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The 2020 MAC Award Nominees

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Anita Gillette, Mark William

The Manhattan Association of Cabarets (MAC) announced the 2020 MAC Award nominees. The nominees were determined by votes cast by the active MAC membership, except for the four song and recording categories, which were determined by special committees.

The Hanson Award, presented by the Board of Directors to a performer who has done excellent work over a sustained period of time and has not yet been recognized with a MAC Award nomination, will be presented to STEVEN ZUMBO.

The MAC Awards show, will present Anita Gillette a Lifetime Achievement Award, and THE BISTRO AWARDS will be recognized with MAC’s Board of Directors Award.

The winners will be revealed as the envelopes are opened live at the 34th Annual MAC Awards on Monday, March 30 at 7:00 pm at Sony Hall in New York City. The winners in certain categories will perform live at the show, with live performances also anticipated from award recipients Anita Gillette and Steven Zumbo.

The MAC Awards ceremony is produced by Julie Miller and directed by Lennie Watts, with musical direction by Tracy Stark. The event is open to the public. For tickets and more information, visit www.MACnyc.com.

The 2020 MAC Award Nominees are:

FEMALE VOCALIST

Corinna Sowers Adler
Second Stories; Songs from the Heart; Winter Song
The Triad, Laurie Beechman Theatre, Oakeside Bloomfield Cultural Center

Cynthia Crane
This Is a Changing World, My Dear
Don’t Tell Mama

Sally Darling
And Kurt Weill Begat Kander & Ebb
Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages

Dawn Derow
The House That Built Me
Laurie Beechman Theatre

Ann Kittredge
Fancy Meeting You Here: An Evening of Ahrens & Flaherty; Movie Nite
Feinstein’s/54 Below, Urban Stages, Feinstein’s at Vitello’s, The Beach Cafe

WENDY SCHERL
Town & Country; You’ll See
Laurie Beechman Theatre, Davenport’s, BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room

Maureen Taylor
Cosmic Connections: The Lyrics of Michael Colby
Don’t Tell Mama

Lisa Viggiano
From Lady Day to The Boss
Pangea, Don’t Tell Mama

MALE VOCALIST

Ari Axelrod
A Celebration of Jewish Broadway
Birdland Theater, The Kranzberg (St. Louis), Skokie Theatre (Chicago)

Bob Diamond
The Game of Life
Don’t Tell Mama

Kim David Smith
Kim Sings Kylie; Morphium Kabarett; A Wery Weimar Christmas; Live at Club Cumming
Joe’s Pub, Club Cumming, Café Sabarsky, Evolution Theatre Company (Columbus, OH)

MAJOR ARTIST – FEMALE

Sue Matsuki
How’s That for Openers?, A Hep Happy Holiday, Ella and Me
Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages, Maureen’s Jazz Room, BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room

Gretchen Reinhagen
Take It With Me
Laurie Beechman Theatre, Pangea

Julie Reyburn
Anywhere We Are
Don’t Tell Mama

MAJOR ARTIST – MALE

Eric Comstock
Saturdays at Birdland
Birdland

Jeff Harnar
Carried Away: Jeff Harnar Sings Comden & Green; On the East Side of Heaven; Too Marvelous for Words: 1930s Songs; Because of You: Fifties Gold; Jeff Harnar Sings Cole Porter
Birdland Theater, The Beach Cafe, Laurie Beechman Theatre; BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room

NEW YORK DEBUT – FEMALE

ROBERTA FELDHUSEN
Who’s That Woman?
Don’t Tell Mama

JOANNE HALEV
Like a Perfumed Woman
Birdland Theater, Urban Stages

MARGE HELENCHILD
I’m Not That Girl
Don’t Tell Mama, The Duplex

Liora Michelle
The Greedy Soprano
Don’t Tell Mama

Gerrilyn Sohn
Something Cool
Don’t Tell Mama

REGINA ZONA
Becoming the Queen 2.0
The Triad, BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room, SOTA

