Jon Peterson Brings Back Vaudeville

  • Times Square Chronicles
  • |
  • March 12, 2013

by Karen Feld

Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, George M. Cohan, Donald O’Connor, Bobby Darin, Sammy Davis Jr., and Anthony Newley – all legendary song and dance men are brought back to life by the talented Jon Petersonn his highly entertaining one night show at Stage 72 (formerly The Triad). Peterson is well-prepared with his research and trivia on each of the personalities and is an engaging storyteller during his 90 minute show which moves quickly as he weaves the stories of each into one. He captured Newley’s Cockney accent.


Dancing, especially tap as evidenced in “Give My Regards to Broadway,” is Peterson’s strength. But his 23 songs backed up on piano are interspersed with witty dialogue. He best captures the personae of Darin and his idol, Donald O’Connor. “Splish Splash” was a highlight of the show but as Darin, Peterson wasn’t going to be a one hit wonder, and topped that number with “As Long As I’m Singing.” O’Connor made his name with second billing to Frances, the talking mule as well as with “It’s A Lovely Day Today.”

He also had fun on stage with Gene Kelly’s song and dance routine, “Singing in The Rain.”

As George M. Cohan, in the heyday of vaudeville, Peterson sang “Be A Clown” while putting on white face at a mirror on the side of the stage. He told the stories of each of these celebrated men with words, song and dance and we could actually see each evolving on stage. He closed with “What Kind of A Fool Am I?”  Don’t miss this modern day song and dance man when he’s back in town.

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