DIVA TALK: Songs, Shows and More...

News   DIVA TALK: Songs, Shows and More... LIZ CALLAWAY
Congratulations to Liz Callaway whose newest CD, “The Beat Goes On,” was named as one of the top ten vocal/Broadway CDs of 2001 by Amazon.com. The former star of Baby and Miss Saigon recently completed a guest-starring run at Feinstein’s at the Regency and is gearing up for several other concert engagements. First up are two performances of Stephen Schwartz and Friends on Feb. 1, 2002, at Ohlone College in Fremont, CA, and on Feb. 2 at San Benito High School Auditorium in San Benito, CA. Callaway will then present her solo cabaret act at the Ridgefield Playhouse in Connecticut on Feb. 8, 2002. Tickets are available by calling (203) 438-5795 or by e-mailing the theatre’s box office at boxoffice@ridgefieldplayhouse.org. The following month, Liz will join her sister, Swing star Ann Hampton Callaway when they perform their award-winning act, “Sibling Revelry,” at the Queens Theatre in the Park in Queens, N.Y. on March 23 and 24; call (718) 760-0064. By the way, if you happen to attend Macy’s Puppet Theatre’s presentation of Percy, the Poor Little Penguin: An Original Holiday Musical at Macy’s Herald Square, you will hear the pre-recorded voices of Callaway plus Alix Korey, Florence Henderson, Roger Bart, Mario Cantone and Anthony Rapp.

LIZ CALLAWAY
Congratulations to Liz Callaway whose newest CD, “The Beat Goes On,” was named as one of the top ten vocal/Broadway CDs of 2001 by Amazon.com. The former star of Baby and Miss Saigon recently completed a guest-starring run at Feinstein’s at the Regency and is gearing up for several other concert engagements. First up are two performances of Stephen Schwartz and Friends on Feb. 1, 2002, at Ohlone College in Fremont, CA, and on Feb. 2 at San Benito High School Auditorium in San Benito, CA. Callaway will then present her solo cabaret act at the Ridgefield Playhouse in Connecticut on Feb. 8, 2002. Tickets are available by calling (203) 438-5795 or by e-mailing the theatre’s box office at boxoffice@ridgefieldplayhouse.org. The following month, Liz will join her sister, Swing star Ann Hampton Callaway when they perform their award-winning act, “Sibling Revelry,” at the Queens Theatre in the Park in Queens, N.Y. on March 23 and 24; call (718) 760-0064. By the way, if you happen to attend Macy’s Puppet Theatre’s presentation of Percy, the Poor Little Penguin: An Original Holiday Musical at Macy’s Herald Square, you will hear the pre-recorded voices of Callaway plus Alix Korey, Florence Henderson, Roger Bart, Mario Cantone and Anthony Rapp.

ANDREA MARCOVICCI
Andrea Marcovicci began her month-long stint at the Algonquin Hotel this past week. Marcovicci, who has been called “the Callas of cabaret,” is currently singing tunes associated with the late Gertrude Lawrence in her show “One Life to Live: A Celebration of Gertrude Lawrence.” The singing actress will also be featured in an upcoming article in the subscription issue of Playbill. In David Drake’s interview, Marcovicci has this to say about her new act: “Like with composers I’ve focused on, it’s the same with Gertrude: It’s about taking out their diamond and shining them . . . She’s of that ephemeral nature of the theatre. And though it’s bittersweet sometimes, I too am part of the ephemera.” Marcovicci’s song list for her Algonquin engagement follows:
“One Life to Live”/ “Whistle a Happy Tune”
“I Don’t Know”
“Exactly Like You”/ “Bad for Me”/ “Do Do Do”
“Somewhere I’ll Find You” / “You Were There”
“Parisian Pierrot”
“How Could We Be Wrong” / “Someone To Watch Over Me”
“Body & Soul”
“The Physician”
“This Is New”
“My Ship”
“Jenny”
“Hello Young Lovers”
“I’ll See You Again” / “Getting to Know You”
The Algonquin Hotel is located at 59 West 44th Street; call (212) 840-6800 for reservations.

