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My View: And Then There Is Marilyn Maye

It’s one of the challenges of aging and it happens to most people in many professions.  Especially careers that require physical  and mental virtuosity.  As the years diminish one’s skills but not one’s enthusiasm to participate, a predictable disconnect occurs when we’re present at a senior entertainer’s show.  

 We find ourselves loving the artiste and admiring their spirit, but alas, scouring our memory for the performers prior facility.  The audience finds itself lovingly sympathetic to the current experience.

And then there was Marilyn Maye’s opening performance at Feinstein’s/54 Below last night!

The audience was not there solely in recognition of her magnificent 80 year career.  They have come to be present  as a “Super Singer” ( Johnny Carson tag),  who possesses both old skills and new skills brings a crowd to it’s feet after practically every song.   Marilyn never misses a note (no pun intended) or skips a beat, and her pauses are elegant musical cliffhangers that keep an audience spellbound. Check the patron comments after a Maye performance, there’s never any ambiguity.  “We’ll never forget this night” is most often heard.  

 I’ll  also never forget this night with Marilyn, and I’m well aware of the relevancy of seniors as I was celebrating my birthday at her opening.  Thank you Marilyn Maye for the best birthday present ever.   The gift of great music performed by a great entertainer still in her prime. 

Marilyn and some other very special entertainers came to my Birthday celebration at Birdland after the opening, but more about that later…..

RICHARD JAY-ALEXANDER & JEFF CALHOUN
AMBASSADOR HELENE von DAMM, HELMUT KOLLER, EDA SOROKOFF, CATHERINE ADLER
MARILYN MAYE & STEPHEN SOROKOFF
STEPHEN SOROKOFF & JIM CARUSO
STEPHEN SOROKOFF & MICHELE LEE
BILLY STRITCH, RICHARD JAY-ALEXANDER, JIM CARUSO
GIANNI VALENTI

Cabaret

Stephen studied at the Manhattan School of Music. Besides being a pianist, Stephen’s business career was in the Fashion Industry. He was CEO of a textile manufacturing facility and President of an international textile machinery company. Stephen was on the Board of Directors of the “First All Children’s Theatre” which brought the Stephen Schwartz musical The Trip and Captain Louie to the Kennedy Center in Wash DC. His wife Eda, an interior space designer and classical pianist was on the Board of Barrington Stage Company and is still active at BSC. Stephen’s photographs, videos and articles appear on Broadwayworld.com, T2Conline.com and The New York Observer. He is active in the entertainment events at the Friars Club, where he is a member. Stephen is also an Honorary Board Member of The Society For The Preservation of The Great American Songbook. Stephen Sorokoff@gmail.com

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