One thing you can be certain of when Israeli singer Isaac Sutton comes to town and performs at Feinsteins/54 Below, as he did last night, 0ctober 5, is that you will be guaranteed a good time. Not only does he impress with his bass baritone voice and his exuberance, but he is fond of introducing and performing with women singers who have excellent voices and add spice to the show.
Sutton, with a white tux jacket over a black shirt, is effusive in welcoming his audience, and he loves to aim songs at adoring women fans. He sings in English and Hebrew and showers the crowd with his larger-than-life personality that goes along with his talent. He is skillful at establishing intimacy with the crowd –-he introduced his parents who flew in from Israel to attend--and he dominates the stage with his musical skill, dispensing lots of humor along the way.
The women singers he presented last night were Amanda Jane Cooper (Glinda in“Wicked"), and Ali Ewoldt (Christine Daae in “The Phantom of the Opera”). Both Cooper and Ewoldt are terrific, each in her own way. Sutton’s approach is to let his guests solo and also duet with them in what comes across as fun-filled collaboration.
Cooper, blond and full of zest, sang “For Good” from “Wicked,” and she and Sutton riffed on “Hello, Dolly!” and playfully sang “Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better” from “Annie Get Your Gun,” which in the “I can sing higher than you” bit allowed Cooper to soar with her soprano voice. They sang “The Rain in Spain,” with Sutton delivering some of it in Hebrew. There was also amusement in the routine of teaching Cooper to also sing a bit in Hebrew.
Ali Ewoldt has a great voice, as she thrillingly demonstrated with “All I Ask of You” from “The Phantom of the Opera.” She and Sutton teamed on “Tonight” and “Somewhere” from “West Side Story” and “Climb Every Mountain” from “The Sound of Music.” Sutton treated Cooper and Ewoldt with generosity, lavishing praise on them and giving the impression that he was excited to share the stage with them.
On his own, Sutton sang a variety of numbers, such as “Come Fly With Me” and “Sway.” Confessing that he longs to perform in “Chicago,” he sang that show’s “All I Care About.” He did a medley from “Fiddler on the Roof,” and especially demonstrating his vocal prowess, “Man of La Mancha” and “Don’t Rain on My Parade.”
There was excellent accompaniment by musical director Dan Pardo on piano, Greg Orlando on double bass and Matt Covey on drums. Not only did Sutton introduce them but he did something unusually generous, inviting them at the end of the show to stand beside him and take bows together. At Feinstein’s/54 Below, 254 West 54th Street. Reviewed October 6, 2019.