Corinna Sowers Adler: High Standards

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Corinna Sowers Adler

High Standards

Metropolitan Room, NYC, December 19, 2015

Reviewed by Joel Benjamin for Cabaret Scenes

Corinna-Sowerrs-Adler-Cabaret-Scenes-Magazine_212Corinna Sowers Adler is not just a terrific singer—she’s terrific company, too. Her reprise of her show High Standards at the Metropolitan Room consisted of her fresh takes on famous songs, starting with the sensuous “All the Things You Are” (Kern/Hammerstein), her lovely entrance song.

She turned her delicious soprano on Victor Herbert’s spoof of divas, “Art Is Calling for Me” (lyrics: Harry B. Smith), “Vanilla Ice Cream” (Bock/Harnick) and “Till There Was You” (Willson), yet was also able to show off her pop voice in “When I Fall in Love” (Young/Heyman) and “If I Ruled the World” (Bricusse/Ornadel) joined oddly, but successfully, with John Lennon’s “Imagine.”

Her rowdy, sexy side came out in “I Can Cook Too” (Bernstein/Comden & Green), which she sang much more slowly than most. Her quietly arch interpretation of a genteel serial killer in “To Keep My Love Alive” (Rodgers/Hart) was quite amusing.

Two pensive songs, “Both Sides Now” (Joni Mitchell) and “Children Will Listen” (Sondheim), illuminated these oft-sung lyrics with her direct honesty. She made a case for Billy Joel’s “This Is the Time to Remember” to be taken seriously as a “classic.”

She peppered the show with personal stories and also made it clear why these songs appealed to her.

Her usual musical director, Alex Rybeck, was absent this particular evening. His place was admirably assumed by Larry Yurman, whose witty playing and intimate musical relationship with Adler culminated in a very moving “You’ll Never Walk Alone” (Rodgers & Hammerstein), which rarely sounded as heartfelt as in the hands of these two.


Joel Benjamin

A native New Yorker, Joel was always fascinated by musical theater. Luckily, he was able to be a part of seven Broadway musicals before the age of 14, quitting to pursue a pre-med degree, which led no where except back to performing in the guise of directing a touring ballet troupe. Always interested in writing, he wrote a short play in high school that was actually performed, leading to a hiatus of nearly 40 years before he returned to writing as a reviewer. Writing for Cabaret Scenes has kept him in touch with world filled with brilliance.