American Songbook at NJPAC Hosted by Michael Feinstein

FULL EPISODE

Joshua Bell, Billy Porter, Larisa Martínez - Full Episode

Michael Feinstein shares the stage with violinist Joshua Bell, Billy Porter, Larisa Martínez, and Songbook Youth Ambassador Brighton Thomas for spirited conversation and unique renditions of “Somewhere”, “Edelweiss”, “New York, New York” and “My Romance.”

AIRED: February 15, 2017 | 0:58:15
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
TRANSCRIPT

>> ♪ Just one of those things

>> Announcer: Coming up on this

episode of

"American Songbook at NJPAC

Hosted by Michael Feinstein"...

>> ♪ One of those things

>> ♪ My romance

>> Announcer: ...joining Michael

in song and effervescent

repartee are the Tony and Grammy

Award-winning star of Broadway's

"Kinky Boots," Billy Porter...

>> ♪ Happy days

>> Announcer: ...a sensational

young singer and the 2016

Great American Songbook Youth

Ambassador, Brighton Thomas...

>> ♪ So clear again

>> Announcer: ...and one of the

most celebrated violinists of

this or any generation,

Grammy Award winner

Joshua Bell...

>> ♪ We'll find a new

way of living ♪

>> Announcer: ...accompanied by

an electrifying young opera

singer, Larisa Martinez.

>> ♪ We'll find a way

of forgiving ♪

♪ Somewhere

>> Announcer: The "American

Songbook at NJPAC" series is

presented in part through the

generous support of...

Support for this broadcast is

provided by the...

And now, from the New Jersey

Performing Arts Center in the

Victoria Theater, your host, the

ambassador of the Great American

Songbook, Michael Feinstein.

[ Applause ]

[ Playing "As Time Goes By ♪ ]

>> ♪ Moonlight and love songs

♪ Never out of date

♪ Hearts full of passion --

jealousy and hate ♪

♪ Woman needs man

♪ And man must have his mate

♪ That no one can deny ♪

♪ Sweet one,

fairer than the flowers ♪

♪ Never will I meet one

fairer than you ♪

♪ Would you turn away

or could you

really learn to care ♪

♪ If I'd ever dare

to say, "I love you"? ♪

♪ If the nightingales

could sing like you ♪

♪ They'd sing much sweeter

than they do ♪

♪ 'Cause you brought

a new kind of love to me ♪

♪ If the Sandman brought me

dreams of you ♪

♪ I'd want to sleep

my whole life through ♪

♪ You brought a new kind of

love to me ♪

♪ I know that I'm the slave

♪ You're the queen

♪ But still you must

understand ♪

♪ That underneath it all

♪ You're a maid,

and I am only a man ♪

♪ I would work and slave

the whole day through ♪

♪ If I could hurry home to you

♪ 'Cause you brought a new kind

of love to me ♪

The Tedd Firth Trio,

Ladies and Gentlemen.

[ Applause ]

♪ I know that I'm the slave

♪ You're the queen

♪ But still you must

understand ♪

♪ That underneath it all

♪ You're a maid,

and I am only a man ♪

♪ I would work and slave

the whole day through ♪

♪ If I could hurry home to you

♪ For you brought a new kind

of love ♪

♪ You brought a new kind

of love ♪

♪ You brought a new kind

of love ♪

♪ To me

♪ New kind of love

to me ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

♪♪

Good evening, Ladies and

Gentlemen.

Welcome to our

"American Songbook" series here

at NJPAC.

My name, at least in this life,

is Michael Feinstein.

I am very honored to be with all

of you to celebrate what I think

is the finest music

of the 20th century.

The Great American Songbook has

made friends for us all over the

world.

It is our greatest ambassador, I

think, our greatest export from

the United States, and so we

celebrate it in all of its

glory.

Tonight's show is called

"Bernstein, Bacharach, and

Broadway."

That may sound to some of you

like a law firm, but it is

iconic, those names.

They are iconic, and you're

going to hear all of those

composers' works and more.

