“Thanks for coming out tonight when you could have gone to the Bledisloe Cup” Tim Draxl declared at the opening of his show tonight, adding, “I don’t even know what the Bledisloe Cup is”. There was only one bloke in the room who looked remotely interested in the rugby, and he was there with his girlfriend, and was possibly a relative, I thought. The rest of the room was made up of middle-aged couples and lots of poofs, as you might expect. And those of us who have followed his career for quite some time.
The last time I saw Tim Draxl perform live he was twenty three years old. At the time I concluded… “I reckon Tim Draxl could become one of our best musical theatre performers… a truly rounded gifted performer… he just needs to work on the “authenticity” thing… ” Well, four years later, aged twenty-seven he seems to have taken my advice on board :) I’m sure he read my blog review…
Tonight’s performance at the Supper Club on Oxford Street was absolutely fantastic. There were quite a few moments when I got goose-bumps, and a couple of times when I was close to having a tear roll down my check. I think the authenticity tonight came from many things, including maturity, but also his choice of songs which was excellent. As well as the jazz-standards you might expect, including an exemplary version of “My Funny Valentine”, he sang more modern songs, including a great Jeff Buckley song called “Lilac Wine“.
When I think more than I want to think
Do things I never should do
I drink much more that I ought to drink
Because it brings me back you
Neither Colin, nor Grant, nor I had heard this song before, but it’s definitely a beautiful song, and one I’d like to pursue further.
“My Funny Valentine” in particular is a favourite of mine. In talking about the song, Tim mentioned that it was by Chet Baker, and that he would love to be in a movie about Chet Baker, though Leonardo di Caprio currently owns the rights to that particular story.
In contrast to four years ago, he seems to have found his own adult voice. Personally, I prefer the more maudlin, depressive numbers, and that’s when I think you really see his soul, but he’s also very good at the more uptempo, more typical “showtune”.
The whole premise for the show was the music and people who inspired him, hence the name “Under The Influence”. Seated in the audience were his mum and a former school teacher with whom he is still close. He also mentioned a dance teacher. All of them were influential in his almost precocious interest in the performing arts. The three of us smiled in recognition at his youthful interest in Hollywood Musicals. Although his between-song-patter still goes on a little too long, and is sometimes a little self-indulgent, that will undoubtedly improve with age. Hey, he’s 27 years old! The music and the show, however, were sublime.