Category Archive for: ‘Richard Connema’
Wesla Whitfield got everyone in a lovely mellow mode on September 13 to a sold out crowd The Society Cabaret in the Hotel Rex. Wesla is considered to be one of the best jazz vocalists on the cabaret scene today. She has a distinctive style and elegance in each song that she sings, amazing charisma and an instant connection with the audience. Her incomparable style leaves audiences happily mesmerized. This marks the third time I has reviewed the San Francisco Diva.
On the night of the performance she treated her audience like group of personal friends who had come to visit in the lovely and informal Society Cabaret. She rejected any pretentiousness or big theatrical embellishment when she sang twenty songs bringing out the soul of each song.
Welsa’s husband Mike Greensill, a great jazz pianist in his own right along with Carla Kaufman on bass and Vince Latano on drums capability assisted the songstress. Carla and Vince created a delicate balance between the singer and the accompanist. The Mike Greensill trio opened the 90 minute program with a jazzy arrangement of “Sweet and Lovely”.
Welsa came to the stage with no fanfare and immediately rendered a dreamily arrangement of “Dream” followed by the upbeat song “Show Me” from “My Fair Lady. She displayed a great clarity of pitch and phraseology in these songs.
The diva showed all sides of her amazing voice from a swinging arrangement of “On the Other Sides of the Track” from “Little Me” to the soulfully interpretation of “Dream Dancing” and “Street of Dreams”. In a lighter mood she joined in a duet with Mike in “Little Tin Box” from “Fiorello ” and her own rendition of “Thou Swell” from Rodger and Hart’s “Connecticut Yankee”. Wesla did a mellow interpretation of “In Buddy’s Eyes” from Sondheim’s “Follies” and poignant rendition of “Folks Who Live on the Hill” Mike gave a moving rendering of “When the Morning Glories Wake Up in the Morning”.
Welsa did three encores starting with the Cole Porter classic “You’re the Top” which also highlighted Carla Kaufman on bass and Vince Latano on drums. The chanteuse concluded the session with the lovely “I’ll See You In My Dream” seguing into “When I Grow Too Old to Dream”.
For a lineup of what’s coming to Society Cabaret go to www.societycabaret.com