- Published on Friday, 13 April 2012 13:22
- Written by Ron Forman
In her new show, Let’s Fall in Love at Feinstein’s at Loew’s Regency, Barbara Cook is helped on stage by two waiters to amusingly remind the audience of her 84 years. All thoughts about her age vanish as soon as she starts singing her opening number, George Gershwin’s, I’ll Build a Stairway to Paradise. The 2011 Kennedy Center honorary is in marvelous voice. She is singing better than she has in years, Ms. Cook has lowered her range beautifully but is still able to hit all of the high notes when they are needed. For the first time in her cabaret career, Ms. Cook has put together her own show, a collection of songs that she has not performed previously. There is not a bad choice, in this collection of love songs.
Ms. Cook does not engage in much patter, but when she does it is very funny often self-deprecating humor. The bulk of the show is just great old-fashioned singing. Ms. Cook incredibly had never performed a song by Hoagy Carmichael, she makes up for it in this show by performing two very different Carmichael songs, The Nearness of You and Georgia On My Mind. She shows off her ability as a jazz vocalist with her medley of House of the Rising Sun and a very unique version of Bye Bye Blackbird and with Marvin Fisher’s When Sunny Gets Blue. She pauses her singing to give the audience a list of very funny titles of country and western songs including If the Phone Don’t Ring You Know it’s Me, as a device to perform the country song I Didn’t Want Love. Her closing number was a rousing I Got Rhythm and her encore was a masterful, performed without a microphone, version of John Lennon’s Imagine.
The iconic Ms Cook will be appearing Tuesday to Saturday at Feinsten’s at Loew’s Regency at 540 Park Avenue through April 21.
Side note from the Editor: Barbara Cook is one of my favorite performers. If you are in NYC you need to see this show. She is excellent. Corine Cohen.