published Monday, March 7th, 2011

Broadway, big-band favorites on the way


LISA DENTON: Barry, we may need to take a road trip this week, but we could go in different directions and still see the same show. Tenor Franc D’Ambrosio is bringing his concert of Broadway favorites to both Athens and Crossville, Tenn.

BARRY COURTER: That show jumped out at me too after reading his resume. I have to confess to never having heard of him before Friday, but we’ve all heard of his work. He was the Phantom on Broadway and had a role in and sang the theme song for “The Godfather: Part III.” He also studied under Luciano Pavarotti at his invitation and was handpicked by Barry Manilow to star in “Copacabana.” That’s high cotton, as the folks in Athens might say.

LISA: D’Ambrosio actually has three one-man shows. Besides “Broadway — Songs of the Great White Way,” there’s “Hollywood — Songs of the Silver Screen” and his latest, “I’ll Be Seein’ Youz ... A Bronx Boy’s Musical Perspective of World War II.”

Which reminds me that a musical revue of big-band standards, “In the Mood,” is coming to the Tivoli on Thursday. As the “greatest generation” ages and dies, it’s nice that people are still bopping to the music of the era.

BARRY: The big dance floor in the sky is getting crowded, but big-band music is still great fun. I contend that lovers of music of any kind can find something to like about big-band music. “Sing Sing Sing” might be the one song that everybody, no matter their age or musical tastes, can love. That drum beat rocks, and who doesn’t like blaring horns?

“In the Mood,” the song, isn’t bad either.

IF YOU GO: “Franc D’Ambrosio’s Broadway” will be presented in the Athens Junior High School auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and at the Cumberland County Playhouse at 7:30 p.m. CST Friday. For ticket information, call 423-745-8781 in Athens, 931-484-5000 in Crossville. “In the Mood” will start at 7 p.m. Thursday at Memorial Auditorium. Call 757-5050 for ticket information.

Contact Lisa Denton at or 423-757-6281. Contact Barry Courter at or 423-757-6354.

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

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