Stephen Mosher: The Storyteller

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Stephen Mosher

The Storyteller

Don’t Tell Mama, NYC, October 22, 2017

Reviewed by Bart Greenberg for Cabaret Scenes

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Stephen Mosher made a surprising cabaret debut after a career as a photographer, an author, a social media motivator, and a documentary film star. And, he assured the audience that packed the room, he has been a storyteller all his life.

His confident skill in sharing the stories of his life — in both spoken word and song — belies his virgin status. Incredibly charming, he offered up tales of three generations of his family as Hollywood costume designers, circus stunt folks, and cultural barrier-breakers. The fact that these delightful tales managed to include Mae West, Edith Head, and Dame Maggie Smith made them all the richer, as did his ability to bring each to life.

Woven into these stories were carefully selected songs that both entertained and illuminated. They were also all numbers that made him happy. Delivering the title tune of Can-Can, he breezed through the lyrics with clarity and speed. He admitted that the Cole Porter work had traveled the course from racy to racist, which made him love it even more. Other witting words he embraced included “Zip” and “My Strongest Suit.

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” Besides his clear diction, he brought to the stage a pleasant voice that flowed between a whiskey tenor and a Bea Arthur baritone.

Mosher was well supported by singer/songwriter Jen Houston, Dan Tracy (who provided a beautiful solo guitar accompaniment to the singer’s delivery of “Go Slow, Johnny”), Don Kelly, and musical director Ricky Pope.

If there was a flaw in the show, it was that it ran about 10 minutes too long.

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But this is a rookie mistake, easy to fix. Hopefully, this isn’t the last New York’s cabaret stages have seen of Stephen Mosher.

Bart Greenberg

Bart Greenberg first discovered cabaret a few weeks after arriving in New York City by seeing Julie Wilson and William Roy performing Stephen Sondheim and Cole Porter outdoors at Rockefeller Center. It was instant love for both Ms. Wilson and the art form. Some years later, he was given the opportunity to create his own series of cabaret shows while working at Tower Records. "Any Wednesday" was born, a weekly half-hour performance by a singer promoting a new CD release. Ann Hampton Callaway launched the series. When Tower shut down, Bart was lucky to move the program across the street to Barnes & Noble, where it thrived under the generous support of the company. The series received both The MAC Board of Directors Award and The Bistro Award. Some of the performers who took part in "Any Wednesday" include Barbara Fasano and Eric Comstock, Tony Desare, Andrea Marcovicci, Carole Bufford, the Karens, Akers, Mason and Oberlin, and Julie Wilson. Privately, Greenberg is happily married to writer/photographer Mark Wallis, who as a performance artist in his native England gathered a major following as "I Am Cereal Killer."