Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for readers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

265

Ute Lemper Returns for One Night to The Royal Festival Hall, London UK

By

Sign in to view read count
Ute Lemper returned again to the Royal Festival Hall bringing with her onto the stage something more than ever before. Her repertoire was taken mainly from her new album But One Day, consisting of compositions from Astor Piazzolla, Kurt Weill, Jacques Brel and which, for the first time, features Lemper's own works.

The scene and ambience for an evening of Berlin cabaret songs, French songs and tangos were immediately set by her presence on stage, aided by her red-sequined dress, black bowler hat, long black coat, and accessorized with a red feather boa. She was joined by the 12-strong Matrix Ensemble; a sexy combination of guitar, piano, accordion, strings, bass, saxophone and clarinet, all essential to achieve the sultry sound of cabaret and tango.

Lemper built a rapport with the audience, engaging in friendly banter before an introduction to each song. Her repertoire this evening was indeed varied, accentuated by the juxtaposition of song styles which allowed Lemper to demonstrate her broad range and her consummate ability to interpret French songs and Berlin cabaret songs.

Her exquisite performance opened with a rendition of Piazzolla's tango 'Buenos Aires'. Here, Lemper's similarity with Edith Piaf was unmistakable, only to be affirmed in 'Ne Me Quitte Pas'. Nick Cave's 'Little Water Song' and Hans Eisler's 'Ballad of Marie Sanders' both exposed Lemper's ability to paint the texture of a song with her rich tones and 'Speak Low' reminded us of Lemper's tribute to Kurt Weill.

A true highlight of the evening was Lemper's performance of her long-awaited own compositions. Lemper's lyrics in 'But One Day', the title track, and 'Lena' portray her emotions and thought through stories of sorrow and happiness. They are the result of inspiration and creativity amalgamating in order to add 'composer' to Lemper's description.

The cabaret songs allowed Lemper to flaunt her stage flamboyance, which did not fail to mesmerize the audience. 'Amsterdam' was particularly special as this year marks the 25th anniversary of Jacques Brel's death. Lemper ended her main set with a bilingual rendition of 'Mack the Knife', uniquely performed in the styles of cabaret, jazz, rock and returning to cabaret. This, coupled with her first encore 'Sex Appeal', reminded us of her stunning stage performance in Chicago as Velma Kelly, which won her the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical.

Most of all, this evening reconfirmed Lemper's accolade of unrivalled interpreter of cabaret songs, French songs as well as composer, concert artist and performer. Often compared to Edith Piaf and Marlene Dietrich, Ute Lemper is, in her own right, electrifying diversity.

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Jazztopad 2017: Concerts In Living Rooms Live Reviews Jazztopad 2017: Concerts In Living Rooms
by Martin Longley
Published: January 17, 2018
Read Lean On Me: José James Celebrates Bill Withers @ NYC Winter Jazzfest Live Reviews Lean On Me: José James Celebrates Bill Withers @ NYC...
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 15, 2018
Read Carl Bartlett, Jr. at Jazz At Kitano Live Reviews Carl Bartlett, Jr. at Jazz At Kitano
by Keith Henry Brown
Published: January 13, 2018
Read Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café Live Reviews Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: January 2, 2018
Read Terence Blanchard at Christ Church Cranbrook Live Reviews Terence Blanchard at Christ Church Cranbrook
by Troy Dostert
Published: December 29, 2017
Read "Gabrielle Stravelli at The 75 Club" Live Reviews Gabrielle Stravelli at The 75 Club
by Tyran Grillo
Published: December 21, 2017
Read "Richie Buckley With The Scott Flanigan Trio @ The Sunflower, Belfast" Live Reviews Richie Buckley With The Scott Flanigan Trio @ The...
by Ian Patterson
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café" Live Reviews Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: January 2, 2018
Read "Steve Reich @ 80: Music for 18 Musicians" Live Reviews Steve Reich @ 80: Music for 18 Musicians
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: March 29, 2017