JALALA Sing in Manhattan! Review by Laurel Massé.

It was a dark and stormy night, but only outdoors. Indoors was a glorious summer, and not just because the Cornelia Street Caféhas a good heating system (which I will say more about in a bit), but because the room was full of friends (some of whom I have not seen, and who have not heard me sing, in many years) and strangers-who-are-now-friends, and beloved family. And because it was JaLaLa's best performance so far. The ensemble numbers sparkled. The solos - well, somebody else will have to write about mine, but Janis and Lauren moved me to laughter - Janis singing Lorraine Feather's I Know the Way to Brooklyn - and tears - her interpretation of I Got Lost in His Arms, by Irving Berlin - and toe-tapping - Lauren's Do It the Hard Way. Lauren's performance of Gershwin's I Love You, Porgy was breathtaking: heartfelt, simple, exquisitely musical. I mean "breathtaking"  quite literally - when she finished the first chorus, and Yaron began his piano solo, I gasped. That's when I realized I had been holding my breath.

I sang  My Blue Heaven (which is on my upcoming solo CD) and Bach's Minuet, from his1st Suite for Unaccompanied Cello (which is on Feather and Bone). As you might infer from the title, I sing the Minuet without accompaniment... most of the time. At Cornelia Street on Tuesday evening, percussive elements were added - little touches at first, and then some great clangings - as the building's heating system got involved ever more enthusiastically. It made the piece merry, and made me giggle.By Laurel Massé