MOTOWN star, N’Kenge recently performed a two night show called “Holiday Magic” at The Triad on the Upper West Side. It featured her MOTOWN co-stars Charl Brown and Jamal Story, as well as two background vocalists: Samantha Blain and Brittany Duck. The show was chaotic from the start. A technical problem pushed the start time to almost forty five minutes late. The staff was sweet and handed out candy and comped drinks to keep everyone happy. Sorry to say, the entertainment did not make up for the lost time.
Awkward pauses were present throughout the performance. More than anything, it was a costume show. Wardrobe stylist, Stephanie Jill Chernick picked stunning clothes for all the women. However, since there were multiple costume changes between songs, it took a long time to transition. Ilana Sedaka, did a roller skating routine that was stunning to watch. She lit up on stage and was truly in her element. The backup singers, harmonies were all over the place and very rough. They did not help accentuate N’Kenge’s performance, instead, they were distracting.
The space was intimate and it seemed many people in attendance were fans and friends of N’Kenge’s who were there for moral support. My advice for the future, make sure all your harmonies are tight and you have a clear goal set for what you want the show to look like. From beautiful Christian based songs, to dirty santa tunes and a rendition of “It’s Raining Men” changed to “It’s Raining Elves” the cabaret was scattered all over the place. The encore sing-a-long of “Go Tell It on the Mountain” was the highlight and energized the fans. It was fun to hear people sing leaving the studio space.
Rating: Not To Be