From behind thick-rimmed spectacles, Cecile McLorin Salvant captivates the Love Supreme audience in an hour’s story telling.  She peers at each of us in turn, defying us to challenge the sincerity with which she devotes herself to the subjects of her affection in ‘I only have eyes for you’ and ‘Mad about the Boy’.  The audience are spellbound from her first syllable.

Aged just 26, Salvant already has a technical control to her instrument that invites unavoidable comparisons to Fitzgerald.   Her seemingly elastic range soars through octaves, captivating and teasing with dynamic shifts and vanishing diminuendos.  Her invention was mirrored by Aaron Diehl’s on the piano who made for a perfect pairing of creative minds.

In less skilled hands the New Orleanian ‘I wish I could shimmy like my sister Kate’ might stick out as a novelty choice, but Savant’s voice crackles with envy and her eyes convey rich jealousy.  ‘Jeepers Creepers’ resounds as autobiographical: where did she get those eyes?  A bluesy thump through ‘Growlin’ Dan’ made for a frenzied finish and left the audience howling for more.

Salvant’s own story is only just beginning, but the opening chapters make it a guaranteed best seller.

Read all of our reviews from Love Supreme here.

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