Past Reviews

Regional Reviews: Florida - West Coast

Come Together: When the 60s Met the 70s
with Carole J. Bufford

Florida Studio Theatre
William S. Oser | Season Schedule

Also see Bill's reviews of 2019 Summer Circus Spectacular and Around the World in 80 Days


Carole J. Bufford
Photo by Sarah Haley
The Summer Cabaret series at Florida Studio has been a mixed bag, one traveling show that dropped in last summer belonged on a second tier cruise ship. But Come Together: When the 60s Met the 70s, starring Nightlife, Bistro, Broadway World and MAC Cabaret award winner Carole J. Bufford is a great evening or afternoon of entertainment. As Ms. Bufford proved two years ago, when she came in with a different program, she is the whole package: great voice, focused presentation, interesting stage patter and wonderful costumes. Ms. Bufford wears a miniskirt and other disco-y ensembles beautifully in the show.

The first set salutes 1965-1969 with highlights "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'," a two song tribute to Dusty Springfield ("You Don't Have to Say You Love Me" and "The Look of Love"), "Spinning Wheel," and "Bridge Over Troubled Water." "Harper Valley PTA" and the Beatles' "Oh Darlin'" seem like more unusual choices. Ms. Bufford sings the heck out of all these tunes, shows us what the Hustle looked like, and owns the stage.

The second act takes a slight turn toward rhythm and blues and away from the best fit for Carole J. Buford's voice. Two songs saluting Tina Turner, "Rock Me Baby" and "I've Been Loving You Too Long" find that our star not quite summoning the power to do them full justice. Highlights include "Killing Me Softly," "Moondance," "Me and Bobby McGee," and "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow." "Way Over Yonder" and "Down on the Corner" bring the half to a spirited conclusion.

Assaf Gleizner is music director and pianist as he will be when The Swingeroos make a return visit to this room, as the next show. He does a solid job, although this music may not be his core idiom. The others in the band are Chuck Davis on guitar, Kroy Presley on bass and Tony Bruno on drums. They support Ms. Bufford well and are a major asset. Come Together is a first-rate cabaret show. Audiences who grew up with and to this music are likely to have a ball. Carole J. Bufford gives a wonderful overview and puts on one heck of a show.

Come Together: When the 60s Met the 70s, through July 24, 2019, at Florida Studio Theatre, Court Cabaret 1241 N. Palm Avenue, Sarasota FL. For tickets and performance information, please call the box office at 941-366-9000 or visit www.floridastudiotheatre.org.


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