And of course for a song to

live, for a piece of music to

live, it has to be interpreted

by great artists.

And tonight we have some

incredible guests who are going

to do just that for all of you.

We are also going to have some

fun with some conversation, some

libations, and this will help

all of us to get to know each

other a little bit better.

So please help me welcome

our wonderful cast.

[ Applause ]

So, it's great to be

with all of you.

I thought we would do something

a little bit different

for this program tonight

because one of the things that I

like about a show like this is

the possibility of spontaneity.

And so, in support of that,

I have something here that I

call the bowl of truth,

or maybe the "Life Is Just a

Bowl of Cherries" sort of thing.

This is going to draw things out

of all of our guests.

And our staff has written these

questions.

I do not know what the questions

are, so I'm disavowing any

responsibility for their

content.

But I would like each of our

guests at a strategic moment to

select a question from the bowl

of truth.

So, Mr. Porter, would you --

>> Certainly.

Am I the first?

>> You are the first.

You are the virgin.

>> Okay. Ahem.

I'm going to mix it up

a little bit.

>> And then I'm going to read

the question to you.

>> Okay.

>> But you have to pick it.

>> Okay. There you go.

>> All right.

>> [ Clears throat ]

>> You're clearing your throat

in readiness for --

>> [ Exhales ]

>> Picture your hero or idol

sitting across from you.

[ Laughs ]

[ Laughter ]

If you only had one question to

ask them, what would it be

and why?

>> So, you want to know

who the person is, obviously.

>> Obviously.

>> President Obama.

>> Okay.

>> And my question would be...

"How have you maintained

your grace over these last

eight years

so brilliantly?"

[ Applause ]

I know the answer why.

I know the answer why.

But how?

>> Mm-hmm.

>> Like, how on earth have you

been able to be that light

for all of us?

>> Mm-hmm.

>> In the situation that you

were dropped into?

That would be my question.

That would be my question.

>> It's a great question.

Yeah.

>> Because I want it myself.

Because I don't have that grace.

[ Laughter ]

[ Laughs ]

>> Well --

>> I don't have it.

I really don't have it.

>> As a performer,

you have grace.

>> Well, yes, as a performer, I

have a grace, but you know,

there were many times when I was

screaming at the TV,

"Cuss 'em out!"

[ Laughs ]

>> And you can actually do that

onstage, you know, if somebody

irritates you, you can always

respond to them.

You may lose your audience, but

you can do that.

>> Right.

>> Have you ever had that

experience of, like, someone

driving you so crazy in a show

where you --

>> From the audience?

>> Yeah.

>> Who you've had to respond to?

Absolutely.

>> Yeah.

>> Absolutely. The hecklers,

we call them.

>> Yes.

Well, would you sing something

for us now?

>> Of course!

>> And I guarantee you there

will be no hecklers tonight

from our supporters.

>> Yes, I would love to.

>> Ladies and Gentlemen,

Mr. Billy Porter.

[ Cheers and applause ]

[ "My Romance" playing ]

>> ♪ Hey

♪ Yeah, yeah

♪ My romance

doesn't need to have a moon

in the sky ♪

♪ My romance doesn't need

a blue lagoon standing by ♪

no twinkling stars ♪

♪ No hideaway,

no soft guitars ♪

♪ My romance doesn't need

a castle rising in Spain ♪

♪ Or a dance to a constantly

surprising refrain ♪

♪ Wide awake, I can make my most

fantastic dreams come true ♪

♪ My romance, it doesn't need

a thing but you ♪

♪ Oh, oh, oh

[ Singing scat ]

♪ Listen to me, boy

♪ Romance doesn't have to have

moon in the sky ♪

♪ Our romance doesn't need

a blue lagoon standing by ♪

♪ Oh

♪ We don't need a month

♪ We don't need the sighs

♪ No hideaway

♪ My romance doesn't need

a castle rising in Spain ♪

♪ Or a dance to a constantly

surprising refrain ♪

♪ Wide awake, I can make my most

fantastic dreams come true ♪

♪ My romance, it doesn't need

a thing but you ♪

♪ Oh, oh, oh

[ Singing scat ]

♪ Oh, oh, oh

♪ Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh

♪ Yeah, yeah, yeah

♪ Oh, oh, oh

♪ No, no, no, it doesn't need

a thing but you ♪

♪ Hey, buddy

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Billy Porter,

Ladies and Gentlemen.

