Last week Broadway icon Bernadette Peters graced the stage at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC). Draped in a sequined lavender gown (with dyed satin shoes to match), Peters delivered many of the songs she’s become known for, beginning with a jazz hot rendition of “Let Me Entertain You” from Gypsy.
In spite of some sniffles, the 67-year-old bombshell had the audience on its feet, and at other times in tears as she worked her way through her Sondheim repertoire, including “Buddy’s Eyes,” “Losing My Mind,” and “Send in the Clowns.” While her patter was charming, those who have seen her before recognized her bits between songs (no, she still hasn’t sold the house in Florida).
Backed by a combo that included Joseph Thalken (musical director/piano), Cubby O’Brien (drums), and Kevin Axt (bass), Peters captivated on sultry numbers like “Fever” and “Come On-A My House,” proving her musicality soars far behind the heartfelt ballad. Though the song list leaned heavy in the back-to-back ballad department, one can’t deny that she’s the real deal and a true Broadway star.
Fall programming continues with NJPAC and NJTV’s American Songbook Series, hosted by Ted Chapin:
October 25, 7 p.m.
Defying Gravity: Stephen Schwartz and Friends
Featuring Jessie Mueller, Jarrod Spector and Marilyn Maye
October 26, 7 p.m.
Our Time: KT Sullivan & Jeff Harnar Sing Sondheim
Featuring Catherine Russell, Seth Rudetsky, and special guest Christine Ebersole
And there’s more!
November 9, 7 p.m.
The Real Sinatra Songbook
Featuring Tom Wopat, Sue Raney and Kevin Mahogany
November 21, 6 p.m., 8:30 pm.
For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.njpac.org.