Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Manilow on Broadway

I got to see "Manilow on Broadway" at the St. James Theatre on Saturday night. For me, this merely involved a short drive to the theater district, but the audience was not simply the usual assortment of tourists in town looking to catch a good play.The theatergoers seemed to be a highly self-selected group of devotees of Barry Manilow, folks who still felt passionately about him and the incredible string of hits he produced in the 1970's and early '80's. Entering the theater was, to an extent, like entering a fan community. People were all uncommonly friendly (yes, even for New York!) and shared stories about how far they had traveled to be there. It became clear that a great many audience members had come a considerable distance solely to see the show. For these fans, this concert, was not just another show in town. It was a destination. Some had driven in from Boston and beyond. That's devotion!

I like it when people are passionate about music. This audience was there to see Barry Manilow and to have a great time. And they did. The singer was in excellent form for the 90 minute show (no intermission), and the audience loved every number. Some had already seen the show. Almost all the songs were familiar '70's or '80's hits, and just about every audience member was old enough to have heard them all when they were brand new.

Manilow was quite personable, and I don't think this is just an act. He reminisced about his boyhood in Brooklyn. He had some reasonable comments about songwriting. I found him to be pretty genuine. He's 69 years old now, but he sounds good, looks good, and moves darn well. Days after the show, I'm still feeling good.

"Manilow on Broadway" is a limited engagement through March 2, 2013.

"Manilow on Broadway" Playbill
Barry Manilow, February 1, 2013
Photo by Marc Hoffman
Barry Manilow at the Keyboard, February 2, 2013
Barry Manilow, February 2, 2013
Barry Manilow, February 2, 2013
The audience was energized on all three levels of the theater. The glow wands were complimentary. February 2, 2013
Streamers Finale, February 2, 2013

"Manilow on Broadway"
"This One's for You"


No comments:

Post a Comment