Not Your Mother’s Leading Lady
Winter Park Playhouse Spotlight Cabaret
with Monica Titus
Musical direction by Chris Leavy
I’ve been to this rodeo more than a few times, and this show hews closest to my idea of what a cabaret should be. Monica Titus appears in a short black velvet dress with giant hoop earrings and delivers an all too quick program of songs dwelling on the dark side of romance. You’ve got your one-night stands, your cheating partners, and your world-weary ennui. Then there’s the mandatory Sondheim, always bright beacon of cheer in the world of romance. Now add the show tunes you vaguely remember (“Not in Love” from” Pajama Game”) and the flipped over Sinatra (“The Gentleman is a Dope.”) Another highlight came from “Always a Bridesmaid;” I have no doubt there’s a closet full of unwearable dresses somewhere in Ms. Titus’s life. Always the performer, Ms. Titus called out her own 11 o’clock number “Time Heals Everything” then let us down by admitting she had a stable boyfriend. Nice as that may be, it does distract from the mood of a good downtempo evening of missed joy. The house was light, but I did get to sit with the Playhouse’s mysterious percussionist Sam Waters and hear his performing horror stories. It was a clear and chillily evening, both inside and outside this microcosm of a Broadway show.