Wednesday, February 25, 2009

‘Dateless’ Kuh delivers love

(Published Feb. 24, PDI-Entertainment)

By Oliver M. Pulumbarit

Kuh Ledesma celebrated Valentine season this year with the show “The Voice...The Violin,” a concert that showcased unique renditions of undying love songs.

At Captain’s Bar in Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Kuh effortlessly performed romantic ballads even when she repeatedly declared between songs her being single and dateless. But her friends, singer Ariel Rivera and violinist Jay Cayuca, kept her company.

Ledesma smoothly opened with the Celine Dion tune “I’m Alive,” and followed with a light, breezy rendition of “Night and Day.” She proceeded with a jazzy medley of three songs, “The Look of Love,” “That’s All,” and “The Nearness of You.” Throughout the show, she sang classics (“Overjoyed,” “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You,” “My Funny Valentine,” etc.), talked about love while sneaking in Bible interpretation (she believes that partners are predestined), and shared interesting anecdotes about her guests.

Actor-singer Rivera did a decent interpretation of Ric Segreto’s “Don’t Know What to Do,” and sang agreeably with Kuh in “I Finally Found Someone” and “Basta’t Tayo’y Magkasama.”

Pony-tailed Cayuca, meanwhile, danced and jumped during his more upbeat numbers, his rock and roll swagger a pleasant surprise. He mingled with the audience members, encouraging them to sing along. He toned it down for his versions of “Sunrise, Sunset” and the Ryan Cayabyab-penned “Once Upon a Life.” He and Kuh did an enchanting take on “Unchained Melody.”

Kuh still strikes a majestic presence, her voice as remarkable as ever. She recreated “My Heart Will Go On” and “Love Moves in Mysterious Ways” without resorting to vocal gymnastics. As expected, she performed her classics, “I Think I’m In Love” and “Till I Met You.”

The venue provided an ideal, intimate setting for the concept, the performers, and the tireless band. Kuh Ledesma may have been dateless, but she did make “The Voice…The Violin” a date to remember for her listeners.

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