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Concert Review (LA): Deck The Halls with Kristin Chenoweth at Disney Hall, 12/31/2010

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If anyone can be called a “phenom” it would be Kristin Chenoweth. She can do stage (Promises Promises, Apple Tree, You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown, Wicked), television (Pushing Daisies, West Wing, Glee), movies (You Again, Bewitched), and concerts all over the world. She has written an autobiography entitled A Little Bit Wicked. She was even supposed to do an opera at The Metropolitan Opera. Kristin Chenoweth is adorable, funny, gorgeous, and has a voice that encompasses pop to opera. On New Year’s Eve at Disney Hall she did two back-to-back concerts to sold-out houses.

She began her concert with a medley of Jerome Kern songs from Showboat (“Can’t Help Lovin’ That Man,” “Bill,” “Nobody Else”). Kristin then did a hysterical song called “14G” about living in an apartment building with an opera singer below and a country-western singer above. This was a great song for her because she got to really show off her versatility and her sense of humor.

Other highlights included “Say A Little Prayer” from Promises Promises (which closed the next night), a beautiful religious song called “Because He Lives” (she calls herself a “God Person”), and several numbers involving some singers and dancers she brought with her from Promises Promises in New York. She even took time to introduce a young Irish singer, Eamonn McCrystal, who sang while she changed costume.

The majority of the rest were songs she will be singing on a new album. One very moving song was called “Fathers and Daughters” which choked her up. She ended up leading us in singing “Auld Lang Syne.” The singers she brought with her were excellent. They were Nikki Renee Daniels, Sarah Jane Everman, Chelsea Krombach, and Kristen Beth Williams. Their vocals blended together nicely having practiced being the back-up singers in Promises Promises.

The two dancers were Sean Martin Hingston (also from Promises Promises) and Charlie Williams. The music director was Rob Fisher who played the piano along with five musicians, Wayne Bergeron, Ray Brinker, Trey Henry, Sal Lozano, and Paul Vispiano. Throughout Ms. Chenoweth was relaxed, professional, and the show was brilliantly put together by Broadway director Rob Ashford. Kristin Chenoweth performed her two shows on New Year’s Eve at the beautiful Disney Hall.

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  • Brie

    Kristin is phenomenal and I’m so sad that I wasn’t there. I love 14G and Because He Lives. I did two of her cds (Not the Christmas one), but As I Am got stolen at school. Couldn’t imagine why? SHE’S GREAT!!!!:)

  • Marshall

    Kristin was brilliant, but she was way over-miked. Disney Hall is designed for unamplified (or slightly amplified) music, and will not tolerate this. We’ve heard Audra McDonald there (and many opera signers) and know it can be done right. We could not understand Kristin at all in the louder passages. The Disney Hall crew was definitely asleep at the wheel during sound check.

  • Sheila

    I was at the 7:00 show. It started 10 min. late, and ended at 8:30….80 minutes for $106…I absolutely loved the show, but was VERY disappointed that she didn’t sing Popular at all!

  • Mark

    I’m not aure what Larry means about the show starting late… and why he complains about the show ending at 12:08 (it was a new years show, the point was to celebrate NYE and have a countdown and some fanfare. We just wished she would do a few more encores. And for the others- there WAS a song from Wicked, albeit not a full song- she sang about 30 seconds of Popular. Yes, she could have sang more- but which songs? All would be weird out of context. Her solo songs are Popular, Thank Goodness (wouldn’t make sense in this concert) and I’m Not that Girl (the repirse, again would not work). Other songs are all with Elphaba, and with a partner wouldn’t showcase Kristen in her own concert. My main issue is the advertising for the show promising “songs from Glee, Wicked, and Promises, Promises!” which brought a lot of people expecting her to arrive drunken in a bubble in early 60’s attire. For me, I was very happy with what actually happened.

  • Larry

    I agree with Henry and Darryl..
    Love you Kristin but you do not have the star power to keep your audience waiting for 20 mins, without even an apology, and end your show at 12:08 am. Your show was rushed and not well thought out at all. We felt that we were watching Glee, a “High School Musical”. Better luck next time!

  • robert machray

    the purpose odf the concert was to promote the new album. I agree the sound system was alittle distorted at least where i sat

  • Beth

    Henry & Darryl – You’re right! I would say we were disappointed about no Wicked songs, and it was REALLY hot in there. We kept wondering why it was so warm. Didn’t notice a sound issue though, from where we sat. (Front Terrace)

  • Henry & Darryl

    We were there at the concert on New Years eve and i must say that it was just ok.Do not get me wrong but we felt disappointed as she sang NO songs from Wicked.The hall was very warm and the sound from the mics just seemed incorrect like she was giving a lecture.Sorry Kristin the show seemed to the guests to be rushed.

  • Editor’s note: corrections noted in comments have been made to the article.

  • robert machray

    sorry about the mixup. wasn’t clear from the list of songs which I didn’t get till the next day

  • Beth

    And the ‘religious song’ was Because He Lives. The Irish guy was the one who sang You Raise Me Up.

  • Skippy

    Opera singer below in 13G, Jazz singer above in 15G.

  • Sarah Jane Everman was also Kristin’s understudy, and did the role the night I saw Promises, Promises. She was excellent.