Live at Zedel, London
For one night only jazz artiste Lucy Dixon brought her eclectic taste in 20th century music to the Crazy Coqs’ art deco basement.
Notwithstanding a distinctly Parisian twist to her act, her routine defiantly straddled the Atlantic with a set-list that dated deliciously back, nigh on 100 years.
As a performer Dixon is blessed with exceptional technical skills – her voice is pitch perfect (an a cappella take on When I Get Low I Get High in her encore was stunning) and she liberally dilutes her vocal turns with perfectly syncopated tap routines throughout the gig.
But as a cabaret gig at the Crazy Coqs Dixon misses the mark, rarely crossing the “fourth wall” to reach out to her intimately placed audience. Her perfectly harmonised trio are a delight in support, but Dixon loses herself in too many flights of self-indulgency, including a mangling of Gershwin’s Fascinating Rhythm, mashing the lyrics into a barely audible blur.
There were times when the talented, gamine and oh so chic performer resembled more of a marionette or even worse, an animated background singer providing “live muzak” rather than the shared personal narrative that can truly make for a fulfilling cabaret gig.
With a bit more self-revelation, an evening with Dixon could yet prove to be stunning.
As Hamlet’s Gertrude might have said, more patter with less tap.
Photo credit: Louis Burrows