Sarah Jane Whiteley’s debut in cabaret was a heartwarming memoir recounting the life of a star. Whiteley conceptualised the production from scratch. Her hour-long tribute to Bette Midler featured hit songs, jazz standards, and anecdotes about Midler’s life.
From crowd pleasers such as “Under the Boardwalk” to rarer gems such as “One for My Baby”, Whiteley curated a memorable repertoire of songs and delivered them expressively with excellent technique.
The Bette Midler Band comprised of a fine group of session players featuring David Goodwin on keyboards, Tim Wildson on bass guitar, and Jakub Gaudasinski on drums. Guest performer Ellis Dolan sang as Barry Manilow in a duet with Whiteley, and burlesque beauty, Roxie Giovannucci danced to “How Bout a Dance”.
Casmira Hambledon and I had the pleasure of harmonising with Whiteley in classic songs such as “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”, “Proud Mary”, “You Don’t Own Me”, and “The Rose” among others.
It was an enjoyable production to take part in and I commend Whiteley on her vocal arrangements and for realising her artistic vision. It takes courage to mount a Fringe performance and I felt privileged to support her in this endeavour.
Whiteley clearly devoted a lot of time into researching her subject and devised an informative script upon which to base her cabaret.
As she explores this genre further, conversations with her audience will naturally develop and complement her exceptional vocal abilities.
Whiteley’s rigour and dedication to her craft is impressive. I am confident that she is a performer/producer to watch out for as she has a versatile skill set from which to create. Sarah Jane Whiteley is a stunning singer and a beautiful soul.
You can follow Sarah Jane Whiteley via her website.
Performances: Thursday 15 & Saturday 17 February 2018
Time: 6.00 pm & 4.00 pm
Venue: La Boheme