Michael Feinstein, SHOWSTOPPERS - Will's New York Nite Life
Michael Feinstein, SHOWSTOPPERS
Michael Feinstein, “Showstoppers”
Feinstein’s / 54 Below
254 W 54th Street, (646) 476-3551
August 23 through September 3
with special guests John Lloyd Young (August 23 through 27) and Betty Buckley (August 29 through September 3)
In his summer offering at the club that bears his name, Michael Feinstein has built his own solo show around the notion of Broadway showstoppers. In doing so, however, he proves that it doesn’t necessarily take a loud and brassy eleven o’clock production number with 5,000 dancers to stop a show - often the desired effect can be achieved with a song that’s intimate and personal, like “Losing My Mind” (from Sondheim’s Follies), which he delivers in an especially moving solo reading, accompanied only by his own piano. (Otherwise, the ace rhythm section of Tedd Firth, musical director and piano, Phil Palumbo, bass, and Mark McLean, drums, is on hand.) Sometimes a show can also be stopped with a comedy number that’s almost an olympic feat of tongue twisting and timing, as Mr. Feinstein shows with Ira Gershwin’s “Tchaikovsky” and all five choruses of Cole Porter’s “Can Can.” But in general, the most moving showstoppers are the most intensely emotional moments, as on Billy Goldenberg’s “Fifty Percent,” and, in a very different way on Mr. Feinstein’s very touching solo tribute to the late Barbara Cook on “Goodnight My Someone.” There are enough showstoppers in this 70-minute show to last an entire season on Broadway.
Author: Will Friedwald
Will Friedwald writes about music and popular culture for THE WALL STREET JOURNAL & VANITY FAIR, and reviews current shows for THE OBSERVER and THE CITIVIEW NEW YORK. He also is the author of eight 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.
SINATRA: THE SONG IS YOU - NEW REVISED EDITION (Chicago Review Press, May 2018)