Author Archive: Charles Nelson

Charles Nelson, a former professor in theatre, specializes in world theatre history, playscript and character analysis, stage direction, the American playwright and musical theatre, opera history, dance history, and the Great American Songbook. He has an MFA in Opera Direction, and was an Adjunct Professor at Montclair State University. He has been an editorial researcher at "People" magazine, NBC News, and Condé Nast.

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Club Review: Ann Talman’s “The Shadow of Her Smile”

Club Review: Ann Talman’s “The Shadow of Her Smile”

June 1, 2022 | By | Add a Comment

Unique is the best word—maybe the only word—to describe the song-stacked narrative that Ann Talman has created for her cabaret act at Feinstein’s/54Below. She calls the show The Shadow of Her Smile, after the haunting, Oscar-winning song that Johnny Mandel and Paul Francis Webster wrote for Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton to emote to in 1965’s The Sandpiper—but that’s […]

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Club Review: “To Steve with Love: Liz Callaway Celebrates Sondheim”

Club Review: “To Steve with Love: Liz Callaway Celebrates Sondheim”

April 7, 2022 | By | Add a Comment

Ever feel like you’re Sondheimed-out?  Perhaps, but if it’s Liz Callaway singing the late great master’s songs, as she did recently at Feinstein’s/54 Below in her newest show, To Steve with Love: Liz Callaway Celebrates Sondheim, I guarantee you that she’ll leave you wanting for more. You may already be aware of the personal, professional, […]

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Club Review: Klea Blackhurst’s “One of the Girls—The Words and Music of Jerry Herman”

Club Review: Klea Blackhurst’s “One of the Girls—The Words and Music of Jerry Herman”

March 3, 2022 | By | 1 Comment

Klea Blackhurst is one of those rare songbirds who can build a show out of intelligent patter and amusing anecdotes. Her act, which she brought to Birdland Feb. 21, is called One of the Girls, subtitled The Words and Music of Jerry Herman. She comes by that title honestly: Herman himself designated her one of […]

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The John Pizzarelli Quintet: “Tribute to George Shearing”

The John Pizzarelli Quintet: “Tribute to George Shearing”

February 13, 2022 | By | 4 Comments

John Pizzarelli‘s weapon of choice is his guitar, and the two have traveled down too many musical roads to list.  As I entered Birdland the other night to hear a tribute to George Shearing by the John Pizzarelli Quintet, I was reminded of the day his father—Bucky, a marvelous and much-missed man of the guitar […]

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