Album Review: Tony Award Winner Victoria Clark Sings Maury … – Broadway World

Album Review: Tony Award Winner Victoria Clark Sings Maury Yeston's Song Cycle As A Soprano & An Actress On DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRAHeigh Ho, dear lovely rainbow tribe, Bobby Patrick, your rainbow reviewer is back in CD-Land to offer another broken-down breakdown of a new music release. So, strap in and get ready, as Bobby goes on the record ABOUT the record.
This week’s album entry in the BobbyFiles comes from two of Broadway’s finest – Composer Maury Yeston and singer Victoria Clark, both Tony Award winners who worked together on Yeston’s hit musical about a disaster – TITANIC. Originally written and released 30 years ago as DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & PIANO this ten-song cycle telling the story of a day in the life of a woman who is lamenting the loss of a great love has been reimagined, adding a 37-piece orchestra, arrangements by Larry Hochmann, conducted by Ted Sperling, and a legitimate soprano in the person of Clark, who, after a 4-month rehearsal journey, gives it her all on all of the acting layers within DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRA. The 35 minutes spent with Ms. Clark as she wanders through Central Park on a cold, winter’s day, feeling all the feels of someone who has had to say goodbye when they didn’t want to, to someone who left but didn’t have the courtesy to disappear, is an alternately sad, longing filled and, ultimately, uplifting stroll. Of the legitimate sopranos working on the Broadway today – voices like Chenoweth, O’Hara, Benanti, etc. – Clark’s pipes are probably the brightest and lightest, able to produce operatic-sounding intonations with clarity but without the weight of a heavy “legitimacy.” Her voice is pretty and her acting choices are palpable as they reach out to the listener, begging for our understanding.
Album Review: Tony Award Winner Victoria Clark Sings Maury Yeston's Song Cycle As A Soprano & An Actress On DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRA
A solitary voice on a solitary journey that goes something like this… DECEMBER SNOW – The loneliness appears immediately in the instrumental intro. Her voice, so legit, speaking of the story of a love ended, and remembering the joy that now causes her pain. WHERE ARE YOU NOW – The feeling of a woman angry at being left alone in NYC, of all places, with the beat beat beat of the Subway train creating the dramatic tension of that anger. PLEASE LET’S NOT EVEN SAY HELLO – Telling the inevitable moment of the dreaded post-break-up encounter where time has not healed… Still carrying the feelings and the longing, afraid to let go, afraid to not. WHEN YOUR LOVE IS NEW remembers the spring of romance and the spring in our steps because of love. The music is spring in December. These are not painful memories, but delightful ones. The good times. Her soprano lifts this all up until the final strains that are tinged with remorse in the music. BOOKSELLER IN THE RAIN – With its minor key beginning in the flutes, then dropping to the clarinets in the intro, and then the drama in her whispering voice hints at the desperation she is trying to keep at bay. The sights on the streets that she is using to distract her. The longing to travel to the world of the books being sold there, that she can read, and use reading to bury her grief. Books, books will rescue her. The rain comes and the books disappear and can offer no respite today. “I’m a closed book, too” she laments. MY GRANDMOTHER’S LOVE LETTERS – From a time when letters were still a thing, she learns of her grandmother’s love at 17. Love that grows old and ends in death do us part. The thing this woman does not have but revels in her grandmother having had it. I AM LONGING – Love ends and the longing that comes after, to be loved again. Feeling certain it will never come. Searching and asking for love. This song honestly is a bit repetitive, but Victoria’s understated sadness, especially at the end, mines the real emotion of real longing. I HAD A DREAM ABOUT YOU – This one is tricky, as it draws the listener in with its humor in the guise of happiness. Bright and sunny until the realization that it was only a dream, then diminished chords and driving beats, to the end, drive home that dreadful feeling of waking up. BY THE RIVER – The saddest of the cycle, as the river calls to a broken woman. The river’s voice, as unyielding as the icy flow of water in December. Will she or won’t she? This one is another minor key drama since the river is offering the promise of freedom in her waters to the sea. Finally WHAT A RELIEF – A quiet triumph over grief. She decides to live with the pain until it becomes memory. That moment after when the love left behind takes a breath and decides to move forward and what a relief that will be.
Clark’s approach to this work as an actress and a classically trained soprano shows her consummate ability to marry the two into a single performance that does not make one more important than the other. The journey she takes us on to know this woman and her plight is beautiful in both emotional depths and a triumph at the end. If you’ve known the peaks and valleys of love, my angels, then this recording will remind you in ways that are palatable rather than heart-wrenchingly unbearable. There are no heavy tragedies here, just the walk through the stages of getting over a sad breakup and, hopefully, coming out the other side with a whole, if slightly more sensitive, skin. Not having heard this piece in other incarnations, Bobby can’t really make comparisons, and why would we want to, anyway? Ms. Clark and Mr. Yeston’s latest collab is a lovely walk through our lovely New York City, despite the sad raindrops that fall throughout. Music fans who enjoy big, hefty song cycles might find this one a bit of light fare but theatre fans who love fine, judicious acting will truly appreciate DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRA the way this rainbow writer did and so…
This one gets a solid 4 Out Of 5 Rainbows – Put this one in your collection today.
You Can Hear DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRA On The Spotifies: HERE
Victoria Clark Photo By: Sophie Elgort
Album Review: Tony Award Winner Victoria Clark Sings Maury Yeston's Song Cycle As A Soprano & An Actress On DECEMBER SONGS FOR VOICE & ORCHESTRA

Debbie Gibson Serves Sweet WINTERLICIOUS
Album Review: Opera Diva Regina Zona Joins With Guitar Star Sean Harkness For Some Holiday Cheer On Their New CD IT MUST HAVE BEEN THE MISTLETOE
Vanessa Racci JAZZY ITALIAN Worth A Listen
MATILDA THE MUSICAL Album Review
Heigh Ho Friends & “Family”! Bobby Patrick your RAINBOW Reviewer here. Putting the silent T in CABARET to bring you all the T. I am a queer reviewer, specializing in the seedy under… (read more about this author)
Most Popular

16 Broadway Shows Will Close in the Next Two Months

The Best Theater of 2022: Shows that Ruled the Year

Video: Patti LuPone Takes Over Television

Video: Amber Iman is Telling Her Story with Audible Originals

16 Broadway Shows Will Close in the Next Two Months
The Best Theater of 2022: Shows that Ruled the Year
Video: Patti LuPone Takes Over Television
Video: Amber Iman is Telling Her Story with Audible Originals
BroadwayWorld TV
TICKET CENTRAL

Ticket Central
SHOP SOME LIKE IT HOT

MJ, THE MUSICAL
BEETLEJUICE
HADESTOWN
Ticket Central
STAGE MAG
HAMILTON
INTO THE WOODS
THE MUSIC MAN

Recommended for You

News + special offers for Broadway Shows
Get Broadway News
Follow Us

 Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

BWW Sister Sites

Apps

source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *