"Molly Pope: A Star is Born"

Feinstein’s/54 Below-July 12, 2016

Directed by Will Nunziata

Choreographed by Sidney Erik Wright

Musical Direction by Brian Nash

Starring Molly Pope w/ Andrew Slane and Justin Henry

Photos by Stephen Sorokoff and JD Urban

“The title of MOLLY POPE’s cabaret show at FEINSTEIN’S/54 BELOW is “A STAR IS BORN.”  It was so good, I humbly suggest they change the name to “A New Era of Cabaret Performance is Born.”  This spectacular hour of nightclub entertainment was a site-specific presentation of the 1954 Judy Garland film musical “A Star is Born” and in this case you were lucky if you got to see the brilliance of Molly Pope and crew.  She was joined by dancer/singers ANDREW SLANE and JUSTIN HENRY.   The show (directed by WILL NUNZIATA, choreographed by SIDNEY ERIK WRIGHT, and with music direction by BRIAN NASH) utilized the space of Broadway’s Supper Club in a highly inventive, effective way, and the standing ovations and cheers at the end were reminiscent of Judy Garland’s Palace appearances.  While we’re about talking name changes, for a performance like this Messrs. Frankel, Baruch, and Viertel should consider a temporary substitution of the word Above for Below 54.  If there is some kind of a waiting list for the next performance of Molly Pope and A Star is Born, make sure you get on it.”  TIMES SQUARE CHRONICLES

“All I can say, after watching Molly Pope take no prisoners tonight at 54 Below, is that future artists at this boîte better step up their game.  More about that in a moment...First, Brian Nash's music direction was outstanding (with musicians Jeremy Yaddaw, Adam Neely, and Rob Mosher).  Ms. Pope's dancers/singers/foils/loves Justin Henry & Andrew Slane were delights--and nice on the eyes, as well.  But major kudos need to go to Will Nunziata and SIDNEY ERIK WRIGHT (director and choreographer, respectively) for cohesively condensing Garland's "A Star Is Born" into a 65 minute tour-de-force.  The entire room was used.  The.  Entire.  Room.  We all got to be extras in 'Vicki Lester's' story, and the result was electric--incandescent and electric as Molly worked her way around and amongst the tables, aisles, and stage.  Mr. Nunziata pulled together the best of the film (both in song and monologue) and Mr. Wright's choreography--though obviously challenging at moments--paid homage to those glorious Garland gifts of yore.  And Miss Pope...talk about being shot out of a cannon and never slowing down!  She gave the show such LIFE...it was never an impersonation of Judy (although I'm not the first to note the vocal similarities), but it was her own take on Vicki's character.  Powerful, poignant, funny and fantastic.  I'm thrilled beyond belief that she is part of our upcoming season at Austin Cabaret Theatre."  Stuart Moulton, Artistic Director Austin Cabaret Theatre