NEW YORK DEBUT – MALE

Sean Patrick Murtagh
Mario! A Salute to The Great Lanza
The Green Room 42

SCOTT RANERI
Marvelous Mr Marzo
Don’t Tell Mama

Mark William
Come Croon with Me
The Green Room 42, The Actor’s Temple

CELEBRITY ARTIST

Charles Busch
Native New Yorker
Feinstein’s/54 Below

Natalie Douglas
Tributes series: Roberta Flack, Nat King Cole, Judy Garland, Nancy Wilson, Barbra Streisand, Joni Mitchell
Birdland, Feinstein’s at the Nikko, The Pheasantry (London)

Joanna Gleason
Feinstein’s/54 Below

Andrea McArdle AND Donna McKechnie
Feinstein’s/54 Below

Mark Nadler
The Old Razzle Dazzle
Laurie Beechman Theatre, Café Sebarsky

IMPERSONATION/CHARACTERIZATION/DRAG ARTIST

Doris Dear
More Gurl Talk; Doris Dear Christmas Special
Don’t Tell Mama, Music Theater of CT, Cherry Grove Community House Theater, The Triad

Sutton Lee Seymour
Dragflix
Laurie Beechman Theatre

CISSY WALKEN
The Invasion; Trans Awareness Week Kickoff; Crown It
Stonewall Inn, Rockbar

MAJOR IMPERSONATION/CHARACTERIZATION/DRAG ARTIST

Joey Arias
Strange Fruit
Laurie Beechman Theatre

BenDeLaCreme
Ready to Be Committed
Laurie Beechman Theatre

Jinkx Monsoon
The Ginger Snapped
Joe’s Pub

MUSICAL COMEDY PERFORMER – FEMALE

ANDREA AXELROD
After the Bawl
Don’t Tell Mama

Lena Moy-Borgen
Glam Girl in a Grunge World
Don’t Tell Mama

LYNDA RODOLITZ
Animal Magnetism
Don’t Tell Mama

MUSICAL COMEDY PERFORMER – MALE

John Burns
John Burns Is a Sexy Beast
The Duplex, Don’t Tell Mama

Michael Kirk Lane
Just Because
Don’t Tell Mama

DUO/GROUP

THE DRINKWATER BROTHERS (John Drinkwater, Matthew Drinkwater)
Don’t Tell Mama, The Green Room 42, Birdland Theater, West End Lounge

MAMA’S BOYS (Tommy J. Dose, Brian Kalinowski, Paul Pilcz, Jon Satrom)
Mama’s Boys
Don’t Tell Mama

Lena Moy-Borgen AND Cheo Bourne
Moy-Borgen and Bourne’s Office Party
Don’t Tell Mama

THOSE GIRLS (Eve Eaton, Rachel Hanser, Karen Mack, Wendy A. Russell)
Those Girls Sing The Boys; An Evening with Those Girls; Those Girls Sing The Boys Volume 1.2 Unplugged
Laurie Beechman Theatre, BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room, Pangea

MAJOR DUO/GROUP

Kim Grogg AND Lennie Watts
Hometown Heroes
Laurie Beechman Theatre, The Beach Cafe

Sean Harkness, Marcus Simeone, Lina Koutrakos
Clearly Now Season 2
Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages

KT Sullivan AND Jeff Harnar
Sullivan and Harnar sing Harnick and Strouse
Laurie Beechman Theatre

