Cynthia Crane: This Is a Changing World, My Dear

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Cynthia Crane

This Is a Changing World, My Dear

Don’t Tell Mama, NYC, September 22, 2018

Reviewed by Bart Greenberg for Cabaret Scenes

Cynthia Crane

A self-described “saloon singer” who despairs that there aren’t any saloons to sing in any more, Cynthia Crane made a very welcome return to cabaret with her new show, This Is a Changing World, My Dear. Accompanied by music director John Bowen and directed by her husband, Ted Story, the chanteuse presented a show that was uniquely her. Who else might mix quotes from Noël Coward and Yogi Berra and assume her audiences know who these two disparate celebrities were?

Her set was a delicious mix of standards and contemporary songs, often with a satirical edge, kicking off with a mix of the title song, courtesy of Coward, and Cole Porter’s “Anything Goes” outfitted with new lyrics to reflect current events. More recent songs reflecting today’s world, included “Everything I Buy Was Made in China” (Clark Gesner) and “Discontinued” (Julie Gold), comic and bittersweet in turn.

Crane also had great fun with two selections with “built in expiration dates”: “You Can’t Say No to a Soldier” (Mack Gordon and Harry Warren) and “How Will We Get Her Back in the Kitchen?
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” (Zeb Carver and Jack Rollin), both dating back to World War II and very much of their time.
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On the other hand, the charm of Frank Loesser’s “What a Blessing to Know There’s a Devil” has not dimmed one whit as delivered by the singer. And while not ignoring the darker aspects of life today, the show closed with the optimistic “I Don’t Think I’ll End It All Today” (E.Y. Harburg and Harold Arlen).

The joy of the evening was perhaps expressed in one moment when, after a warm response from the audience, Crane murmured “you’re so kind,” and someone called back “you’re so good!”

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."

This Post Has One Comment

  1. joseph hosie

    Hi cynthia, it’s joe hosie charlene and phoebe’s friend. I’ll be seeing you tonight on 46th street.

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