Skip to main content
  1. AXS Entertainment
  2. Arts & Entertainment
  3. Arts & Exhibits

Liza Minnelli hits high notes as a seated balladier and comedian at 68

See also

Liza Minnelli graced Davies Symphony Hall Friday night for one night only, performing some classics and then more quirky and undiscovered ballads, neh even once forbidden. Her song choices and self-effacing humor endeared her even further with the San Francisco audience of all ages so clearly bonded to the iconic individualist and personality; and loving this Emmy, Oscar and Tony winner and sexy, quirky actress unconditionally. Billy Stritch the jazz pianist lent his charm and grace and sang a duet.

More Photos

I Can’t Give You Anything But Love

The audience loved her and often rose to its sequined, peacockian feet during the hour and a half performance with her long-time loves, a septet including her jazz pianist Billy Stritch who highlighted the show with a gentle and loving duet. Liza with a Z sounded the most in form and appropriate in such quieter and gentler numbers that would turn poignant. However as the life of the party she strained comedically to raise the roof with her show stopper cabaret numbers.

Related: Chita Rivera celebrates 80th birthday at Bay Area Cabaret

She would simultaneously making light of her age at 68 by lugging around an enormous director’s chair to sit in yet turning childlike and girlish in the hands of her long time love and pianist Billy. This was not a dancing cabaret show, it was seated but full of gestures and vogueing and mugging. She was herself, Liza with a Z, singing her own song.

The order of the American songbook numbers felt as telling of her never-say-die, show-must-go-on spirit as one who was born to the stage, inheriting it, the legacy. She sang a song for which 40 years ago she said, one would have one’s passport taken away or one would be beaten for, about unrequited love by a man who still lived with his mother and asked what is the measure of a man. Liza seemed to have a protective, nurturing and maternal tone as she seemed to comfort and empower the character by her choice of the following song “Maybe This Time”. She made the loneliness and idealization of unrequited love a universal if not bonding experience crossing gender and time. She also made a statement about the nature of love and marriage with another Charles Aznavour buried treasure, “You’ve Let Yourself Go”.

Related: Oscar Viewing Party in Napa an HIV/AIDS research fund raiser

Comic relief ensued with “Ring Them Bells” and she built up to the climax of the show with “Cabaret” and “New York, New York”.

San Francisco seems to be graced with the presence of shows by divas who still kick up their cabaret heels in spirit, having hosted 80 year old Chita Rivera at Bay Area Cabaret recently and Hotel Nikko hosting Joan Collins for two nights, April 10 and 11.

For more information: www.SFSymphony.org, www.BayAreaCabaret.org, HotelNikkoSF.com

For more stories by this writer check out CBS San Francisco's website under Eye on the Bay, San Francisco arts & culture "Best Of"; and San Francisco Arts & Culture on Examiner.com. Subscribe by hitting the SUBSCRIBE button at the top of this article.

https://www.facebook.com/CindyWarnerJournalist (America's Cup SF photos and links)

Romantic Napa Wine train tour to medieval castle winery Castello di Amorosa

Obituary of SF painter, musician and magician Mark Stock, 62--'The Butler's in Love'

Chris Botti played with SF Symphony

CBS SF: Best Holiday Celebrations in the North Bay 2013

Bay Area Cabaret in the Venetian Room, Fairmont Hotel with Jim Brickman

The Pornographer's Daughter a legitimate, courageous and life-affirming solo

Spa day: Meet CEO of L'Escape Jennifer Pham

Advertisement

Today's top buzz...

  • Jack White
    Reddit users have fun photoshopping an angry Jack White at a Cubs game
    Music Buzz
  • Kliff Kingsbury
    Kliff Kingsbury reads a series of flattering tweets praising his good looks
    Video
    Today's Buzz
  • Jamaal Charles
    Kansas City Chiefs make Jamaal Charles the second highest paid running back in NFL
    NFL Buzz
  • Slash
    Slash and The Conspirators crush it at Hard Rock, AP Awards
    Camera
    20 Photos
  • Monks of Mellonwah
    Exclusive interview: Monks of Mellonwah talk music, touring and more
    Camera
    9 Photos
  • Nikki Bella
    How will fans react if the WWE decides to turn Nikki Bella into a heel?
    Camera
    5 Photos

Related Videos:

  • Today in Rock: July 25
    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/IM2Ttov_zR0?VQ=HD720&amp;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • Colbie Caillat
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/GXoZLPSw8U8?rel=0?rel=0&amp;VQ=HD720&amp;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • Today in Rock: July 24
    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/pkn2l9UQP4o?VQ=HD720&amp;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>