Review: Bernadette Peters at the Palladium

February 15, 2012
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Bernadette Peters has performed in so many Broadway shows that she can do a full set of songs at the Palladium, as she did on Feb. 15, skip songs from most of them, and still satisfy.

With strong back-up from the Carmel Symphony Orchestra, Peters bypassed "Song and Dance," "A Little Night Music," "Sunday in the Park with George" and others where her name was above the title on Broadway, only dipping into her own original cast recording oevre for the heartbreakingly delivered "Losing My Mind" from her most recent stint, headling "Follies" (which closed just a few weeks ago). 

She did slip in a few songs that she didn't sing in her shows, including "No One is Alone" from "Into the Woods" and "Let Me Entertain You" from "Gypsy," but for the most part, she was exploring songs she hadn't tempered in eight-show-a-week runs.

She skillfully captured the passionate longing of  "Some Enchanted Evening," wasn't quite in control of the vocal acrobatics of "You Could Drive a Person Crazy," paird two Disney songs, and playfully vamped through "There is Nothing Like a Dame." Peters played the sultry card again with what she said was her first-ever performance of "Fever," which included some requisite lounging-on-the-piano moments, which the crowd ate up.

Peters was at her best, though, when playing straight to the microphone, riding the emotional roller coaster of "Losing My Mind" and mining unexpected emotional power from the traditional folk song "Shenandoah."

Peters only played the post-intermission side of the evening, leaving the first half to Michael Feinstein who stressed Sinatra tunes and great American songbook entries. The low point was a version of "Hello, Dolly!" featuring some new lyrics by Jerry Herman that felt like discarded first drafts. The high points: Some fun anecdotes (as one expects from this great music history storyteller) and an offer for the audience to shout out any Gershwin title, leading to a sweet "Embracable You."

Your thoughts?

 

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  • Completely agree
    The whole evening was great. Michael Feinstein's hour went by so fast, I couldn't believe it when he killed on "New York, New York", left the stage and I looked at my watch.

    I already love "Losin My Mind" and her interpretation was definitly a high point. And thankfully they used the amazing original Jonathon Tunick orchestration.

    The worst part of the evening: sitting dead still for 15 minutes on the third floor of the parking garage before things started moving. I sure wish there was a way for them to use the garage entrance lane so they had two lanes leaving the garage. Not good planning. That and no covered walkway or tunnel from the garage to the Palladium. So much good about what they did too bad to spoil the evening by missing those details.
  • Sorry I missed it
    I am sorry I missed seeing BP, but I've been so busy I missed hearing about the show until reading this review. However, it looks to me from the review that I didn't miss anything after all. For the most part, the set sounds like the same songs she performed with the ISO a couple years ago or on one of her albums. I could swear she performed Fever with the ISO when we saw her. Still, BP is so amazing, it would have been wonderful to see her.

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