The Sounds of Music

There’s a new plaque going up on the wall of the Mark Taper Forum. It honors Michael Feinstein. At the conclusion of Monday’s spectacular “Salon At The Taper” honoring Frank Loesser, while the evening’s full cast and the SRO audience applauded, CTG Artistic Director Michael Ritchie presented the honor to Feinstein, who has toasted the heart and soul of America’s most beautiful music in movies and theater. This was the most lavish production the Salon has presented and the most enthusiastic cast ever to grace the boards of the Taper. The theater is absolutely perfect for the event as chaired this year by Ann and Stephen Hinchliffe, Jr. and dedicated to the memory of Nick Vanoff.

A few of the Loesser songs which filled the theater: “On A Slow Boat To China,” “I’ve Never Been In Love Before,” “Heart & Soul,” “Once In Love With Amy,” “Baby It’s Cold Outside “– duetted by Jo Sullivan Loesser and Feinstein, no less. The performers included Ken Page, Elissa Johnson, Harry Groener, Kim Huber, Amanda McBroom, Rod Giffy, Nita Whitaker, Theodore Bikel, Wesla Whitfield, Jason Grae, Michele Lee and Robert Morse. The audience sang its way to the post-party in the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Michael Fenstein continues on to N.Y. where Dec. 2-30 he plays “The Sinatra Holiday Project” in his club — with a 17-piece swing band and guest star Antonia Bennett. That’ll cheer up New York.

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