She's A Superstar

An Evening With Karen Carpenter

Cliff Reeve

19 September 2017

Cliff Reeve

Article heading image for She's A Superstar

Here's my review of an amazing show at the BREC  on Saturday night  


One of our own came back home on Saturday night for Superstar, The Karen Carpenter Story at the Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre, presented by Johnny Young and the lady who inherited Karen Carpenter's voice, Narelle Belle.

Narelle had plenty of her South West family in the audience for a show which could be sub titled Yesterday Once More for it was a trip back to revisit the music of one of the most successful duos of all time, The Carpenters.

Over 14 years Karen and Richard Carpenter produced music which some saw as sacchrine, and even during a time of the emerging glam rock scene and into monster bands like Led Zeppelin, they dominated charts around the world.

Sadly, behind the scenes Karen was uncomfortable with the adulation and Richard was addicted to quaaludes, the latter point not addressed in the show's narrative.

Karen once said of her voice "the money is in the basement" referring to her deep, chesty tones, and that voice is reproduced magnificently by Narelle Belle.

On a journey through 22 songs including all the big ones, Close To You, Top of the World, Ticket To Ride, A Kind Of Hush, Mr Postman, Narelle's performance channelled her late hero.

A photo of the duo was a nice touch on stage towards the end of the night.

This was a particularly difficult night for Narelle and her band with an acknowledgement of the passing of her aunt during the week and the death the previous night of the mother of a guitarist Rob Spence.

It was no wonder then that during Goodbye To Love, Narelle choked a little, as did much of the audience.

For me, this performance, vocally alone, was a highlight of the evening, full of longing and heartfelt passion.

Changing from a shear red dress Narelle leapt into the encore in another return to the 70s with a beautiful blue culotte suit for a more upbeat end to the evening.

Even Johnny returned to thank and once again praise his protege before a delightful sing along of All My Lovin"

More shows are ahead and if you missed this one, don't miss the next.



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