SMA Kryztoff banner May 13 100dpiIdinaMenzel_t614By Anthony Nguyen

When it comes to Broadway legends, the name Idina Menzel gets tossed around quite often. And for the first time ever, Idina Menzel, graces our shores in her Australian debut show for the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.

The Tony award-winning Broadway star is best known for her original roles as both Maureen Johnson in the musical Rent and as Elphaba in the green-skinned witch in Wicked. Additionally, Menzel has also featured in numerous film and television shows, possibly best known by youngsters today as Shelby Corcoran in hit musical TV show, Glee.

Accompanied by the 55-piece Adelaide Art Orchestra, conducted by Vanessa Scammell, including some members of Menzel’s own band, Idina Menzel makes a glamorous entrance with a bone-chilling rendition of Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Menzel takes us through her life journey, displaying an intimate performance showcasing over 10 songs from shows she has been involved in, including Rent and Wicked, as well as songs reflecting her relationships and loved ones she’s lost.

Barefoot and dressed in a self-proclaimed ‘very non-sexy frock,’ Menzel simply does not fail to amuse her audience in between songs and it is clearly obvious that she has a rather large fanbase here in Adelaide.  Not only showing spectacular vocal skills, Menzel also performed a small dance number to the entertainment of the audience.

A memorable and highly enjoyable moment of the night would be when Menzel performed Rent’s Take Me or Leave Me in which she invited a trio of unexpected talent to come up onstage to sing the song with her. Without a doubt, this performance of high grandeur received an overwhelmingly positive response from the audience.

In an unforgettably moment, Menzel performed an unaccompanied acapella version of For Good from the musical Wicked, a song which emphasizes her appreciation of her fans and the opportunity to travel the world doing what she loves. And without a doubt, she closed the show with her most signature song in a grand performance of none other than Defying Gravity.

However, Idina Menzel returned to the stage once more to perform a song from her upcoming musical If/Then and her personal favourite Somewhere from West Side Story.

The Adelaide Festival Theatre, housing approximately 2000 people, provided a simple backdrop and minimal staging decorations in order to allow a more intimate performance between Menzel and the audience. The powerful vocal performance displayed by Menzel emphasized her professionalism in being a renowned musical theatre actress throughout the years.

It goes to say that the name Idina Menzel  will be passed around countless times in the theatre world in the years to come. If one ever happens to be in New York in 2014, be sure to see Idina Menzel in her return to the Broadway stage in her new show If/Then.


Kryztoff Rating: 5K

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