Thursday, September 25, 2014

Future Cabaret and Theater Star?

In scouring feeds daily, there are always a few sweet finds. This one is "barely" connected to the work we do. But I still found it so precious that I wanted to share it.

His name is Iain and he is a precocious youngster in the NYC area who has his own video channel. He posts reviews of the many Broadway shows he sees, and actually has some valid and colorful things to say about each. Animated and well spoken. This is a recent clip of him singing one of his favorite showtunes. And NO it is not from Annie, Matilda or Billy Elliot. It is a very studied and heartfelt rendition of Sondheim's Finishing the Hat. Amazing work - with drawing et al.

Monday, September 22, 2014

New York Cabaret Conference

In related national news, a monumental event in New York coming up in October that should grab our attention. Sponsored by the Mabel Mercer Foundation and celebrating 25 years now, the tag line is Four Magical Nights. It is from Oct 20-23 and will be hosted at Lincoln Center. Each night has it's own star-studded roster and a host very much like our own Salons.

Night 1 is dubbed I Love a Piano and celebrates the tradition of great singing pianists. It features notable songsters like Jason Robert Brown, Mark Nadler, Steve Ross, Nellie McKay and many others who are cabaret double threats.

Night 2 is a gala tribute to legend Julie Wilson hosted by Ann Hampton Callaway. Those two names should pack marquee value alone, but the list goes on to include 20 other artists. It is titled Quiet Please, There's a Lady on the Stage and celebrates her 90th Birthday!

Night 3 is Something Sort of Grandish and will be a tribute to the music of Lane & Harburg hosted by Andrea Marcovicci and Jeff Harner. The festival closes with Come On and Hear - the songs of Irving Berlin hosted by Klea Blackhurst. Altogether, an amazing collection of talent all devoted to our world of cabaret. Just in case you wanted to use up any frequent flyer miles.


Friday, September 12, 2014

Colleague Shout Outs

Three separate tidbits in this posting. All are related to regular colleagues in our TCCAN community.

The first is an addition to the upcoming Salon on Sept 20th. Lori Dokken, performer extraordinaire, will be on hand as our cabaret accompanist for the evening. Over the last several months she has been generous to share her stage at the Town House with us for our Saturday Salons, but this will be her debut alongside our roster of singers. We are excited to finally have this chance to collaborate and she brings a special artistry that is all her own. Please plan to join us if you are not already.

And in an abundance of wealth, regular musical director Steven Hobert has his own special gig on that very same evening. He has been at work on a project called "Ocean Eyes" for a long while and is having his CD Release Party also on Sept 20th @ the Friends Meeting House at 6:30 on 1725 Grand Ave. So it is indeed possible to catch both events in tandem if you are wanting. He is also featuring it on 10/4 at the new Matties on Main in Minneapolis from 9:00-11:00 if you are needing to take a rain check on that date.

Lastly - David Cummins who is a staunch advocate of TCCAN and does regular coverage of our Salons, has told us that his station KFAI is having their pledge drive on Sept. 22nd while he is on air. So feel free to give him a call and support the great work they do in bringing our alternative music to the airwaves.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

In the Room with Jason Robert Brown

Attached is a podcast from a day masterclass a year back that just found its way to my feeds. It is sponsored by the Dramatists Guild - so expectedly, the focus is on the structure of writing.

Of course I am a huge champion of his work. I was first mesmerized by his score when I saw him conducting the National Tour of his show Parade. Because of my background in theatre, it is no surprise that his songs are character driven. His primary aim is to "tell a story" and the "best what to do that is to sing it." Trust that a song is one moment for a character. Certainly how I approach a song. Worth a listen.

In The Room - JRB