BROADWAY STARS SING
A new, star-studded holiday recording to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is now available from Centaur Entertainment, Inc. Entitled “Broadway Cares: Home for the Holidays,” the 15-track disc features some of Broadway’s finest voices singing seasonal favorites like “Silent Night” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” The complete track list follows, and the CD is now available in record stores or on-line at www.charityCD.com.
“Baby, It’s Cold Outside” Liza Minnelli/Alan Cumming
“Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” Christine Ebersole
“Santa Baby” Jane Krakowski
“Merry Christmas Darling” Sam Harris
“Peace on Earth” / “Little Drummer Boy” Liz and Ann Hampton Callaway
“Silent Night” Lillias White
“New York State of Mind” Adam Pascal
“Feliz Navidad” Daphne Rubin-Vega
“Christmas Time Is Here” Billy Porter
“Sleigh Ride” Lea Delaria
“We Need a Little Christmas” Patrick Wilson
“The Christmas Song” Davis Gaines
“Silver Bells” Gary Beach/Roger Bart
“I’ll Be Home for Christmas” Victor Garber
“White Christmas” Audra McDonald

CABARET REVIEW
A slew of cabaret regulars took part in Jamie deRoy’s holiday spectacular this past Sunday evening at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in the West Bank Cafe on W. 42nd Street. The evening was hosted by deRoy, a cabaret veteran who should be commended for often showcasing some of the lesser known and up-n-coming cabaret performers who are struggling to make names for themselves. DeRoy opened the show (twice actually -- she forgot the lyrics the first time but won the audience over with the comical way she handled the situation) and then introduced each of the guest performers. Highlights of the evening included an a capella version of “Carol of the Bells” sung by the vocal group The Accidentals; a rendition of “Remember” by another vocal group, “Uptown Express”; Craig Rubano’s forceful delivery of David Friedman and David Zippel’s Christmas anthem, “Just in Time for Christmas”; Jeff Harnar’s sweet, lush tones on “Little Drummer Boy”; Lennie Watts and Scott Coulter’s high voltage “O Holy Night”; and Tommy Femia’s appearance as Judy Garland. The evening celebrated the holiday season as well as the release of deRoy’s new CD, “Jamie deRoy & Friends: ‘Tis the Season: Volume 3,” which is now available in record stores.

