There have been many performances that have thrilled me but I’m sure I’ll be excused for highlighting my granddaughters singing at The 27th New York Cabaret Convention which saluted Charles Strouse and Sheldon Harnick. I have heard the best, but the family relationship causes me to have a natural unfairness in my judgmental capacities when listening to 12 year old Zoe Gelman. Yes, KT Sullivan made a perceptive choice for the Strouse/Hannick evening when by chance she heard Zoe sing in a Corinna Sowers show. However, these things just don’t happen, it took a village of caring professional people to grow Zoe’s natural ability into a performance worthy of a slot in the Cabaret Convention. The village starts with the direction and vocal coaching of Corinna Sowers, who in addition to being a superb artist is a superb vocal coach and director. She has the ability to bring out the best in performers. It takes the extraordinary musicianship of an Alex Rybeck, to pick just the right notes to envelope a singer and enhance their singing. It continues with the Mabel Mercer Foundation, who’s talented staff create the environment with their knowledge and professionalism to insure that a performer has all the tools for a successful experience. Lastly, it doesn’t hurt to have a family, steeped in a tradition of music and an understanding of the arts to encourage children to pursue their artistic desires. So in my totally unbiased opinion…..Zoe did great!
(Check out the video)