By Tiffany Maleshefski
Several weeks ago, Robert Lloyd of the Los Angeles Times published a review of the "Rachel Zoe Project," the either-extremely-loved-or-utterly-despised reality show on Bravo, about the trials and tribulations of a celebrity stylist.
His poignant review dishes the appropriate amount of snark , but also hones in on a very important part of Zoe's appeal and the show’s success, which is the A-list fashionista's deep and genuine feelings for clothes.
Sincerity, it seems, can go an awful long way.
Now how the hell on earth does that relate to Mark Nadler’s show Russian on the Side, the one-man cabaret extravaganza that leaves the enthusiastic pianist a sweaty, breathless, cheerful mess at the end of his 90-minute performance?
Well, if there’s ever an exercise in sincerity, it’s Nadler’s show, which opened last night at the Marines Memorial Theater and runs through November 16.
The show’s premise is inspired from the song “Tschaikowsky [sic] (and other Russians), “sung by Danny Kaye in Lady in the Dark and written by the super famous Ira Gershwin. In that song, Kaye rattled off (at alarming speed) 50 Russian and Russian-American composers, some very famous, others the equivalent of a one-hit wonder.
Nadler takes the audience through each composer listed in Gershwin's song, giving the audience a chance to get to know all 50, either by tickling the ivories on the grand piano he’s got on stage, or sharing juicy bits of gossip about a particular songsmith.