Archikulture Digest

Cabaret Sunday: The Songs of Billy Joel

Cabaret Sunday: The Songs of Billy Joel

Musical Direction by Angelyn Rhode

March 13, 2016

Breakthrough Theatre

Winter Park, FL</strong>

“Singer-songwriter” sounds SO 1970, but that’s only because that was the great decade of those special artists who could pen gripping pop tunes and belt them as well. This month’s Sunday Cabaret explores the world of Billy Joel. He’s penned dozens of top hits, earned a half dozen Grammies and represents the best of what pop music offered in the downside of the 20th century. The Breakthrough cast has gone off and each picked a favorite tune. They open with a rap-lie ensemble version of “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me.” It was clearly sung and raised the question: Just what are “Pink SideWinder?” The question remained open as Wade Hair launched into a blasting version of “New York State of Mind.” Music came from karaoke track, and the cast had mostly memorized the lyrics. Grace Trotta followed with a rather wispy “She’s Always a Woman”, it was hard to hear even in the front row. A semireligious note crept in when Candace Doener opened “Only The Good Die Young” with its brutal look at mortality The most impressive solo came from relative newcomer Andrew Emory; he sold “Big Shot” better than any other performer tonight although Angela Cotto’s “Lullaby” almost brought tears. With a song book of Joel’s size we missed a few favorites; I was hoping for “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant” and my date wanted the fishing song “The Down-Easter Alexa,” but instead we were happy with the closing ensemble number “Piano Man.” And just like that Sidewinder question, no one seems to know what a “Real Estate Novelist” does. Fun and intimate, this is a monthly tradition at Breakthrough. They’ve quite a few singer song writers to cycle through before they return to Mr. Joel.

For more information, please visit http://www.breakthroughtheatre.com or look them up on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Breakthrough-Theatre-of-Winter-Park/


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