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Pangea

On the Town with Chip Deffaa: As Nightclubs Begin Coming Back

July 20, 2021

Gianni Valenti, who runs one of the city’s best-known and most important nightspots, Birdland Jazz Club on 44th Street, deserves a lot of credit for leading the way.  He was one of the first club owners to announce plans to reopen.  He’s reopened strong, booking lots of respected artists, like Delfeayo Marsalis, Allan Harris, Ken Peplowski, etc. (For Birdland's full schedule, go to www.birdlandjazz.com.)  And he’s keeping prices as low as possible to make sure the place is packed.   For many shows at Birdland this summer, you can buy tickets online and pay only a nominal cover charge—some nights just 99 cents (plus a service charge).  That’s the same cover charge the club had when it first opened way back in 1949. [more]

Me & Mr. Jones: My Intimate Relationship with David Bowie

January 20, 2020

With her richly expressive character voice, alternating between appealing deepness and wonderfully hitting high notes, she beautifully does justice to each song. We see every hallowed surrealistic image contained in “Life On Mars” due to her precise phrasing and crisp enunciation. Written in 1995, with its incendiary title, harsh lyrics and considering the state of the nation today, “I’m Afraid of Americans” becomes a prophetic terrifying showstopper as performed by the dynamic Cion. [more]

Lavender Songs: A Queer Weimar Berlin Cabaret

November 6, 2016

"Lavender Songs: A Queer Cabaret in Weimar Berlin" has the mature and slim Mr. Lawrence in drag virtually for the entire length of the performance. In a dirty-blonde curled wig, his face garishly made up, twirling a red and purple boa, and wearing a sleeveless sequined black dress, Lawrence is like an Otto Dix painting come to life. [more]

Saloons: Some Enchanted Evenings

May 14, 2016

Cabaret has always been a mixed bag. The golden age is gone. However, in today's schizo world of nightclubs, things are looking pretty good. It is a milieu unique in the entertainment industry. And, it continues to reinvent itself. The late cabaret critic Martin Schaeffer wrote in Back Stage in 1993,“There cannot be a better night of classic American music than a Bobby Short gig at The Carlyle.” He was right; especially if you're a purist of the Great American Songbook. [more]