The American Theater is a great venue and the sound reproduction is excellent. The sound for this show is the best I have heard in ,it seems, years. Todd was in excellent voice and spirits and in witnessing the musicianship and "intellect/demeanor" of Ethel, I can understand why. Todd's songs were very well crafted and arranged and Todd had the opportunity to let them breathe as he emoted so strongly and passionately. Hearing "Pretending To Care " was a privilege and his performance of this was Stellar!!! His performance of all of his songs was excellent in that you could see and hear every nuance.
Utopia purists may not agree with my personal observation/opinion, but I feel that Ethel and the arrangements are fitting collaborators with Todd on stage...truly peers and Todd seems to feel this. I have enjoyed band moments with Todd over the years but have been frustrated with several missteps in the shows where I feel that Todd had to pull and push the players a bit..with Ethel, I saw none of this. Todd's time with Ethel reminds me of the same vibe as Acapella-Nearly Human and Second Wind ensembles and production and perhaps the AWTS show.
I hope Todd will do this again and tour where more folks can see this. The crowd that night in Hampton was very much a patron crowd and not so much familiar with Ethel or "current" Todd. He won them over with his performance and skilled execution..he was very much an Artist that night and I for one will promote seeing this show if it comes again. It was heartwarming to see Todd in his element...it was very much like a fine tribute...blessings to Todd and Ethel.