A Diary Of A New York Lady

 

THREE recent women graduates of acting schools have got together to present a light entertainment at Players Theatre. They have called their work A Diary Of A New York Lady and describe it as a cabaret based on the works of Dorothy Parker; but it is much slighter than that might imply. It really aims to convey, in snippets of Parker's lesser writings and songs mainly by Cole Porter, the essence of the female flapper of the 1920s.

The trio - Iseult Golden, Lisa Harding and Catherine Walker - are appropriately dressed and coiffured to encompass the frivolity of their subject. The format they have adopted is to recite pieces by Parker interspersed with familiar songs - Anything Goes, What Is This Thing Called Love and others - all in choreographed movement. They sing pleasantly and move gracefully, and the 50 minutes or so passes painlessly.

While one must applaud their enterprise, the vehicle they have constructed to showcase their talents is a limited one. Little of the essential Dorothy Parker comes through and the songs are mostly too familiar to create an impact. When they do change the pace as it were, in a moody rendition of Duke Ellington's Sophisticated Lady, they strike a spark. A straightforward cabaret, with the net cast much wider for material, might have served them better.

Nonetheless, a pleasant frivolity, tidily directed by Emma Mclvor and with lively music by Conall Gleeson (piano) and Deirdre O'Leary (clarinet).