With less than a month left in her run as Maria Callas in the Broadway production of Master Class, La LuPone gears up for a slew of concert dates in the next few months (before heading to London to bowl 'em over in the West End production of MC). On Saturday, Jan. 25 at 8 PM, the one-woman dynamo will bring her concert act to Proctor's Theatre in Schenectady, NY. Tickets range from $29.50 to $42.50 and may be purchased by calling (518) 346-6204. Patti LuPone in concert is always a terrific evening, an eclectic mixture of songs that LuPone has made famous onstage ("Don't Cry for Me Argentina," "I Dreamed a Dream") and an array of other standards and pop tunes ("I'm a Stranger Here Myself," "Get Here," "Being Alive").
In February, LuPone will perform on the first of the month at the Alberta Bair Theatre for the Performing Arts in Billings, MT. She will perform at their Annual Gala at 7:30 PM that evening, and tickets are available by calling (406) 256-6052. LuPone's last concert dates in February are Feb. 18-23 at the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa, CA. Performances will be held Tuesday through Friday at 8 PM, Saturday at 3 and 8 PM and Sunday at 3 and 7:30 PM. Tickets begin at $19 and cost up to $49.50. For more information and to purchase tickets call (714) 740-7878 or (213) 365-3500.
So, if you're anywhere in the area of these concerts be sure to catch one of our greatest performers at work! BETTY BUCKLEY
Betty Buckley continues to tour in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Music of the Night, which finishes its Los Angeles stint this Sunday. Following are excerpts from a few more reviews of this production:
The Orange County Register, Jan. 10 ,1997
By Paul Hodgins
"The enthusiastic full house Wednesday at the Pantages Theatre came to hear and see Buckley perform. As far as they were concerned, she could have been singing nursery rhymes.
Buckley is a Lloyd Webber veteran--she won a Tony for her performance in "Cats" and made a memorable Norma Desmond in "Sunset Boulevard." More than that, she's one of the Lloyd Webber Divine Divas. Along with Patti LuPone, Sarah Brightman and possibly Glenn Close, she can make a Lloyd Webber ballad seem like a work of genius--even when it's not.
"Sunset Boulevard's" "As If We Never Said Goodbye" is arguably Lloyd Webber's best-ever diva vehicle, and its "I'm back world!" lyrics (when divorced from their ironic context, of course) have proven irresistible to high-mileage ballad queens such as Barbra Streisand, who chose it to open her recent comeback concerts.
Buckley uses the song to similar effect, beginning the evening with a quiet, reflective delivery that she doesn't allow to get big until the final chorus. Like all great Broadway stars, she knows as much about restraint as she does about pulling out all the stops.
Buckley's voice is far from perfect: She can hold onto her consonants for an annoyingly long time, she strains uncomfortably for some high notes and her brassy-yet-thin tone isn't for everyone. But Broadway singing isn't about vocal perfection, it's about selling the song--and sell she can.
In a song such as "Memory," Buckley's vocal foibles work in a strangely synergistic way. It's a wistful, heartfelt creation, and Buckley projects those qualities achingly well, imbuing it with a subtext of profound melancholy that far exceeds the music's modest merits. . ."
In Daily Variety, January 10, 1997
By Charles Isherwood
". . .When Buckley descends an admittedly less grand staircase than the one she rode in Sunset Boulevard to open the evening with that show's "As If We Never Said Goodbye," her powerhouse vocalizing sweeps all before it.
Buckley's distinctive elocution alone marks her as a great singer- no lyricist has probably ever been as well-served--and whether she's playing it low and plaintive, as on "Tell Me on a Sunday" from Song and Dance, or grand and passionate, as on pretty much everything else, from "Memory" to "I Don't Know How To Love Him" to "With One Look," she brings the charisma of an intelligent actress to her interpretations. . ."
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