Incanto's resident piano man and professional musician, Maestro Salvatore Rodríguez, celebrates his 38th year in music with his own show portraying the iconic Mr. Showmanship, Liberace, king of the ivories in the 50's to 70's. He was flamboyant on and off stage and set up a glamorous residence in Las Vegas, NV. He was an evident master of self-production. His shiny smile and twinkling eyes enthralled millions of women to adore him, even though he was an outlandish character. He opened the night of glittering piano playing on the eighty-eights with a medley of "Tea For Two", "Blue Moon" and "It Had to Be You". The audience was excitedly infected by his abilities and dazzling performance. A lovely "Young at Heart", introduced by Frank Sinatra in the movie of the same name, educed sways of the bodies romantically.
Salvatore has accompanied some of the biggest names in the music industry as Juan Gabriel, Rocio Durcal, Vikki Carr and many others. His mastery of the keyboard is beyond compare, hence the title "Maestro". His wide musical talent is one-of-a-kind. He launched into a flow of movie songs. "As Time Goes By" from Casablanca, "Que Sera Sera" and "That's Amore" brought familiar memories to many present. One delightful feature was his using the entire span of the keys, often ending in swirls of the upper notes. His little finger was curved as he completed the highest note. "[Where Do I Begin?] Love Story" from composer Francis Lai finished the movie theme portion of the night.
Renown lecturer, music student and researcher Paco Ojeda narrated the show. He popped in at intervals, discussing a series of melodies which Salvatore would play, giving the listeners many backgrounds before the piano emitted these pieces.
In the second act, Paco described pertinent periods of Liberace's life and then departed so Salvatore could play some appropriate tunes solo and with flair. Salvatore has been known nationwide for decades as 'Mexico's Liberace'. Act 2 was devoted to the music and the dramatic productions of this iconic legend Liberace.
Then there were special guests, obvious admirers of his and he of them in return. First entered Estela Rosas, a stunning singer unbeknownst to many present but a star and very good friend of Salvatore's. Musically, the two bounced off each other with complimentary refrains. Three entries from the repertoire of Spanish Rocio Dúrcal singing with Juan Gabriel, Mexico's greatest musical icon, were presented. Brightening the stage was singer and Spanish guitarist Gabriel Reyes who performs upstairs at The Piano Bar. He joined the evening's extravaganza by adding lyrics to the sparkling Salvatore. His rendition of "My Way" was a tour de force, with the crowd erupting. Then Tongo Letongue, a super-talented musician, played the flute and neck strap drum and also added vocals.
The festivities of this evening were marked by glistening sounds throughout. The long song list of memorable numbers included "Autumn Leaves", "Mack the Knife", "Begin the Beguine" and "La Vie en Rose". But the finale of this special show was phenomenal with Salvatore bringing back his three guests and also Alexis Guadalupe Jimon García and his wife dancing a colorful traditional Mexican dance, flowing front and center. The duo is taking their troupe to Shanghai, China for a festival, highlighting Jalisco in the world of dance.
Many of us have become acquainted with the Maestro from his playing keyboard outside on the patio by the river [rushing now] during morning meals here and at times upstairs in The Piano Bar accompanying Joan Houston in her shows. Judging by this oversold crowd, he hopes to engage in future shows with varying themes.
Stop by Incanto on Tuesday-Sunday for a delicious meal while being entertained by Salvatore from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm.
Incanto Vallarta is located at Insurgentes 109, Southside at Río Cuale. Telephone is (322) 223-9756.
For more reviews of performances in Puerto Vallarta, visit More of Beck's Best: Theater, Cabaret and More!
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