Thursday, December 27, 2007

SOB's 7 Singular Sensations Of '07 - #7: Jennifer Holliday

SOB's 7 Singular Sensations Of '07 - #7: Jennifer Holliday

Introduction: While others use the end of the year to provide their lists of the top shows of the past year, here at Steve On Broadway (SOB), I wait until the conclusion of the entire Theatrical Season to provide my official tally.

Instead, I'm once again devoting the waning days of the calendar year to celebrate SOB's Singular Sensations -- those magical live performances that have stayed with me throughout the year. During 2007, I have enjoyed, been wowed and ultimately inspired by a dazzling display of excellent performances from some of the theatre world's best actors, singers and dancers of our time.

Without any further ado, I give you SOB's 7 Singular Sensations of '07:


And I’m telling you Miss Jennifer Holliday is one of those rare performers who commands the stage like no other. Making you all but forget Jennifer Hudson as Effie Melody White in a stunning summer revival of Dreamgirls in Atlanta, Holliday triumphantly and effortlessly reclaimed the role she created over a quarter century ago.

Here's what I had to say about Holliday's performance last July:
As if to prove that she and Effie are not going to take a backseat to anyone, Jennifer Holliday returned one more time to role that for more than a quarter century was hers and hers alone. In a glorious and absolutely thrilling performance, not only does Jennifer Holliday triumphantly reclaim the mantle of Effie Melody White, but she reigns supreme. Holliday maintains the undisputed claim on Effie.

(In “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going”) Holliday pulls this incredible outpouring of heartbroken anguish from the deepest, innermost recesses of her very being and spews it forth in an as chilling a show-stopping performance as I have ever seen. The angst of Holliday’s Effie is not only that of a dream lost, but more importantly, of a love lost.

One of my friends who joined me for both this and Holliday’s last outing as Effie at the very same theatre five years ago observed that watching this Dreamgirls on the heels of
silver screen version was like filling the blanks. For me, seeing this Dreamgirls was a chance to once again witness one of the greatest live theatrical performances of all time and savor it.

Here's toasting that singular sensation, Jennifer Holliday -- my Effie for the ages!

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).


Related Stories:
Dreamgirls (The SOB Review) (July 30, 2007)
Living The Dreams (January 6, 2007)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #1: Patti LuPone (December 30, 2006)
Honorable Mentions: SOB's Singular Sensations Of '06 (December 30, 2006)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #2: Cate Blanchett (December 30, 2006)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #3: Chita Rivera (December 29, 2006)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #4: Barry Humphries (December 28, 2006)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #5: Kitty Carlisle Hart (December 28, 2006)
SOB's 6 Singular Sensations Of '06 - #6: Meryl Streep (December 26, 2006)
Flashback: Best of 2002-03 (May 25, 2006)

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2 Comments:

At 27 December, 2007, Anonymous tee said...

jennifer holliday has a lot of bitterness, and its hard for younger audiences to connect with her, due to how she expressed dislike to the dreamgirl of our generation.

 
At 27 December, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

Tee, Oh please. Did you see the performance of Jennifer Holliday and Jennifer Hudson at the BET Awards. The women gave due props to each other.

Jennifer Hudson was excellent and very, very deserving of her Academy Award.

Yet there will never be a Dreamgirl like Jennifer Holliday - and the fact she can still pull it off makes her a Dreamgirl for all generations.

 

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