Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasano, the popular husband-and-wife team equally at home in the worlds of pop and jazz, will debut their new show,
”Helluva Town: A New York Soundtrack,” from January 4th to 15th during their annual sojourn in the legendary Algonquin Oak Room Supper Club. The duo will celebrate the love/hate affair most New Yorkers have with their city through the songs of Leonard Bernstein, Rodgers & Hart, Comden & Green, Strouse & Adams, Coleman & Leigh, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell and other explorers of the Big Apple in good times and bad. Among their selections are “Lullaby of Broadway,” “Comes Once in a Lifetime,” “My Time of Day,” “Lucky to be Me” and “How About You?”
If the mantra of real estate is location, location, location cabaret’s shadow image must be material, material, material. And that is why this duo has blossomed, since our last viewing, into a first rate act that deserves your patronage. Ms. Fasano’s voice has lost the edge it previously had and blends, rather than competes, with Mr. Comstock’s smooth, reedy baritone. His piano, always excellent, is enhanced by the terrific bassist, Sean Smith. Avoiding clichés and the too many obscure show tune trap. the team manages to tease (just offering hint of “LULLABY OF BROADWAY” in an arrangement with “TWO SLEEPY PEOPLE”), tempt, with a dynamite version of COME BACK TO ME” (Burton Lane, Alan Jay Lerner) by Fasano and tear one’s emotions, with a heart rendering interpretation of “MY TIME OF DAY” (Frank Loesser) by Comstock. “THE HAMPTONS” (Jim Lowe) will delight any professional New Yorker, with a desire to show off. But again, that’s material or should we say: material, material, material.
Shows are Tuesday through Thursday at 8:30 and Friday and Saturday at 8:30 and 11. There is a $50 cover charge plus either a $30 food and beverage minimum or a $60 prix fixe dinner. Reservations: firstname.lastname@example.org or 212 419 9331.
Winners of the 2010 Nightlife Award as Outstanding Cabaret Duo, Eric and Barbara last appeared in the Oak Room in February with their highly praised show, “This Thing Called Love,” of which Rex Reed observed, “If love is a wave, they are riding the crest of it.” Though they’ve been compared to Nick and Nora, Fred and Ginger and Lunt and Fontanne, Comstock and Fasano’s unique blend of wit and sensuality is all their own. They’ve performed at Carnegie Hall, Feinstein’s, The Carlyle and Birdland, and have headlined at Caramoor, Cooperstown Music Festival, Guild Hall in East Hampton, St. Louis, Philadelphia and Palm Beach. Eric Comstock created and contributed his masterful piano and vocals to the hit revues “Singing Astaire,” “Made for the Movies” and “Our Sinatra” (which debuted in the Oak Room and played 1300 performances off-Broadway). His new CD, “bitter/sweet” debuts this month, joining previous releases “Young Man of Manhattan” and “All Hart.” A multi-award winner from Manhattan Association of Cabarets, Barbara Fasano has appeared in musical theatre productions of Wonderful Town, Grease and Side by Side by Sondheim. She won a Back Stage Bistro Award Record of the Year for “Written in the Stars,”a Harold Arlen songbook, and another for “The Girls of Summer,” featuring songs from Springsteen to Sondheim. She will release “Roundabout,” based on her one-woman show, later this year.
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