Diamonds Are Forever: The Songs of Dame Shirley Bassey
Jennifer Leigh Warren's new cabaret show is a fitting tribute to the great British singer.
Warren scores with Bassey's biggest hits, especially her popular James Bond themes, "Diamonds Are Forever" and "Goldfinger." Yet it was the Beatles melodic "Something" and Jerry Herman's anthem "I Am What I Am" that received the loudest hosannas from the audience.
Warren --dressed in gowns by Ali Rahimi -- is having a ball with many of the numbers, shimmying during "Big Spender," flipping her hand in protest during "Puhleeze! Mister Brown," or shaking a tail feather in "History Repeating."
Sometimes she teases the audience with an innocent but naughty baby voice, and, at one point, lures the audience into placing dollar bills into forbidden places. Between the numbers, Warren, who clearly grew up in awe of Bassey, recounts a few anecdotes of the great chanteuse's life and career.
Kenneth Crouch and his seven-piece band are the fire that ignites Warren during her show-stopping numbers. Although the trumpets and sax pump energy into the jazz numbers, it's the lyrical flutes in one of the wistful songs that surprise. And the guitarist Aron Forbes plucking out some of those 1960s riffs, like the opening of "History Repeating," is a joyful noise indeed.