The 1959 Broadway Songbook
“Superb” – New York Times
“Extraordinary” – New York Daily News
“A Hit!” – Chicago Tribune
“Harnar’s ‘Broadway Songbook’ something to sing about.” – Dallas Morning News
“Top Five” Critic’s Choice” – The Times London
“…a most delightful time machine… at the center of it is a performer who possesses charm, grace, sophistication and a charismatic connection to the audience. Harnar is polished to perfection and most of all, he is full of joy… a certified winner.” – Theater Pizzazz
“…a jewel of a show…a sparkling treasure of musical gems presented by Harnar, a warm baritone with the gift of musicality, tenderness and wit… It sparkles, it glitters, it touches the heart and, even more, The 1959 Broadway Songbook celebrates the gift of songs America has given the world.” – Cabaret Scenes
“Jeff Harnar’s voice and witty delivery enhance his choice of music to perfection.” – Elaine Paige
“Dear Jeff, Thank you so much for the 1959 Broadway Songbook – it’s wonderful! I’d love to see 1960, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66… coming out of your talented mouth.” – Joan Rivers
Jeff Harnar sings Cole Porter
May 31, 2008
Basking in a World Where Anything Goes
By STEPHEN HOLDEN
“Is it to rescue or is it to wreck?/Is it an ache in the heart/Or just a pain in the neck?” So wrote Cole Porter about serial infatuation in his 1938 movie song “At Long Last Love.” To hear such delicious turns of phrase delivered with meaningful hesitations and a raised eyebrow by Jeff Harnar, who completes a four-night tribute to Porter at the Metropolitan Room on Saturday, is to find yourself grinning with pleasure.
Known for his meticulously researched and assembled cabaret shows, Mr. Harnar balances the savory wit and boyish yearning of a composer whom he joked had “a whim of iron.” I last saw Mr. Harnar two years ago at Feinstein’s at Loews Regency, where he performed a tribute to Cy Coleman – a rare mismatch between a mild-mannered crooner and a hard-boiled composer whose songs demand a brazen theatricality. Porter and Harnar, however, are a perfect fit.
Mr. Harnar has developed into an accomplished mimic. His imitation of Jimmy Durante singing the comical gender-bending song “A Little Skipper From Heaven Above,” from the 1936 show “Red, Hot, and Blue!,” is dead-on. The show alternates tongue-twisting patter songs and ballads to underscore Porter’s dichotomous personality. Here was an ultimate example of the truism that the worst cynics are also the biggest romantics.
Mr. Harnar, accompanied on Thursday by Alex Rybeck on piano and Mark Winkler on bass, plucked “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” from the prizefighting ring where Frank Sinatra enshrined it and carried it to the dreamy, emotionally vulnerable realm of the besotted suitor. Crooning “In the Still of the Night” and “Ev’rytime We Say Goodbye,” Mr. Harnar projected the tremulous, adolescent ingenuousness of a more innocent era.
Porter’s tongue-in-cheek worldliness whooshed back in a final rush with “Can-Can,” the nonsensical invocation to join a global menagerie that includes apes, pelicans, hippos and rhinos, as well as humans, in a global kick line. In Porter’s language, “If a gangly Anglican can/If in Lesbos, a pure Lesbian can/Baby, you can can-can too.”
Sammy Cahn All The Way
“Harnar’s polished performance recalls a music era dominated by romanticism.” – Variety
“I wish Sammy couldn’t seen this show. He would’ve loved it. I certainly did.” – Liza Minnelli
New York cabaret performer Jeff Harnar has taken his one-man show honoring Sammy Cahn, which has played New York venues, into the studio and the result is this CD. Paying tribute to one of popular music’s most prolific and successful lyricists is bound to be a winner and in the matter of this CD, it is. Cahn penned hundreds of tunes and was one of the more important lyricists in the old tradition of Broadway and the classical Hollywood musical. Thirty of his film songs were nominated for Academy Awards, four winning. Two of these, “All the Way” and “Call Me Irresponsible,” are included in this collection. Harnar is no slouch at winning awards himself, having been named Best Male Vocalist twice by the Manhattan Association of Cabarets. Cahn worked with several composers during his long career. Perhaps his most notable collaborations were with Jimmy Van Heusen and Jule Styne, and several of their output are included. Harnar is very attuned to Cahn’s lyrical style and obviously enjoys what he’s doing. He is very much at home with such romantic ballads as “I’ll Never Stop Loving You” and the classic “I Should Care,” which he delivers with an expressive, hushed manner. Most of the time he is accompanied quite sympathetically by pianist Alex Rybeck. On the up-tempo swinging material such as “My Kind of Town (Chicago Is)” and “Come Fly With Me,” Harnar is joined by horns, rhythm, and strings. The latter has some jazzy sax by Mort Silver. One of the more attractive segments is the medley of songs associated with World War II, most of which have survived and are still performed. This album is a good representation of the cabaret style and is recommended for admirers of that vocal art.
