El Yentl

It’d be the easiest thing in the world to write off Simply Barbra as the most obvious and ill-advised drag show in the history of men in dresses. Barbra Streisand’s mannerisms are tricky to lampoon and trickier to emulate, and the voice — that glass-shattering, earth-rending, note-scooping, ball-blasting freak of a voice — is so hard to reproduce that even Barbra can’t quite manage it these days. But New Yorker Steven Brinberg can do it, or so they say. The Times of London called his singing “uncannily accurate,” and referred to him as “the best press agent Streisand ever had.” This, even though he’s a dude laying his pipes around “People,” “The Way We Were” and “Don’t Rain On My Parade” — all of which, reason would dictate, should be impossible for even the most blessed male countertenor (never mind one in heels). But the world is full of surprises, and since ticket prices for Babs’ last farewell tour soared to $3,000 on some English dates, you might as well spend $30 - $55 to find out if Brinberg can surprise you tonight. Simply Barbra runs through December 23rd at Rising Action Theatre (840 E. Oakland Park Blvd., Fort Lauderdale). Call 800-595-4849, or visit www.risingactiontheatre.com.
Sat., Dec. 22; Sun., Dec. 23, 2007
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Brandon K. Thorp