Anita Gillette at Birdland
“My View” Written by Stephen Sorokoff
Something very different happens when a Broadway Star does a cabaret act. The first thing you become aware of is that a substantial amount of audience members are other Broadway and Cabaret stars, or in some way connected to the theater community. There is a buzz in the room, and I’m sure it’s got to be a nervous time for the entertainer about to take the stage. This kind of nervous energy is probably what Anita Gillette thrives on.
In an expertly crafted act (Barry Kleinbort, Director) which Anita so skillfully performs, the show folk present were constantly cheering, laughing or held in rapt attention.
It’s common knowledge that President Lyndon Johnson was a “ladies man” (ask
Doris Kearns Goodwin). When Anita visited the White House she explained how the
tall President “mistakenly” thought he was grabbing diminutive Anita’s waist.
The height differential had Lyndon holding her right breast for the 10 minute
entire conversation (as Anita so explicitly demonstrated). From her 14 Broadway
show career, her David Merrick story was a classic. The legendary producer
called her up to proudly tell her he had her name on a new big sign installed on
the theater marquee. A few weeks later she received the bill from the sign
company in Paramus NJ that erected the sign!
Anita can sing funny or serious and, at all times, with a great degree of musicality. Her show is an exceptional cabaret experience.