(Your Ethel Merman impersonation goes here.)
Hershey Felder – who wrote and performs the show – does a terrific Ethel Merman. Not to mention a terrific Irving Berlin.
From the website:
Heralded as “the greatest songwriter that has ever lived,” by George Gershwin, Irving Berlin is known for innumerable American classics such as “White Christmas,” “God Bless America,” “Anything You Can Do,” and “Top Hat, White Tie and Tails.” Songwriter Jerome Kern said it all: “Irving Berlin…IS American music.” In this tour de force performance by award winning showman Hershey Felder (George Gershwin Alone and Maestro: Leonard Bernstein), the remarkable story of “America’s Composer” comes to life. We’re taken from the depths of anti-Semitism in Czarist Russia to New York’s Lower East Side—and ultimately all of America and the world. Featuring the composer’s most popular and enduring songs and beyond, Hershey Felder’s masterful creation of character and musical performance makes this evening with Irving Berlin an unforgettable journey that epitomizes the American dream.
Sure, some of the production is hokey, but so was Berlin. Over all, though, it’s an illuminating review of a Great American Songwriter.
(Fun fact to know and tell: The slang designation for Italians in the early 20th century – wop – stands for “with out papers.”)
Chronological list of Berlin’s songs via (God forgive us) Wikipedia.
Not surprisingly, the Boston Globe’s redoubtable theater critic Don Aucoin can give you a better sense of the production than we ever could.
But we do say this: Catch Hershey Felder’s performance. Through August 2.