Campbell Opens Carlyle Cabaret Gig Feb. 26; Readies New Album
David Campbell, who created a mini-sensation a couple seasons back when he
was cast in the lead of the Off-Broadway New York premiere of Stephen Sondheim's
early effort Saturday Night, will return to town Feb. 26 for a month-long
cabaret gig at Cafe Carlyle. The Australian star's engagement lasts until March
Campbell will use the Carlyle dates to pay tribute to two of his favorite
singers: Bobby Darin, the early rock idol who, with "Mack the Knife," switched
mid-career from pop to swinging lounge-style singing; and Sammy Davis, Jr., the
tap dance, actor and Rat Pack member who's best remembered for his rendition of
"The Candy Man."
"When I started doing cabaret and singing," Campbell told Playbill On-Line,
"they were the two guys I modeled my style on. I copied the hard-swinging style
those guys had. They were entertainers, more than singers. That has been the
strength of my shows—I'm a down front entertainment."
From the Davis catalogue, Campbell will sing "Gypsy in My Soul" and "Mr.
Bojangles," which will be delivered not as Davis did, but rather "as a tribute
to Sammy." From the Darin oeuvre, comes a medley made up of " Splish Splash,"
"Mack the Knife," "Beyond the Sea," and more.
"I'm not the type to do theme shows," Campbell continued. "I try to choose
songs that are extensions of me or reflections of me at the time... I think I've
got acting chops and I've got a voice to match those chops and I've got a lot of
guts. I can do a lot more things than other people could. In the end, I call
myself more a live entertainer than a musical theatre actor."
Campbell recently signed a recording contract with Sony. In two months, he
will be flying to London to record his next effort, a rock and roll album.
Ironically, it was his experience performing in Sondheim's Saturday
Night, which he describes as "life changing," that convinced Campbell to try
his hand at rock. "When I saw those people, and Sondheim, doing what they did
best, it encouraged me to push myself and do what I think I do best. And that's
rock. The show inspired me to move away from musical theatre, but in a good
In the Cafe Carlyle show, Campbell will also sing songs from Shout,
the Aussie musical he starred in. Other represented composers include Carol
Hall, John Bucchino and Michael Pemberton.
Campbell's other theatre credits include Babes in Arms at City Center
Encores!, and Guys and Dolls and Les Miz, both in Australia.
There is a $75 cover charge, no minimum. Cafe Carlyle is in the Carlyle
Hotel, Madison Avenue at 76th Street. Performances are Tuesday through Saturdays
at 8:45 PM with late shows on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 10:45 PM. For
reservations call (212) 570-7189.