[ Applause ]

That is such a fascinating

treatment, a beautiful

treatment, of that song.

>> Thank you.

>> And this is from a

forthcoming recording you're

making that is --

>> Yes.

>> Called --

>> It's called "Billy Porter

Presents the Soul of Rodgers."

And my writing partner and I

developed this piece --

James Sampliner and I developed

this piece a number of years

ago, and we were given the

opportunity to expand it and

record it on Sony.

And so essentially I have sort

of gathered the new, young --

>> The young lions.

>> The young lions of Broadway

from "Hamilton" and

"Color Purple" and all the other

places, who sort of have grown

up inside of

the African American R&B, soul,

hip-hop, rap culture, and we

are doing treatments of

Richard Rodgers' music in those

genres.

I wanted to really crack open a

different conversation

with these arrangements and with

this, and I hope that it will.

>> It definitely will.

>> I hope so.

>> It's going to get a lot

of comment.

>> [ Laughs ]

>> Joshua Bell.

>> Yes.

>> In classical music,

how do you freshen a piece of

music?

Is that insulting,

to even say that?

I mean, I've seen performers

do many different things these

days in classical music to try

and "freshen" the feel.

>> That can be forced sometimes,

if you're trying to "freshen"

something up.

Or it can work.

So sometimes it does work.

Sometimes it doesn't.

Generally, with the classics

that I tend to work with --

Beethoven and Mozart and

Schubert -- you don't need to

add a drum beat

to freshen it up, you know.

But having said that, I have

experimented with doing songs --

things -- you know, I've been so

lucky to get to play with jazz

musicians, bluegrass musicians,

over the course of my life

because it challenges me, and I

like hearing their take on

music that I'm used to playing.

And so I have...

I'm willing to step outside of

that box.

>> Well, I think it's time to --

>> My turn? Or --

>> To have you select something

from the bowl of cherries.

Excuse me, Larisa.

We'll get to you.

Don't worry.

>> Oh.

>> I'm glad you took that one,

the one that you took.

>> All right.

So I have to read it to you.

>> Oh, you have to read it.

Wait. Maybe it's not even what's

on there.

You're just...

[ Laughter ]

If you're...

I...

I demand a recount.

[ Laughter ]

>> Yeah, right.

[ Applause ]

You see, we knew we'd go there.

We'd eventually go there.

The most attractive person on

the planet walks into the room

right now and makes eye contact

with you.

>> Okay. She may already be...

[ Laughter ]

>> What's the first reaction

that pops into your head?

>> Uh...

Walks in, makes eye con--

>> That you can say on a show

like this.

>> Usually it's "Don't speak,"

because "Don't ruin it."

>> Right.

>> Usually that's...

Usually that's the case.

[ Laughter ]

But --

>> I hope that's not a bad omen.

>> Because expectations are so

high at that point, almost,

you -- if someone is that

attractive.

But sometimes you're surprised.

>> Well, I would love it if you

and Larisa would perform

something --

>> Yes.

>> Together that is part of our

theme tonight.

>> One of my favorite songs.

>> Joshua Bell

and Larisa Martinez.

>> Thank you.

[ Applause ]

[ "Somewhere" playing ]

>> ♪ There's a place for us

♪ Somewhere a place for us

♪ Peace and quiet

and open air ♪

♪ Wait for us

♪ Somewhere

♪ There's a time for us

♪ Some day a time for us

♪ Time together

with time to spare ♪

♪ Time to learn,

time to care ♪

♪ Some day!

