THE POTS-AND-PANS TENOR
A cook in white jacket, starched apron and billowy hat stands next to a buffet or strolls from table to table. Grandly displaying a “Musical Cookbook,” he offers the guests a wide selection of operetta melodies, Broadway classics, Neapolitan songs, film tunes, rock oldies, jazz standards and German popular songs from the Twenties and Thirties. This jovial “Pots-and-Pans Tenor” is delighted to have escaped from the hot confines of his kitchen and proud to serve up his musical creations a cappella.
It is not just melodies that are presented in the banquet room but also opinions of a frank spirit concerning what he often feels to be the guests’ unbecoming behavior. Just as at the stove, here at the tables he intends to be in charge as well. After all, he is the head cook. If something is not to his liking, he expresses his displeasure with forthright concreteness: “He just jumped out of the frying pan into the fire!” or “There's a rotten tomato at this table!” or “Your goose is cooked!” His listeners grin at the outlandish conduct of this droll fellow and enjoy all the more his expert musical performance.
Conversations with the guests take place in German, English, French and Italian, with a linguistic command that is not halting and fragmentary, but instead fluent and richly expressive.