Because Of You: Fifties Gold
“A sly musical scrapbook. A pop baritone of impeccable polish.” – Stephen Holden, The New York TImes
“A Sh-boom to Remember” – Rex Reed, The New York Observer
“Gold from a 40-carat voice” – The New York Post
- Hold Me! Thrill Me! Kiss Me!/You Send Me
- Young At Heart
- It’s Not For Me To Say
- Quizas (Perhaps)
- Little White Cloud That Cried
- Secret Love
- Nature Boy
- Cabin In The Sky/Stranger In Paradise/Angel
- Because Of You
- Unchained Melody
Does This Song Make Me Look Fat?
Jeff’s most recent show had its debut as a one-night sold-out concert at Birdland in 2012 and opens for a run on January 14th at The Laurie Beechman Theatre.
Does This Song Make Me Look Fat? is an eclectic set of standards and surprises, through which Jeff sets out to do his version of musical stand-up comedy, yet still have a satisfying musical soul to the show. Tapping into the wit of Noel Coward, Cole Porter, Comden & Green, Tom Lehrer, Stan Freburg, and Allan Sherman yet sprinkled with the heart of Sammy Cahn, Kander & Ebb, Leonard Bernstein, Cy Coleman and Billy Joel.
“A very substantial, yet fun, program. From the moment he took the stage, Harnar had complete command over his celebrity-filled audience.” – Times Square Chronicle
Along with standards such as “I Fall in Love Too Easily,” “That’s Life,” “You’re My Home,” “Lonely Town” and “The World Goes Round,” Jeff includes the comedy songs from his parent’s record collection (“The Elements,” “Tele-vee-shun” “Schticks of One”) and newer treasures from Rick Crom (“Sondheim’s Oklahoma”), Larry Kerchner (“What’s Your Phobia?) and Francesca Blumenthal (“Between Men”).
“Jeff Harnar, balladeer, doesn’t so much throw off his familiar mantle during this show, as leave it on the piano bench while other shenanigans go on. There are ballads to be sure. But, in Does This Song Make Me Look Fat?, Harnar turns his charm to making us laugh. He succeeds.” – Cabaret Scenes
Cabaret Reviewers Weigh In On their 2012 Picks of Most Memorable Shows and Performers: Jeff Harnar “Does This Song Make Me Look Fat?” (Birdland) – “A consummate cabaret artist holding the audience in the palm of his hand.” – Times Square Chronicle
“Listening to Harnar sing gives you the warm therapeutic feeling of being in a movie palace … Who could ask for anything more?” – The New York Daily News
“My favorite in this vast array of favorites was A Foggy Day which filled the room with Harnar’s rich baritone… Harnar combines musical knowledge with great wit and charm.” – Stages
A Collective Cy: Jeff Harnar sings Cy Coleman
There’s just something about Cy Coleman’s music. Maybe it’s the jazz that permeates every note and syncopated beat. Maybe it’s the pure emotion that effortlessly connects character to song. Whatever it is, it made Coleman one of the most beloved theatre composers of the second half of the 20th century, and his unexpected 2004 death left a gaping hole in Broadways firmament.
Fortunately, Jeff Harnar, who has earned his name in the cabaret community with elegant retrospectives of legends from the golden years, has created the first concert dedicated to the Coleman songbook since Coleman’s death. The concert, A Collective Cy, not only highlights the many notable numbers of Mr. Coleman’s career, but may well be one of the smoothest cabaret shows in recent memory.
And if anyone is up to the task of displaying Coleman’s greatest work, it’s Harnar. Blessed with a voice that out-Sinatras Sinatra, Harnar can croon ballads or patter through uptempo numbers with ease. His casual-yet-refined demeanor is perfect for Feinstein’s at the Regency (where, incidentally, Coleman gave his final performance before his death), warmly exuding class while warmly welcoming the audience along for the ride. He evokes the old-fashioned nightclubs in which Coleman’s music would frequently be heard. The anecdotes he tells between the songs, however, provide new insights on Coleman and his lengthy career, and let us more fully appreciate the songs.
