Tony-Winner Lea Salonga wowed a SOLD OUT crowd at Carnegie Hall on Monday night, November 7, to benefit the Diverse City Theatre Group. The benefit was in extremely good hands with the uber-talented Salonga - led by director Richard Jay-Alexander and music director/conducter Kevin Stites. Joining her on stage during the evening were three very special guests, including her first “musical theatre God” Andrea McArdle for a duet of ANNIE's ‘Tomorrow,’ former MISS SAIGON co-star Liz Callaway, who duetted with Lea on an extremely emotional ‘The Story Goes On’ from BABY (after Salonga announced that she is pregnant), and ‘I Still Believe’ from MISS SAIGON. Richard Maltby, Jr. of BABY and MISS SAIGON fame, had to pick his jaw up off the floor at the end of ACT 1. Also, fellow Filipino, and Cinderella star Paolo Montalban, took up Marius duties for ‘A Little Fall of Rain’ from Les Miz.
During the two-act, glamour filled show, they traversed the worlds of Broadway, Jazz, Filipino music and several pop hits. Some of the night’s many showstopping moments included ‘We’ve Only Just Begun,’ ‘True Colors,’ ‘I Enjoy Being A Girl,’ ‘Love Look Away,’ ‘People (with the original 1964 Broadway orchestration!), ‘On My Own’, ‘Where is Love? / As Long as He Needs Me,’ ‘Reflection,’ ‘Popular,’ and a ‘Defying Gravity’ - which was performed like no one else has sung it yet! The night was full of standing ovations, and anyone who was there to witness the physically and vocally ravishing Salonga, will never forget this powerhouse night at Carnegie Hall.
Some party pictures from after the show at PROVIDENCE, 311 West 57th Street. (Ben Strothmann)
Lea Salonga - the star of the night.
Lea Salonga and husband Rob Chien
Richard Jay-Alexander and Lea Salonga
Liz Callaway, Lea Salonga and Andrea McArdle
Liz Callaway and Nancy Opel
A parting shot of the night's star!
Andrea McArdle and husband Edd Kalehoff
Miss Saigon co-star Liz Callaway
Lea Salonga and Diverse City Theater Company's Victor Lirio
A Chorus Line Reunion: Priscilla Lopez and Kelly Bishop