Simply Brill – The Women Who Defined Rock ‘N’ Roll @ Banquet Room, Festival Centre, Adelaide 11/6/2022

Photos Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2022

This wonderful show as part of the 2022 Adelaide Cabaret Festival tells us the story of Tin Pan Alley and then later the Brill Building in New York which is famous for housing the music industry offices and studios where some of the most popular American songs were written.

The talented trio Michaela Berger, Michael Griffiths and writer Amelia Ryan sang and told us this incredible story which gave us the history of the movement and era and focussed on three women writers, Carole King, Cynthia Weil, and Ellie Greenwich.

Three of the Carole King penned tunes that were performed were Up on the Roof, One Fine Day and Take Good Care of my Baby. Later in the show, they did a song by Carole called A Road to Nowhere which was my favourite for the night. The beautiful harmonies of Michaela and Amelia for this song were breath taking.

Three of the Cynthia Weil tunes performed by this talented group were On Broadway, Blame it on the Bossa Nova, and We Gotta Get out of This Place. Ellie Greenwich also helped write some phenomenal tunes and she would use nonsense words as a temporary stop-gap until she thought of what words actually to insert but often these words were left in giving us the hits Do Wah Diddy Diddy and Da Doo Ron Ron as well as the seminal Leader of the Pack.

The encore of three songs very cleverly gave the individual spotlight on our three performers (Michael, Michaela and Amelia) as well as focussing on three of the greatest songs of the three writers. We were treated to You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling, Natural Woman and River Deep – Mountain High and these three songs were a fantastic end to the show.

Tonight the singing, the dancing and stories were magnificent and the crowd gave all three performers and the wonderful band a well-deserved standing ovation at the end. I know many people who would love this show and I hope it gets a run somewhere sometime in the future.

Adelaide Cabaret Festival Review By Richard De Pizzol

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