Author Archive: Mark Dundas Wood

Mark Dundas Wood is an arts/entertainment journalist and dramaturg. He began writing reviews for BistroAwards.com in 2011. More recently he has contributed "Cabaret Setlist" articles about cabaret repertoire. Other reviews and articles have appeared in theaterscene.net and clydefitchreport.com, as well as in American Theatre and Back Stage. As a dramaturg, he has worked with New Professional Theatre and the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

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Cabaret Setlist: “Cooking Breakfast for the One I Love” — Music by Henry Tobias, Lyrics by Billy Rose

Cabaret Setlist: “Cooking Breakfast for the One I Love” — Music by Henry Tobias, Lyrics by Billy Rose

September 6, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Article #17 in this ongoing series We learned recently that Beanie Feldstein will headline next year in a Broadway revival of 1964’s Funny Girl. Once again, the name of that musical’s central character, real-life entertainer Fanny Brice (1891-1951), will be on people’s minds and lips. Brice’s career […]

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Return Engagements: Singer Meg Flather Remains Stuck with a Thing Called Hope

Return Engagements: Singer Meg Flather Remains Stuck with a Thing Called Hope

August 16, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

(Third and final installment of a limited series on Return Engagements.) On February 21, 2020, singer-songwriter Meg Flather performed her first-ever gig at Manhattan’s Beach Café. She was, at the time, about to put into gear another, more focused show—about Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. The Beach engagement was called A Cockeyed Optimist, after […]

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Return Engagements: Spoken-Word Performer Joe Gulla Inches His Way Back to the Spotlight

Return Engagements: Spoken-Word Performer Joe Gulla Inches His Way Back to the Spotlight

August 2, 2021 | By | 2 Comments

(Article #2 in a limited series on “Return Engagements.”) “You do all this stuff to build momentum,” says monologist and playwright Joe Gulla, “and when you get some, you kind of want to ride it for a little bit.” Indeed, Gulla’s career seemed to be on a roll during the earliest weeks of 2020. For […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “He’s a Runner”  —  Music and Lyrics by Laura Nyro

Cabaret Setlist: “He’s a Runner” — Music and Lyrics by Laura Nyro

July 19, 2021 | By | 2 Comments

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Article # 16 in this ongoing series. There are auspicious recording debuts, and then there is More Than a New Discovery, an album by singer/songwriter Laura Nyro (1947-’97), recorded in 1966 and released on the Verve Folkways label the following year. The album contains compositions that would […]

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Return Engagements: John Lloyd Young Will Ride the Disco ‘Round in His Return to Live Performance

Return Engagements: John Lloyd Young Will Ride the Disco ‘Round in His Return to Live Performance

July 4, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

(Article #1 in a limited series on “Return Engagements.”) John Lloyd Young is ready to boogie on down. (Then again, who isn’t?) The Tony-winning singer-actor, who starred as Frankie Valli of the Four Seasons in both the Broadway and film versions of Jersey Boys, has worked diligently to remain engaged with his career and to stay […]

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“The Reason to Sing — A Guide to Acting While Singing”: A Chat with Craig Carnelia About His New Book

“The Reason to Sing — A Guide to Acting While Singing”: A Chat with Craig Carnelia About His New Book

June 14, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

Between 1992 and 2017, singer and composer/lyricist Craig Carnelia (Working, Sweet Smell of Success) taught acting classes for singers in a studio on West 71st Street in Manhattan. His students included members of the New York City theatre community. They may have been prepping for auditions or working on a particular role or song. Sutton […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “Blue Skies” — Music and Lyrics by Irving Berlin

Cabaret Setlist: “Blue Skies” — Music and Lyrics by Irving Berlin

May 23, 2021 | By | 1 Comment

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Article #15 in this ongoing series. The simple-yet-engaging standard “Blue Skies” has the distinction of being the most successful Irving Berlin number ever to debut in a Rodgers & Hart musical. It’s not clear exactly when Berlin had begun composing the song, but, according to biographer Lawrence Bergreen, the […]

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Now You’ll Know: Rick Pender’s “The Stephen Sondheim Encyclopedia”

Now You’ll Know: Rick Pender’s “The Stephen Sondheim Encyclopedia”

May 10, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

All right, so you’ve read pretty much everything that’s ever been written about American songwriter Stephen Sondheim, and you’re thinking: Why on earth would I need to have something called The Stephen Sondheim Encyclopedia? Let’s put your Sondheim knowledge to the test with three questions (no Googling allowed!): Who was originally hired to play Fredrik […]

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Cabaret Setlist: Springing Forward with Three Songs of Hope and Happiness

Cabaret Setlist: Springing Forward with Three Songs of Hope and Happiness

March 29, 2021 | By | 2 Comments

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Article #14 in this ongoing series In the most recent installments of “Cabaret Setlist,” we’ve looked at the brilliant-but-dark “Lush Life” and the splendid-but sad “When October Goes.” I love these musical explorations of anguish and heartbreak, but I realize they’re not the only sorts of songs […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “When October Goes” – Music by Barry Manilow, lyrics by Johnny Mercer

Cabaret Setlist: “When October Goes” – Music by Barry Manilow, lyrics by Johnny Mercer

March 1, 2021 | By | Add a Comment

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Song #13 in this running series The lucky thirteenth installment of Cabaret Setlist centers on “When October Goes,” a short, bittersweet, and evocative ballad of love and loss. The song, which debuted in 1984, has gradually come into its own as a modern standard. It has a […]

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