NY Mirror

''In Rounders, John Malkovich chewed so much scenery that it's a wonder there were any card tables left.''

Host Julie Andrews kept changing costumes and floating around saying, "What a lovely evening this is!" But the real diva turned out to be the sponsor, Continental Airlines, which--according to picketers outside--pays half of its pilots less than $15,000 a year and gives none of them pension benefits. Some people!

The Capeman was somehow omitted from the night's illustrious lineup, and that show's Marc Anthony mysteriously didn't mention it at his Madison Square Garden concert last week either, but it still provides a subtext of crossover dreams gone awry whenever Anthony performs, or even shows up. The singing sensation will hopefully survive his next bid at mainstream celebrity--a record company push toward Top 40--but I'm glad to hear that he plans to keep one foot planted in la musica Latina, I guess in case the other one ends up planted in sludge.

In concert, Anthony proved to be a charismatic, powerful entertainer with perfect pitch and a very cute sense of showmanship. In between rendering love songs to his mother, he did some mock-fey dance moves, talked in funny voices, and put a rose in his mouth, then launched into a salsa version of "I Will Survive." Girlfriend! A highlight had surprise guest star Jennifer Lopez prancing around and making "I'm not worthy" gestures in Anthony's direction. I struck the same pose for a while, but since the woman next to me--one "Luba from Cuba"--kept drunkenly slapping me and insisting I stand up and dance, I feel Anthony sort of owes me one. Maybe he'll host my birthday party?

Life upon the wicked stage: Anna Kendrick with Cabaret chorus at Carnegie Hall
Joe Vericker
Life upon the wicked stage: Anna Kendrick with Cabaret chorus at Carnegie Hall

Michael Musto can be e-mailed at musto@villagevoice.com.

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