Friday, October 29, 2010

"Cabaret Scenes" Magazine Review - Kenneth Kamal Scott

Like a preacher selecting a Bible quote to inspire his sermon, Kenneth Kamal Scott chose "Here's to Life" as the guide for his celebration of more than 60 years in show business as a dancer, singer, Broadway lead (the title role in The Wiz), and concert soloist, laced with fond and humorous memories from career and family.

...Mr. Scott approached his selections--from a joyful "April in Paris" (Duke/Harburg) to a spare, deeply felt "The Day I Stop Loving You" (Diane Warren)--as if they were are songs, employing his classically trained lyric tenor as a musical instrument to give each a distinctive sound and interpretation.

High points included an evocative "Calling You" (Bob Telson) sung a capella as Mr. Scott entered from offstage, a sly "It Ain't Necessarily So" (the Gershwins), a soft and gentle "I'm Glad There Is You" (Dorsey/Madeira) dedicated to his wife, Etta, and a soulful, proudly bittersweet rendition of his show's title tune, "Here's to Life," performed to Nori Ochiai's simple piano accompaniment.

Mr. Scott graciously ceded the floor to Mr. Ochiai, bassist Scott Colberg, and Charles Goold on drums for solo turns as he tapped along or moved with the music. His pleasure in performing was in full evidence, whether leading the receptive audience in an infectious sing-along of "I Just Called to Say I Love You" (Stevie Wonder) or wringing from his encore, "My Foolish Heart" (Young/Washington), all the fearful hopefulness it possessed.

Bob Barnett
Cabaret Scenes
September 28, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Dream Come True - Wendy Gerbier

Recently I was speaking with my student Miss Wendy Gerbier, a world class mezzo soprano, about her upcoming Parisian debut in December. We were so excited because this will be a full professional concert which for any artist is a tour de force. My only regret is that I won't be sitting in the audience applauding her performance. Stateside, Miss Gerbier has sung before both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives, and during our conversation she laughingly exclaimed "What I wouldn't give to sing for President Obama!"

Well, last night following our Master Class her dream came true. Miss Gerbier received a telephone call inviting her to sing for President Obama this weekend during a Bridgeport, Connecticut campaign fundraiser. It is with tremendous pride that I congratulate Wendy Gerbier: This is just a sampling of her many Dreams to Come True.