Last year I attended a remarkable performance called the Tres Gai Cabaret: PERFECT HARMONY, which was created in honor of the Harmony Fund. It featured some of CCM’s brightest musical theatre stars of tomorrow. It was beautiful and I was very happy when I learned they were presenting another show this year called LIVING IN HARMONY.
While last year’s show featured songs and monologues in “the spirit of the Harmony Fund,” this year’s show was more focused on celebrating the Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage. And what a celebration it was!
There were lots of laughs, as songs were genderbent and modified to fit the theme. Director Aubrey Berg (with beautiful accompanment and musical direction by Evan Roider) assembled a perfect cast and staged the show well using every inch of the stage in the Master Class room (and then some). Tom Meglio, a graduating senior, wrote the text for last year’s cabaret and he was back this year with an all new script that transitioned from song to song with wit, charm, and brilliance.
Here are some of the highlights:
- Louis Griffin’s remarkable version of “On My Own” from Les Mis showed remarkable range and presence.
- Phillip Johnson’s powerful performance of “I am Changing” from Dreamgirls in tribute to transgender issues was quite moving.
- Ciara Harris gave a probable preview of her future Broadway career with “I’m Here” from The Color Purple. This is a very difficult song to sing, especially out of context, and she nailed every bit of it.
- Shauna Topian, Marissa Hecker, and Emily Meredith were dynamic throughout the entire performance and I can’t wait to see more from each.
- For me, the most moving part of the show was the stunning duet from Tyler Jent and Stavros Koumbaros. The chemistry, the passion, and the exquisite vocal performance of “In His Eyes” from Jekyll and Hyde stole the show.
I hope that this tradition of excellence continues next year and I hope I’m invited back to enjoy what has become a highlight of the spring in my theatrical entertainment.