O Come All Ye Divas is the latest show from the versatile and rather brilliant Christina Bianco. Basically performed in a cabaret format, the show contains, well-observed and often hilarious impersonations of a variety of ‘Divas’ usually singing an ‘unlikely’ song or reading extracts from the Barbra Streisand book: My Passion For Design (2010).
There is a clear Christmas feel about the show and indeed a number of classic Christmas songs are performed here, as expected, given the title. However, I was delighted by and impressed by Miss Bianco’s love and knowledge of the British popular culture especially the TV ‘Christmas Special’. To the delight of the audience at The Charing Cross Theatre there were superb impersonations of Barbara Windsor from EastEnders, and Jennifer Saunders – Joanna Lumley – Julia Sawalha from Absolutely Fabulous. There were also impressions of other Brits: Katie Price, Cheryl Cole, Keira Knightley and of course Shirley Bassey.
Miss Bianco begins her show with a definition or description of what a ‘diva’ is, or at least what a ‘diva’ is to her. It is, therefore clear from the outset that her impersonations come from essentially a place of ‘respect’, admiration and even sympathy for the larger than life world of the ‘diva’.
The show proceeds with the handing out of 12 Christmas Crackers – it would be a cruel reviewer who would divulge more about the Christmas crackers and their place in the show other than to note that they contain either a song title or the name of a ‘diva’ and a Christmas party hat!
Miss Bianco is supported by a top-notch band led by MD Joe Louis Robinson. They are excellent and Mr Robinson himself has a lovely singing voice and works well with his diva, he is gently supportive at all times – the repartee between them is almost symbiotic – a thousand words spoken in a glance, a nod or a smile
Miss Bianco’s voice is indeed remarkable in its range and scope – she is genuinely funny, witty, charming and engaging as a ‘live’ performer. I take pains to note this because in many respects she came to prominence as a YouTube sensation with her video impersonations of ‘divas’ – gaining over 23 million views! If you enjoyed these videos – then you will certainly enjoy seeing her live.
The night concluded with a deserved standing ovation from the appreciative audience. If you go to see this show – you are unlikely to be disappointed – you will more likely be beaten into submission by the velvet kosh of charm, skill, and versatility of this rather amazing performer/actress/cabaret artist/singer/impressionist – I rate this a 5**** evening and take into consideration both the performance and location – Trafalgar Square, The Strand, Embankment, Christmas lights and the general buzz of people … you will be in the mood before Christina Bianco sings her first note – Merry Christmas!
Review by Michael Moor
A girl of a thousand voices, Christina Bianco is the stunning US vocal impressionist whose repertoire spans Edith Piaf, Barbra Streisand, Idina Menzel, Shirley Bassey and Ariana Grande.
Through soaring vocals and jaw-dropping impressions, O COME, ALL YE DIVAS features classic renditions and unlikely interpretations of favourite Christmas holiday tunes along with hilarious sketches and a fabulous on-stage band. Christina promises to take Londoners on a seasonal celebration like no other!
Musical Director Joe Louis Robinson
Lighting Designer Chris Randall
Sound Designer Andy Johnson
Producers Steven M. Levy, Sean Sweeney and Vaughan Williams
A star of Forbidden Broadway in New York and the West End, she will now premiere her special festive spectacular, O COME, ALL YE DIVAS, at Charing Cross Theatre for 15 performances from Tuesday 20 December to Saturday 7 January 2017