Since an earlier Diva Talk column this week focused on the "Nothing Like a Dame" benefit that featured performances from some of our regular divas, Betty Buckley, Donna Murphy, etc., I thought I'd write about a few other talented ladies this week:
Maureen McGovern, whose multi-octave range has impressed critics for years, will release her newest album on the Sterling Records label in March. Due in stores on March 18, the album celebrates the lyrics of Alan and Marilyn Bergman, who are probably best known for their lyrics to the Barbra Streisand hit "The Way We Were." Titled The Music Never Ends, McGovern's CD includes the following 12 tracks from the Oscar-winning lyricists:
How Do You Keep the Music Playing?
Like a Lover
It Might Be You
Windmills of Your Mind
The Summer Knows
Little Boy Lost
Make Me Rainbow
The Way We Were/Where Do You Start?
You Must Believe In Spring
I'll Never Say Goodbye
The last track on the recording is one of the most beautiful love songs I've heard recently, from a movie a few years back called "The Promise." For those who like to collect various artists singing the same tunes (okay, how many Sunset Boulevard recordings do you have?), Nancy LaMott's first posthumous album, released a few months ago, also offers a terrific interpretation of this song.
Debbie Gravitte, formerly Debbie Shapiro Gravitte, formerly Debbie Shapiro, will soon release her second album on the Varese Sarbande label - her first solo album was The Alan Menken Album (previously released as Part of Your World: Debbie Shapiro Gravitte Sings Alan Menken). Her new recording is titled The MGM Album and is a collection of classic songs from MGM musicals. The recording includes such standards as "Where the Boys Are," "Love Me or Leave Me," "My Romance" and a creative vocal arrangement for "The Theme from 2001."
Gravitte will kick off the album release, which is due in stores on March 25, with two shows at Rainbow & Stars in New York City. Her R & S show (both shows will take place on Sunday, March 23) is entitled MGM, Menken & More and will include songs from both albums as well as songs from her various Broadway shows, including her Tony-winning performance of "Mr. Monotony" from Jerome Robbins' Broadway. For reservations, call Rainbow & Stars at (212) 632-5000.
CAROL and CHITA
The North Shore Music Theatre, which is located in Beverly, MA, recently announced its musical theatre productions for the 1997 season. On a list that includes such musicals as The Music Man, Oliver!, 42nd Street, The Who's Tommy and Little Me, North Shore Music Theatre will also offer Carol Channing and Chita Rivera together in concert from June 30 until July 19. And, if their engagement at NSMT is a success, the two may tour the country during the summer of '97. For ticket information, call (508) 922-8500.
Kathryn Evans, who portrayed Evita during the original London run of the musical and went on to star in the Elaine Paige production of Anything Goes as well as the recent West End Mack and Mabel, will be returning to the London stage shortly. Evans is set to play John Barrowman's mother in the upcoming musical The Fix at the Donmar Warehouse. The Cameron Mackintosh musical, which concerns the rise and fall of a young politician (Barrowman), begins a seven-week rehearsal period March 3 before starting previews.
DIVAS ON THE RADIO
For those in the eastern Washington/northern Idaho area, you may be interested in tuning into a radio program that will air on KPBX Spokane Public Radio (91.1 FM in the Spokane area, 91.9 in northern Idaho and some areas of central and eastern Washington) on March 10 at 7 PM. Titled "Night of the Living Diva," the program will pay tribute to some of our favorite ladies, including Betty Buckley and Patti LuPone.
DIVAS (and others) AT SYMPHONY SPACE
Manhattan's Symphony Space will be launching an intriguing new program entitled Golden Voices/Silver Screen every Tuesday night from March 18 until June 10. The evening will consist of a cabaret performance saluting a composer or lyricist and will be immediately followed by a film from that composer or lyricist's body of work. The series begins with Amanda Green singing the songs of her father, Adolph Green, and then a screening of On the Town for which Comden and Green wrote lyrics to Leonard Bernstein's wonderful score. The complete list of performers and movies follows:
March 18 Amanda Green sings Adolph Green lyrics/On the Town
March 28 Michael Marotta sings Berlin/Easter Parade
April 1 NYC Gay Men's Chorus sings Jerry Herman/Hello, Dolly!
April 8 Claiborne Cary sings Jerome Kern/Swing Time
April 15 Christine Tisdale sings Gershwin/An American in Paris
April 22 Melba Joyce sings Hammerstein/Carmen Jones
April 29 Emily Loesser sings Loesser/Guys and Dolls
May 6 Patti Ben Peterson sings Lerner and Loewe/My Fair Lady
May 13 Ivy Austin sings Rodgers and Hart/Pal Joey
May 20 Peter Howard sings Cohan/Yankee Doodle Dandy
May 27 Judy Malloy sings Porter/Kiss Me, Kate
June 3 Carolee Carmello sings Jule Styne/Bells Are Ringing
June 10 Laurie Beechman sings Rodgers and Hammerstein/Carousel
There is a 7:30 PM curtain for each evening, and tickets are $8 general admission, $7 for seniors and $4 for Symphony Space Members. Symphony Space is located at 2537 Broadway at 95th Street, and tickets may be purchased by calling the box office at (212) 864-5400.
Betty Buckley returns to the cabaret stage of Maxim's in New York City March 19-22. Call (212) 751-5111 for reservations.
Patti LuPone: Be sure to check local listings for the upcoming Colm Wilkinson concert on PBS that includes La LuPone singing a bunch of her Broadway hits. The concert airs on WLIW Channel 21 beginning this weekend in New York.
Donna Murphy is one of a bevy of divas who will perform in an evening devoted to the music of Stephen Sondheim at The Brooklyn Academy of Music March 20. Tickets can be purchased by calling TicketMaster at (212) 307-4100.
Elaine Paige will conclude her critically hailed run in Sunset Boulevard March 22.
Bernadette Peters latest recording, Sondheim Etc.: Bernadette Peters Live from Carnegie Hall, is due in record stores on March 11; BP will make an appearance on the "Rosie O'Donnell Show" on March 25.
And to keep you thinking: What musical theatre leading lady is currently in negotiations for her first-ever concert appearance with the Boston Pops? That's all for now. Happy diva-watching!
Coming soon: An interview with Sunset Boulevard's John Barrowman, star of the upcoming London musical The Fix.
-- By Andrew Gans
e-mail me at email@example.com