54 Sings Broadway’s Greatest Hits

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54 Sings Broadway’s Greatest Hits

Feinstein’s/54 Below, NYC, March 5, 2019

Reviewed by Ron Forman for Cabaret Scenes

Hunter Ryan Herdlicka

The 38th edition of Scott Siegel’s 54 Sings Broadway’s Greatest Hits Series continued his amazing record of bringing together a different cast of marvelous singers to perform some of the very best songs Broadway musicals have to offer. This edition featured songs taken from every decade from the 1920s to the present. Siegel has the remarkable ability to match each performer with a song appropriate for his or her voice and style of singing. His interesting and amusing introductions to each song provide a nice transition between numbers. Music director Ryan Shirar was able to match his work on piano perfectly with each vocalist.

The very beautiful Maxine Linehan opened the show with a lively “Color My World.

” Hunter Ryan Herdlicka (pictured) first showed off his strong voice with “Younger Than Springtime” and returned for a wonderfully comic “Penny in My Pocket,” a song that was cut from the original production of Hello, Dolly! but happily was put back into the recent revival. John Easterlin thrilled the audience twice, without the use of a microphone; his operatic voice soared on two songs taken from operettas of the 1920s: “Serenade” and “One Alone.” The very talented Brian Charles Rooney performed a moving “I Am What I Am,” beginning softly and building to a spectacular climax.


Rooney, a man of many voices, used his feminine voice to hilariously perform “Sweet Transvestite.” Marcus Lovett combined drama and comedy with his performance of “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat,” with the audience clapping along.


He returned to bring the show up-to-date with “I’ll Be Back” from Hamilton. Pepe Nufrio performed an ultra dramatic “Gethsemene” from Jesus Christ Superstar, made memorable by his holding the final notes on the phrase “See how I die.” Gigi Encarnacion made the most of her debut at Feinstein’s/54 Below with a dramatically performed “I Am Changing.” Linehan closed the show in spectacular manner with her performance of “With One Look.”

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.