Shades of Brown
Under Rogers’ direction, the trio worked together to produce Shades of Brown, a retrospective of Brown’s work. The singers are accompanied by a tight trio of musicians that includes John Wilder on keyboards, Susan Just on drums and Christopher Deloffi as a one-man horn section.
Brown’s songs are classy and sassy, and so is the resulting show. There is no dialogue, except for a short introduction of Brown’s work at the beginning of each act. Because Brown excels at writing songs that tell stories, no further talking is needed, really.
What makes the show so engaging are the trio’s interpretations of the songs, both vocally and emotionally. The first half is dedicated to Brown’s clever, catchy, flirty numbers—each backed up with expressive performances. The second half focuses on Brown’s “message songs,” which were written mostly during the 1960s civil-rights push.
All that was missing in this classy nightclub act (staged in a theater) were candlelit tables and cocktail service. After its current run is done, the troupe really should take this show on the road. This class act could grace many other venues around town.