Eileen Monahan: Melodious Memories

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Eileen Monahan

Melodious Memories

The Duplex, NYC, February 2, 2018

Reviewed by Chris Struck for Cabaret Scenes

Eileen Monahan

Eileen Monahan’s Narrows Community Theater has been as lucky to have her as she said she was to have them. While she may not have performed the roles on Broadway that she has cherished, she does have a classy appeal that combined well with her down-to-earth attitude. Celebrating a recent birthday, she exemplified the joy that the theater world brings across generations performing personally nostalgic tributes.

When Monahan shared the moment that the hills came “alive with ‘The Sound of Music’” (Rodgers and Hammerstein) and afterward came home to twirl on a green blanket, we were transported to the fleeting memory of childhood fantasy.

Her memories of listening to music and going to shows with her mother showed the love that permeated through her life. Her smooth, slow, and easy style worked well with her voluminous voice and hit well on “In My Life,” her mother’s favorite.

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Sharing the stage briefly was exquisitely dressed and equally talented Samantha Braga, who sang a duet with Monahan and then performed a stellar “Me and the Sky” (Come from Away; Irene Sankoff and David Hein). She’ll have her own show coming up on March 16. Steven Silverstein also starred in the role of the show’s pianist and music director.

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Monahan finished the night off with two more great choices from musicals, Waitress and Mamma Mia! — the first being “She Used to Be Mine” (Sara Bareilles), where she really delivered “to bring back the fire in her eyes, that’s been gone, but used to be mine” exceptionally. The final song, “Thank You for the Music” (Benny Anderson and Björn Ulvaeus) seemed fitting as certainly nothing “could capture the heart” like music has in Monahan’s life.

Chris Struck

Chris Struck's debut novel, Kennig and Gold, is due to be officially published in June 2019. He's written reviews for Cabaret Scenes since August of 2017. For more information about the writer, see StruckChris.com