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Call Me Madam

From 84 member  reviews
Members say: Entertaining, Great singing, Dated, Delightful, Fluffy

About the show

A highlight of the second season of Encores! (1995) and featuring a memorable score by Irving Berlin, "Call Me Madam" centers around a brassy ambassador to the fictional European nation of Lichtenberg.


The show pokes fun at a far more polite and benign political world and includes standards such as “It’s a Lovely Day Today” and “Something to Dance About,” along with Berlin’s famous counterpoint duet, “You’re Just in Love.” 

Member Reviews (84)


Entertaining, Great singing, Dated, Delightful, Fluffy
Avg Score

Charming, Funny, Weak singing (lead), Nostalgic, Entertaining

See it if you want old-fashioned musical with lovely tunes and light, amusing tale. Great choice (again) for Encores. Gotay & Worsham esp. good.

Don't see it if You want something new or edgy - or you want lead w/powerhouse singing. Cusack's voice lovely for some scores, but not for belting Berlin.

Disappointing, Creaky, Lead voice very weak, Some good songs, Dated

See it if You’ve never seen it before and like lots of corn with your musicals.

Don't see it if You’ve ever seen it before; this show relies on a brassy lead; she had either exhausted her voice or didn’t have it to start with.

Also I have a lot of patience for and joy in old musicals, but this product... Read more Read less

Cute, Charming, Vintage, Great singing, Fun

See it if This isn't neuroscience, just plain old fashioned fun. Great singing. Just top notch.

Don't see it if You don't want the gift of a little Irving Berlin--feel good music. It's a warm fuzzy experience, but not profound​.

Great singing, Fluffy

See it if you enjoy all Encores as a history piece and saying you've seen a production of a rarely done show.

Don't see it if You're expecting a stand out star performance. Cusak is lovely but hardly the bulldozer required for the role.

Cliched, Dated, Funny, Fluffy, Overrated

See it if you like stale political satire, historical musicals, or Irving Berlin. A fine revival of a very dated musical with a couple great numbers.

Don't see it if You don't feel the need for a predictable, slightly sexist comedy set in a poor duchy in Europe. It was fine, just very unmodern.

Dated, Disappointing, Great singing

See it if Support City Center.

Don't see it if Looking for Merman.

Entertaining, Dated, Great singing & orchestra, Fluffy, Nice costumes, simple staging

See it if you like Encores--orchestra is wonderful, great performances in a show that doesn't really hold up. That said, it was an enjoyable evening.

Don't see it if you don't like old fashioned shows, want something edgy or with more depth. Cusack good but not larger than life. Take it for what it is.

Delightful, Entertaining, Exquisite, Great singing, Masterful

See it if You love Encores! and what they do—bringing older shows, dusting them off, making them fresh, and reminding when theater was entertainment.

Don't see it if You need the hot new show. This is old-fashioned, pure entertainment. Don’t go if you’re looking for big sets, contemporary themes or ideas.

Also Another example of what Encores! does best. If you’re a fan, don’t mis... Read more Read less

Dated, Fluffy, Romantic, Slow, Entertaining

See it if You want to see a classic musical done by Broadway-caliber actors, in a gentle political satire

Don't see it if You'll be bored by dated songs; the music is quite dull. You want to go for Carol Kane, who's only in it for 5 min.

Disappointingly uncharismatic production

See it if for some delightful talent, familiar tunes and the joy of a never produced work; choreography and duets of the young lovers worth it all.

Don't see it if you expect a charismatic Sally who creates irresistible chemistry with her lover and the rest of the production; costumes accurate to period

Also This show needs a real Broadway Dame to lead the show and make the sto... Read more Read less

Funny, Fluffy, Great staging, Quirky, Great singing

See it if you love any of the performers or want to see what City Center is really all about -- putting on a great show

Don't see it if you don't like traditional musical comedies -- there's no stakes here at all.

Cliched, Great singing, Fluffy, Dated, Entertaining

See it if you are interested in revivals of old shows. It has some lovely songs, of course, and Carmen Cusack gives it her best shot. Script is creaky

Don't see it if you expect musicals to have strong, logical, funny books. This one hasn't held up. Some people hate City Center, too, for the size.

Delightful, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if Fun, light, frothy and Randy Rainbow😃

Don't see it if If you don't like frothy musicals

Entertaining, Musical comedy comfort food, Dated

See it if You love those classic Irving Berlin tunes performed by top-notch entertainers. You love revivals of older musicals.