The song list features many of Coleman’s standards, from Sweet Charity to Barnum to City of Angels. While dedicated to preserving the original lyrics of the songs, Harnar was able to get new lyrics to some numbers either by the original lyricist (David Zippel) or Kleban-award winner Barry Kleinborn. The results, endearing new versions of “You’re Nothing Without Me/I’m Nothing Without You” and “My Personal Property,” respectively, are fresh and funny, and are a gentle reminder of the timelessness of Coleman’s music. A cut number from Barnum (“So Little Time”) is getting its premiere, and at the opening night, a number from Pamela’s First Musical, a new show Coleman was working on with Wendy Wasserstein before his death, was presented for the first time. And one of the few songs with lyrics by Coleman (“Somebody”) gets a stirring and emotional rendition from Harnar.
The show’s band, which Harnar has dubbed “The Rhythm of Life Quartet” (yes, they do the song) gets to swing out with plenty of jazz, from the hippie-inspired beats of Sweet Charity to the bluesy big-band sound of City of Angels. Musical director pianist Alex Rybeck and bassist Jay Leonhart do double duty from behind their instruments as back-up singers, allowing for some great harmonizing and counterpoints. Ray Marchica keeps a steady rhythm on drums, and Dan Willis’ sax and flute work adds wonderful color to the songs. Sara Louise Lazarus’ direction is bright and energetic, making the evening into a true celebration of a fantastic career.
Many of Coleman’s songs, as Harnar points out early in the evening, focused on love in all its many splendored forms. While A Collective Cy will certainly appeal to theatre and jazz fans, the pure romance (not to mention sensuality) of many of the songs can appeal to just about everyone. The combination of The Regency’s swankiness, Harnar’s sweet voice, and Coleman’s rich music may just make this concert one of the more romantic events in the city. Make a date now.
Dancing In The Dark: Vincente Minnelli's Hollywood
DANCING IN THE DARK: Vincente Minnelli’s Hollywood is a tribute to the music from the films of one of MGM’s most prolific and inspired directors, Vicente Minnelli. Tapping into the songbooks of such films as “Gigi,” “Meet Me In St. Louis,” “Cabin in The Sky,” “An American in Paris,” “The Pirate,” “On a Clear Day,” “Brigadoon,” “Kismet,” “Bells are Ringing,” results in a musical program containing songwriters such as Cole Porter, the Gershwins, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Lerner & Loewe, Dietz & Schwartz, Vernon Duke, Martin & Blaine, Lerner & Lane, and Kander & Ebb and more.
The songlist contains standards such as Dancing in The Dark, Taking a Chance on Love, Stranger in Paradise, On Clear Day, Stairway to Paradise, By Myself, I Guess I’ll Have to Change My Plan and some surprises such as “Boys and Girls Like You and Me” cut from “Meet Me in St. Louis” and “You Can Don No Wrong” from “The Pirate.” Conjuring celluloid memories of Judy Garland, Gene Kelly, Lous Jordan, Dean Martin, Ethel Waters, Kirk Douglas,Yves Montand and many more, this show is indeed “A feel-good night out.” – New York Post
“A show that is a model of its type. . . eubullient . . . In Mr. Harnar’s hands songs like ‘Be a Clown’ and ‘That’s Entertainment’ become serene expressions of enjoyment” – The New York Times
“A feel-good night out.” – The New York Post
“Frothy fun… always surprising.” – The Washington Blade
“My father would have loved Jeff Harnar’s show – I certainly did. His attention to detail, the stories, the songs are all impeccably researched and performed with a joy that can only be called true style. Thanks, Jeff!” – Liza Minnelli
Carried Away: Jeff Harnar sings Comden & Green
October 6, 1989
By STEPHEN HOLDEN
Early in ”Carried Away,” his breathlessly paced evening of songs with lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, Jeff Harnar observes that throughout their long-running collaboration, the team kept writing songs for their favorite character, New York City. These remarks introduce ”Lonely Town,” a memorable ballad with music by Leonard Bernstein that has one of Comden and Green’s finest lyrics. Here, for once, the perennially playful team showed that they could write a lyric of probing melancholy. And Mr. Harnar, whose strong, open-hearted singing recalls Larry Kert in ”West Side Story,” realizes all of its stirring poignancy.
