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Minnelli's New Show Honors Musical Godmother

Liza Minnelli takes a curtain call during a recent performance of <em>Liza's at the Palace...</em> in New York.
Andrew H. Walker
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Liza Minnelli takes a curtain call during a recent performance of Liza's at the Palace... in New York.

Liza Minnelli's latest sold-out Broadway show was a double showcase.

The first half of Liza's at the Palace... featured many of the tunes that made Minnelli famous on the stage. The second disc relives the 1940s nightclub act made famous by her godmother, Kay Thompson.

Many know that Minnelli grew up with famous parents: Her father was film director Vincente Minnelli, her mother Judy Garland. But Thompson also enjoyed a measure of fame. Alongside her long-running act with Andy Williams and his brothers, she wrote the Eloise series of children's books and was a musical director and vocal coach for Hollywood's MGM Studios.

"Well, Kay Thompson was Hollywood's secret weapon," Minnelli says. "So everything that made you smile, really, was because of her. She taught people how to sing, she arranged things and her vocal arrangements were astounding."

A double-CD recording of Liza's at the Palace... is set to be released this week. Minnelli talked about her career and her latest production with host Scott Simon.

"And, yes, I am left gasping for breath," Minnelli says. "But it's the most joyous exhaustion I have ever experienced."

Hear the full interview with Minnelli by clicking on the link at the top of the page, starting around noon ET on Saturday, Jan. 31.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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