Donna McKechnie - Inside The Music

Friday, 25 October, 1996

If you are the type knew who she was before reading the above, you are probably already rushing off to buy your ticket, desperate to purchase your moment of nostalgia, your chance to see this Broadway legend recreating some of the routines, and performing some of the numbers from these wonderful musicals. If this is the case I am sure you will have a wonderful evening. If not I expect you are a little bewildered as to what the fuss is about.

The above are not particularly famous musicals (with the obvious exception of "A Chorus Line"), however they are loved by musical theatre enthusiasts, although mostly unheard of by those referred to as "Joe Public". The songs Joe Public will actually recognise, will be those made famous by somebody else, somebody who invariably did it better. This is not to say Donna Mckechnie is untalented, the reverse. She is primarily a dancer, but the small venue does not allow her to show this attribute off to the full, (although she certainly does her best). She is a competent singer, but not sensational. Her upper range sometimes sounds as if it she is not going to make the high notes, and the occasional flat note crept in.

Despite the drawbacks, it is still a great opportunity, to hear such classic songs as "Cockeyed Optimist", "Being Alive", "If They Could See Me Now", and "The Music and the Mirror", her hit from "A Chorus Line", and it is fun to see someone like this in such a cozy and intimate venue as this lovely hidden underground theatre, however when a performer is quite obviously bursting to dance, maybe next time a slightly bigger venue would work better.

(Jason L Belne)

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