A MICHAEL FEINSTEIN HOLIDAY CELEBRATION by Carol Kaufman Segal
The Valley Performing Arts Center (VPAC), located on the campus of California State University Northridge (CSUN), was completed in 2011, and has brought live entertainment to the San Fernando Valley since it opened. This year (2017), Younes Nazerian and his wife donated $17 million to the Center to rename it the Younes and Soraya Center for the Performing Arts Center (The Soraya).
Since its beginning, the Center has brought top quality performers and entertainment to its stage. They could not have brought back a more wonderful performer to help celebrate the year-end season than the delightful talented Michael Feinstein who performed in A Michael Feinstein Holiday Celebration.
What a joyous celebration it was. Michael sang many songs from his album, A Michael Feinstein Christmas, but also captivated his audience with many standards accompanied by three outstanding musicians, Sam Kriger (Music Director, and pianist), Albie Berk, (drums), and Kirk Smith (bass). He also accompanied himself on the piano for some of his numbers. Michael is a perfect entertainer with personality plus. Whether he is telling a joke, just talking to his audience, singing, or singing while performing at the piano, that personality simply shines through.
Michael Feinstein was raised in a conservative synagogue in Columbus Ohio, but he is attracted to traditional Christmas songs, which as he says “Many were written by Jewish songwriters,” the “popular” Christmas songs, not about Jesus, but about sleigh bells, a white Christmas, and things like toys and Santa. As he says, “Everyone sings them.” As the performance came to an end followed by his encore, it was obvious how very much the audience loved the show.
The Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) is located at 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge. The remainder of their 2017-2018 season promises more exciting and superb programs. Check their schedule out by calling (818) 877-3000, or by going online www.valleyperformingartscenter