Affectionately yours

Marin Mazzie & Jason Danieley: 7 reasons why it’s easy to love this romantic couple

 

When Marin Mazzie and Jason Danieley –  dubbed “Broadway’s Golden Couple” – duet on lush romantic numbers, audiences have no doubt that these long-marrieds know what they’re singing about. Spouses relate to the wit and wisdom that time shared together brings; and for singles, the mood hits all the high notes for a great date night.

 

On Saturday, May 12, the two appear in NJPAC’s skyline-lit Chase Room for a cabaret revue fittingly titled My Funny Valentine – a little banter and a lot of American Songbook standards mixed with their Broadway favorites, sung solo and in harmony. The duo return to the Arts Center carrying scores from their collective stage hits for performances at 6 and 8:30pm.

 

The original Clara in Stephen Sondheim’s Passion, Mazzie is a three-time Tony Award nominee for her roles in that musical, as well as Ragtime and Kiss Me, Kate. Danieley, who was called “the most exquisite tenor on Broadway” by no less than The New York Times, is reprising his portrayal of the villainous Philip when Pretty Woman: The Musical opens this summer in New York by way of Chicago. Both actors were cast as the married couple of the musical Next to Normal in 2010 and often appear in tandem on the concert stage.

 

(NJPAC audiences might recall their turn in American Songbook at NJPAC, an episode that aired on PBS and other public television outlets four years ago and included their snappy rendition of “Something’s Gotta Give.”)

 

Here, with their co-CD Opposite You spinning in the background, we offer seven reasons why it’s super-easy to associate Marin Mazzie and Jason Danieley with true romance:

 

  • These actors have been crooning together since they were married 21 years ago; they met while performing in an outdoor staging of The Trojan Women: A Love Story.

 

  • Although Mazzie played the starchy, proper Mother in Ragtime, her character’s big heart was stolen by another. “Back to Before” is her spotlight moment, a lilting song of regret, and the soprano considers it one of her finest.

 

  • Danieley was the original Malcolm in the bawdy, sexually-fueled The Full Monty, which handed him David Yazbek’s beautiful “You Walk with Me,” played frequently at weddings.

 

  • “So In Love”: It’s one of the all-time goosebump-inducing love songs, written by Cole Porter, and belted to the upper tiers by Mazzie when she took the dual lead of Lilli/Katharine in the 1999 Broadway revival of Kiss Me, Kate.  

 

  • The hunky character of Lt. Joe Cable was portrayed by Danieley in a concert version of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific, which aired on PBS’ Great Performances in 2005. Of course, that presented him with the opportunity to sing the timeless “Younger Than Springtime.”  

 

  • Speaking of R&H, Mazzie is likely to perform a selection from The King and I at NJPAC; bets are on “Hello, Young Lovers.”

 

  • A ballad about friendship and goodbyes – “I Miss the Music,” from Broadway’s Curtains – was written by John Kander in tribute to his songwriting partner, the late lyricist Fred Ebb. It was set on Danieley, who originated the role of songwriter Aaron Fox in that musical.

 

April 20, 2018

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