8.8/10
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Bernadette Peters in Concert (1998)

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Paul Baker
Glenn Carter
Drew Jaymson
Michael Strassen
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To be cherished
13 October 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Any Bernadette Peters fan will find this concert a treasure. Apart from instances of too bright lighting and pitchy violin playing(in all fairness these are rather nit-picky criticisms that are not really enough to hinder the performance itself at all), as a Peters and Stephen Sondheim admirer this concert is not to be missed. Peters is on superb form, she looks great still with her beautiful doll-like appearance and her voice is still the angelic and dynamic one I fell in love with. Her musicianship, diction and phrasing are spot on as well, and she doesn't just interpret the songs, she inhabits them with a riveting stage presence. A lot of the programme is Sondheim and considering how Sondheim's music is very difficult to sing and interpret that is quite a compliment, then again we are talking about one of the great Sondheim interpreters here so you don't really expect anything less. Her renditions of Broadway Baby, Not a Day Goes By, Unexpected Song, The Way You Look Tonight and The Last Midnight are especially noteworthy, though throughout she is never less than very good. The songs of course are beautifully written with some ingenious lyric writing, while the concert is well-shot and there is a real spontaneity in the atmosphere as well as the intimacy required for some of the songs. The orchestrations compliment the music and Peters' voice beautifully and there is some fine playing all round, from the pianist in particular. Overall, a great concert and one to be cherished, while there are one or two very small imperfections the quality of the music and Bernadette Peters' singing-acting make those imperfections seem like nothing. 9.5/10 Bethany Cox


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