You-review-it Monday

June 25, 2012
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For me, the weekend included concerts by Idina Menzel and Linda Eder, the  world premiere musical "Dearest" at Theatre on the Square, a stop at the Noise! cabaret at White Rabbit and the screening of a batch of movies coming to the Indianapolis Intenational Film Festival (the better to offer a list of recommendations for you prior to the fest). More on those in an upcoming column. 

What about you? What did you see or hear this weekend?

  • Next Fall
    I saw NEXT FALL at Phoenix Theatre. Some very powerful performances from the two male leads! I thought the play was really powerful as well, although I think the playwright wimped out at the end a little. A bit disappointed by that. BUT a really timely, thought provoking, and great production. Worth catching before it closes I think.
  • Good shows and varied
    A fun weekend in Indy for concerts. I enjoyed the ISO's "Heroes and Victors" performance on Friday at Symphony on the Prairie. It was music (mostly) from sports movies like Hoosiers, and Rudy, as well as a tip of the hat to the upcoming London Olympics. And Saturday night I caught Linda Eder at The Cabaret at the Columbia Club. It looked like a packed house, and the whole experience was spot-on. From check-in, beverage service, and personal welcomes from the staff and performers, they knew how to do it up right. Next weekend: Heading back out to the Prairie for the music of Queen. Don't Stop Me Now!
  • Idina
    I also attended the Idina Menzel show at Clowes. Singing was fantastic, but I felt there should have been a little more singing and less chit chat. I enjoy the stories, but when it was $190 for two tix and the entire show was around an hour (pre-encore), I feel a little ripped off. Also, I just need to vent for moment. If you are attending an event, you should at least break out a pair of khaki pants and a polo shirt and not wear plaid shorts and a t-shirt. And, we all paid money to see the show, so shut up and quit talking during the performance.
    • Concert Length
      FYI: I played in the orchestra for Idina's concert. It was almost 100 minutes long, including encores. It started at 8 pm and we were done at 9:40 pm. Since there was no intermission, this is the same length as ISO concerts, which are approximately 2 hours from start to finish, with a 20 minute intermission.
      • Well...
        The difference between the ISO show and Idina's show is that the ISO plays almost nonstop the entire time. Idina did not do so. As an audience member, the talking seemed to take up the majority of the time and not singing. When an event is advertised as "Idina Live," I expected much more singing than chatter. Perhaps it should have been advertised more as "An evening with..." instead. Reminds me of earlier this year when the ISO advertised Hello Dolly as a "musical" then the actors read the entire thing from books. Again, had it been explained that way, I never would have purchased tix to that event.
      • Linda Eder
        Sorry you folks weren't satisfied with Idina. Wish you had come to Linda's show instead. Magical evening. Linda is a voice not to be missed if you have the opportunity. The review in your paper says it all. I attended all 3 shows and all were stunning.
        • Eder review?
          Gerry, Not sure what review you are referring to. My review doesn't appear in IBJ until this weekend. --Lou
          • Linda Eder
            Lou, It was a review by Tom Alvarez with the Iindy Performing Arts Examiner.
          • NYC and Wisconsin
            I am glad to be back in Indy after a couple of weeks on the road. Just short takes on these since they were out of town. New York Philharmonic concert with Music Director Alan Gilbert - the orchestra sounded just terrific in Beethoven Coriolanus, Korngold Violin Concerto - a piece that seems to get better every time I hear it, and Nielsen Third Symphony. Harvey - one of my wife's favorite actors is Jim Parson of the Big Bang Theory. He was quite good in the lead role, but why did the women in the cast feel the need to scream and whine all of their lines? Tiring. Nice Work if You Can Get it - Matthew Broderick playing the same character he always plays, and he does it very well. Excellent Gershwin music that sounded terrific in new arrangements by Billy Elliott - not the one who dances, but the one who is Michael Feinstein's music director. Well deserved Tonys for supporting male and female actors. Story was thin - based in Prohibition times. Spiderman - did not suck nearly as much as I expected. Great show for kids, and there were plenty of them in the audience. Neat moment when the mask is coming off and a little boy exclaimed - It's Peter Parker. Forgettable music but great staging and flying effects. The actor who plays the Green Goblin has an amazing low bass voice that rivals Russian choristers. Milwaukee Choral Society in a demonstration concert of significant choral literature for educators and conductors - terrific music and a great choral sound. Almost no emphasis on last consonants of words, which worked with this hall and this audience. I am not sure this approach would work everywhere, but an interesting and beautiful choral sound.

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