‘Follies has been an incredible experience so far. At 24 having the opportunity to work with such fantastic people and in The National Theatre of all places is so overwhelming. I honestly pinch myself most days I’m in the building. ‘
I have to hold up my hands and say I was pleasantly surprised by more than a few of the songs here. The first two-thirds of ‘The Rose’ are genuinely spine-tinglingly lovely and even when the bombast kicks in for the finale, it stills maintains a heartfelt sincerity.
Recorded just after he completed his 2014/5 return to Cabaret at Studio 54, Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs – Live at the Cafe Carlyle is one of the best cabaret records I’ve had the pleasure of listening to.
Supported by the superb musicianship of Will Van Dyke and The Whiskey 5, Ashford is an effortlessly delightful performer, whether ripping through the vocal splendour of Dreamgirls’ ‘One Night Only’ or a Donna Summer medley, nodding to Studio 54’s illustrious past.
With the National’s highly anticipated production of Follies about to start previews, I thought I’d listen to about a hundred different versions of perhaps its most famous song – Losing My Mind – and try and decide on a top ten.
Not every performer is able to ascend these heady heights, but it gives me enormous pleasure to report that Josefina Gabrielle delivers one of those utterly transcendent moments with a nigh-on perfect interpretation of Desiree Armfeldt in A Little Night Music at the Watermill.