Mabel Madness
Closed 1h 30m
Mabel Madness

Mabel Madness NYC Reviews and Tickets

(10 Ratings)
Members say
Entertaining, Intelligent, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Great staging

About the Show

Urban Stages presents the world premiere of a dramatic story with music that looks at the life of the legendary chanteuse Mabel Mercer.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (10)

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207 Reviews | 25 Followers
Entertaining, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Profound

See it if enjoy one woman shows with good acting , music and historical context

Don't see it if do not like one woman shows, or plays that are based on real life experiences with a positive spin.

148 Reviews | 36 Followers
Absorbing, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you know more about the jazz legend Mabel Mercer. Well written, solo performance interspersed with representative songs.

Don't see it if you've come only for the music, or you don't like solo performances

273 Reviews | 41 Followers
Interesting, Informative

See it if you like an historical retrospective of a relatively unknown performer who influenced musical greats such as Sinatra.

Don't see it if you don't like a one women show.

200 Reviews | 24 Followers
Entertaining, Intelligent, Refreshing, Ambitious, Profound

See it if You are interested in the life of Mabel Merced and want to see a very entertaining performer.

Don't see it if You are not interested in Mabel Mercer and have better things to do.

32 Reviews | 11 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you like one-person biographical shows; are interested in the history of cabaret; are a fan of Mabel Mercer; or want to know more about her

Don't see it if you don't like the things listed above, or need a bigger, broader show

7 Reviews | 0 Followers
Entertaining, Great acting, Great staging, Intelligent, Resonant

See it if You like good musical theatre.

Don't see it if You don't like solo shows.

7 Reviews | 3 Followers
Clever, Ambitious, Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if You like jazz

Don't see it if Dont like one actor bios

4 Reviews | 3 Followers
Clever, Exquisite, Great staging, Refreshing, Great acting

See it if You enjoy great theatre performances by one of he most under-rated performers of our time. Absolutely love it.

Don't see it if You aren't a fan of one-woman shows.

Critic Reviews (13)

The New York Times
March 10th, 2016

"Ms. Beverley, who both wrote and stars in this one-act musical play, makes Mercer’s story compelling...When Ms. Beverley sings, she makes the case beautifully for Mercer’s greatness of style...The production itself, directed by Frances Hill and Peter Napolitano, could be more polished. But the heart is there, and Nicholas Blade Guldner’s video design, with evocative vintage black-and-white images, adds a great deal to its atmosphere."
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New York Theatre Guide
February 27th, 2016

"Although Beverley struggles with her British accent and occasionally with her pitch, these gripes are trivial to the importance of the story. Beverley gives her own essence to Mercer’s singing style...She is so passionate about her character and the story is fascinating enough for the audience to quickly forget the minor issues... Ultimately, it is the closeness you feel with Beverley’s elegant portrayal of the very regal Mercer that makes this play a poignant lesson in musical history."
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February 25th, 2016

"Though brevity necessitates lack of detail, it serves the piece. Trezanna Beverly effectively incorporates salient points and important people. The story runs smoothly, giving us a good sense of Mercer's roots, her journey, and of the generous, self-effacing performer herself. Characterization is imbued with sensitivity and sympathy. Songs capture the subject. The play is co-directed with great naturalness by Frances Hill and Peter Napolitano."
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Lighting & Sound America
February 29th, 2016

"A show that never completely manages to transcend the artificial nature of the biographical one-person show...The story she tells is a fascinating one, but so crowded with characters and incidents that 80 minutes allows for only the most cursory treatment...'Mabel Madness' is an odd title for a show as formulaic as this one."
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March 10th, 2016

"Trezana Beverley’s keenly observant, warm biographical musical, 'Mabel Madness,' is not only good theater, but also a means for the many people who, sadly, know little about this extremely influential singer to get acquainted with her...She uncannily finds Mercer’s style, sounding surprisingly like Mercer in her speak-singing period which depended mostly on exquisite timing, understanding the lyrics and hitting the few notes still within her power."
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February 25th, 2016

"Playwright/actress Trezana Beverley compellingly tells Mercer's story at Urban Stages Theatre...With focused direction by Frances Hill and Peter Napolitano, nine songs are set up by memories...Watching 'Mabel Madness' is a lesson in listening...In this skillful memoir with neat production values, Beverley's delivery of 'Just One of Those Things' as Mercer sang it to Sinatra, is a master class in interpretation."
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Theater Pizzazz
February 25th, 2016

"Tony Award-winner Trezana Beverley not only captures the essence of Mercer, but has written a narrative that gives breadth and depth to the life and legacy of this amazing singer's singer...As an actress, Beverley delivers a convincing and compelling performance as Mabel Mercer. But it is as a singer that she excels, exactly reproducing Mercer’s unique story-song style...Hats off to Beverley for bringing to life a cultural treasure and oft overlooked performer."
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Broadway Blog
February 25th, 2016

"The Tony-winning hard to reincarnate Mercer, but her British accent is inconsistent and her charm forced (all those little chuckles must go). She also speaks, not very believably, in the multi-accented voices of other people. Unfortunately, her singing, unlike Mercer’s, is not always on pitch, and her attempts to capture Mercer’s famed “story song” style of mining her lyrics for their nuances are little more than respectable imitations."
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