♪ Somewhere

♪ We'll find a new way

of living ♪

♪ We'll find a way

of forgiving ♪

♪ Somewhere

♪ There's a place for us

♪ A time and place for us

♪ Hold my hand

and we're halfway there ♪

♪ Hold my hand

and I'll take you there ♪

♪ Somehow

♪ Some day

♪ Somewhere!

♪ We'll find a new way

of living ♪

♪ We'll find a way

of forgiving ♪

♪ Somewhere

♪ There's a place for us

♪ A time and place for us

♪ Hold my hand

and we're halfway there ♪

♪ Hold my hand

and I'll take you there ♪

♪ Somehow

♪ Some day

♪ Somewhere!

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Larisa Martinez and

Joshua Bell, Ladies and

Gentlemen.

Beautiful.

That was absolutely gorgeous.

Absolutely gorgeous.

As a soprano, I marvel at the

way that...

You are one of the few I've

heard who really sings lyrics

and interprets in that I've

heard many sopranos who sing the

American Songbook, and they

don't have the connection to the

words because it's not

necessarily taught in that way.

>> Right.

>> So it's a different thing,

a different thing, isn't it?

>> It is a different thing, yes.

I started when I was little,

singing Spanish

standard songs.

>> You're from Puerto Rico.

>> From Puerto Rico.

So my first connection with

music came from standard music

in Spanish, which is very

soulful and very nostalgic.

So I connected in a different

way, and then came classical

music in my teenage years.

But I already had that in me, so

I guess I like to approach it

from this --

>> From the text.

>> Yes.

>> That's great.

Collaborating together --

>> I love playing with vocalists

in general.

I learn a lot from how they look

at music, how they phrase, how

they sing -- because the violin

is basically the voice.

>> Yes.

>> Except we have a wider

range.

[ Chuckles ]

We can go, like, five octaves,

and we can play double stops.

But besides that, we're exactly

the same.

>> And you don't have to

breathe.

>> You don't have to breathe.

Yes.

>> We can create the line that

goes on forever.

>> Yes.

>> But, yeah, so actually --

we string players learn a lot

from singers.

>> Well, I would like to sing a

song now that was created

by Cole Porter

that to me is one of the perfect

blendings of music and lyric

because it's not possible to

think of the melody or the lyric

without one or the other.

They are absolutely...like this.

So this is, I guess,

exhibit "A," all right?

[ Applause ]

♪ As Dorothy Parker once said

♪ To her boyfriend,

"fare thee well" ♪

♪ As Columbus announced

♪ When he knew he was bounced

♪ "It was swell,

Isabel, swell" ♪

♪ As Abelard said to Eloise

♪ "Don't forget to drop

a line to me, please" ♪

♪ As Juliet sighed

in her Romeo's ear ♪

♪ "Romeo, why not face

the fact, my dear" ♪

♪ It was just

one of those things ♪

♪ Just one of those

crazy flings ♪

♪ One of those bells

that now and then rings ♪

♪ Just one of those things

♪ It was just

one of those nights ♪

♪ Just one of those

fabulous flights ♪

♪ A trip to the moon

on gossamer wings ♪

♪ Just one of those things

♪ If we thought a bit

of the end of it ♪

♪ When we started

painting the town ♪

♪ We'd have been aware

that our love affair ♪

♪ Was too hot

not to cool down ♪

♪ So goodbye, dear, and amen

♪ Here's hoping

we meet now and then ♪

♪ It was great fun

♪ But it was just

one of those things ♪

♪ Just one of those things

♪ Just one of those

crazy flings ♪

♪ One of those bells

that now and then rings ♪

♪ One of those things

♪ Just one of those nights

♪ Just one of those

fabulous flights ♪

♪ A trip to the moon

on gossamer wings ♪

♪ One of those things

♪ If we thought a bit

of the end of it ♪

♪ When we started

painting the town ♪

♪ We'd have been aware

that our love affair ♪

♪ Was too hot

not to cool down ♪

♪ So, goodbye, dear, and amen

♪ Here's hoping

we meet now and then ♪

♪ It was great fun

♪ But it was just

one of those things ♪

♪ Just one

of those

things ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

Thank you very much, people of

impeccable taste.

