The Legend of Sinatra Gala Performance, Symphony Hall Birmingham

'I always think that if the audience will not let a performer leave the stage after an encore then this is proof that he has entertained them exceptionally. That is what happened last night at Symphony Hall when vocalist Garry Williams treated us to 2 hours of brilliant singing. Having read the flyer I was expecting a very good 17-piece orchestra conducted by John Wilson and so you can imagine my surprise and pleasure to find a 30-piece concert orchestra on stage. The capacity audience were treated to a sound that only an orchestra of this size can produce and song after song it confirmed that this is what people want to hear. The Legend of Sinatra features many classic Sinatra hits but please, Gary is not a Sinatra impersonator, he is far too good for that. The songs are given his own treatment and I counted 24 in all including ‘Lets face the music and dance’, ‘Come Fly With Me’, ‘Witchcraft’, ‘Mack the knife’, ‘Luck be a lady’, ‘My Kinda Town’, ‘New York, New York’ and many more. Gary is an excellent vocalist with considerable range and the ability to sing both ballads and up tempo songs equally as well.

The John Wilson orchestra was superb throughout and the concert orchestra sounded so good in the renowned Symphony Hall a venue of which Henry Mancini once said ‘This is the finest concert hall I have ever played and I’ve done them all’. It was wonderful to hear the string section, several of them at least and they were at their sweetest for ‘Put your dreams away’ and the soloists for the big band numbers such as Mike Lovett (trumpet) on Harry James ‘I’m confessin’ were outstanding.

The ever-popular David Jacobs a man who has by his own admission been doing it for years’ joined Gary and gave his own personal insight into Frank Sinatra's amazing story, recounting their many meetings over the years. The rapport between Gary and David is unmistakable something they developed during a long and successful tour last year of this show. This concert was a one-off put together for the night and what a memorable occasion it was. Let’s hope they are back again and soon.'

Clive Fuller - Encore Magazine

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