PIANO BAR INSTRUMENTALIST

Nate Buccieri
Don’t Tell Mama, Brandy’s

GERRY DIEFFENBACH
Don’t Tell Mama, The Duplex

William TN Hall
Don’t Tell Mama, Brandy’s, The Duplex

BRIAN J. NASH
The Duplex

Joe Regan
Don’t Tell Mama

PIANO BAR/RESTAURANT SINGING ENTERTAINER FEMALE

Liz Lark Brown
Brandy’s

Michelle Dowdy
Don’t Tell Mama

MARIA GENTILE
The Duplex

Tara Martinez
Don’t Tell Mama

Alison Nusbaum
Don’t Tell Mama

Jennifer Pace
Brandy’s

PIANO BAR/RESTAURANT SINGING ENTERTAINER MALE

Bobby Belfry
Brandy’s

TOMMY J. DOSE
Don’t Tell Mama

BRIAN KALINOWSKI
Don’t Tell Mama

Paul Pilcz
Don’t Tell Mama

JON SATROM
Don’t Tell Mama, Brandy’s

RESTAURANT/HOTEL LOUNGE/HAPPY HOUR ENTERTAINER

Clare Cooper
Don’t Tell Mama

Ricky Ritzel
Don’t Tell Mama

Sheree Sano
Don’t Tell Mama, Spoonfed NYC

Bill Zeffiro
La Rivista, Parnell’s

ENSEMBLE INSTRUMENTALIST

Sean Harkness, guitar
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat 25th Anniversary Show (Feinstein’s/54 Below), Lucille Carr-Kaffashan/How the Light Gets In (Don’t Tell Mama), Kathleen Turner/Finding My Voice (Arena Stage), Vocalmania (Birdland Theater, Zinc Bar), Ronny Whyte Quartet (Jazz at Kitano)

Tom Hubbard, bass
Marilyn Maye/I Wish I Were 90 Again (Feinstein’s/54 Below), Tony Yazbeck/The Floor Above Me (Appel Room, Feinstein’s/54 Below), Isabelle Georges/Oh, La, La! (Feinstein’s/54 Below), Rosemary Loar/Everything’s Coming Up Rosie (Don’t Tell Mama), Sue Matsuki/How’s That for Openers? (Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages)

Don Kelly, drums
Those Girls Sing The Boys (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Lynda Rodolitz/Animal Magnetism (Don’t Tell Mama), Leanne Borghesi and Marta Sanders/Show Broads (Birdland), Stephen Mosher/The Storyteller (Don’t Tell Mama), Le Scandal (Laurie Beechman Theatre)

Matt Scharfglass, bass
Those Girls Sing The Boys (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Lisa Viggiano/From Lady Day to The Boss (Don’t Tell Mama), Lynda Rodolitz/Animal Magnetism (Don’t Tell Mama), Kim Grogg and Lennie Watts/Hometown Heroes (Laurie Beechman Theatre)

RECURRING SERIES

THE AMERICAN POPULAR SONGBOOK SERIES
Produced by Linda Amiel Burns
The Green Room 42

PIANO BAR LIVE
Produced by Scott Barbarino
The Duplex, Brandy’s

Ricky Ritzel’S BROADWAY
Created and produced by Ricky Ritzel, staging and choreography by Jay Rogers and Aaron Morishita
Don’t Tell Mama

SALON
Mark Janas, creator, host, artistic director; Tanya Moberly, executive producer
Don’t Tell Mama

SPOTLIGHT ON YOU OPEN MIC
Produced and hosted by Natasha Castillo
53 Above

SPECIAL PRODUCTION

MAMA’S NEXT BIG ACT
Produced by Don’t Tell Mama and Lennie Watts
Don’t Tell Mama

Meg Flather SONGS: A CABARET SISTERHOOD
Written and produced by Meg Flather, directed by Lennie Watts, musical direction by Tracy Stark
Don’t Tell Mama

Sherie Rene Scott AND Norbert Leo Butz: TWOHANDER
Starring Sherie Rene Scott and Norbert Leo Butz, written by Sherie Rene Scott, directed by Dick Scanlan, musical directed by Todd Almond.
Feinstein’s/54 Below

EMCEE

Corinna Sowers Adler
Music at the Mansion
Oakeside Bloomfield Cultural Center

Natasha Castillo
Spotlight on You Open Mic
53 Above

Amy Wolk
I Only Have Lies for You
Laurie Beechman Theatre

DIRECTOR

Jeff Harnar
Dawn Derow/The House That Built Me (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Renee Katz/When It Happens to You (Don’t Tell Mama), Anna Bergman/The Best of Bergman (The Beach Cafe), Tovah Feldshuh/Tovah Is Leona (Feinstein’s/54 Below), Margo Brown/Margo Sings Mercer (Don’t Tell Mama)

Lina Koutrakos
Sue Matsuki/How’s That for Openers? (Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages), Ari Axelrod/A Celebration of Jewish Broadway (Birdland Theater), Joanne Halev/Like a Perfumed Woman (Birdland Theater), Doris Dear/The Doris Dear Christmas Special (The Triad), Deborah Stone/Here I Am (Pangea)

