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Arts and Theater 1
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Black Tie International:
The Sedaka Show


Regis Philbin, Jim Van Slyke and Neil Sedaka

Regis Philbin, Jim Van Slyke and Neil Sedaka

 

Jim Van Slyke in "The Sedaka Show"
at Feinstein's at Lowe's Regency

By Ward Morehouse III

 

When Jim Van Slyke throws his incandescent ardor into "Oh, Carol" and "Anybody Gonna Miss You" he takes you into the world of intoxicating pop legend Neil Sedaka. These and at least parts of some 26 Sedaka hits alone make "The Sedaka Show" at Feinstein's at the Regency, where it has been playing every Monday in April, a must-see. But Van Slyke illuminates and commands the small stage with far more than a tribute to the living legend singer/songwriter that is Neil Sedaka.

There's -- and I hesitate to use the term -- a kind of spiritual energy
that takes over in some of the numbers that goes well beyond his stage perfect pitch,  affability and affection for Sedaka's songbook. For instance, in "Love Will Keep Us Together," co-written with frequent Sedaka collaborator Howard Greenfield, and other numbers, Van Slyke transcends his exciting sentimental
tribute. The longer he sings the more we see of Van Slyke's own warmth and humanity as as artist in his own inimitable right.

In short, Van Slyke doesn't become Sedaka. He exposes more and more of his own vibrant charm. He ebodies a kind of poetic humanity that magically makes the world a better and happier place. I'm told Van Slyke loves teaching singing to young people as much as he does performing to sold-out houses.

"The most remarkable hour and a half of show I have ever seen!" Regis Philbin proclaimed.

It's the difference between nostalga -- remembering by-gone days and memories no matter how inviting -- to somehow being in the intoxicating present even though your mind's eye is vaguely aware that many of these songs are the dream stuff of music memorabilia.

"Just brilliant! I've seen others sing my songs, but nobody has moved me more than Jim," says Neil Sedaka himself.

"The Sedaka Show" continues at Feinstein's at Loews Regency, 540 Park Avenue at 61st Street on Monday, April 18 at 8:30pm, and Monday, April 25 at 8:30pm

Conceived and directed by Tony-nominated singer/actor
Brian Lane Green, "The Sedaka Show" features intimate melodies of Neil Sedaka, including "Laughter in the Rain," "Hungry Years," "Solitaire," and classic Sedaka hits such as "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do," "Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen," "Where the Boys Are," and "Love Will Keep Us Together."

With musical arrangements by award-winning musical director Tim DiPasqua, Terese Genecco joins Van Slyke on April 25.
"Best" and "outstanding" are the two words used most often to describe Genecco. "On the last Tuesday of each month, she and her Little Big Band put on an unstoppable juggernaut of a set at the Iridium, with one hard-hitting swinger after another, pausing only for what she describes as a mandatory 'two-ballad maximum...
Ms. Genecco makes every show seem like New Year's Eve," said Will Friedwald in The Wall Street Journal.

Van Slylke celebrates the forthcoming release of his brand new CD,
The Sedaka Sessions, featuring two duets with Neil Sedaka. The CD may be available for prerelease at some April performances.

*********************************************************************

$30 cover or $50 premiere seating, plus $25 food and drink minimum. Dinner begins at 6pm. Feinstein's at Loews Regency is at 540 Park Avenue at 61 Street, New York City. For reservations and more information, call 212.339.4005 or visit www.feinsteinsattheregency.com .

Video of "The Sedaka Show," Regis Philbin's exciting comments about Jim, and much more, can be found on Jim Van Slyke's web site at www.jimvanslyke.com . Neil Sedaka's worldwide tour schedule can be found at www.neilsedaka.com .

 
     
Joyce Brooks

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