It’s hard to believe, but Little Big Town finally played Salt Lake City on “The Nightfall Tour”. The show had to be rescheduled at least twice. Covid-19 and the pandemic caused a lot of shows to be postponed and ultimately canceled. But Little Big Town never canceled. They tried to keep the initial date, then tried to keep the next one, and finally, they were able to play two nights at Eccles Theater in downtown Salt Lake City. People who held on to their tickets finally got the payoff months later. We had the opportunity to attend night one and it was obvious that both the band and the audience were happy to be together.
With a minute to go until the 8 o’clock showtime, chimes warned the stragglers filtering through security in the Eccles Theater lobby to take their seats. These chimes were more of a guarantee than a warning, as Joe Bonamassa and his band took the stage not a moment past 8:01. Beyond punctual, the all-time #1 Billboard Blues Album record holder has been described as “magical” and “transformational.”
Attending The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber at Eccles Theater felt like a joyous homecoming. I love this theater. I was there opening night and have had the great fortune to return many times attending concerts, comedy, and theater. This return, after over a year away felt that much sweeter. I even had the box office staff say, “Hi Kevin, welcome back! Here’s your ticket.” before I even made it to the window. It really did feel like I was home.
“The Really Useful Group in London has authorized a special, limited engagement of The Music Of Andrew Lloyd Webber to be produced almost entirely with Utah talent for Utah audiences in celebration of the return of live performance to Utah stages.
Emmy Award-winning Utah composer KURT BESTOR is collaborating with director LOUANNE MADORMA to bring this very special production featuring Utah musicians, singers, cast, crew and featured performers, including DALLYN VAIL BAYLES , DAVID OSMOND, Tony Award-winner LISA HOPKINS SEEGMILLER, LEXI WALKER and others, to the Eccles Theater, May 7th–15th.“
Utah Concert Review Editor in Chief, Kevin Rolfe had the opportunity to chat with cast member, David Osmond leading up to Friday night’s opening performance.
UCR: I know what it feels like for me to once again prepare to cover a show but to be rehearsing and on a stage and listening to the music, what does it feel like to be preparing for an actual show?
David Osmond: It is goosebumps! We were on stage yesterday and we’re doing our tech rehearsals and the lights are on and you smell that theater smell and everybody’s there and we’re going through the music and its great content. I just have a perma grin. I’m ear to ear, I’ve been able to grow up in the music world since I was a baby in so many different capacities of performing.
As a kid in a barbershop quartet and my brothers as a boy band back in the day to pop music and then the opportunity to get into musical theatre and perform doing Broadway tours and shows and of course “Joseph” was kind of the kingpin of that. I did five companies of it. To do that music again in this setting is epic. There’s nothing quite like it and to know that Eccles has been down for 14 months and this is like we’re kicking the cobwebs off and we’re bringing it back! And this is a Utah show with Utah’s finest. I’m honored to be part of the mix and I think the audience is going to be thrilled not just to be back in seats and not feel that live element again. But because of the show itself, it’s pretty epic.
Nineteen-year-old Jackie Evancho stunned an audience of all ages as she performed at the Eccles Theater in Salt Lake City this past Thursday. At an early age of 10, she made her first appearance to the world on America’s Got Talent season 5 where she finished with a 2nd place medal. No longer a child, Jackie sang songs from her newest broadway album, “The Debut.” Jackie exclaimed on her website, “I’m very proud to be recording and interpreting songs by these contemporary theater songwriters. Not only do I love the songs, but I am able to tell a story and interpret them from my perspective. It was an incredible experience getting to know these characters and songs and I can’t wait to perform them live!”
“I’ve come to terms with the fact that I write the same song over and over,” Sarah said, “so with my limited musical ability, I try to spice things up by switching instruments.” This isn’t true, of course, but it does show a level of self-deprecation and humility rare for an artist of her renown.
Finding humor in the every day is easier said than done, but Miss North Carolina 1963 (better known as Jeanne Robertson) makes it look like a breeze. This isn’t a product simply of age experience, it’s the result of a finely-tuned analytical perspective sharpened by wit and just the right amount of wackiness—specifically, the type of wacky that decorated the lobby of the Eccles Theater with signs encouraging the night’s attendees to enter a drawing to win a “JEANNE ROBERTSON SIGNED AND SAT-ON ROCKING CHAIR.”
When I was invited to cover The Hip Hop Nutcracker I wasn’t sure what to think. What exactly was the show going to be like? Was it exactly that? The Nutcracker set to Hip Hop? I went to the show’s website for more information. This is how they described the show.