Although Leslie Jordan is a diminutive sized actor, this doesn’t impede his one-man shows from being gargantuan in their hilarious storytelling abilities.
And his latest, My Trip Down the Pink Carpet, (based upon his memoir of the same name) is no exception to that rule, as the former “Will & Grace” star ruminates on everything from his upbringing to his time spent in Tinsel Town; which includes his celebrity encounters of the one-on-one kind with Boy George and George Clooney.
Jordan also takes advantage of his captive audience to regale them with tales about his bouts with drug addiction and his take on gay culture.
Albeit, they are relayed with his self deprecating sense of humor firmly in place, as is his signature Southern drawl that pulls you into his stories, which is akin to being happily stuck in a puddle of molasses 90 minutes.
My Trip Down the Pink Carpet was filmed in Atlanta and directed by fellow out actor, Amanda Bearse (“Married with Children”). Available September 7.
Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky charts the meeting of two creative forces (played by Anna Mouglalis and Mads Mikkelsen), one is a renowned fashion designer and the other an innovative composer in 1913, and then follows the twosome during their rumored affair in 1920.
The “Rite of Spring” maestro, along with his wife and children, had fallen on hard times seven years after the iconoclasts’ initial meeting and are essentially living in exile in Paris. They are offered housing at Chanel’s villa, while she nursed a broken heart over the death of polo player Arthur “Boy” Capel, whom she was deeply infatuated with.
Director Jan Kounen takes the supposition aspect of their alleged liaison and delivers an engaging love story revolving around their mutual respect and admiration for one another on a two-fold level, including their revolutionary desires to redefine their respective fields. Available September 28.
TV on DVD
“Glee: The Complete First Season” is making its way to DVD, so for those of you who have been living under a gay rock this past year, now is the perfect time to catch the show that has everyone buzzing, prior to its sophomore season return on September 21.
For those already in the buzz zone, it serves as a wonderful refresher course about William McKinley High, its students and facility, and teacher Will Schuester’s (Matthew Morrison) attempts to take a group of underdogs all the way to possible glee club glory at sectionals and regionals, respectively.
Of course, there are also plotlines about teen pregnancy, a false pregnancy, love triangles and scene stealing cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) and her quest to squash the glee club’s dreams. As for the musical portion of the show, there are lessons to be learned lyrically, for both teachers and students alike.
“The Gleek Edition” features guest stars, including Olivia Newton-John, Kristin Chenoweth and her Wicked co-star Idina Menzel, as well as the popular “The Power of Madonna” episode. Available September 14.
Standards and practices
Liza Minnelli Confessions
The incomparable Liza with a Z returns with her first non-cast studio recording in almost fifteen years. Minnelli gives her distinctive twist on Great American Songbook standards from the likes of Irving Berlin and Sammy Cahn.
However, unlike other musical artists with similar projects over the past few years, Minnelli has searched out lesser known tunes from a wealth of famed composers, with stripped-down versions of songs such as “You Fascinate Me So” and “Moments Like This.”
But she also honors classics, including “At Last,” as only Liza can and successfully makes listeners believe that she is singing to them solely, with intimate and simple arrangements, featuring Billy Stritch, her longtime pianist.
Confessions also marks the iconic performer’s sixty years in the entertainment industry. Available September 28.
Born to hand jive
Maroon 5 Hands All Over
For their third studio album, Maroon 5 have enlisted the services of uber-producer “Mutt” Lange, who has overseen successful projects for the likes of Def Leppard and AC/DC, to name but a few.
Their first single, “Misery,” is an up tempo song with an undeniable club vibe, and a healthy dose of funk thrown in for very good measure.
The remainder of frontman Adam Levine and company’s Hands All Over runs the gamut from the country-infused “Out of Goodbyes,” which features guest vocals from Lady Antebellum, to the soul-tinged “Don’t Know Much About That.” Available September 21.