West Coast Premiere: Kathleen Turner brings her cabaret act to SF

“I always kind of thought film happened to me,” Kathleen Turner said in an interview with the PBS News Hour earlier this year, “I wanted to be a Broadway star.”

While the Missouri-born actress became an overnight movie star at age 25 after her film debut as femme fatale Matty Walker in 1981’s Body Heat (a part she gamely self-parodied five years later as the voice of Jessica Rabbit), she started out as a stage actress and has  repeatedly returned to the theater. Twice nominated for Tony Awards—in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Turner has also starred in several biographical one-woman shows: She played Texan columnist Molly Ivins in Red Hot Patriot, screen great Tallulah Bankhead in Tallulah, and Joan Didion in The Year of Magical Thinking—a role originated by Vanessa Redgrave.

Now, Turner is taking on a new one woman performance—but this time she’s playing herself. And she’s singing.

On Friday and Saturday, October 20 and 21, Turner brings Finding My Voice, her new program of songs and stories to Feinstein’s at the Nikko. San Francisco will be just the second city to host the show, following a well-received debut in Philadelphia last month.

Among the songs Turner performs in her trademark husky burr are Alan and Marilyn Bergman’s “You Must Believe in Spring,” “Since I Fell For You”—a longtime favorite of hers that’s been recorded by artists including Bonnie Raitt and Eartha Kitt, and Harold Arlen’s “Anywhere I Hang My Hat is Home.”