Carol Platt Liebau

Friday, March 25, 2005

The week has passed without my having commented on the death of the great Bobby Short.

I have been a fan of Cole Porter's for almost as long as I can remember -- one of my favorite songs in the world is "You're the Top!". Bobby Short loved Cole Porter's work, too, and it's been reported that once, Cole Porter himself even crossed the room to congratulate Short on the quality of his performance (no small tribute, that; Porter was so notoriously particular that he stormed out of a Sinatra performance one evening).

I never saw Bobby Short play at Club Carlyle, much to my regret. But last September, I did see him do an evening of Cole Porter at the Kennedy Center. Although he seemed very aged, and his voice had changed considerably, it was a treat -- and it was clear that he was having fun, as well. Afterwards, outside the Kennedy Center, we saw Dr. Condoleezza Rice also departing with friends -- as a lover of music, she had to have been a fan of Bobby Short's.

He was a great performer, who played an important role in keeping the beautiful American songbook alive. May he rest in peace.


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