The singer, who has brought ”Carried Away” to the Ballroom (253 West 28th Street) after a successful run at Eighty-Eight’s in Greenwich Village, has been building a following for the last three years. With ”Carried Away,” which opened a three-week engagement at the Ballroom on Tuesday, he emerges as the most important new male cabaret performer since Michael Feinstein. In another era, the wiry, diminutive singer would have been on Broadway playing the musical comedy roles that were once taken by the youthful Robert Morse. Ingenuous but not cutesy, energetic but not frantic, he exudes a controlled dynamism that at Tuesday’s opening night show charged the atmosphere of the Ballroom with a very upbeat energy.
The playfully pattery lyrics of Comden and Green are atypical of the sort of song preferred by cabaret performers, since most of them don’t allow for deep self-reflection. But Mr. Harnar, with his arranger and pianist, Alex Rybeck, and Sara Louise Lazarus, the show’s director, have strung three dozen songs together into set pieces that hurtle from one amusing bon mot to the next.
The arrangements are so seamless that it’s often impossible to tell where one song ends and another begins. The longer medleys (one includes fragments of 14 songs) are jaunty comic journeys in which the singer’s enthusiasm fuses with the lyrics to create a character – a sassy sophisticate with a loud mouth and a way with words – that might indeed be called New York.
“A winning propostion!” – Variety
“The best cabaret act in town.” – Rex Reed, New York Observer
“Make no mistake about it, this is the cabaret show to see this year.” – The New York Post
“Easily the best show on the cabaret circuit.” – Show Business
“Manic and mirthful” – Newsday
The Warner Brothers Songbook
“A delightful nostalgic romp” – The New York Times
“Hooray for Harnar’s Hollywood!” – New York Daily News
“Joyous” – The Hollywood Reporter
“Th-th-that’s show biz!” – New York Post
Dancing In The Dark: The CD
“Harnar’s voice varies from throbbing to swaggering to effervescent… A remarkably enjoyable collection.” – CAPITOL RADIO (NPR)
“Listening to this creamy-voice crooner is like lounging beside a fierplace on a cold winter night; Harnar’s baritone is supremely warm and comforting.” – THEATERMANIA
“In addition to being such an engaging vocalist, Harnar bubbles over with personality that fairly bursts out of the speakers, and that electrifying combination makes ‘Dancing in the Dark’ an absolute charmer… an artist working in peak form.” – Cabaret Scenes
“A delightfully warm and wonderful collection… Grade: A” – Broadway’s Biggest Hits
“Top 10 Cabaret Albums of 2005. A sublime mix of Broadway, standards and more.” – John Hoglund, Theaterscenes.net
“Discover one to the genre’s true connosseurs,
Jeff Harnar… demonstrating sincerely sophisticated showmanship.” – Jazz Times
“Jeff Harnar’s new CD reveals a maturity and depth and the arrangements are simply sensational.” – Talkin’ Broadway
“Harnar lends his silky smooth voice to a wide range of songs on this wonderfully satisfying disc… jazzy, theatrical and yet wonderfully intimate.” – XM Satellite Radio
Another Hundred People: KT Sullivan & Jeff Harnar sing Sondheim
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Review: ‘Another Hundred People’ Digs Into Stephen Sondheim’s Catalog
By Stephen Holden – July 19, 2015
“Another Hundred People,” a thrilling new revue at the Laurie Beechman Theater, is the most dramatic example I can remember of how a crash course in the songs of Stephen Sondheim can transform entertainers you thought you knew into beings far more complex and sophisticated than you ever suspected. As its stars, KT Sullivan and Jeff Harnar, dug into Mr. Sondheim’s catalog, it was as though they had suddenly grown up.
The revue is the much more adventurous sequel to the team’s warmly received show “Our Time,” which opened almost exactly a year ago in the same space. Subtitled “Act Two” and incorporating almost no patter, the show, acutely directed by Sondra Lee, is devoid of the sort of ingratiating shtick associated with its stars, both die-hard nostalgists who have built cabaret careers celebrating the American songbook.
