On Saturday, May 16th at 8pm, The Town Hall (123 West 43 Street), Times Square's landmark concert venue, presented Andrea Marcovicci‘s 60th birthday gala concert. The celebrated singer and actress is lauded as "the greatest cabaret star of her generation" by The International Herald Tribune and "the epitome of elegance and showbiz savvy" by Variety. The event coincided with the release of her first-ever "greatest hits" collection, As Time Goes By: The Best of Andrea Marcovicci on Andreasong, her own label. The CD, featuring two newly-recorded songs, includes highlights from three decades of classic recordings. The disc will be available at marcovicci.com and CDBaby.com.
Act One at The Town Hall featured Andrea performing her signature numbers, which include "These Foolish Things," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," "The Last Time I Saw Paris" and "The Folks Who Live on the Hill." In Act Two, Andrea performed songs by newer composers, most of whom will perform with her onstage. Guests included three-time Academy Award winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked), Grammy Award winner Julie Gold ("From A Distance") and John Bucchino, who sang a duet with Andrea from his recent Broadway musical A Catered Affair. Other guests included noted ASCAP composers Francesca Blumenthal, Craig Carnelia, Babbie Green, Christine Lavin and Tom Toce. Shelly Markham, Andrea's longtime music director and also a respected composer, led a five piece band and performed two of his own songs.
In addition, the concert celebrated the 90th birthday of Andrea's mother Helen Marcovicci, who last year released her latest CD, Seems Like Old Times. During the war years she appeared as Helen Stuart at top New York nightclubs including The Glass Hat, Bill Bertolotti's, La Vie Parisienne and The Maisonette at the St. Regis. Helen was invited to Paramount Pictures for a screen test, but she turned it down to raise her family.
Andrea's new CD, As Time Goes By - scheduled for release May 19 - features favorites from her recording career, mostly from out-of-print albums. Highlights include "As Time Goes By" from Marcovicci Sings Movies, which she thinks of as "America's Favorite Song"; "These Foolish Things" from What Is Love?, which, as Andrea says, "shimmers with nostalgia"; and Maury Yeston's "New Words," the now-standard which she helped popularize from her collection of the same name.
Two newly-recorded tracks, "Young At Heart" and "The Lies of Handsome Men," feature Shelly Markham on piano and Jered Egan on bass. Andrea remembers, "In 1976 ‘Young at Heart' was the very first song that I sang at the legendary club, Reno Sweeney. And now it's the closing number for my show Marcovicci Sings Movies II. So, in many ways I've come full circle. Music really does keep me young at heart."
Marcovicci recently created Skylark: A Centennial Tribute to Johnny Mercer, which was commissioned by the Savannah Music Festival, Mercer's hometown. She will perform the show later this year in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Andrea also will co-host the 23rd Annual Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs Awards on May 18 at BB King's in New York.
Andrea Marcovicci's 60th Birthday Concert is part of The Town Hall's 2009 season that concludes with Broadway By The Year®: Musicals of 1970 (June 15) and Bebel Gilberto (June 19) as part of the JVC Jazz Festival.
Built in 1921 by a group of suffragettes, The Town Hall began as a lecture hall and public forum for debates. Over the decades, the stage has been graced by Eleanor Roosevelt, Margaret Sanger, Billie Holiday, Igor Stravinsky, Bob Dylan and Miles Davis. Today the hall flourishes as a popular, affordable venue, boasting the hottest acts in rock, pop, folk, cabaret, world music, comedy and dance, including Billy Joel, Blondie, Elvis Costello, Natalie Merchant, Graham Nash, Liza Minnelli, Cyndi Lauper, Norah Jones, Andre Watts, Henry Rollins, Joe Jackson, Pink Martini, Regina Spector, Brian Adams, Aimee Mann and Dawn Upshaw. For over a decade, The Town Hall has hosted live broadcasts of Garrison Keillor's Prairie Home Companion. Over the past two-and-a-half decades, The Town Hall has produced a number of new and critically acclaimed musical series, which include The Century of Change, Not Just Jazz, Broadway By The Year® and The Broadway Cabaret Festival.
BroadwayWorld brings you exclusive photos of the after party at Saju Bistro with Andrea and her special guests for the concert.