’s uses for the word “bemused” include “immersed,” “surprised” and “thunderstruck”—but Ms. Andreas’s favorite definition of “bemused,” she says, is the kind of spark that only occurs when the right singer meets the right song (or songwriter). Read More
Belt-tightening measures in the new economic squeeze are being felt all over town, but at the chic Café Carlyle—even if the marquee names lack the usual luster in the new year—elegance still prevails. Broadway Romance, a musical journey through the turbulent stages of love illustrated by timeless songs from Broadway musicals, might seem under-
What are you doing New Year’s Eve? The cultured and the wise will be punishing the parquet at Feinstein’s at Loews Regency for the last time, saying goodbye forever to one of New York’s most venerable cabaret kingdoms. Yes, it’s one more nail in the coffin of the kind of sophisticated nightlife that used to Read More
“Taps, Tunes and Tall Tales” is the perfect title for Tommy Tune’s cabaret debut at Feinstein’s at Loew’s Regency, and he delivers plenty of all three. You know you’re in for an evening of savvy show business sass the minute the lights dim and he sails in singing “I’ve Got Them Feelin’ Too Good Today Blues” in a red suit the color of a tomato surprise.
Treetop tall and chlorophyll fresh, the dancer/actor/director/choreographer who Gene Kelly once called “too lanky for a legend” reduces his life story to one hour of handpicked tales and take-home tunes, punctuated by nifty tap routines executed to tumultuous applause on a stage the size of a forever stamp. Read More