Vivian Reed: Standards and More

  • Post author:
  • Reading time:3 mins read

Vivian Reed

Standards and More

Metropolitan Room, NYC, April 2, 2016

Reviewed by Ron Forman for Cabaret Scenes

Vivian-Reed-Cabaret-Scenes-Magazine_212The two-time Tony nominee Vivian Reed burst onto the scene 40 years ago, by literally creating a part for herself in the musical Bubbling Brown Sugar. After a hiatus from show business to care for her mother, Reed returned to the world of cabaret in 2014 with a residence at 54 Below. In her introduction, she remarked that many in the audience at 54 Below asked her to perform standards from the Great American Songbook. With this show, she fulfilled that request admirably, by combining standards with the blues and jazz numbers that she is best known for. The spectacular instrument that is her voice has lost none of its range and power over the decades, and works remarkably well in all genres.

Backed by a musical quartet led by William Foster McDaniel, Reed showed off the power of her voice, and opened with a medley of “Just One of Those Things,” “Almost Like Being in Love” and “”I’m Gonna Live Till I Die.” Her voice became softer and sweeter for “My Funny Valentine.” An accomplished actress, Reed’s emotional performance combined with the lush beauty of guest performer, Metropolitan Opera soprano Janinah Burnett, to perform a moving and memorable “Strange Fruit.

online pharmacy generic

” Reed stopped the show with “You Can Have My Husband (Don’t Mess with My Man),” a number she performed in The High Rollers Social and Pleasure Club. Her bluesy side came out in a fun-filled duet with guest Raun Ruffin of “Bluer Than You.” An autobiographical introduction, involving her mom, made her performance of “Believe in Yourself” especially meaningful. The closing number, “Mon Dieu,” was a tribute to Edith Piaf.

online pharmacy generic

The encore of “More (Than the Greatest Love)” (Riz Ortolani/Nino Oliviero/Norman Newell) and “The Way You Look Tonight” left the overflow audience (there were people listening in the waiting area) cheering.

Vivian Reed returns to the Metropolitan Room Monday, May 23 at 7:00 PM; Friday, June 17 at 9:30 PM; and Thursday, July 21 at 7:00 PM

Ron Forman

Ron Forman has been a Mathematics Professor at Kingsborough Community College for 45 years. In that time, he has managed to branch out in many different areas. From 1977 to 1994 he was co-owner of Comics Unlimited, the third largest comic book distribution company in the USA. In 1999,after a lifetime of secretly wanting to do a radio program, he began his weekly Sweet Sounds program on WKRB 90.3 FM, dedicated to keeping the music of the Great American Songbook alive and accessible. This introduced him to the world of cabaret, which led to his position as a reviewer for Cabaret Scenes.