Lyricist Michael Colby, otherwise known as The Algonquin Kid, has been under a bright and lucky star as of recent months. First the release of his book The Algonquin Kid and now the release of Tales of Tinseltown on Jay Records (music by Paul Katz) together with the re-release of Charlotte Sweet (music by Gerald Jay Markoe).
The Duplex was the scene where we learned more about the kid, Michael Elihu Colby, who grew up at the Algonquin, grandson of Mary and Ben Bodne owners. It was there that Michael spent hours of time writing Tales of Tinseltown, hunting and pecking on a typewriter and hobnobbing with theater celebrities. But that’s a whole other tale and you can read more about it if you get the book!
The CD release event featured songs from Tales of Tinseltown, others from Charlotte Sweet as well as from Ludlow Ladd (music Markow, lyrics Colby).
Rob Langeder and Stacie Perlman Langeder kicked off the evening (with Michael Lavine at the piano) singing “It Could Only Happen in the Theatre” (Charlotte Sweet) and from there a talented cast of performers including Christina Bianco continued with “All I Dreamed” (Tales of Tinseltown), followed by original cast member Nat Chandler’s ‘Someone to Love Me” (Tinseltown). Jeff Harnar was “All Over the Place” (Tinseltown) while Sarah Rice portrayed the “Lonely Canary” (Charlotte Sweet). The very funny Adam Shapiro was hysterical as “Vegetable Reggie” (Charlotte Sweet). Things moved along as Nat and Christina came together for “Hunchy” (Tinseltown), followed by Ben Rauch & Rita Markova singing “Poor Little Paper Boy” (Ludlow Ladd). Booming Natalie Douglas proved it with “I Can Sing” (Tinseltown) and Paul Katz at the piano sang “So This Is the Movies/I’ll Stand by You” (Tinseltown).
All the while photos of the original cast productions were projected on a backdrop screen, along with original caricatures by Al Hirschfeld, as Michael Colby hosted the event with great humor giving insight into the history of the productions, his extraordinary family and so much more.
It was a delightful afternoon and congratulations are in order for Mr. Colby and company!
Photos: Maryann Lopinto