Review: ‘A once in a lifetime show’ ★★★★★ Kristin Chenoweth, London Palladium

There are few performers who could pack the London Palladium for a one-off concert. There are even fewer who could completely captivate the two thousand strong audience for an entire evening with just a piano as accompaniment and a collection of stories.

But Kristin Chenoweth is no ordinary performer and in a stripped back concert at the iconic Argyll Street venue she proved why she is seen as musical theatre royalty.


It’s difficult to describe just how charismatic Chenoweth is without sounding gushing. But the stage star – who is small in stature – somehow managed to fill the cavernous auditorium, reaching every corner and every person with her dazzling disposition, while maintaining a feeling of intimacy throughout.

From the very first entrance the audience erupted with adulation and after beginning with “Should I be Sweet” – which featured on her 2001 Let Yourself Go album – Kristin launched into her trademark self-deprecating and down to earth story telling.

There’s no doubt that Kristin Chenoweth is vocally one of the best in the business – her range is phenomenal and her ability to effortlessly switch from one musical style to another is remarkable – but it’s in the delivery where she really leads the field. When extracting every bit of emotion or humour from each lyric, she is able to completely connect with her audience. You could have heard a pin drop, such was the silent awe throughout the more meaningful numbers like “I Get Along Without You Very Well” and the glorious “Moon River”. Other act one highlights included an extremely emotional version of “Bring Him Home” from Les Misérables, “I Could Have Danced All Night” from My Fair Lady – which showcased her extraordinary soprano voice – and the religious anthem “Upon this Rock” for which she was joined onstage by the Choir of the Arts Educational School.

After returning to the stage after the interval bedecked in a shimmering slip and matching thigh-high silver boots, Wicked fans were treated to the song for which Kristin Chenoweth is renowned; “Popular” (so perfectly performed it sounded as if we were listening to the original recording) before the songstress was joined onstage by another former Wicked star, Rachel Tucker for a stunning rendition of the duet “For Good”.

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There were homages to many of her influences throughout the show too (a number of who were in attendance) including British musical theatre star Elaine Paige, lyricist Lesley Bricusse, composer Andrew Lippa and director of You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown – for which Chenoweth won a Tony award in 1999 – Michael Mayer.

Stand out numbers in act two included a gorgeous version of the country classic “You Were Always On My Mind” mashed up with Sondheim’s “Losing My Mind” and the funny little ditty “Taylor the Latte Boy” along with another belter performed with the Choir of the Arts Educational School to close the show.

You can’t help but feel like you’ve been in the presence of greatness when you find yourself anywhere near Kristin Chenoweth; such is the positive energy which she emanates and her encore performance – without a microphone –  of “Smile” left the audience in no doubt they had witnessed a once in a lifetime show. Is Kristin Chenoweth a goddess? I think so.

Photo by Danny Kaan

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Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth to return to London

“I count the Royal Albert Hall as one of the top three experiences of my lifetime.” Kristin Chenoweth told The Sweet London Life when we spoke to her last year, so it’s no surprise that the Broadway star is returning to London in October for an intimate concert at the London Palladium.

The EMMY ® AND TONY ® Award-winning singer and actress will bring her boundless talent and charisma to London’s Palladium in October for what is likely to be an unforgettable evening of song.

Chenoweth last performed in London in 2014 at the Royal Albert Hall, a concert which featured a very special duet with British stage star Kerry Ellis.

Kristin Chenoweth and Kerry Ellis

In a career that spans film, television and stage, Kristin Chenoweth originated the role of Glinda the Good Witch in Broadway’s smash hit “Wicked. Chenoweth brings her powerful voice to the Palladium for a performance of popular songs from Broadway and the Great American Songbook accompanied by Michael Orland.

A Hollywood Walk of Fame Star recipient in 2015, she received in 2009 an EMMY® Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her role in “Pushing Daises.” Previously, she won a TONY®Award for “You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” and was also nominated for her role of Glinda the Good Witch in “Wicked” in 2004.

Known to millions for her role on the worldwide TV hit Glee (for which Chenoweth was nominated for two EMMY® Awards and for a People’s Choice Award), in 2009, she wrote an upliftingly candid, comedic chronicle of her life so far, “A Little Bit Wicked,” which debuted on the New York Times Hardcover Non Fiction Best Seller List.

In 2015, Chenoweth earned a Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award and Broadway.comAudience Choice Award for her lead role in the Roundabout Theatre Company’s “On the Twentieth Century.” She also earned nominations for a TONY® Award and a Drama League Award. Chenoweth has performed to sold-out audiences across the world, including performances at Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall. In 2014, she released a CD and DVD of her own live concert performance, “Kristin Chenoweth: Coming Home.” Notable television roles include appearances in “The West Wing,” Disney’s “Descendants” and most recently “The Muppets.” In film, Chenoweth voiced the role of Gabi in the hit animated film “Rio 2” and Fifi, Snoopy’s beloved French poodle in “The Peanuts Movie.” She starred in the indie teen drama entitled “Hard Sell” and additional film credits have included “The Boy Next Door,” “Deck the Halls,” “Twelve Men of Christmas,” “Four Christmases,” “RV,” “Bewitched,” “The Pink Panther,” “Hit & Run” and “Family Weekend.”  Chenoweth recently starred in NBC’s “Hairspray Live!” as Velma Von Tussle. She is also lending her voices to some animated films such as Lionsgate/Hasbro’s “My Little Pony: The Movie,” set for a fall 2017 release and “The Star,” which is set to be released in November 2017.  This year, Chenoweth has reunited with executive producer Bryan Fuller to join his celebrated Starz series “American Gods,” in the role of Easter.

Chenoweth released “The Art of Elegance,” last year, her first album of American Songbook classics via Concord Records.  The album debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Current Jazz and Traditional Jazz charts. Chenoweth also returned to The Great White Way in her limited engagement, one-woman concert event, MY LOVE LETTER TO BROADWAY, at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in New York, receiving rave reviews.

An Intimate Evening with Kristin Chenoweth will be at the London Palladium on October 20th