Evelyn Evelyn – Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley
Monday May 17 2010 @ The Venue, Vancouver
Show Review/CD Review
by Jade Sperry
Amanda Palmer does it….AGAIN. This time, instead of performing with The Dresden Dolls or with The Danger Ensemble, she has teamed up with Jason Webley for theatrical fun and games. This is a show you must see if you are fans of movies like “Cabaret” or if you just like theater. Amanda’s training in theater is evident when you see her perform her half of Evelyn Evelyn. Jason is brilliant in his role as the other half of Evelyn Evelyn, and both performers are very skilled at improvising and are funny as well as entertaining. They both played the piano, accordion, ukulele and guitar; Amanda performing the right half with Jason picking up the left side. They work very well together and did a great job of being one half of a twin set.
When Evelyn Evelyn left the stage, there was a brief break in the action and then Jason came out to perform. He was riveting. He is a natural storyteller in much the same way that Amanda is but he is also a talented musician and reminded this writer of Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen. He had the audience of 200-300 people in the palm of his had for the 40 minutes he performed. Amanda came onstage and sang a number with Jason, and as he left, Amanda took over the Venue. She is a talented storyteller as well but her talent is beyond her 33 years. She reminds me of Liza Minnelli for many reasons: her vocal ability and the emotion she puts into her music, her talent as a musical writer for the theater and as a performer onstage. In particular, the way that she performed “Ampersand” was so emotional that the couple beside me became very tearful. To bring that out in a crowd just from singing and playing the keyboard is amazing and reveals great talent.
The CD that Evelyn Evelyn have out and are touring to support is self titled and reminded this writer of old burlesque shows from the early part of the 20th century. The songs are sad, funny and emotional in the dark days of the twins early existence which affects them both to the present time. The only difference is that the “twins” were born in the 1980’s according to the song “The Tragic Events of September” parts one, two and three. This song needed help from the audience – 2 men came up and held a screen while cutouts were used to perform the song which is spoken word with piano. Well done! I liked all the cutout blood splatters. Another highlight was when the song “Elephant Elephant” was performed and the audience participation was good. I liked the way that Amanda and Jason interacted and reacted with the audience especially when they joined their “thoughts” together to answer pre-written questions in which one question was “Should I take that job at ICBC?” to which Jason ended with the answer with the letters “ICBM”. That set off Amanda who lost it for a brief moment. I also have that moment captured in a photo that is accompanying this article.
At this time, they have performed the show in Seattle and Portland, and if they are coming to your town, make sure you check out the show as well as your twitter account as Amanda and Jason twitter constantly. Who knows? You might win tickets to the show or make breakfast for the cast the next day at your house. Either way its a good time and well worth the $18 ticket price. And also stop by the merchandise booth, as the prices are affordable and there is a lot of selection.
You can find Evelyn Evelyn, Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley at the following links:
Amanda Fucking Palmer – website http://www.amandapalmer.net
Amanda Palmer – Twitter http://www.twitter.com/amandapalmer
Jason Webley – website http://www.jasonwebley.com
Jason Webley – Twitter http://www.twitter.com/jasonwebley
Evelyn Evelyn – website http://www.evelynevelyn.com
Evelyn Evelyn – Twitter http://www.twitter.com/evelynevelyn
And you can stream the music and buy the songs Evelyn Evelyn have made here at Bandcamp: