Saturday, January 11, 2014


Last night, Betty Buckley took the stage of the Cullen Theatre at The Wortham Center.  Actually, the show started with her NOT being on stage but coming in through a side door singing When You're Good To Mama from Chicago.  And it was a simple stage.  A grand piano, some ferns on pedestals, a stool, chair, table, music stand and lights adorned the stage.

The title of the show was The Vixens of Broadway which highlights the songs written for the other woman and supporting female characters of Broadway.  So think, Ado Annie from Oklahoma! singing I Cain't Say No or Perón's Mistress in Evita singing Another Suitcase In Another Hall.  And yes, she delivered on these songs and many more.

She also did a spoofed medley of songs highlighting songs sung by the other woman or the supporting cast member that steals the show and you don't see them again until curtain call with the underlying song being You Gotta Get A Gimmick from Gypsy. So think Les Miserables, Evita, and even herself being made famous for singing one note in Memory from Cats.

There were a few songs that she sang that I was not familiar with mainly because I didn't know the musical.  These were songs from Dear World and Allegro.  I hate to admit this but I've never seen Into The Woods so the Little Red Ridinghood song was also new to me.

Until last night, I thought only Linda Eder could sing Unusual Way from Nine but I must say Betty's rendition has won me over.  The one song that didn't belong to the other woman was Corner of the Sky.  I almost cried when she sang it because it is my favorite song from Pippin.  I remember seeing that show many years ago at Casa Mañana.  It brought back some conflicting memories.  She sang it because she was in Pippin on Broadway and always wanted to perform it.  And well, when you're Betty Buckley and you have a captive audience, sing it girl!

With the exception of some sound problems, a roaming photographer and someone who was using their cell phone they must have been on Grindr or Scruff OR trying to take photos it was a wonderful evening.  And speaking of the cell phone, she politely asked the guy to turn it off because it was distracting and she handled it much better than La Lupone did a while back.

And let's hear it for the girl!  She can still hit those notes!!!!  Because she had spoofed Memory earlier in the show I was afraid she wouldn't sing it.  When she stepped on stage for her encore her stance let me know that she was going to sing it even though the musical intro didn't give it away.  Throughout the song she stayed in the character of Grizabella and wowed us.  It was another moment that almost made me cry.

I thought that would be the end of the show BUT at the request of Scott Brogan from Brilliant Lecture Series  she sang Send In The Clowns from A Little Night Music.

Thank you Betty for sharing your talent with us last night and you did sparkle in more more ways than one.

Betty was going to be signing her Ah, Men! The Boys of Broadway cd after the show.  I got sidetracked in the lobby by visiting with people including Lydia Baehr from Lydia Baehr Public Relations.  Plus, the previous evening at Tenenbaum & Co. I had already met her; it was the highlight of my week; another wonderful memory.

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