Meow Meow & Thomas Lauderdale @ Sony Hall - New York City Article

Meow Meow & Thomas Lauderdale @ Sony Hall 

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Meow Meow & Thomas Lauderdale @ Sony Hall

Mar 25, 2019

Meow Meow & Thomas Lauderdale
Sony Hall
235 West 46th Street
Saturday, February 2 (two shows)

She is the international Queen of the most rarified, not to mention high-falutin’ art song, a chantootsie (as the late Earl Wilson would say) of eminently upper-crusty stature, a mega diva to the Nth power. There’s no one in the world who can sing the likes of Kurt Weill, Bertolt Brecht, Charles Aznavour, and Jacques Brel, while simultaneously indulging in onstage shtick that would do the Three Stooges proud. The celestial, feline presence known only to us mere mortals as Meow-Meow much too young to be the pioneer of anything, yet she is one of the foremothers of the medium known as “alt cabaret,” which is defined by, among other things, the creation of a stage persona and alter ego. (Rumor has it that she was born in Australia as Melissa Madden Gray, but I personally refuse to believe it.) The good news is that not only does the marvelous Miss Meow have a rare New York personal appearance this week, but the first album I have ever heard that captures at least the musical side of her glory, Hotel Amour, which features, as special guests, Barry Humphries (not in Dame Edna drag), Rufus Wainwright, and the Van Trapp Family Singers (yes, those Von Trapps). (For the slapstick side, check out the recently uploaded YouTube number, address below. Once word gets out that she’s doing this bit, wherein she feigns stage fright and induces random delighted dudes from the audience to hold her legs and her torso for moral support while she sings, guys will be lining up and down 46th Street, hoping to be picked as volunteers.) Lately, along with the equally formidable Stormy Large, she’s been appearing with everybody’s favorite pop-chamber-symphony ensemble, Pink Martini, and PM’s director, Thomas Lauderdale, will be her co-star on this date. A word to the wise: bring flowers to throw on stage; a diva of this stature deserves nothing less.

For information and reservations, please click here:

For a rather amazing recent video of Meow Meow at work, click here.

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Author: Will Friedwald
Photography by: STEPHEN SOROKOFF

Author: Will Friedwald

Will Friedwald writes about music and popular culture for THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, VANITY FAIR and PLAYBOY magazine and reviews current shows for THE CITIVIEW NEW YORK. He also is the author of nine books, including the award-winning A BIOGRAPHICAL GUIDE TO THE GREAT JAZZ AND POP SINGERS, SINATRA: THE SONG IS YOU, STARDUST MELODIES, TONY BENNETT: THE GOOD LIFE, LOONEY TUNES & MERRIE MELODIES, and JAZZ SINGING. He has written over 600 liner notes for compact discs, received ten Grammy nominations, and appears frequently on television and other documentaries. He is also a consultant and curator for Apple Music.

New Books:

THE GREAT JAZZ AND POP VOCAL ALBUMS (Pantheon Books / Random House, November 2017)