By: Elaine Stritch
Details: Shaw Theatre, 100 Euston Road, NW1 2AJ
Performances: Thu-Sun 8.00 pm
In short: Songs and stories from a well established diva
In full: Red wine and Elaine Stritch - two things that get better with age. The hard drinker's anecdotes of fifty years in show business are living proof.
This all-singing, all-dancing diva earns every minute of her current one-woman show at the Shaw. Unlike Simon Callow's one man homage to The Mystery of Charles Dickens, or Linda Marlowe's lone attempt to conjure up all of Berkoff's Women, Elaine Stritch has only to play herself.
But don't be fooled by the autobiographical candour. Every bit the performer she always was, the one time star of Company and Private Lives here indulges a rare gift for Beckettian humour. Stritch tip toes the line between the alarming and the amusing as she taps out the original choreography from early hits and recounts the mistakes as well as the successes of her early years.
This is comedy at its most humane. Studded with both painful memories and show stopping tunes, Stritch has her audience in stitches and tears. Elaine Stritch At Liberty shows this Broadway Baby still has what it takes.
- 'They stitch songs and patter together so elegantly and ingeniously that by the end of the evening you've really absorbed a rich, full life.' Don Shewey, The Advocate
- 'Tthe lady is ageless and just as funny as she must have been back when Truman was squabbling with MacArthur.' Steven Suskin, Variety