Ann Hampton Callaway: On My Way to You

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Ann Hampton Callaway

On My Way to You

54 Below, NYC, June 19, 2015

Reviewed by Annamaria Alfieri for Cabaret Scenes

Ann-Hampton-Callaway-On-My-Way-to-You-Cabaret-Scenes-Magazine_212Ann Hampton Callaway delivered joy to her audience, the recipe for which was surefire, but hard to come by in these times. Her voice, singing style, and musicianship are superb, but they did not account for all of the evening’s beauty. The rare ingredients of emotional generosity and sincerity spiced with a playful wit were essential to her potent magic potion.

Inspired by Callaway’s recent marriage, the song list followed the journey of a person searching for love.

First came “How About You?” which appropriately begins “I like New York in June,” it went on with updated lyrics, including “…

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Caitlyn Jenner’s looks give me a thrill!”  A beautifully phrased “Teach Me Tonight” allowed John di Martino the chance to show his considerable jazz piano chops.

A slow, gorgeous medley of “My Foolish Heart” and “My Romance” raised the temperature of the love Callaway communicated, a mood beautifully underlined by Martin Wind’s great work with the bow on his bass.

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The emotional drive of the evening went from love lost (“Never Really Mine to Lose”) to betrayal (“You Turned the Tables on Me”) to confusion (Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time”) and right off the rails (a laugh-out-loud rendition of “Moody in Paris”).

Loneliness (“Touch the Hand of Love”) finally gave way to true love (Callaway’s own composition “Finding Beauty”), thrived with “I Gaze into Your Eyes,” and looked to its future in “How Do You Keep the Music Playing.

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The evening ended with the singer expressing her gratitude for love found at last with a torch-song version of “Blue Moon” and a quiet and reflective encore—the title song, the Bergmans/Legrand “On My Way to You.”

In addition to di Martino and Wind, kudos are also due Tim Horner on drums and director Dan Foster.

Ann returns to 54 Below on June 25 at 7 pm.

Annamaria Alfieri

Annamaria Alfieri is the author of four acclaimed historical mysteries, including the current Strange Gods, which takes place in British East Africa in 1911 and is described as Out of Africa meets Agatha Christie. Writing as Patricia King, she also is the author of five nonfiction books, including Never Work for a Jerk, that landed her on the Oprah Winfrey Show. She is a past president of Mystery Writers of America, New York Chapter, and Vice President of the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. She is a life-long fan of the American Popular song.