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My most recent single release - "My True North" - is now available on Bandcamp. Open my profile and click on "audio clip".

Tuesday, July 2, 2024

A Wonderful & Surprising Re-Entry

There's no question that growing up with the Temptations music helped to make Ain't Too Proud To Beg a peak Broadway experience. If Covid hadn't shut down the world soon after I saw it in February 2020, it's possible I would have made my first-ever return visit to a show. 

Because my exposure to Alicia Keys's music has been quite limited, my enthusiasm about seeing Hell's Kitchen was muted. But I'm always up for hearing new music and I'd been blown away recently when a friend introduced me to an all-vocal version of Empire State of Mind featuring just Keys. Still, my last Broadway show had been over four years ago and that one had me reliving my early musical life with the Temps.  

My ambivalence dissipated the moment Hell's Kitchen began. If jukebox musicals are your jam, this is a show to see. Anchored by Keys's infectious music, the dynamic singing and electrifying choreography brought new life to an oft-told story of a young person finding herself. I was never out of the spell and moved several times, first by the Act One closer - Perfect Way to Die. The penultimate song - No One - re-purposed as a mother/daughter duet, and the rousing finale, Empire State of Mind, were unimprovable.  My new experiences with the latter have catapulted it into the musical stratosphere alongside some of my all-time favorites. 

I'd enjoy hearing your reaction if/when you see Hell's Kitchen. What a wonderful and surprising re-entry to the Great White Way this was for me.  

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