Daryl Glenn: Daryl Sings Steve

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Daryl Glenn

Daryl Sings Steve

Don’t Tell Mama, NYC, November 11, 2018

Reviewed by Bart Greenberg for Cabaret Scenes

Daryl Glenn

It’s not your typical cabaret show when, during the second number, a table of four get up and leave when they realize they are actually in the wrong room, but they shout out, “You’re wonderful!” And it’s not your typical cabaret show when the accompanist comes down with laryngitis, so she can play but not sing the planned duet.

So with no rehearsal, someone else bravely volunteers to perform.

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But, she needs to use her phone to read the lyrics, turning that section into a very polished karaoke bar moment.

But Daryl Glenn is not a typical cabaret performer; he’s polished and in charge, and he rode all the erratic waves like a pro and totally enchanted us.

The show is not just a run-of-the-mill tribute to Stephen Sondheim; its greatly influenced by Glenn’s friendship, mostly epistolary but on occasion in person, with the master himself.

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This relationship allowed the singer to be a bit irreverent while still respectful of the material. It also allowed him to present some of Sondheim’s lesser-known material, such as “No, Mary Ann” cut from Follies and a Dick Tracy medley including the heartbreaking “What Can You Lose?” The star also handled the lyric-packed material of “Another Hundred People” and “Now You Know” with sharp clarity while never missing the humanity of the words.

Karen Dryer, despite her vocal distress, provided fine backup on the piano. Mardie Millit, she of the karaoke moment, later returned to the stage to offer “Moments in the Woods” and “Losing My Mind,” displaying a peerless soprano and fine acting skills as well.

This would have been an outstanding entertainment even without the peculiar incidents of the afternoon, but that seasoning only added to the delight as Glenn guided us through his very personal take on a fine song list.

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."