For years Mr. Harnar, now in his mid-50s, epitomized the boyish juvenile lead of the sort once played by Robert Morse. Ms. Sullivan’s characteristic alter ego has been a zany glamour girl with a light operatic voice. In “Another Hundred People” she abandons that voice, the better to interpret psychologically knotty Sondheim lyrics with a ruthless honesty.
The musical director, the pianist Jon Weber, connected the songs in fleet arrangements that incorporated a light jazz pulse and allusions to Dave Brubeck.
Like “Our Time,” “Another Hundred People” slyly revels in sexual ambiguity and in dissolving gender stereotypes, with both performers singing numbers associated with the opposite sex. The first jolt arrived with Mr. Harnar’s licentious interpretation of “I Know Things Now,” Little Red Riding Hood’s song from “Into the Woods,” reimagined as a young man’s gay initiation. Attached to “More,” from the movie “Dick Tracy,” the song hinted at sexual addiction and predation.
Throughout the show, carefully edited fragments from as many as four or five songs in a block were sequenced into conceptual threads in which each selection threw light on the one before. In an especially evocative pairing, Ms. Sullivan’s version of “The Girls of Summer” was wound around Mr. Harnar’s version of “Sand,” a little-known song from an unproduced film musical, “Singing Out Loud.”
The loss of innocence and cherished romantic illusions were overarching themes reflected in both the song choices and the singers’ dry-eyed interpretations of numbers like “Now You Know” and “There Won’t Be Trumpets.” Perhaps the boldest pairing found the sweetly compassionate parental advice song “Children Will Listen” attached to the gory “The Ballad of Sweeney Todd.”
Sex-Role Reversals in Sondheim – KT Sullivan and Jeff Harnar Reflect a New Era
By Stephen Holden – July 10, 2014
“Our Time,” the opening number of KT Sullivan and Jeff Harnar’s iconoclastic Stephen Sondheim show at the Laurie Beechman Theater on Wednesday evening, is the optimistic dawn-of-a-new-age anthem from “Merrily We Roll Along.” It’s the 1950s, and there are nothing but blue skies and bright futures ahead in the lives of its naïve musical-theater hopefuls gazing forward with starry-eyed confidence.
But it’s not so simple. A subversive double vision soon surfaces and drives the show, directed by Sondra Lee, on an alternative route. The future has already arrived. Great familiar songs are bent to reflect the era of same-sex marriage, gender fluidity and the dissolution of traditional roles. Once-unquestioned verities about what it means to be a man and a woman are under siege.
The evening began conventionally enough, with breezy early Sondheim songs about New York City taken at a breathless clip by the singers and the pianist Jon Weber.
Its vision suddenly warped when Mr. Harnar sang two ballads, “Loving You” and “Losing My Mind,” usually attached to women, with a quiet, troubled intensity. It became surreal when he affected an old woman’s croak for “The God-Why-Don’t-You-Love-Me Blues,” from “Follies,” followed by his sober, introspective “Send In the Clowns” set to dissonant jazz harmonies.
Ms. Sullivan’s sly, seductive “Pretty Women” and “Johanna” infused both these ballads from “Sweeney Todd” with an almost predatory erotic subtext as she delivered the warning, “I’ll steal you, Johanna” as a sexual provocation.
In a edley of songs (mostly from “Company”) about marital anxiety, sung by Mr. Harnar, the groom (instead of the bride) balked at the last minute.
Ms. Sullivan astutely reinterpreted “In Buddy’s Eyes” and “Being Alive” as wised-up, bitterly cynical expressions of marital boredom and stagnation by a wife feeling trapped in her marriage. In Mr. Harnar’s “Could I Leave You?” the song’s threat was issued by an older man’s angry, avaricious younger male partner.
If the show occasionally pushed too hard to surprise, it worked. The considerable acting talents of Ms. Sullivan, who has never been more fearless, and Mr. Harnar gave the songs a bite that left tooth marks.
I Got Rhythm: Mickey & Judy's Hollywood (with Shauna Hicks)
The Mickey and Judy Show is a star-spangled salute to the movie music of Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland, the “Gable & Garbo of Hollywood High,” and top box office stars of Hollywood’s Golden Era. The show takes a tuneful & nostalgic look at their classic MGM films, including “Girl Crazy,” “Babes in Arms,” “Strike Up the Band,” and “Babes on Broadway,” and salutes their reunion years later on CBS television.
