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My View: Exciting Night on 42nd Street ….Sheldon Harnick Honored

My View: Exciting Night on 42nd Street ….Sheldon Harnick Honored

42nd Street, for over a century the place where so many momentous theatrical events have taken place was the scene of another one last night at the Pershing Square Signature Center.   Sheldon Harnick the legendary lyricist was celebrated in an evening presented by the American Songbook Association which featured a star studded musical tribute by some of Broadway and Cabaret’s most consummate performers.  Mr. Harnick received the American Songbook Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award.  Klea Blackhurst one of the most talented and witty performers in the business got the call to host the event and started the evening off with “Boston Beguine”  from Mr. Harnick’s  New Faces of 1952 which had music and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick.  In addition to hearing the words of Mr. Harnick sung by the remarkable cast  the audience heard the welcoming words of Marilyn Lester, Executive, Executive Director, Carolyn Montgomery, Director: Education and Outreach Program, and Board Member Craig Pomranz  who read a message from Mayor Bill de Blasio.  Deborah Grace Winer presented Mr. Harnick with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Sheldon Harnick & Margery Gray

This is the year of the huge success of the Harnick/Bock masterpiece Fiddler on The Roof in Yiddish and the American Songbook’s celebration was titled To Life!.  Steven Skybell, Tevye in the current production of Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish brought the audience to it’s feet with his rendition of “Ven Ikh Bin Rothchild” Everyone got the message without the sub titles and the glorious evening ended with the Cast and audience joining in the traditional Jewish dance to Fiddlers, TO LIFE.

Marilyn Lester & Frank Dain

Eugene Gwozodz, music director, Danny Bacher featured player (reeds) Tom Hubbard, Bass, Mark McLean drums.

Performers (order of appearance)

Kissy Simmons, Klea Blackhurst, Adam Heller, Danny Bacher,

Samantha Massell, Melanie Moore, Alexandra Silber, Brad Oscar, Liz Callaway, Jeff Harnar & Alex Rybeck, Alan Schmuckler, Jeffrey Saver and Rhyn Mclemore Saver, Ed Dixon, Sidney Myer, Judy Kuhn, Robert Cuccioli, Steven Skybell,  Alexandra Silber,

Complete Photos of this show on

Liz Callaway & Sheldon Harnick
Klea Blackhurst
Steven Skybell
Danny Batcher & Frank Dain
Robert Cuccioli
Deborah Grace Winer & Sheldon Harnick
Jeff Harner & Liz Callaway
Eda Sorokoff & Alyce Finell
The Cast


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, 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

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