Rufus Wainwright to Channel Judy Garland in NYC and Chicago

Thursday April 28, 2022
Originally published on April 27, 2022

Rufus Wainwright performs "The Man That Got Away" with Renée Zellweger
Rufus Wainwright performs "The Man That Got Away" with Renée Zellweger  (Source:YouTube)

Two-time Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright will celebrate Judy Garland's centenary with a pair of exclusive live residencies, "Rufus Does Judy" at City Winery, set for City Winery in New York City (June 5, 7, 8, 10) and Chicago (June 16-17).

Today, Wainwright and his band announced that the performances will feature special guests including Laura Benanti (June 5), Mx Justin Vivian Bond (June 8), and Molly Ringwald (June 10), with more to be announced in the coming weeks. Early sets will cover songs from "When You're Smiling" to "San Francisco," while late shows will feature "I Can't Give You Anything But Love" to "Chicago," with additional surprise numbers during both sets. For complete details and remaining ticket availability, please visit rufuswainwright.com/tour .

Recently, Wainwright shared "Puttin' On The Ritz," featured on his upcoming "Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios" and available now at all DSPs and streaming services. An official live performance video premiered Friday via YouTube.

"Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios" — an all-new performance of his groundbreaking tribute to Judy Garland, "Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall," recorded last year at Los Angeles' famed Capitol Studios — arrives via BMG on Friday, June 10, celebrating the legendary Garland's 100th birthday. Pre-orders are available now.

First presented last year as a virtual livestream concert event, "Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios" sees Wainwright using the very microphone Garland herself used while making her own historic recordings at Capitol Studios, backed by a four-piece jazz ensemble before a micro-audience comprised entirely of 2-time Academy Award-winning actress Renée Zellweger, winner of 2020's "Best Actress" Oscar for her spectacular performance as Garland in 2019's "Judy."


Among the concert's many highlights is a special duet rendition of "Happy Days Are Here Again/Get Happy" performed alongside award-winning Concord recording artist Kristin Chenoweth, as well as the concert highlight, "The Man That Got Away," the latter available now at all DSPs and streaming services; an official live performance video is streaming now via YouTube.

"Rufus Does Judy at Capitol Studios" — which marked a rare complete performance of Wainwright's now-legendary homage to 1961's "Judy Garland At Carnegie Hall" — showcases a selection of standards spanning swing, jazz, and pop, including three songs by George & Ira Gershwin, two Rodgers & Hart classics, two from Howard Dietz & Arthur Schwartz, plus favorites by Harold Arlen, Yip Harburg, Irving Berlin, Noël Coward, and more. Highlights include such Garland signature songs as "The Man That Got Away," "Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart," "Swanee," and, of course, "Over The Rainbow."

"In terms of actually fundamentally knowing these songs, honestly feeling them in my bones, Judy Garland has always had a good 30 year leg up on me and despite my valiant attempts, she will always be the Queen," says Wainwright. "Listening back to my latest renditions of some of these amazing numbers, I was slightly taken aback... in a good way. I don't know if it's the pared down arrangements, my own as well as the planet's trials and tribulations, or the fact that everyone but myself were required to record these tracks with masks on (playfully emblazoned with Judy's likeness mind you). But, there is a darker quality to these renditions, a measure of pain involved that in almost every other aspect of life can prove burdensome, except for in the act singing. I now know these songs and definitely feel them deep in my bones."

Wainwright will return to the road with his "Unfollow The Rules Tour," beginning April 26 at Vancouver, BC's Chan Centre for the Performing Arts and then traveling the world through November. The upcoming run will see Wainwright performing classic songs, fan favorites, and tracks from his highly praised new album, 2020's Grammy and Juno Award-nominated "Unfollow The Rules," both solo and backed by his brand-new live combo, Brian Green (John Legend, Michael Bublé) as music director, guitar and backing vocals; Jacob Mann on keyboard, piano and backing vocals; and Alan Hampton on bass, guitar, ukulele and backing vocals.

In addition, Wainwright will present his acclaimed 2018 opera, "Hadrian," with a special one-night-only performance at Madrid, Spain's historic Teatro Real on July 22. Wainwright will also team up the Los Angeles Phil for an exclusive performance set for L.A.'s Walt Disney Concert Hall on June 2, 2023.

Wainwright's sixth full-length release and first live album, 2007's "Rufus Does Judy at Carnegie Hall" was recorded and produced by Phil Ramone over two sold-out nights at Carnegie Hall, backed by a full 36-piece orchestra and special guest appearances from his sister Martha Wainwright, his mother Kate McGarrigle, and Garland's daughter, Lorna Luft. The album proved an immediate cultural landmark, feted by worldwide media attention and critical acclaim while earning Wainwright his first-ever Grammy Award nomination (for "Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album"). Due to popular demand, Wainwright recreated his momentous tribute to Garland with sold-out, star-studded performances at such renowned venues as Paris' L'Olympia, Los Angeles' Hollywood Bowl, and the London Palladium, the latter of which was filmed and released on DVD as "Rufus! Rufus! Rufus! Does Judy! Judy! Judy!: Live from the London Palladium."

Rufus Wainwright "Unfollow The Rules Tour 2022":

APRIL

28 — Kirkland, WA — Kirkland Performance Center

29 — Edmonds, WA — Edmonds Center for the Arts

30 — Portland, OR — Aladdin Theater

MAY

16 — Toronto, ON — Massey Hall

19 — Ottawa, ON — Babs Asper Theatre, National Arts Centre

20 — Quebec City, QB — Palais Montcalm

21 — Montreal, QB — Salle Wilfred-Pelletier

29 — Reykjavik, IS — Harpa Center

 

JUNE

5 — New York, NY — City Winery (Two Shows) *

7 — New York, NY — City Winery

8 — New York, NY — City Winery

10 — New York, NY — City Winery (Two Shows) *

14 — Los Angeles, CA — The Ford

16 — Chicago, IL — City Winery (Two Shows) *

17 — Chicago, IL — City Winery (Two Shows) *

23 — Worthing, UK — Worthing Assembly Halls

25 — Bath, UK — Bath Forum

26 — Rhyl, UK — Rhyl Pavilion Theatre

30 — Zaragoza, ES — Parque Grande José Antonio Labordeta

 

JULY

6 — Dublin, IR — National Concert Hall

7 — Kassel, DE - Kulturzelt

11 — Amstelveen, NL — Amsterdamse Bostheater (SOLD OUT)

19 — Frankfurt, DE — Palmengarten

27 — Madrid, ES — Teatro Real †

30 — Glasgow, UK — Kelvingrove Bandstand

?

 SEPTEMBER

14 — Dallas, TX — Majestic Theatre

15 — Austin, TX — The Paramount Theatre

17 — Houston, TX — The Heights Theater

 

OCTOBER

9 — Hammondsport, NY — Concerts at Point of the Bluff Vineyards

11 — Annapolis, MD — Rams Head On Stage

12 — Alexandria, VA — The Birchmere

 

NOVEMBER

12 — Kansas City, MO — Kauffmann Center For The Performing Arts

 

JUNE 2023

2 — Los Angeles, CA — Walt Disney Concert Hall