Mickey & Judy’s silver screen songbook includes classics by the Gershwins, Rodgers & Hart, and Harold Arlen & Yip Harburgh, featuring unforgettable songs such as “Embraceable You,” “Our Love Affair,” “Where or When,” “I Wish I Were in Love Again,” and “I Got Rhythm,” among many others. Whether you’ve seen a Mickey & Judy film or not, their treasure chest of American standards makes for an evening of good old-fashioned entertainment everyone will enjoy. Audiences have responded with standing ovations for this musical tribute to two legendary performers and the songs they sang from their talented teens to their full-throttled prime.
The Mickey & Judy Show: Two mikes, two stools, and a trunk-load of great songs!
Easy To Love: Andrea Marcovicci & Jeff Harnar Sing Cole Porter
Two of our foremost interpreters of the Cole Porter songbook join forces to conjure up a uniquely entertaining portrait of the master songwriter, bon vivant, and citizen of hte world. Their chemistry is infectious during duets and in sharing their love for Porter’s clever, intricate rhyme schemes and unforgettable melodies.
The sophisticated team of Marcovicci and Harnar have crafted a program that includes timeless romantic ballads, witty and fun love longs, and brilliantly clever “list” songs. And they’ve even discovered some “lost” Porter treasures that are heard here for the first time in decades!
The show sketches Porter’s life from marriage to globetrotter and from Broadway to Hollywood. As Marcovicci paints the love story of Cole’s marriage to wife Linda with a knowing perspective that brings the celebrated composer’s romance vividly to life, Harnar taps into Porter, the wordsmith, with a selection of Broadway and Hollywood gems replete with the behind-the-scenes lore that captures a singular era in show business when Cole Porter was crafting the Great American Songbook to the talents of Ethel Merman, Bob Hope, Jimmy Durante, Frank Sinatra, Jimmy Stewart, and Bing Crosby to name a few. In duets, Marcovicci and Harnar capture the joyous intelligent humor and tender romance of Porter’s most beloved compositions.
A warm, witter, and delightful evening, this tribute to Cole Porter perfectly captures America’s most sophisticated composer.
Double Take: Sally Mayes & Jeff Harnar At The Same Time
“Mayes and Harnar play off each other with palpable glee . . . a bouyant collaboration … effervescent … musicianship is top-notch.” – Woman Around Town
“The display of consumate technique combined with their sheer joy of singing made the show feel like a special event.” – Theater Pizzazz
“Double your pleasure, double your fun…Mayes and Harnar seemed to get sparks from each other with a mutual affection showing in more than a show-bizzy way.” – Cabaret Scenes
The 1959 Broadway Songbook
On Saturday, the 92nd Street Y launched the latest edition of “Lyrics and Lyricists” with “The 1959 Broadway Songbook,” which concludes tonight. At first, the idea seemed to have been borrowed from another long-running New York concert series, Town Hall’s “Broadway by the Years.” But the L&L program, which was hosted and produced by the cabaret singer Jeff Harnar, turned out to be a highly ambitious graduate lesson in the etymology of the musical comedy. Using the 23 shows that were playing on Broadway 48 years ago, he took us step-by-step through a typical Broadway production of the so-called “Golden Era.”
The soprano Sarah Uriarte Berry and baritone David Burnham served as the romantic leads, and could have stepped out of a Disney musical. Mr. Harnar also cast Sally Mayes and, with admirable modesty, himself, as what he called the “second-banana couple.”
The program illustrated the introduction of the characters with an “I Want” song (the beautiful “I Wish It So”), an “I just met a girl”-type song, a comedy number (“I Don’t Think I’ll End It All Today”), a romantic duet, a charm song, a wedding vow, and so on. For the big dance number, Donna McKechnie re-created Gwen Verdon’s Tony-winning turn in “Redhead.” Later, Ms. Mayes hit a home run with Billy Barnes’s touching “Too Long at the Fair,” a diva aria at the same level as anything in “Follies.”
But the standout of the evening was the host, who was funnier than I’ve ever seen him. His high point – literally – arrived in a routine that symbolized the kind of music one might hear on the street during a Broadway intermission, wherein he knocked out a stratospheric version of the “Theme from a Summer Place.” After watching Mr. Harnar perform for decades, it’s something of a shock to discover that his greatest strength may not be in traditional cabaret material, but as a pop falsetto in the fashion of the Frankies – Lyman and Valli. It’s almost like he’s been holding out on us for all these years.