Lea Salonga’s performance at New York’s Cafe Carlyle gets good reviews from the New York Times


Lea Salonga being interviewed by GMA-7’s Ryan Songalia about "New York in June." She is wearing a dress by New York-based Filipino designer Robin Tomas.



(SPOT.ph) The opening of world-renowned performer Lea Salonga's new cabaret show, "New York in June," at the Café Carlyle received positive reviews from the New York Times. Writer Stephen Holden said the program was "much smarter, more carefully conceived" compared to Salonga's performance at the club last year.

"Ms. Salonga's bright, metallically edged voice is a shiny all-purpose instrument that confidently establishes its dominion over whatever musical setting surrounds it," wrote Holden. "Because her accompaniment consists of only piano (Larry Yurman), bass (John Miller) and guitar (Jack Cavari), she isn't required to belt, which is all to the good in an intimate cabaret setting."

According to the review, Salonga’s most poignant performances were her rendition of Joshua Salzman-Ryan Cunningham's "Just Not Now," a song about youth not giving in to true love, from the Off-Broadway musical I Love You Because and "Blackbird," a song about love’s timing.

Salonga, who joked about ironically played both a Disney princess and a prostitute, also put contrasting songs vis-à-vis each other. Holden noted: "The most incisive juxtaposition of songs in the show paired ’I Enjoy Being a Girl,’ from Flower Drum Song, delivered in a tone of angry sarcasm, with "Femininity," from the 1963 Disney movie Summer Magic, sung with honeyed perkiness." According to Holden, Salonga also defiantly delivered an "exhilarating version" of Sondheim's "Everybody Says Don't"--proving that she was a performer who determinedly leaps over every hurdle.

Lea Salonga performs until June 25 at the Café Carlyle, at the Carlyle Hotel, 35 East 76th Street, Manhattan. Visit carlyle.com for more details.


For more on this story, log on to the New York Times.

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