Friday, April 28th was something new for me. All of the shows I’ve watched and reviewed so far have been either musical theatre or a play so to see a show that was a purely vocal performance was a little bit different. To be honest I didn’t know what to expect from the evening. I’m not a diehard Sinatra fan, although I have a few tracks on my iPod, mostly well known songs that everyone has heard of. But I have to say, despite not particularly looking forward to the evening, and having a few traffic problems on the way which nearly led me to turn around and go home before even getting there, I was very pleasantly surprised.
Robert Habermann took to the stage with a fabulous pianist and Musical Director, Trevor Brown, by singing one of his own numbers about the horrors of ‘mobile phones’ in theatre; very comical and definitely made the audience reach for their bags and make sure they were silent!
I couldn’t possibly name all the tracks Robert covered but during the two acts he vocalised both the songs and the life of Singer Frank Sinatra, telling stories about his time as band singer to ballad and swinging singer, and building his own record label ‘Reprise.’ It was a pleasure to hear from Robert detailing some of the highs and lows of Frank’s life, together with his wonderful musical renditions, not only of the songs that Frank made famous, but a lot of songs from his early years that aren’t quite so well known. It was obvious that Robert had done his research and is a big fan of Sinatra, there’d be no other way of retaining so much interesting and entertaining information (without any written notes), especially the snippets about his Christmas with Ava Gardner!
The audience really warmed to Robert’s easy going style (representative of the Mr Sinatra style we all recognise I guess!), and they took advantage of the opportunity to join in as much as possible… even I joined in with some of the more well known songs! It was a true delight to hear stories that gave a great insight into the legend, and with Robert’s sincere and genuine personality and beautiful vocal renditions of so many wonderful songs, the audience couldn’t fail to enjoy the evening.
Did Robert sound like Frank Sinatra? Well I shut my eyes a few times, and could easily have been transported to a little club somewhere in the heart of America in the mid 1950’s… He has the smooth vocals, the easy style, and likeable personality that I can only imagine were typical of the Frank we are all familiar with. Some of the songs Robert covered included Come Fly With Me, Fly Me To The Moon, Witchcraft, You Make Me Feel So Young, Strangers In The Night , My Way, New York New York and many more.
Robert performs many shows across the UK, click on the link here to get details of his up and coming tours and how to buy tickets. I’ll certainly be watching out for Robert and a hopeful return to Louth Playgoers either later in 2017 or 2018, perhaps with one of his other shows, Broadway and Hollywood musicals, or MGM musicals – after all, I really have got quite enthusiastic about musical theatre!