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Review: "An Intimate Night with Kristen Chenoweth"

As a musical theatre fanatic, I am constantly on the local theatre websites and calendars looking for shows and musicals I can  go watch. I can honestly tell you that in the next three months, I have at least three or four musicals penciled into my calendar. 

This past weekend on Saturday, February 3rd, Kristin Chenoweth had her yearly "An Intimate Night with Kristin Chenoweth" show at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Although my friend and I were the only audience members under the age of 30, it was definitely a show for all to watch and enjoy. 

Kristin was extremely engaging with the audience all throughout the show. She began the night by singing "Should I Be Sweet?" from one of her eariler albums. This choice of song with its comical elements and conversal tone helped break the ice between the artist and the audience. Kristin had the entirety of the hall laughing five minutes into the show. 

The rest of the night was filled with her conversing with the audience, allowing us all a glimpse into who Kristin the person really is. So, you can say the "intimate" part of the night was checked off the list. 

Kristin's repertoire of songs included pieces from her own album, Les Miserables, and the one and only Wicked. Prior to each song, Kristin gave us a small short story in order to lead into the song. Accompanied by her producer, Mary Mitchell Campbell, on the piano, the dynamic duo had the entire hall laughing every minute before and during each song. 

Of course, her rendition of "Popular" and "For Good" with one of her closest friends, Sarah Wylie, had every member of the audience cheering and clapping, not including her hilarious anecdote and retelling of Mariah Carey's lipsyncing mishap at the 2017 New Year's Eve show. 

As the show came to a close, Kristin brought on local artists and talents to perform the Christian song, "Upon This Rock." Prior to beginning the song, Kristin joked around with the religious members of the audience as well as the "non-believers", saying that it would soon conclude "in four short minutes." The beautifully orchestrated song not only highlighted Kristin's talent but also allowed the rest of the ensemble to stand in the limelight and have their own couple minutes of fame. 

The final two songs of the show were absolutely magnificent and memorable. Kristin was joined up front with her musical ensemble and their drums, guitars, violins, etc. to cover some of her favorite Dolly Parton songs. The final song and the closer of the night was a one-man show on Kristin's part. With no mic or music in the background, Kristin stood downstage and covered The Wizard of Oz's "Somewhere over the Rainbow." Pulling an Andrea Bocelli, Kristin performed the technically challenging song with no help or background noise, just her and her raw talent. 

I was so grateful for the opportunity to watch the legend in person on her one night in Orange County. She will continue her tour this year and around the area, so be sure to write her into your calendar as it is a night you will definitely not want to miss. 


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