IN OTHER NEWS Betty Buckley, Audra McDonald, Kristin Chenoweth, Debbie Gravitte, Cady Huffman, Alix Korey, Judy Blazer, Susan Lucci, Brad Oscar and other surprise guest stars will take part in this Sunday’s Miracle on Broadway, the first annual Festival of Lights Benefit Concert at the Gershwin Theatre, 222 West 51st Street. Call (212) 307-4100 for tickets to the 7 PM show on Dec. 16 . . . For those who are eagerly awaiting Betty Buckley’s return to “Oz,” the HBO prison series will begin its fifth season on January 6 at 10 PM. For those who missed her appearances last season, Ms. B starred as Suzanne Fitzgerald, an inmate’s mother. Buckley will reprise her role for seven of this season’s eight episodes . . . How exciting that Elaine Stritch’s critically praised one-woman show will transfer to Broadway after all! Elaine Stritch at Liberty will play Broadway’s Neil Simon Theatre for 80 performances only beginning Wednesday, Feb. 6. Tickets are now on sale at the box office or by calling Ticketmaster at (212) 307-4100 . . . It seems like it’s the season for one-woman shows by theatre legends, as Bea Arthur will bring her own solo show, Bea Arthur on Broadway: Just Between Friends to Broadway’s Booth Theatre for a six-week engagement beginning January 29 . . . Speaking of theatrical legends, the one-and-only Barbara Cook will bring her celebrated concert, Barbara Cook in Mostly Sondheim to Lincoln Center’s Vivian Beaumont Theatre for 14 performances beginning Dec. 30. Call Tele-charge for tickets: (212) 239 6200 . . . Diva fans can celebrate New Year’s Eve with 42nd Street Tony winner Christine Ebersole. The talented actress/singer will perform her acclaimed act, “Christine Ebersole: Live in New York,” at a special Black Tie New Year’s Eve party at Arci’s Place. The evening will begin at 8:30 PM with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and will also include a five course dinner and a bottle of champagne per couple as well as the show. Tickets are $250 per person; call (212) 532-4370 to make reservations. For those who can’t make it New Year’s Eve, Ebersole has added three additional dates to her sold-out Arci’s run: Mondays, January 7, 21 and 28 . . . For the Record: A handful of Broadway’s finest appear on the first-ever recording of Ira Gershwin and Vernon Duke’s Ziegfeld Follies of 1936. The star-studded cast who performed the show during its limited City Center Encores! run appear on the 17-track recording, including Christine Ebersole, Ruthie Henshall, Mary Testa, Howard McGillin and Karen Ziemba. Highlights of the disc include Henshall’s superlative rendition of the beautiful ballad “Words Without Music”; Christine Ebersole’s smooth-as-silk vocals on “Island in the West Indies”; Ebersole and Peter Scolari’s second-act duet, “I Can’t Get Started”; Howard McGillin’s powerful lyric baritone on “Time Marches On”; and Mary Testa’s comedic “He Hasn’t a Thing Except Me.” Ziegfeld Follies of 1936 is available from Decca Broadway . . . Chicago native Maureen Christine, a cabaret singer who has been a guest vocalist with the Count Basie Orchestra, just released a new CD on the LML Music label. Entitled The Very Thought of You, Christine wraps her crystal-clear voice around such standards as “Embraceable You,” “Can’t Help Lovin’ That Man,” “Blue Skies” and David Friedman’s “Listen to My Heart.” . . . Quotable Quote: Patti LuPone, who currently stars in Broadway’s hit revival of Noises Off, writes this on her website: “. . .On to happier moments in my life. The picture you see on [my] home page is of the steamboat The Normandie. Isn't she an elegant lady? I may have the opportunity to see her again this summer, as I have been asked to sing Desiree opposite George Hearn's Frederic in A Little Night Music at The Ravinia Festival in Chicago. A second Sondheim role. I'm thrilled to death.”

REMINDERS:

BETTY BUCKLEY
That Tony-winning dynamo, Betty Buckley, has just released a new slate of concert performances, which follows:


December 27 at the Verizon Regional Performing Arts Center in Philadelphia, PA (with Michael Feinstein)
January 4 & 5, 2002 at the Bushnell Auditorium in Hartford, CT
March 15 & 16, 2002 with the North Carolina Symphony in Raleigh, NC
March 30 at the McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert, CA BARBARA COOK
April 12 and 13 with Marilyn Horne at Michigan State University’s Warton Center in MI
April 26 at Symphony Hall in Boston, MA
June 5-9 and June 12-16 at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theatre in Washington, DC

LINDA EDER
Eder in concert:
Dec. 14 and 15 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, (800) 444-1324

PATTI LuPONE
The Tony and Olivier Award-winning actress has also just released a whole new slew of concert dates, which follow:


February 9, 2002 at the Tilles Center with the Long Island Philharmonic (“Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda”)
February 22-23, 2002 at the Kleinhans Music Hall in Buffalo, NY with the Buffalo Philharmonic (“Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda”)

February 28 at Carnegie Hall in New York, NY (“Coulda Woulda Shoulda”)

BERNADETTE PETERS
Jan. 4, 2002 at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater
Jan. 6 at the Barbara Mann Hall in Ft. Myers
Jan. 7 at Van Wezel Hall in Sarasota
Jan. 9 at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach
Jan. 10 at the City Center in Coral Springs
Apr. 5-6 at the OCPAC in Costa Mesa

Well, that’s all for now. Happy diva-watching!

By Andrew Gans