LOGAN – Michael Corvino’s Sentimental Journey attracted a mostly geriatric, sellout crowd to the Ellen Eccles Theatre in downtown Logan 0n Wednesday evening.

Under the artistic direction of the incomparable Suzan Hanson, the Big Band tribute to musical legend Frank Sinatra was simply classy, start to finish.

Corvino’s review – with accompaniment by the Utah Festival Opera Orchestra conducted by Dr. Mike Bankhead, plus singers and dancers from the Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre — was regrettably also a one-night stand.

If you missed it, shame on you. There hasn’t been a show this glitzy and glamorous in Logan in a long time – and there probably won’t be another musical review with this much talent any time in the near future.

Born to Italian immigrant parents in Hoboken, NJ in 1915, Sinatra began his career in the swing era with bandleaders Harry James and Tommy Dorsey. The idol of the so-called “bobby soxers” in the 1940s, Sinatra released his first album in 1946 and followed up a string of highly successful albums.

But Sinatra was most at home performing live. He became one of Las Vegas’ best-known residency acts, often performing with his Rat Pack colleagues, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr.

Casey Lamont (who helped to choreograph many of this season’s UFOMT shows) began the Sinatra review by singing – what else? – “Sentimental Journey.”

Corvino performed a breezy rendition of “Come Fly with Me” and Daniel Illig (from the casts of Man of La Mancha, The Magic Flute and She Loves Me) sang the Cole Porter classic “I’ve Got You Under My Skin.”

Then it was the orchestra’s time to shine with a medley of tunes from composer Henry Mancini. Ensemble singers Lucy Breedlove, Christian Harward, Daniel Illig, Sara Law, Brennan Martinez and Logan Wagner provided sweet harmony and dancers Cassandra Gauthier, Jimmy Henderson, Casey Lamont, Luke Swaller and Devin Wieser also performed.

Brennan Martinez (from the casts of Carmen, Man of La Mancha and Joseph …) did a cheerful solo of “I’ve Got the World on a String” and John Tibbetts (a baritone soloist from Carmina Burana) performed Sinatra’s iconic “My Kind of Town.”

Sentimental Journey then veered into the collaborations between Sinatra and the renowned Count Basie, with the Utah Festival Jazz Orchestra performing “Basie, Straight Ahead.”

Dancers Lucy Breedlove, Camryn Elias, Jaden Holtschlag, Ben Jessop, Casey Lamont, David Postlewate, Cary Stewart and Robert Taylor accompanied the jazz orchestra with a spirited tap dance choreographed by Hunter Yocom.

From this season’s casts of Carmen, Joseph … and The Magic Flute, Victoria Isernia performed a lovely rendition of “It Might as Well be Spring,” followed by Corvino’s salute to Sinatra’s 1964 hits.

That medley included ”Fly Me to the Moon,” “It’s the Good Life,” “The Best is Yet to Come” and “The Way You Look Tonight.”

Following the intermission, it was all hands on deck as the festival opera’s singers and dancers performed a medley of familiar tunes from the 1960s.

Later, Corvino sang Sinatra’s bittersweet “It Was a Very Good Year.”

Bankhead then led the orchestra in playing the instrumental hit “Theme from a Summer Place,” which Corvino confessed “ … had nothing to do with Frank Sinatra, but we thought that you’d like to hear it.”

Lucy Breedlove and Christian Harward collaborated on a romantic duet of “Our Love is Here to Stay” and Corvino performed one of Sinatra’s pop hits “The Summer Wind” and the Sinatra trademark “My Way.”

Finally, Michael Colman (from the casts of The Tender Land, The Magic Flute and Joseph …) brought down the house with a smooth as silk rendition of “Nice ‘n’ Easy.”

“There’s simply nothing that compares to these songs from Frank Sinatra,” Corvino said prior to the show’s finale. “There’s also nothing that compares to the Utah Festival Opera.”

Covino praised Michael Ballam for his farsighted vision in founding the Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre 30 years ago and his kindness in its management over the decades, inviting to audience to give the local impresario a well-deserved standing ovation.

Sentimental Journey then closed with the inevitable “New York, New York,” with the audience singing along.



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