Archikulture Digest

Marina Jurica

Marina Jurica

Spotlight Cabaret

Musical Direction by Chris Leavy

October 8, 2015

Winter Park Playhouse, Winter Park FL</strong>

It’s not often you run into a classically trained opera singer with a degree in Atmospheric Science, but here she is. Ms. Jurica moonlights as a local TV weathercaster weekends and sings opera with the best when the rest of us are at our desks. The TV thing moves her around the country; she’s a Canadian girl who loves cold weather but right now she’s sweating through what I consider to be a harsh Central Florida winter. Tonight’s theme here is obvious: “Songs about Love and Weather” is the unofficial name of this performance. Ms. Jurica opens with a Chris Leavy mash up of “Nothing but Blue Skies” and “Singing in the Rain;” this describes every day down here from May to November, and the result is an amazingly tight fit for these two seemingly dissimilar melodies. There are few fall songs in the songbook; she makes do with “Autumn Leaves” and then quickly heads to winter. There’s plenty of material here; the beautifully obscure “Blackberry Winter” and “My Favorite Things” were my favorite things. Other show tunes came from Camelot, “Lusty Month of May” and State Fair, “It Might As Well Be Spring.” There was even some operetta based material (Kismet’s “Stranger in Paradise”); rumor has it she might be looking for space to do operetta on a regular basis.

Ms. Jurica is a newcomer to the WPPH stable but she blends right in with a powerful voice and elegant presence. The only oddity I noticed was a reliance on cue cards. She was fairly discrete about them, and they were small, but that’s the power of TV: sounds come in small digestible pieces with no need to look back.

For more information on Winter Park Playhouse, please visit http://www.winterparkplayhouse.org

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