(CLOSED April 19, 2008) The musical Fabulous Divas of Broadway, written, directed and performed by Alan Palmer, opened at St Luke’s Theater on 27 Feb 2008, following previews from 13 Feb, 2008 through to 30 Mar 2008.
Congratulations, Alan on 17 previews and 61 performances. It was a great run, and you made many new fans here in New York!
Fabulous Divas of Broadway: Opened at St Lukes Theatre, direct from Los Angeles, where it enjoyed an extended 5-month run. About the show: “What to do when you’re a male musical theater performer with a big belting voice and an affinity for Broadway’s greatest leading ladies? Since Broadway shows aren’t casting men in traditional women’s roles � if you’re resourceful, you create your own one-man ‘woman’ musical!
A hilarious and touching look at growing up in the business while portraying 18 different stars of the stage. In rapid succession and a non-stop turnover of gorgeous costumes, he brings to life such legends as Ethel Merman, Carol Channing, Liza Minnelli, Angela Lansbury, Julie Andrews, Judy Garland and Chita Rivera and such Tony-winning stars of today as Christine Ebersole, Patti LuPone, Sutton Foster, Kristin Chenoweth and Beth Leavel.
Performing 25 songs in each lady’s singular style, he weaves together reminiscences of growing up in a small town obsessed with musical cast albums, auditioning for shows in New York City, performing during onstage and backstage mishaps, raising his young son and interacting with many of the ladies represented in the show.”
Alan Palmer was accompanied by Curtis Jerome.The creative team was comprised of Jessa Orr (sets), C. Bucky (costumes) and Peter Ray (lighting).
Click here to read the piece on NY1’s website or you can download the actual footage. (Click on the dial up/broadband icon.) Congratulations, Alan- you look fabulous!
“I had a theatre in Los Angeles in Sherman Oaks, California, and we were trying to keep the doors open, and so I had written this piece as a kind of workshop sort of piece and we decided to try and throw it into the season to keep the doors open,” said Palmer. “Within a week, all the tickets sold out and we kept extending the show and it ran for five months in Los Angeles.”
Beginning with Andrea McArdle’s “Tomorrow” from “Annie” and ending with Carol Channing’s “Hello Dolly!,” Palmer embodies almost two dozen “fabulous divas,” singing their signature numbers and telling show biz tales in between. Palmer, who grew up listening to Broadway cast recordings and performing shows on a makeshift stage in his basement, says his diva devotion began with Ethel Merman.
“My first experience was “Annie Get Your Gun,” the album of “Annie Get Your Gun,” which I listened to on our turntable downstairs over and over, and I decided to go to my local library and checkout everything that Ethel Merman recorded after that,” said Palmer. “So she was my first big diva.”
Once the show begins, Palmer is on stage the entire time, going from one diva to the next — while telling stories behind a small dressing wall.
“When you finally have all the elements together, the costume, the makeup, and everything, you can’t help but become those characters,” said Palmer. “I’m going into Betty Buckley, because every single time I put on that Norma Desmond gown I feel exactly the pains that they feel and I try to see the show through their eyes.”
And so, in this one man/multi-woman show, “With one look” you’ll get to see some of the greatest stars of all.
– Donna Karger [CLOSED]