Krtizerland’s sixth anniversary show, The Songs That Got Away 6, performed at Sterling’s Upstairs at the Federal on Sunday, September 4 was in the words of the immortal Ed Sullivan “a very big shew!” For a Kritzerland show, it featured a larger cast than usual, ten, and each performer got two chances to strut their stuff for the capacity audience. Richard Allen provided the excellent musical direction and accompaniment on piano.
First up was Jenna Lea Rosen who got the show off to a rousing, energetic start with a put-together of two Gershwin tunes “I Can’t Be Bothered Now” and “Kickin’ the Clouds Away.” She later joined her friend Sami Staitman in a comic duet to Irving Berlin’s “Anything You Can Do.” Producer Bruce Kimmel, besides providing his hilarious running commentary and fact-checking on the songs and the shows that spawned them, tweaked Berlin’s lyrics to make the song really work for a pair of teenage BFFs, including a texting duel. Staitman got a chance to exhibit her growing maturity with the two bitter breakup songs “Wherever He Ain’t” and “No More” from Mack and Mabel and The Goodbye Girl, respectively.
Kimmel paid tribute to the genius of Danny Kaye with a rendition of “The Maladjusted Jester” from the comedy classic The Court Jester. He later went into fine crooner mode with “That’s All.” Nick Santa Maria strummed his ukulele through “I Can’t Begin to Tell You” before treating the audience to his Al Jolson tribute with “Rockabye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody.” Reagan Pasternak gave a quirky rendition of the quirky “Somewhere That’s Green” from Little Shop of Horrors before delivering a breathy version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Tell Me on a Sunday.” Marc Baron Ginsberg brought his Broadway leading man looks and vocal chops to the Kritzerland stage for the first time and did a great job with the put-together of “Perfectly Marvelous” and “Why Should I Wake Up” from Cabaret and then two Anthony Newley classics “Gonna Build a Mountain” and “Nothing Can Stop Me Now.”
The wonderful Ilene Graff was in splendid voice for both her numbers—the peppy “Love Revolution” from I Love My Wife and the haunting Bacharach/David “Whoever You Are, I Love You” from Promises Promises—both shows in which she appeared on Broadway. Sharon McNight can always be counted on to deliver the comedy goods and she didn’t disappoint as she channeled her inner and outer Bette Davis to duet with the young Hayley Shukiar (and her trumpet) on two songs from the film Whatever Happened to Baby Jane. McNight closed out the show with a powerful and stirring rendition of the Stein/Sondheim classic “Some People.” As an extra added treat, legendary composer Richard Sherman sang his song “The Good Time Girl” AKA “The V.D Polka” from Over Here. Sherman also led the audience in “Let’s Go Fly A Kite” from his classic film score for Mary Poppins. Next up on October 2 will be the songs of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty.