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Better than Ice Cream

On a whim, we got tickets yesterday morning to see Barbara Cook and Friends last night. It was a benefit performance for World AIDS Day (a day late) supporting Interact Worldwide, which is an international AIDS charity based here in the UK.

The concert was amazing. Ms Cook is now 80 years old (another reason for the evening's celebration) and is every bit as vibrant on stage as the last time I saw her (some five years ago at Lincoln Center). She is a spectacular performer, her vocals as strong as any of the whipper-snappers she shared the stage with. The fact that she filled the house with an un-miked version of "Some Other Time", which was simply beautiful, was a testament to the art of vocal performance.

Her friends included Ruthie Henshall, Siān Phillips, and a slightly over-the-top Elaine Page (who sang "I Know Him So Well" as a solo and a very dramatic "Cry Me a River").

Aside from Ms Cook's brilliantly understated "No More/No One is Alone" (which had me weeping and subsequently listening to Into the Woods for a good portion of today, the highlight of the evening for me was a number I'd never heard before from an artist I didn't know — Sally Ann Triplett. She sang a hauntingly beautiful ballad about a suicidal young woman called (as best I can tell) "East River Calling." I can't find anything out about the song, but I'd love to get my hands on a recording of it. Anybody know it or who wrote it? Is it from a show?

No more questions.

I might not be thrilled about the Spice Girls, but I think I've earned extra points on my gay card with last night's stroll down musical theatre memory lane.

Witches can be right. Giants can be good.
You decide what's right, you decide what's good.

Happy Birthday to Barbara Cook, and thank you for the show.