I appreciate that.

That's also a great song to sing

to someone if you wish to end

a relationship and you don't

know what else to do.

Just sing that, and then exit

stage left or right, and you're

gone.

It's very easy.

[ Laughter ]

A few years ago, I helped to

start an organization called

the Great American Songbook

Foundation.

It exists for a number of

reasons, but I think one of our

most important missions is to

inspire and educate by

celebrating the Great American

Songbook.

And one of the things we do is

have an annual Songbook Academy,

which hosts high school kids

from all 50 states, who come to

learn and interpret the Great

American Songbook.

And tonight it's a joy to

introduce to you our 2016

Songbook Ambassador.

She's from Burbank, California.

And I think she's quite

wonderful.

Please welcome her --

Brighton Thomas!

[ Applause ]

[ Playing "One Less Bell

to Answer" ]

>> ♪ One less

bell to answer ♪

♪ One less egg to fry

♪ One less man

to pick up after ♪

♪ I should be happy

♪ But all I do is cry

♪ Oh, I should be happy

♪ I only know

that since he left,

my life's so empty ♪

♪ Though I try to forget,

it just can't be done ♪

♪ Each time the doorbell rings,

I still run ♪

♪ I don't know

how in the world ♪

♪ To stop thinking of him

♪ 'Cause I still love him so

♪ I end each day

the way I start out ♪

♪ Crying my heart out

♪ One less bell to answer

♪ One less egg to fry

♪ One less man

to pick up after ♪

♪ No more laughter

♪ No more love

♪ Though I try to forget,

it just can't be done ♪

♪ Each time the doorbell rings,

I still run ♪

♪ I don't know

how in the world ♪

♪ To stop thinking of him

♪ 'Cause I still love him so

♪ I end each day

the way I start out ♪

♪ Crying my heart out

♪ Oh, I should be happy

♪ One less man

to pick up after ♪

♪ No more laughter

♪ No more love

♪ Since he went away

♪ I should be happy

♪ One less man

♪ Since he went

away ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Beautiful, Brighton.

Really great.

>> Unbelievable!

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Get used to it.

[ Chuckles ]

Take a bow. Take another bow.

Thank you for being here.

Now, you're 18 now?

>> I'm 17.

>> You're 17.

And what do you think are the

most serious challenges for

people your age?

You must think about the world

and your generation.

>> I think the biggest thing for

me is not being taken seriously

as an artist and just as a

person.

I feel like a lot of times,

people think that young people

and young adults maybe aren't

educated or, you know what I

mean, like, don't know about

current issues or as a

performer, maybe, that they're

not treated the same as, like,

more seasoned performers.

And actually, that's a really

great thing with Songbook --

is that I have, this entire

time, been treated like a

professional.

And I feel like that's as it

should be, and I'm so grateful

for that because I don't know --

I just feel like I'm in really

good hands, and I feel

comfortable being here and

knowing that just because I'm

young doesn't mean that I can't

be up here and perform for

everybody.

>> Well, what are you going to

sing now?

>> I'm going to sing

"Happy Days Are Here Again."

>> Yay.

Brighton Thomas, Ladies and

Gentlemen.

[ Applause ]

[ "Happy Days Are Here Again"

playing ]

>> ♪ So long, sad times

♪ Go long, bad times

♪ We are rid of you at last

♪ Howdy, gay times

♪ Cloudy gray times

♪ You are now a thing

of the past ♪

♪ Happy days are here again

♪ The skies above

are clear again ♪

♪ So let us sing a song

of cheer again ♪

♪ Happy days are here again

♪ All together, shout it now

♪ There's no one

who can doubt it now ♪

♪ So let's tell the world

about it now ♪

♪ Happy days are here again

♪ Your cares and troubles

are gone ♪

♪ There'll be no more

from now on ♪

♪ From now on

♪ Happy days are here again

♪ The skies above

are so clear again ♪

♪ So let's sing a song

of cheer again ♪

♪ Happy times

♪ Happy nights

♪ Happy days are here

again ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Brighton Thomas, Ladies and

Gentlemen.

