Natasha Yvette Williams: It’s Just Love

Natasha Yvette Williams

It’s Just Love

The Green Room 42, NYC, November 12, 2018  

Reviewed by Randolph B. Eigenbrode for Cabaret Scenes

Natasha Yvette Williams

Natasha Yvette Williams is undeniably relatable. From her gospel-delivering vocal stylings and a conversational appeal to her patter, seemingly from the heart, she always appears to be sharing something special. She (literally) takes her shoes off and connects with her audience.

Yet, in this offering, much more concert than cabaret, Williams gets somewhat lost. Rough around the edges and slightly under prepared, the piece never quite reaches a boil.

Chalk it up to an unfocused theme. Starting as a tribute to veterans and then to lessons learned from her parents, Williams finally landed on songs that make her “feel good.” Still, it’s hard to relate when you’re not being led.

Luckily, Williams can put over a song like a pro. “Hope” (Jason Robert Brown) capitalized on her engaging allure, serving as an underplayed anthem for change.
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A poignant “Where Are the Sounds” (Bil Wright/Georgia Stitt) let her take her time, pulling the heartstrings of even the most cynical.

At times, she takes on a sage-like quality. By sharing her tribulations in two Gospel selections—“In the Midst of It All” (Kevin Bond) and “God Provides” (Kirk Franklin)—she is at her most relatable. The simple delivery and emotional connection only double down on the authenticity of her messaging.

Williams’ availability comes off as so simple, yet it’s a quality very few master in a cabaret room.

So, it’s no surprise that the highlight of the evening comes from an Aretha Franklin barn-burner, “Spirit in the Dark.
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” Williams sings to the rafters with a forward-placed clarity and pinging resonance. The rhythmic delivery, along with a call and response, ignited the audience into a frenzy with Williams, finally, leading like a luminary.

This showing brought love and laughter, but unfortunately it needed another few hours to really cook.

Randolph B. Eigenbrode

Randolph is the newest addition to the writing staff at Cabaret Scenes. He is a cabaret teacher, previously teaching with legend Erv Raible, and his students have gone on to success in the field with sold-out shows and many awards. He is also a director and that, combined with a knowledge of the art form and techniques that cabaret performing encompasses, makes him love reviewing NYC’s cabaret scene. When not catching the Big Apple’s crazy talent, Randolph loves 1970s variety shows, mall Chinese food, Meryl Streep films and a good cold glass of pinot grigio.