Fabulous Phoebe Snow filled the main theatre at Queens Theatre in the Park (QTIP) recently for a solo concert. This special event is part of the solo series at QTIP that is also offering comedian Robert Klein, singer Dionne Warwick (in conjunction with Queens College), the accomplished Tom Chapin, and cabaret star Karen Akers.
It’s been more than 30 years since Snow stood the musical world on its ear with her hit “Poetry Man” and her Grammy nominated first album. But tragedy overtook the songstress when her beloved daughter Valerie suffered severe perinatal damage in the mid 1970s. Soon after, Phoebe herself battled a serious illness.
Thankfully, Snow has not been forgotten. If her recent concert is any indication, her four-octave voice range and dedicated fan base are more in synch than ever. This month’s appearance on TV’s “Hannah Montana,” and songs offered recently on the CBS Early Show, are just the newest opportunities to discover and enjoy this incredibly talented performer.
While dignitaries including Congressman Meeks looked on, Snow opened with “Shaky Ground.” The back-up guitars, drums, and keyboard immediately picked up the beat as she demonstrated her incredible vocal range. The audience broke into applause as she held a long note for what seemed like several minutes.
The musical pace continued to change as the singer frequently switched melodic gears. This included her version of “All in the Game.” Most striking was the very high comfort level between the audience and the stage. Snow frequently spoke directly to fans in the theatre. She asked a young girl to cover her ears while she told a slightly off-color anecdote. Snow, whose daughter passed away two years ago this month, dedicated the performance to her memory. The evening was as close to a relaxed visit in a friend’s “family room” as I have ever seen.
There was no intermission as the songstress continued for close to two hours. She joked about the many well-known TV jingles that “helped buy my condo,” and sang a few as evidence.
When Snow and her musicians finished performing, thunderous applause forced an encore. She sang a slow melody, thanking the audience for helping her survive all these years. When the final bows were taken, a warm and wonderful evening had reached its conclusion.
This season’s ticket sales at QTIP have been brisk, especially for these solo shows. Even SRO spots are difficult to obtain. To assure a good seat for the rest of the series call 718-760-0064 or email email@example.com. As always, save me a seat on the aisle.