Although her son suggested she call her act The Bitch Is Back (Pia has three kids), under any title, the show would be a smash!
I arrived a little early and was about to return from the club's men's room, climbing the narrow stairs, from basement level, when the diva herself appeared at the top in her wedgies. "Do you mind if I come down first?" she asked. Well, I never contest a diva!
Although I meant to request a song set for press at show's end, Pia opened with what seemed like a very personalized number called "Alive." She was in great voice from the get-go and will dispel ideas anyone might have about her being a bantamweight singer. She is a belter, babies! A vocal powerhouse who could put Liza (in her prime) to shame.
|Pia & Beaverhausen|
Two seats from stage right, Nick Lion and I were greeted by the onstage Ms Zadora (and we adored huh!) who skillfully engaged the full house by speaking to us individually or creating a conga line when she covered "C'est Si Bon." She told Nick she adored his necklace and pointed out how she loved my shirt. Little things mean a lot.
American songbook classics like "The Man Who Got Away" and "Cry Me a River" were interpreted in fresh, emotionally raw and vocally vigorous style. Her stage presence, partly thanks to Bob Esty's staging, was impeccable.
The projected images behind her opened up the performance, with a wonderful five-man band backing her up, in the small but cozy cabaret.
|In the distance: Bob directing Pia @ rehearsal|
|Bob Esty & I|
Nick and I met both Pia and Bob Esty after the show before heading home. But we were invited to Vegas to check out the act on a bigger stage, and so it's Vegas or Bust this autumn for us!