AN ENCHANTED EVENING WITH BARBRA

ALHAMBRA AFTER DARK REVIEW

A DUAL CRITICS REVIEW BY DICK KEREKES & LEISLA SANSOM

The Alhambra Theatre and Dining has opened one of its fabulous after hours tribute shows with an electric evening of songs and comedy starring Sharon Owens as the incomparable Barbara Streisand. The show, which opened on April 5th, will run through April 9th, 2017. Call 641-1212 or visit Alhabrajax.com for reservations.

The atmosphere was that of a big time New York nightclub, as the Alhambra had a special lighted stage for this event. Ms. Owens was backed by an eight piece band of incredibly talented local musicians.

The infamous Barbra Streisand, who has retired from performing on stage, is one of the most talented and successful performers of all time, and has been awarded an endless stream of honors throughout her career, including Oscars and Tonys. It was obvious that the opening night audience had many Streisand fans who were enchanted by the performer’s talents, who sang with such passion and believability that we really felt like Barbra was truly on that stage singing such favorites as “Send in the Clowns,” “Happy Days are Here Again” and “People.” Owens, who originally began her career as a Streisand tribute performer in 2002, has perfected her act to the extent that if you compare her vocal performance with that of Streisand’s on YouTube, it can be  remarkably difficult to tell them apart.

The evening began with Chef DeJuan Roy’s always excellent meal; the choices included  cured corned beef, roasted red snapper, lamb meatballs, and a vegetarian spaghetti dish.  Dessert lovers had a choice of Kahlua chocolate cake or Italian cannoli, both truly delicious.

Ms. Owens put on a fashion show filled with lovely gowns equaling those worn by Streisand in past stage appearances. The show was not limited to music, as she frequently interspersed songs with humor and audience interaction. At one point she surveyed married couples, and had one guest, married for seventy years, share her secrets for success.

After the wonderful two hours filled with fantastic songs and humor, “Barbra” went out to the lobby to meet and pose for photos with her many appreciative fans. Truly, we had an enchanted evening at the Alhambra.

 

About Dick Kerekes & Leisla Sansom

The Dual Critics of EU Jacksonville have been reviewing plays together for the past nine years. Dick Kerekes has been a critic since 1980, starting with The First Coast Entertainer and continuing as the paper morphed into EU Jacksonville. Leisla Sansom wrote reviews from time to time in the early 80s, but was otherwise occupied in the business world. As a writing team, they have attended almost thirty Humana Festivals of New America Plays at Actors Theatre in Louisville, Kentucky, and many of the annual conferences sponsored by the American Theatre Critics Association, which are held in cities throughout the country. They have reviewed plays in Cincinnati, Chicago, Miami, Sarasota, Minneapolis, Orlando, New York, Philadelphia, Sarasota, San Francisco, Shepherdstown, and The Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, Massachusetts. They currently review about one hundred plays annually in the North Florida area theaters, which include community, college, university, and professional productions.

october, 2021

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