Christine Ebersole, 2001 Tony Award-winner for Best Actress in a Musical for 42nd Street, recorded a live album of her 1997 club act at the Cinegrill in Los Angeles but the 1998 disc has been largely uncirculated until now.
Coinciding with her Manhattan cabaret show at Arci's Place on Mondays (her night off from 42nd Street), the disc has resurfaced and is sold at the nightspot, but also at Footlight, the beloved specialty show-tune record shop on 12th Street in Manhattan (www.footlight.com).
Patter and all, Ebersole is heard on the disc telling of life in Los Angeles following success in New York (in the 1979 revival of Oklahoma!, among other projects) and personal and professional highs and lows. She sings specialty numbers and standards with musical direction and arrangements by David Snyder (playing with the David Snyder Trio). Scott Wittman directed in L.A., as he does at Arci's. The record label is Wailing.
The CD, "Live at the Cinegrill," includes Maury Yeston's "New Words," Dave Frishberg's "Do You Miss New York?," Kern and Hammerstein's "The Folks Who Live on the Hill" paired with Gordon Jenkins' "San Fernando Valley," Kern and Hammerstein and P.G. Wodehouse's "Bill," Vic Mizzy and Manny Jurtz's "No Bout Adout It," Larry Grossman and Ellen Fitzhugh's "The Animal in the Pit," Arlen and Gershwin's "The Man That Got Away," Gershwin and Weill's "My Ship," Leo Robin, Richard Whiting and W. Franke Harling's "Beyond the Blue Horizon," Harry Belafonte, Malvina Reynolds and Alan Greene's "Turn Around," Joni Mitchell's "Circle Game" and Frank Loesser's "More I Cannot Wish You."
To view a May 2001 Playbill On-Line Brief Encounter interview with Christine Ebersole, click here. *
Ebersole appeared on Broadway in I Love My Wife, On the Twentieth Century, the 1979 revival of Oklahoma!, in which she played Ado Annie, and the Camelot revival opposite Richard Burton. Among her TV work is a stint as a cast member of "Saturday Night Live." The blonde character actress is known for her comic performances on TV sitcoms and playing Tessie Tura in the TV remake of "Gypsy," starring Better Midler. Her New York appearances just prior to 42nd Street were in the Encores! revival of A Connecticut Yankee and the Broadway revival of Gore Vidal's The Best Man.
Ebersole's current Live in New York act continues at Arci's 8 PM Monday nights through Dec. 17. Academy Award-nominated composer Marc Shaiman directs a trio. Arci's is at 450 Park Avenue South between 30th and 31st streets. Tickets are $30 with $15 food or drink minimum. For information, call (212) 532-4370.
— By Kenneth Jones