By Brian Scott Lipton . . .

They say you can’t judge a book by its cover, but what about a cabaret show? In the case of “Christine Andreas: And So It Goes…Life & Love, Lost & Found,” at Feinstein’s/54 Below through September 25, you can actually tell a lot.

For example, you will discover there will be many musings, philosophical and personal, about the human condition. You might also guess from the length of that title that the 90-minute show will be a bit rambling, jagged and overstuffed. And if you know pop music, you’ll surmise correctly that Andreas will sing – beautifully — Billy Joel’s heart-wrenching 1989 ballad “And So It Goes” (inspired by his brief relationship with the supermodel Elle McPherson).

But the most important words in the title are, of course, Christine Andreas. Looking stunning in a simple black dress and possessing a voice that has only richened since her Broadway debut over 45 years ago (yet which also retains its extraordinary operatic soprano), Andreas is a force of nature. She may be a philosopher of sorts but, more importantly, she’s a sort of a magician, making time disappear whenever she sings.

Indeed, her eclectic, nearly 20-song set list gives Andreas the opportunity to perform all sorts of tricks (and treats). One swoons during a glorious medley of Rodgers & Hart’s “My Romance” and “Falling in Love with Love” (which she originally sang at George Abbott’s 90th birthday celebration back in 1976). One laughs repeatedly during her comedic (and purposefully overdramatic) rendition of the pair’s witty “To Keep My Love Alive” and smiles often to oneself during the ever-timely “Laughing Matters” by Dick Gallagher and Mark Waldrop.

One’s heart silently breaks during her deeply felt takes on such songs as Johnny Burke and Jimmy Van Heusen’s “Here’s That Rainy Day,” Amanda McBroom’s autobiographical “Errol Flynn” (especially when we learn that like McBroom, Andreas “lost” her beloved father in the battle of the bottle as well), and John Lennon’s little-known “Grow Old With Me,” which she performs with her music director and husband of 30 years, the good-natured (and very talented) Martin Silvestri.

Moreover, during the show, one wishes there had been a chance to see Andreas portray two of musical theater’s greatest roles, Nellie Forbush in South Pacific and Sharon McLonergan in Finian’s Rainbow, after listening to her gorgeous versions of “Some Enchanted Evening” and “How Are Things in Glocca Morra?” Heck, one might even be tempted (unwisely) to revive the ill-fated Leonard Bernstein/Alan Jay Lerner musical 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue after her stirring delivery of its most famous ballad, “Take Care of This House.”

Martin Silvestri, Christine Andreas, Marco Romano. (Photo: Maryann Lopinto)

And given that Andreas has written this show to both cheer herself up and make sense of the world, it’s only fitting that she concludes her show by having Neapolitan singer Marco Romano (who appears onstage three times) join her on the ultra-popular ballad “The Prayer.” Its key lyrics, “Lead us to a place/Guide us with your grace/To a place where we’ll be safe,” are a benediction that all of us can appreciate as we return to the night — and a very confusing world.

Christine Andreas: And So It Goes… continues on Saturday, September 25 at 7pm at Feinstein’s/54 Below (254 West 54th Street). Visit for tickets and information.