Matt Howe and Maris Wicker in a “Cabaret Doubleheader”

Maris Wicker and Matt Howe presented a “Cabaret Doubleheader” at the Sitar Arts Center last night, with each presenting their separate show, all under the terrific music direction of Alex Tang.

Wicker was up first in a springy-yet-cabaretish ensemble of black chiffon printed with peachy pink blossoms.  Her show, The Passage of Time, was indeed inspired by the first line of the James Taylor song, “The secret of life is enjoying the passage of time” which Wicker said had become, of late, a mantra for her.  Highlights of the show included a lovely medley of the Waters of March and You Can’t Rush Spring, and a quietly passionate reading of How Glory Goes.  I also have to say that her anecdotes were some of the most movingly charming patter I’ve heard on a cabaret stage in a while.

Matt Howe’s show, Happing Ending, took a comic exploration on the thesis “life is a musical, and where’s my happy ending!”   That search for a happy ending gave a framework for a variety of material from a medley of “happy” songs, Cool Rider (from Grease 2), and even I Honestly Love You.  Particularly effective was the way he presented his title song twice in way that reflected the journey he took in the show.  It was great to see Matt look so comfortable on stage, and see him effective deploy both his sense of humor and his touching seriousness.

On a personal note, here’s something that really thrilled me.  I happen to know that both of these performers are people who regularly invest a lot of resources – time, thought, effort, and yes, money, into their craft.  And it is great to see those investments pay dividends with each being the best I’ve seen them!

The program repeats tongiht (Saturday) with Maris Wicker at 8:00pm and Matt Howe at 9:30.  Tickets and info.

The Passage of Time set list*:

  • Walkin’ Shoes
  • Secret O’ Life
  • The Best of Times / It’s a Good Day
  • Times Like This
  • Waters of March / You Can’t Rush Spring
  • Lullaby
  • A Child is Born
  • Time Enough for Love
  • Happy Talk
  • I Do What I Can With What I Got
  • Our Love Rolls On
  • Love Is Here to Stay
  • How Glory Goes
  • On a Clear Day (You Can See Forever)
  • Encore: My Ship

Happy Endings set list:

  • Born in a Trunk
  • Happy Endings
  • Wanna Sing a Show Tune
  • Happy Medley
  • Cool Rider
  • Hymn for a Sunday Evening
  • Nobody Does It Better
  • I Never Has Seen Snow
  • I Honestly Love You
  • Losing My Mind
  • Isn’t This Better ?
  • Thank God I’m Old
  • It’s a New World
  • Encore: I Love a Piano

*I love the way they had their set lists discreetly taped to the floor of the stage.

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2 Responses to Matt Howe and Maris Wicker in a “Cabaret Doubleheader”

  1. Jill Leger says:

    I was there in spirit. Thanks so much, Michael, for this rundown! Huge, celebratory cheers for Matt ‘n’ Maris!!!!!!!!

  2. Well done, Matt & Maris. You guys are stars! Continued success!

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