The Promethean, Fri Nov 7
Tonight’s show at The Promethean paid homage to American torch singer Julie London. This is the second Julie London tribute show that has been presented to Adelaide audiences since Rhonda Burchmore brought Julie London to the Adelaide Cabaret Festival in 2012. Nice Girls Don’t Stay For Breakfast featured vocalist Stephanie Acraman supported by a quartet of local Adelaide musicians; Dean Barcello on guitar and Peter Caputo on double bass – both from local swing band Lucky Seven, Tony Lillywhite on piano and Ben Adamson, playing his first gig, on drums.
Stephanie is a singer of great versatility and experience. Having trained classically as a soprano, but working actively in musical theatre, opera and jazz. Apart from Australia and New Zealand, she has toured the world performing to audiences as far afield as Italy, Singapore, Fiji, Vietnam, Hong Kong and Cambodia. She is known for her broad range of talents having commenced her theatre career as a dancer. She also had much success at the 2014 Adelaide Fringe with her original show Pleasure Opera.
The ambience of one of Adelaide’s premiere cabaret venues provided the perfect setting for showcasing the glamour of the 1950s. Despite the title of the show, which is the name of a 1967 album release for Julie London, the set list focused heavily on London’s first two LPs both entitled Julie Is Her Name released in 1955 by Liberty Records.
During the first set, as a means of introduction, Stephanie portrayed the persona of ‘Stella’ to talk us through Julie London’s early career and rise to fame. This set included the most famous of London’s songs Cry Me A River, I’m In The Mood For Love and No Moon At All from the same album. The performance of Daddy brought Stephanie into the audience and showcased her theatrical skills, her well honed technique and faultless delivery. After a brief interlude, set two brought with it another glorious gown and a full band sound for more London standards including an old favourite, Fly Me To The Moon in a “Stella” delivery. Tony Lillywhite was an absolute stand out for his stylised solos on piano.
Overall, Nice Girls Don’t Stay For Breakfast ticked all the boxes for professionalism and audience participation, along with ‘Stella’ showcasing Stephanie Acraman’s theatrical pedigree delivered in a 1950’s New York style.
by George Kaplan