"Christmas Magic in the Big Apple" continues Richard Holbrook's many years of presenting Christmas season shows. What sets his productions apart from many other performers is his view that this time of year is a time for celebrating family and friends. It is not simply a time of religious holidays but more of an all-encompassing recognition of the joyous spirit that moves people to engage with one another in a celebration of life. His shows are a creative mix of holiday songs with a universal theme. Holbrook commented, “Not everyone celebrates Christmas, and I don't want people coming to my show being made to feel uncomfortable." His playlists over the years have exemplified that view, with the current show being the latest in the series. [more]
Holbrook’s enduring youthful presence, twinkling charm and commanding vocal authority make him the ideal vessel to channel Lerner’s monumental achievements. Through his concisely informative commentary that is perfectly interlaced with 25 songs, we learn Lerner’s biographical essence. Wit, Harvard, Broadway, Hollywood, eight marriages, triumphs, flops and death at the age of 67 in 1986 are all crisply detailed during 80 fast-paced minutes. The presentation is a model of the tributary concert with its wide-ranging array of rarities, never before heard selections in addition to classics. The dramatic lighting and polished sound design coordinated by Rocky Noel added to the show’s depth. [more]
The white-haired O’Hare’s appealing tenor voice with its regional cadences is expressive. His instrument is in the realm of a tuneful storyteller who mines laughs and emotions with vocal flourishes and marvelous phrasing. His lack of mobility becomes a facet of his mature everyman persona as he conveys the aura of a wounded though happy warrior ready for another round. [more]
With his commanding and emotionally expressive baritone voice, the eternally boyish Holbrook wearing formal wear, vividly performs a program drawn from show tunes, Hollywood musicals, classical music, jazz and The Great American Songbook. The numbers are connected with his concise and engaging patter. [more]
“The Little Drummer Boy” was an emotionally shattering highlight of Richard Holbrook: "Always December." Mr. Holbrook’s performance of this perennial was revelatory due to the intensity he brought to it. This was performed in tandem with the equally moving “Some Children See Him.” [more]
As always, Holbrook was dapper in his signature tux and brought real class and style to the stage. His rich, tenor voice was soothing to the ears and stirred the packed audience, mostly an older crowd, into reminiscing with him about the old days when these songs were written. Their enthusiasm was undeniable, underscored by their continuous applause. Holbrook's vocal instrument is not particularly robust but, what he lacks in volume, he makes up for in passion; a great interpreter, he really feels the music and sings with a lot of heart just like the title of his cabaret. This, along with his great stage presence, connects him with his audience and they find themselves being reeled in. [more]
The debonair Holbrook sang his way down memory lane with his enchanting voice and interesting stories about Astaire that he shared in-between songs, many showing a side to the man that is relatively unknown. This is one of the aspects of the show that makes it intriguing and a must-see for those who appreciate the talents of this widely respected artist.
Most remember Fred Astaire for his singing and dancing, and for his movie roles, but there was much more to the man. [more]