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Bernadette Peters Returns to Houston

Bernadette Peters
Bernadette Peters
Photo by Andrew Eccles
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Maybe you took a recent trip to New York City and saw Bernadette Peters on a Broadway stage as Dolly Gallagher Levi in Hello Dolly! Or perhaps you saw her in her Lenore Rindell recurring role in The Good Fight on CBS's streaming service.

Or maybe you were lucky enough to see her in one of Stephen Sondheim's creations (Into the Woods anyone?)

Well whether you have or haven't — now's your chance to see the Broadway legend (three Tony Awards,a Golden Globe, three Emmy and four Grammy Award nominations) in Houston as the Society of Performing Arts presents her in concert on November 2 at Jones Hall. She'll be singing a lot of the songs she's sung in shows, as well as others her character didn't get to sing, but it's a concert so she can do what she wants.

Asked how many songs she'll be doing, Peters laughs and says "I never count." Barbra Streisand said to me one time 'How many songs are you singing in that show?' I said, 'I never count because if I had to go 5, 4... I just want to be in the moment. I usually do 75-80 minutes."

She explains why she likes singing Sondheim. "I do enjoy his music because each show it’s very varied. He becomes a different character. Everytime he takes on a show it’s a project about something. he’s almost like an actor; he becomes that character and all the characters that are in it and the music takes on a different tone in each show. He writes for character and what people go. So they're real emotions and it's interesting material. And it's beautiful music."

While her first opportunities came to her via a singing career, Peters says she always wanted to act as well. "I do love acting."

Asked what her fans can anticipate at this upcoming concert, Peters says: "We're all in this one place to have an experience and to be happy and to think and feel things and we go on this musical journey together and I hope they feel satisfied that they've had a full wonderful evening of music."

Asked why she likes coming back to Houston, Peters says, "The audiences are great.  I just was reminded of it; I'm a fan of Beyonce, that Beyonce comes from Houston. The hall is beautiful.

"I have to be honest. When I come to town, I'’m really focused on the show. I don't go looking around so much.  I get ready for the show. I  go to the gym. I vocalize. And I go down to the theater and I rehearse with the musicians and it's really all about that. But isn't that where there's great barbecue? I like that."

Bernadette Peters' performance is scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday November 2 at Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana. For information, call 713-227-4772 or visit spahouston.org. $35-$130.

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