Life Is For Living: Conversations with Coward OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Sara Krulwich
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    December 18, 2016
    Closing:
    January 1, 2017

    Theater: 59E59 Theaters / 59 East 59th St., New York, NY, 10022

    Synopsis: 

    Simon Green and David Shrubsole, the creators of the sold-out Coward at Christmas, the Drama Desk-nominated Traveling Light and So, This Then is Life, return to 59E59 Theaters with an imaginative, musical new show for the festive season celebrating Sir Noel Coward's remarkable impact on British and American culture.
    Fusing theatricality, music, and conversations (both real and imagined) with gems from British musical icon Ivor Novello, Life is for Living blends the wit of Fascinating Aida's Dillie Keane and the satire of Jeremy Nicholas with the wisdom of Maya Angelou, the lyricism of Irving Berlin, and the syncopation of George Gershwin.

    A uniquely British take on the twists and turns of life, the show will include Shrubsole's original compositions and Coward poetry set to music, plus old favorites newly re-scored and classics from "The Master" himself.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Life Is For Living: Conversations with Coward

    The Songs of Noël Coward, With Lightness and Bite

    Charles Isherwood

    December 18, 2016: No matter how festive your holiday party season may be, it is unlikely to reach the heights, or depths, described in Noël Coward’s irresistibly funny song “I Went to a Marvelous Party,” a highlight of “Life Is for Living,” a tribute to Coward created and performed by Simon Green and his accompanist at the piano, David Shrubsole. In that delicious song, delivered with the driest of wit by Mr. Green, the narrator recalls a season of decadent parties on the French Riviera, in cascades of rhymed lyrics that grow more lunatic as the song trundles along. “People’s behavior away from Belgravia would make you aghast,” he confides with ill-disguised glee. The show, which opened on Sunday at 59E59 Theaters, combines songs with snippets from Coward’s letters and diaries, in roughly chronological order, as well as some of his verse, set to music by Mr. Shrubsole. An underlying theme is the development of Coward’s famous persona: The eternal bon vivant gliding through the high life dispensing brittle wit.

    READ THE REVIEW

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