Liza And Alan Cumming At Town Hall: My Review
"I think this is the only time a show from Cherry Grove, Fire Island has transferred to Broadway!" cracked Alan Cumming at Town Hall last night.
Last summer, he and Liza Minnelli did a joint show on the Island, and it was the buzzy event of the season, effectively turning two Fosse-handed Cabaret stars into Fosse-handed cabaret stars. Well, last night, producer Daniel Nardicio brought them back for an even bigger love-in, with a large band (Lance Horne and Billy Stritch played piano) and even more material and more them. It was a total immersion into the souls of these two cutely naughty yet plaintively poignant singer/actors who are connected at the (Mein) Herr-line.
The evening started with the two having a good time singing "Nowadays" and "Class" from Chicago, and already the audience was going nutso with joy.
Then Alan did a strong solo set (everything from an Adele/Gaga/Katy mashup to that song from Once) complete with pain, satire, and lots of charming patter. He told the crowd that when Liza stayed at Fire Island, "It was like a papal visit--if you can imagine the church full of homosexuals." The crowd went crazy with laughter. "Don't cry for me, Argentina," added Alan in that impish way of his.
And then Liza did her set, gracing us with virtually every one of her standards--even "Ring Them Bells". She did "New York, New York," "Maybe This Time," "Cabaret," "And The World Goes 'Round," "Liza With A Z"--everything. Whatever edges have come with time didn't seem to matter because in her black bugle beads, Liza was sparkly and exciting, and kept getting standing ovation after standing ovation for being so full throttle all night.
"Liza!" screamed an audience member at one point in all seriousness. "I came from Argentina just to see you."
Hmm. So the Pope is gay!
Afterwards came a lavish party at the Copa, with food, frolicking, and a 67th birthday cake for Liza.
Tonight is the second (and last) Liza/Alan concert of this engagement. I just might try to sneak back in.