THEIR FAVORITE THINGS: Tony Winner and Bullets Over Broadway Star Karen Ziemba Shares Her Theatregoing Experiences

By Andrew Gans
March 12, 2014's feature series Their Favorite Things asks members of the theatre community to share the Broadway performances that most affected them as part of the audience.

This week we spotlight the choices of Tony Award winner Karen Ziemba, who can currently be seen as Eden Brent in the new musical Bullets Over Broadway at the St. James Theatre.

(Clicking on a name bolded in blue will take readers to that actor or show's entry in the Playbill Vault.)

A Little Night Music

"My first Broadway experience. The estate with huge rolling lawn onstage was so life like and idyllic, I felt as if I could smell the grass, hear birds chirping and bugs buzzing. As the show began, five Liedersingers entered singing in waltz-time about what was going to commense…I loved how they kept ‘chiming in’ throughout. The score’s lyrics were sensual, mysterious and erudite… full of lust, love lost and found again."





"Bob Fosse’s amalgam of style, wit and mastery of movement included Ann Reinking’s incomparable dance solo to a trumpet interlude in 'Sing Sing Sing,' her body conveying the epitome of sensual power."


 Sweeney Todd


"Once that high piercing factory whistle blew I knew I was in for a wild ride. Throughout the spellbinding score, I fell hard for two murderers as I got sucked into their scheme, winced at the ensuing macabre, yet was so saddened when they got their comeuppance."


Peter Pan


"With delight and sheer abandon, Sandy Duncan was a boy who could fly. I was in Never Land."





 "There was loads of genius in Michael Bennett’s production. The musical scenes within Robin Wagner’s set moved seamlessly and cinematically in the story’s backstage to onstage…along with the delicious Loretta Devine finally saying her piece with 'This Ain’t No Party,' knocked my socks off." 




"One of director Tommy Tune’s great masterpieces with the highlight of Anita Morris’ performance in a black lace body stocking singing 'A Call From The Vatican' …Magnifico."




"Just play that overture one more time, please. Though I wasn’t able to catch Ethel or Angela as Mama Rose, when it was Tyne, Bernadette and Patti, the show never fails to put a lump in my throat.'"


Kiss of the Spider Woman


"Brent Carver’s ‘Molina’ and Chita Rivera’s ‘Aurora’… Crackling, raw brilliance. Molina’s first song, 'Dressing Them Up,' shows lyricist Fred Ebb at his best."

Crazy for You


"During 'Slap That Bass,' each lithesome showgirl grabbed a piece of rope and transformed into a standing bass fiddle, plucked and played by their fervent partner. The dancing images, Susan Stroman, the show’s choreographer, created to Gershwin tunes, were giddy and glorious."





"'Mr. Snow' sung and acted with such clarity and guilelessness by the luminous Audra McDonald."