Piano Bar

Piano-BarOriginal Off-Broadway Cast, 1978 (Original Cast Records/no CD) No stars; not recommended. Time was when you could buy an original cast recording with a reasonable amount of confidence. If a score got recorded, it usually meant that it was a work of some quality. Not so here. Piano Bar is a musical that takes place in — well, a piano bar. It throws together four strangers who sing about their pasts, their hopes, and their despair. The paper-thin characters and their petty problems are of extremely limited interest. Doris Willens’ weak lyrics are predictable and undramatic, while Rob Fremont’s music is simply monotonous. The high-powered cast features Kelly Bishop, Karen DeVito, Steve Elmore, Richard Ryder, and Joel Silberman (as the piano player), all for naught. — David Wolf