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POP CAPSULES

Allen: No Frills

June 16, 1986|DON HECKMAN

What? A Peter Allen concert without the Rockettes? Without elephants, 747s or even the Statue of Liberty? Too true. The singer-songwriter showed up Saturday for the first of two nights at the Universal Amphitheatre--his first L.A. concerts in three years--with nothing but his talent (and a modest 40-piece orchestra). It was more than enough.

Allen sang his hits ("I Honestly Love You," "Don't Cry Out Loud," "Arthur's Theme") and his equally well-crafted non-hits ("Quiet, Please," "Bi-Coastal," "You Haven't Heard the Last of Me"). He tap-danced, mugged, did aerobics on top of the piano and honed the most razor-edged songwriter wit since Noel Coward. It was an impressive display of virtuosity. Allen was so good that he probably didn't even need the orchestra. But he was well served by his back-up singers, one of whom--Nikki Gregoroff--is gifted enough to deserve a concert platform of her own.

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