Pam Lawson starts with a smooth jazz version of Sentimental Journey as the audience file up the stairs at Tuxedo Cat’s Red Room. Accompanied by Tom Finley on piano and John Callisto on double Bass, Lawson gives a brief outline of what the performance will cover; the songs Doris Day has sung in her movies.
Lawson works her way through more than a dozen of Doris Day’s songs, interspersed with a chronological overview of her movie career from her screen test for her first film in 1947.
Lawson obviously enjoys the music, giving clear renditions in the original arrangements so as to not disappoint an audience that are expecting the songs as written. Throughout the show, Lawson feels the rhythm of the music, moving and dancing along, emphasising her love of the works. She maintains a good connection to the audience, during both the patter and the songs, ensuring the whole audience is included and drawn in.
As this is the third of Lawson’s shows to be reviewed, the others being Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers: A Celebration in Song and From Broadway to Hollywood: A Tribute to George and Ira Gershwin, it is clear that Lawson and her band are getting very comfortable as a trio. Finley has travelled from Scotland with Lawson to do the shows. Callisto, a local performer, is supporting Lawson for all three shows and also appears to be having fun with the performances. Finley and Callisto get to showcase their jazz skills through a number of solos.
For anyone who likes Doris Day’s music, this show will get you tapping away, moving in your seat and remembering favourite movies.
Reviewed by Jade Kops, special guest Fringe Critic, Glam Adelaide
Venue: Red Room, The Tuxedo Cat, 199 North Tce, Adelaide
Season: 6pm, Thurs 1 – Mon 5 Mar, Thurs 15 – Sun 18 Mar 2012
Tickets: Adults $20, Concession $18
Bookings: Fringetix 1300-FRINGE (1300-374643), Fringetix outlets or online