Daily Archives: May 18, 2022

EVENINGS IN THE THEATRE, ALL ABOUT LOVE: NANCY HARROW, JAZZ, CHEKHOV, TURGENEV

I first encountered Nancy Harrow as a wondrous singer, an individualist deeply immersed in the blues: someone with feeling and spirit but entirely lacking in affectation. (That her early fans included Buck Clayton, John Lewis, and Roland Hanna did not escape me.)

When I had the opportunity to hear Nancy in person, those impressions were only reinforced. But by that time, I had learned that she was also songwriter, lyricist, dramatist — someone for whom the word “theatrical” would be the highest praise.

Just before the pandemic, I had the opportunity to see ABOUT LOVE, a musical play with songs, inspired by Turgenev’s story, songs by Nancy, script and direction by Will Pomerantz, and I was bewitched, as I wrote here. I remember very clearly the subtlety of the acting, the way that music, dance, and words blended; the way that the plot seemed new because of the electricity onstage. Even the pandemic has not blurred my memories of that evening.

A scene from ABOUT LOVE.

Now, ABOUT LOVE is back — joined in repertory by a new adaptation of Chekhov’s THREE SISTERS, again with music by Nancy and direction by Will. Here is one of Nancy’s songs that you will hear:

And here are more facts:

Chekhov + Turgenev is two Russian classics presented in repertory, and underscored in jazz: About Love, a musical play with songs, inspired by Ivan Turgenev’s novella, “First Love”; and Three Sisters, a new adaptation of the play by Anton Chekhov. is now playing a limited engagement, in repertory, through June 5 at The Sheen Center (18 Bleecker Street at the corner of Elizabeth Street, NYC) in The Frank Shiner Theater. The official opening for both production is Thursday, May 19. Tickets are available online at SheenCenter.org, by phone at 212-925-2812, or in-person at The Sheen Center box office Monday to Friday noon to 5PM and one hour before performances. Tickets are $39 – $69. Premium seating is available. Rush tickets will be available at the box office an hour before any performance for $20.

A scene from THE THREE SISTERS.

The company of Chekhov + Turgenev features John AhlinSilvia BondEssence BrownNathan HintonMiles G. JacksonNehal Joshi, Amanda NicholsTom PattersonElizabeth RamosTommy SchriderJean TaflerPilar Witherspoon and more to be announced.

Chekhov + Turgenev features a live jazz quartet nightly: music director Misha Josephs on guitar, Frederika Krier on violin, Jared Engel on bass, and Steve Picataggio on drums.

Here‘s the link for tickets.

I hope to be there, and I urge you to join me: delights await.

May your happiness increase!