Thank you, Brighton.

[ Playing "New York, New York

(It's a Helluva Town) ]

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Beautiful.

Thank you, buddy.

That really captures the spirit

of New York, even though we're

in Newark, so we have to...

♪ Newark, Newark,

a helluva town ♪

♪ The Bronx

...is there, and...

Yes.

I'd love to continue

the New York theme with you and

do another iconic New York song.

This one actually was written in

1922 for an unproduced show

called "Winkle Town."

It's Rodgers and Hart, and it

was their first big hit.

>> Genius lyrics.

>> Yeah, and they go on and on,

but we're going to do, I think,

a distillation of the best of

those lyrics.

[ Applause ]

[ Playing "Manhattan" ]

♪ Summer journeys

♪ To Niagara

♪ And to other places

♪ Aggravate all our cares

♪ We'll save our fares

♪ I've a cozy little flat

♪ In what is known as old

Manhattan ♪

♪ We'll settle down

♪ Right here in town

♪ We'll have Manhattan

♪ The Bronx

and Staten Island too ♪

♪ It's lovely going through

the zoo ♪

♪ It's very fancy

♪ On old Delancey Street,

you know ♪

♪ The subway charms us so

♪ When balmy breezes blow

♪ To and fro

♪ And tell me, what street

♪ Compares with Mott Street

♪ In July?

♪ Sweet pushcarts

gently gliding by ♪

♪ The great big city's

a wondrous toy ♪

♪ Just made

for a girl and boy ♪

♪ We'll turn Manhattan

♪ Into an isle of joy

♪ The city's clamor

can never spoil ♪

♪ The dreams

of a boy and "goil" ♪

♪ We'll turn Manhattan

♪ Into an isle

♪ We'll turn Manhattan

♪ Into an isle

of joy ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

Thank you, Gentlemen.

Thank you, Joshua.

Let's go back to the...

Well, that was fun.

Larisa.

>> Uh-oh.

>> Moment of truth.

>> Uh-oh!

>> ♪ Life is just

a bowl of cherries ♪

♪ Don't take it serious

♪ Just pick the right question

[ Chimes playing ]

Don't look. Don't look.

I look.

I get to read it.

[ Laughs wickedly ]

>> It was long.

>> It was long.

[ Laughter ]

Okay.

All right.

Describe your ideal environment

to prepare for an upcoming

rehearsal.

Where do you get

the best work done?

>> I...

Anything will do. [ Laughs ]

>> As long as you get to

rehearse?

>> It's...

Yes, I mean, alone would be

better in a...

It doesn't matter if it's a

small room, a kitchen.

I have a little piano

on my phone [ Laughs ]

if I need to warm up.

>> Do you sing in the shower?

>> I do.

Actually, that's perfect.

>> Where do you best rehearse?

>> That's an interesting

question.

It depends on what I'm doing.

>> Okay. Yeah. Sure.

>> Every show or everything is a

different thing.

>> Yes. Well, I'd love to ask

you to sing...

I'm going to ask you to sing

something else from the upcoming

Rodgers and Hammerstein

recording.

>> Yes.

>> No, it's Rodgers.

It's Rodgers with Hart

and with Hammerstein.

>> Rodgers.

>> This is, I think, what you're

going to sing is from

"The Sound of Music" --

is the very last song --

>> Yes.

>> That Oscar Hammerstein and

Richard Rodgers wrote together.

>> Yes.

>> So I think that gives it an

added poignancy.

>> Absolutely.

Absolutely.

>> Ladies and Gentlemen,

Billy Porter.

>> Ready?

