Small-Town Girl Makes Good, Laughing All the Way
Published: September 21, 2007
The journey from the sticks to the Broadway stage is a pilgrimage that has been made by countless performers. But no one in recent memory has turned it into the kind of thrill ride that the singer K T Sullivan makes of it in her new cabaret show, “Autumn in
As she travels in song from her rural hometown, Boggy Depot,
Where most performers turn their show-business histories into self-serving tales of triumph leading to disillusion and finally to wisdom, Ms. Sullivan has no pretensions to being a sage. A sexy, wide-eyed comedian with a semi-operatic voice that is in the best shape I can remember, she is having a ball. Instead of sadder and wiser, she is happier and wiser.
An early segment covers Ms. Sullivan’s less-than-triumphant brushes with Broadway (she appeared in George Abbott’s “Broadway,” “The Threepenny Opera” with Sting, and “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes”) and culminates with a cheerful reading of excerpts from “No Turn Unstoned,” a collection of damning theater reviews put together by Diana Rigg. The show’s centerpiece is Ms. Sullivan’s hilarious take on “World Weary,” which had me laughing out loud on Wednesday. “I want a horse and plow/Chickens too/Just one cow/With a wistful moo,” moans the self-pitying urban night crawler who narrates the song. You wonder what Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie, today’s contemporary equivalents of Marie Antoinette playing a milkmaid, might make of it. Ms. Sullivan makes it sidesplitting.