Review: David Harris, ‘Til The Night Is Gone

by Jane

I love you.  I honestly love you.

Or, rather, read my actual review.  This review originally appeared here at Australian Stage Online.

Based on his own debut album by the same name, David Harris brings ‘Til The Night Is Gone to the Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Accompanied by Bev Kennedy on piano, Harris takes the audience through songs about his career, from competitions in RSL halls, being constantly upstaged by a chicken parmigiana, through to playing lead roles in The Fully Monty and Thoroughly Modern Millie, and songs about that thing songs are always about: love. This use of a mix of songs supporting the biographical narrative and running in accompaniment gives Harris a chance to show off both the best of his voice and his personality.

Harris has a personality beautifully suited to the cabaret stage: he is warm and open with his audience, retelling stories with humour and pathos. A very generous performer, he allows the audience a connection not only through the humorous stories and re-enactments (complete with audience participation and blonde wigs), but also to the more vulnerable and serious moments of his life.

Harris has a surprising voice: a rich tenor with a mix of straight-tone and vibrato lead to beautiful interpretations of standards such as “Save The Last Dance For Me” and “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered”, yet then he will come out with the story of how (for two days) he trained in yodelling, or perform for us an opera classic (with “completely improvised” guest star Marika Aubrey), and a high and clear falsetto will break forth.

Last in Adelaide for Miss Saigon, playing his dream role of Chris, Harris recounted the story of his first job in Sydney, where he ushered for Miss Saigon and every night watched his dream role in his dream show. In a highlight of the cabaret show, Harris sung “Why God Why?” from the show, and the power and emotion of the character, which shone through in the Artspace Gallery, was beautiful.

‘Til The Night Is Gone is a show with charm, heart, a killer voice, and just down right sex appeal. David Harris is very rightly a leading man of Australian music theatre, and is clearly a star on the cabaret stage.

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