Straight from his engagement at Carnegie Hall in New York City, Jeremy Jordan returns to the UK to host four concerts at London’s Cadogan Hall. Although the London venue may not be as large or prestigious, the performance delivered by Jordan was nothing short of extraordinary.
For musical theatre fans, Jordan has become a household name. His voice is easily recognisable for its unique tonal quality and remarkable power. Since making his Broadway debut in 2009, he has starred in many well-loved shows including ‘Newsies’ and ‘Bonnie and Clyde’. At the concert, Jordan acknowledges that the majority of the London audience are fans of his due to the wonderful, yet short-lived musical TV show ‘Smash’.
Jordan comes across as humble and instantly likeable. He’s humorous, charming and addresses the audience with the ease of someone that’s been in our company for much longer than one evening. In his set, just shy of two hours, we learn that there are around nine songs which he’s not performed to a live audience before, creating the feeling that we’re all in for something special.
Jordan is joined by a fantastic band, including a cello, guitar, drums, bass and his fabulous Musical Director, Benjamin Rauhala is on the keys. Jordan refers to Rauhala as the King of Medleys and we were certainly treated to a creative selection of them. This included a medley of Disney princess songs, songs from Bonnie and Clyde and ‘The Last Five Years’ where Jordan only tackles Cathy’s parts. Rauhala has a gift for picking out sections in a collection songs and weaving them together seamlessly with such satisfying musical transitions between each. Even though we’re all hearing these arrangements for the first time, they have a surprisingly natural fit.
It’s an intimate concert as Jordan is comfortable with talking about his personal life and how certain events he’s experienced have inspired his song choices. Coldplay’s ‘The Scientist’ captures this feeling of distance that surfaced when he returned to his loved ones after being away filming ‘Supergirl’ in Canada. His tender rendition of Billy Joel’s ‘Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)’ is dedicated to his daughter and captures his feelings around being a father for the first time. We also hear ‘Sun’, an original song of his about the moment before you kiss someone the first time.
The highlight of the night was the ‘storytime’ where Jordan shares his nail-biting experience of being involved with the Greatest Showman demo and read-through with a medley of Greatest Showman songs interspersed. Unfortunately, the story had a not so happy ending for Jordan. However, he uses this concert to claim the redemption moment he missed out on and delivered an uplifting and rousing rendition of ‘From Now On’.
By the end of the concert the audience were moved to their feet three times. As the audience refused to leave, Jordan came back on stage for two encore performances of Etta James’ ‘At Last’ and a gorgeous medley of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ and ‘Home’ from ‘The Wiz’. It was an unforgettable end to an all-round brilliant evening.