Don't see it if You can't image anyone but Ethel Merman (or Tyne Daly) as Sally Adams. You don't care for older musicals.

Also I enjoyed this production thoroughly. It's always a pleasure to hear R... Read more Read less

Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Clever, Great staging

See it if The score us excellent and the story is uplifting...something we can all use now. Excellent performances

Don't see it if It is old fashioned and charming, not edgy. Don't see it if you don't like old fashioned musicals.

Dated, Entertaining, Great singing, Slow, Fluffy

See it if You like old-school musicals with fun and pleasing but fluffy songs.

Don't see it if You want to be deeply engaged or truly moved by a musical. You need a show with a strong book.

Dated, Funny

See it if you are either an Encores! or Carmen Cusack fan.

Don't see it if you dislike dated musicals about politics.

Also This was just fine. Not outstanding, not terrible. Ben Davis and Laure... Read more Read less

Delightful, Entertaining, Refreshing, Blast-from-the-past

See it if You enjoy being thoroughly entertained with a full orchestra and delightful staging and choreography of an old musical.

Don't see it if You want a perfect stand-in for Merman. Carmen Cusack is very likable, yet not a force of Ms. Merman, Patti Lapone, or Annaleigh Ashford

Banal, Dated, Slow

See it if You don't mind a boring and dated plot and production. Didn't engage me except for one number. Left at intermission. Tons of people left.

Don't see it if Expecting a great show.

Great orchestra, A bit of relevance to today, Some wonderful classics

See it if See it for Ben Davis, who plays the gorgeous government official from Lichtenburg. His manner and voice are as handsome as his face.

Don't see it if old-fashioned musicals with happy endings are not your thing.

Also Carmen Cusack cannot belt the songs that need to be belted. But she is... Read more Read less

Cliched, Dated, Great singing, Fluffy, Old-fashioned

See it if you’re a historian who wants to see a relic live onstage.

Don't see it if you’re expecting something that feels fresh or relevant.

Charm in spades

See it if you appreciate Berlin: (You're Not Sick) You're Just in Love/I Wonder Why, It's a Lovely Day Today; Cusack's southern charm, Davis' voice.

Don't see it if you can't stand love-conquers-all musicals with a hum-able score.

Also See it!

Disappointing, Fun coreography, Lead miscast

See it if Like old fashioned musicals. This one is better than some critics like the NY Times would mislead you to believe. Nice songs.

Don't see it if Want a complex story. A lead that can belt out the tunes the way they were written to be. I.E Merman. Cusack good but not brassy enough.

Entertaining, Great singing, Romantic, Great staging

See it if You enjoy period musicals with a rose-colored view of how the world should work.

Don't see it if Today’s political shenanigans upset you. All the people around you laughing at the pointed corollary will surely give you a coronary.

Also It’s beautifully staged, dressed, danced and sung. Carmen Cusack is wo... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Great acting, Great singing, Great staging, Masterful

See it if you enjoy wonderful musicals that have great singing and dancing mixed with laughter.

Don't see it if you do not enjoy endings that tie everything together and makes you feel good.

February 7th, 2019
"The pulse-lowering Encores! production...Cusack, a strong performer in other circumstances — is overpowered here by material that, if it can work at all today, can do so only when rough-handled by a mauler....'Call Me Madam' can’t support much political reflection, or any reflection, really...Th...
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February 7th, 2019
"Sadly, Carmen Cusack doesn’t quite have the larger-than-life presence necessary to lift this flimsy star vehicle. She does, however, have a gorgeous voice and charm to spare, and these assets, along with Irving Berlin's terrific score and some deftly amusing supporting performances, make this 'C...
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February 7th, 2019
"What passed as 'political satire' in 1950 does not have quite the same bite in 2019 — at least not as seen in the flat and tiresome revival...While 'Call Me Madam' has at least four good songs, much of the rest is second-rate operetta pastiche and the book is drawn-out. The Encores! revival stil...
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February 7th, 2019
“’Call me Madam’ is breathing in new life in the 21st Century...Cusack's casual charm comes with a delightful drawl and spirited country-pop vocals...By no means a classic musical, ‘Call me Madam’ is nevertheless a classic style musical of its time, offering 1950s audiences some good laughs, some...
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