After a two-year respite, RESPECT: A MUSICAL CELEBRATION OF WOMEN returns to rock the Herberger!
The show grew out of a conference presentation by Dr. Dorothy Marcic aptly titled I Am Woman: The Female Voice in 20th Century Popular Music and her book RESPECT: Women and Popular Music.
After touring worldwide in a one-woman show called THE MUSICAL HISTORY OF WOMEN, Marcic's stage adaptation of her book premiered with a Narrator who tells/sings life stories woven together by lyrics and accentuated by inspiring or ironic photos -- the Phoenix production is salted with local celebrity picts too!
Narrated by Nancy Snow Carr, the show features a trio of triple-threat performers: Heather Paton, Lisa Payton and Kelsey Venter. Each one is given moments to shine, but none brighter than Venter with her renditions of “As Long As He Needs Me” (popularized by Shirley Bassey), and “It Must Be Him” (the title track from Vicki Carr’s 1967 album).
From the thousands of top songs recorded since the turn of the 20th century, Marcic singled out 70 singles to reflect what she, her mother, aunt and grandmother went through during each generation. Although her music choices stop at 2002 with “Video” and “Beautiful”, the show could easily expand to include another decade of popular vocalists including Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift and Adele.
You may be wondering, is this something men would enjoy? As one of the so-called “sterner sex” in attendance, we made up five-percent of the matinee audience. Stoic as some of us may have appeared, I was singing along in my head and quick to join a standing ovation during the finale.
Regardless of your gender, if you enjoy music that tells a story and spans 100 years, then you’re gonna love RESPECT: A MUSICAL CELEBRATION OF WOMEN now through March 3 at the Herberger Theater Center.