[ Applause ]

[ "Edelweiss" playing ]

♪ Blossom of snow

♪ May you bloom and grow

♪ Bloom and grow forever

♪ Oh

♪ Mm

♪ Bless our homeland forever

♪ Bless our homeland

As Michael just explained, this

was the last song that

Oscar Hammerstein wrote before

he passed away.

And it was written for a musical

called "The Sound of Music."

And in the space of that musical

and this time,

the song is presented as a song

of love and a song of hope and a

song of peace

for a country that is in crisis.

I offer this as a prayer

to you this evening

because we need it now

more than ever.

♪ Edelweiss

♪ Edelweiss

♪ Every morning

you greet me ♪

♪ Oh

♪ Small and white

♪ Clean and bright

♪ You look happy to meet me

♪ Oh

♪ Blossom of snow

♪ May you bloom and grow

♪ Bloom and grow forever

♪ Edelweiss,

edelweiss ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

forever ♪

♪ Oh

♪ Blossom of snow

♪ May you bloom and grow

♪ Bloom and grow forever

♪ Forever

♪ Edelweiss,

edelweiss ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

forever ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

forever ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

forever ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

forever ♪

♪ Bless our homeland

♪ Bless our homeland,

edelweiss ♪

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> Beautiful.

Mr. Billy Porter.

We want to thank all of you for

being part of the show tonight.

We so appreciate your support of

NJPAC, of public television, and

of course of the Great American

Songbook.

I am going to conclude this

program with a song that is

autobiographical.

This is a piece that was not

written by me but could have

been, but it was written by

Irving Berlin 40 years before I

was born.

But it just shows how songs can

sometimes say it better than we

can put it into words, and with

that I thank you and retreat to

my customary position

at the piano.

[ Applause ]

[ Playing "I Love a Piano" ]

♪ I love a piano

I've had therapy about it.

[ Chuckles ]

♪ I love a piano

♪ I love to hear

somebody play ♪

♪ On a piano,

a grand piano ♪

♪ It simply carries me away

♪ I know a fine way

to treat

a Steinway ♪

♪ I love to run my fingers

o'er the keys,

the ivories ♪

♪ And with the pedal

I love to meddle ♪

♪ When Liberace

comes my way ♪

[ As Liberace ] ♪ I'm so excited

when I'm invited ♪

♪ To hear that long-haired

genius play ♪

Actually...

[ Normal voice ]

♪ Well, you can keep

your fiddle

and your bow ♪

♪ Give me a P-I-A-N-O, oh, oh

♪ I love to stop right

beside an upright ♪

♪ Or a high-toned baby grand

♪ I love a piano

♪ I love a piano

♪ I love to hear

somebody play ♪

♪ On a piano,

a grand piano ♪

♪ It simply carries me away

♪ I know a fine way

to treat a Steinway ♪

♪ I love to run my fingers

o'er the keys,

the ivories ♪

♪ And with the pedal

I love to meddle ♪

♪ When Paderewski

comes my way ♪

♪ I'm so excited

when I'm invited ♪

♪ To hear that long-haired

genius play ♪

♪ Well, you can keep

your fiddle

and your bow ♪

♪ Give me a P-I-A-N-O, oh, oh

♪ I love to stop right

beside an upright ♪

♪ Or a high-toned

baby grand ♪

♪ Oh, yeah

[ Cheers and applause ]

Thank you, Ladies and

Gentlemen.

I would like to thank these

amazing artists who joined us

tonight!

Mr. Billy Porter!

[ Cheers and applause ]

Joshua Bell!

[ Cheers and applause ]

Larisa Martinez!

And Brighton Thomas!

[ Applause ]

[ Speaks indistinctly ]

Please keep watching our

"American Songbook" series at

NJPAC.

We've got a great season planned

for you.

Thank you, and good night.

♪♪

>> Announcer: The "American

Songbook at NJPAC" series is

presented in part through the

generous support of...

Support for this broadcast is

provided by the...

♪♪

STREAM AMERICAN SONGBOOK AT NJPAC HOSTED BY MICHAEL FEINSTEIN ON

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