Author: Edward Kliszus

Duke Ellington Sacred Concerts

For the first time in 35 years, Duke Ellington’s Sacred Concerts returned to the stage. Envisioned initially by Ellington as a “Festival of Grace,” provenance for Sacred Concerts is informed by a broad spectrum of jazz, classical and choral music, spirituals, dance, gospel, and blues. Ellington’s compositional product in this venue consisted of a triptych of 34 songs originally recorded in 1965, 1968, and 1973 respectively. It can be argued that an august Ellington facing his mortality considered his Sacred Concerts among his most significant works.

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Wendy Moten at Birdland

Wendy Moten ascended to the Birdland stage with a smile and charm that lit up the room. From her first words and the comfortable swing tempo of her first song, All of Me, Moten emerged as a poised, expressive, and consummate artist. She conveyed her passionate insights with a beautiful, clear voice and through her ability to command any genre she desired.

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Radiotheatre presents The Haunting of 85 East 4th Street

The rich baritone voice of raconteur Frank Zilinyi launched Radiotheatre’s deliciously macabre exordium of The Haunting of 85 East 4th Street, a dark, spellbinding tale of New York City history, horror, mysterious sounds, ghosts, curses, cannibals, occult, exorcisms, diablerie, and doom. Zilinyi and his partner Zero Boy were our able cicerones, guiding us through a hypnotizing tale of gripping suspense and almost unspeakable dread.

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Insomnia

Blake Allen’s Insomnia is a cerebral, enigmatic, and mystifying artistic creation chronicling a night of an insomniac narrator. Based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story “Sleep and Waking” (1934), Allen mobilizes the power of music to dramatize and intensify the import of the conflicting tensions of the restive, lone sufferer.

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L’Amour `a Passy

Benjamin Franklin the man emerged as a frowzy, flawed, and crafty roué, relentlessly attempting to seduce the married Mme Brillon. Franklin deftly engaged and modified his façon de parler and wits to enamor the charming Brillon while also initiating, to no avail, games of chess with personal stakes to tarnish Brillon’s marital honor.

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