‘Ol’ Blue Eyes could be right there with you’: SINATRA RAW – Live at Zedel ★★★★

In Cabaret, London theatre, Musicals, Opinion, Reviews by Jonathan BazLeave a Comment

Live At Zedel, London – until 20 January 2019

Transferring to the capital from a sold-out run at the Edinburgh Fringe, Richard Shelton’s tribute to Frank Sinatra makes for a fabulous evening. Accompanied by the excellent Michael Roulston on piano, Shelton adopts Sinatra’s persona for the gig – transporting the action to The Purple Room in Palm Springs and, in amidst a selection of the crooner’s greatest hits, delivers a well-rehearsed and meticulously researched whirl through Sinatra’s life.

Shelton’s script touches on Sinatra’s youth, The Rat Pack, his (alleged) links to The Mob and JFK, as well as his politics and fierce support of America’s civil rights movement. There are moments perhaps when the narrative seems a little lengthy and self-indulgent, but these are more than made up for by Shelton’s sensational voice.

The songs are classics, with the script offering occasional footnotes alluding to the numbers’ histories. But for 75 minutes of mellifluous wonder, Sinatra: Raw cannot be beaten. Sit back as you sip on a vodka martini or scotch on the rocks and as Shelton sings, close your eyes, and Ol’ Blue Eyes could be right there with you!

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Jonathan Baz
Theatre critic Jonathan Baz is London-based but with a coverage that extends far beyond the capital to include regional theatre as well as occasional forays into Europe and the USA. He enjoys reviewing new writing as much as seeing fresh interpretations of well-known plays and musicals. Jonathan also sits on the judging panel of London's Off West End Awards ("the Offies") and has published numerous interviews and features with leading figures in the film and theatre world. Away from the arts, Jonathan is a practising Chartered Accountant with a number of clients in the entertainment industries. He blogs at www.jonathanbaz.com and tweets at @MrJonathanBaz.
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Jonathan Baz on RssJonathan Baz on Twitter
Jonathan Baz
Theatre critic Jonathan Baz is London-based but with a coverage that extends far beyond the capital to include regional theatre as well as occasional forays into Europe and the USA. He enjoys reviewing new writing as much as seeing fresh interpretations of well-known plays and musicals. Jonathan also sits on the judging panel of London's Off West End Awards ("the Offies") and has published numerous interviews and features with leading figures in the film and theatre world. Away from the arts, Jonathan is a practising Chartered Accountant with a number of clients in the entertainment industries. He blogs at www.jonathanbaz.com and tweets at @MrJonathanBaz.

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