The Column Online


Out of the Loop Fringe Festival
WaterTower Theatre, 15650 Addison Road
Addison, TX 75001

WaterTower Theatre

Musical Director - Michele Brourman
Asst. Musical Director and Keyboardist - Hans Grim
Upright Acoustic Bass - Peggy Honea

Reviewed Performance: 3/5/2011

Reviewed by Mary L. Clark, Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

Its early evening, the sun has set as you and other people enter a small dim-lit room and take a seat. In the corner is a piano and a bass leans against the wall. A single microphone and stand waits in the center and the audience is rather quiet. As lights go out, a spotlight hits the mike and a woman dressed in evening gown. The music starts, the woman sings and slowly you imagine yourself back to the days when supper clubs and cabaret was in vogue.

Taking Chances ? A Cabaret with Marjorie Hayes has that same dreamy quality of those clubs where people dress up and the singer croons songs straight from their heart. Marjorie Hayes is one of those singers. Her journey back to music is told in her songs, after a life and a long list of credits that has taken her across Europe and the U.S. with theatre, into films and back here again to sing songs from her heart. Her songs tell of her working class beginnings, of her loves and heart-aches but, most of all, of her spirit to always take chances.

Hayes leads the audience through her journey with music written for her as well as some songs from James Taylor, Elton John and Leonard Cohen. Her rendition of Hallelujah was a welcome fresh take on a now too-often heard piece. While sometimes losing her energy, Hayes was best when the song required some theatricality and she could use her lower vocal range notes.

The music for Taking Chances is beautifully arranged and performed by Hans Grim on keyboards and Peggy Honea on upright acoustic bass. They blended and filled the small Stone Cottage space and never overpowered the singer.

Taking Chances ? a Cabaret with Marjorie Hayes has only one more performance at the Out of the Loop Fringe Festival on Sunday, March 6. While you may not get to see her perform there, please be on the lookout for her name as she has acted and directed to acclaim in theatre here and has a lead role in Uncertain, TX, soon to be released. For Ms. Hayes, taking chances is apparently what she is all about.