Tanya Moberly
Lisa Viggiano/From Lady Day to The Boss (Pangea, Don’t Tell Mama), Rian Keating/In This Traveling Heart (Don’t Tell Mama), Susanne Mack/Where I Belong (Pangea, Don’t Tell Mama), Stephanie Trudeau/Chavela:Think of Me (Don’t Tell Mama), Bruno Giraldi/This Is Bruno

Gretchen Reinhagen
Bob Diamond/The Game of Life (Don’t Tell Mama), Gerrilyn Sohn/Something Cool (Don’t Tell Mama), Irenka Jakubiak and Evan Mittman/Cheek to Cheek (Laurie BeechmanTheatre), Becca Kidwell/Fangirl (Don’t Tell Mama), Bennett Silverstein/Born to Be Bennett (Don’t Tell Mama)

Lennie Watts
Those Girls/Those Girls Sing The Boys (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Lynda Rodolitz/Animal Magnetism (Don’t Tell Mama), Meg Flather/Outbound Plane (Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages), Meg Flather Songs; A Cabaret Sisterhood (Don’t Tell Mama)

MUSICAL DIRECTOR

Paul Greenwood
Anita Gillette/Chapter 3 (Birdland), Austin Pendleton and Barbara Blier/How About Love? (Pangea), Randa McNamara (Don’t Tell Mama), Maren and Angela Show (Don’t Tell Mama), Susanne Mack/Where I Belong (Don’t Tell Mama, Pangea)

Alex Rybeck
Ann Hampton Callaway and Liz Callaway/Broadway the Calla-Way (Feinstein’s/54 Below), Joanne Halev/Like a Perfumed Woman (Birdland Theater), Ann Kittredge/Fancy Meeting You Here: An Evening of Ahrens & Flaherty (Feinstein’s/54 Below, Urban Stages, Feinstein’s at Vitello’s), Karen Akers/Sing the Shadows Away (Urban Stages, The Beach Cafe), Ari Axelrod, Celia Berk, Kevin Dozier, Karen Oberlin/Four for the Holidays (The Beach Cafe)

Tracy Stark
Sidney Myer/Sidney Myer Live (Pangea), Meg Flather/Outbound Plane (Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages), Kim David Smith/Kim Sings Kylie; Christmas Show (Joe’s Pub, Club Cumming, Neue Galerie), Lisa Viggiano/From Lady Day to The Boss Pangea, Don’t Tell Mama), Roberta Feldhusen/Who’s That Woman?

Gregory Toroian
Sue Matsuki/A Hep Happy Holiday, Ella and Me, How’s That for Openers? (Don’t Tell Mama, Urban Stages, Maureen’s Jazz Room, BJ Ryan’s Magnolia Room), Lauren Frazza (Pangea), Kati Neiheisel/That Holiday Feeling (Don’t Tell Mama), Jackie Draper/Repeal the Blues (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Suzanna Ross/Bewitched (Don’t Tell Mama, The Triad)

Steven Ray Watkins
Those Girls Sing The Boys (Laurie Beechman Theatre, Pangea), Lynda Rodolitz/Animal Magnetism (Don’t Tell Mama), Lennie Watts and Kim Grogg /Hometown Heroes (Laurie Beechman Theatre), Mama’s Next Big Act (Don’t Tell Mama)

TECHNICAL DIRECTOR

Armando Bravi – The Duplex
Anthony Fett/Gayer Than Christmas, John Burns/John Burns Is a Sexy Beast, Hillary Clinton’s Song Cycle: Witness, Harmonic Proposal/I Can’t Even

ADAM DeCARLO – Don’t Tell Mama
Mama’s Boys, Sue Matsuki/How’s That for Openers?, Amy Beth Williams/Meet Me at the Bar, Julie Reyburn/Anywhere We Are, Michael Kirk Lane/Just Because

Jason Ellis – 53 Above
NY Cosplay Cabaret, Groovin’ on a Sunday, Bronwyn Rucker/Bronwyn’s Old Fashioned Christmas, Spotlight on You Open Mic, Evelyn Sullivan/In the Dark

JONNY MERCADO – Don’t Tell Mama
Meg Flather/Outbound Plane, Lynda Rodolitz/Animal Magnetism, Amy Beth Williams/Great Ladies, Great Songs, Marieann Meringolo/Between Yesterday and Tomorrow: The Songs of Alan & Marilyn Bergman, Meg Flather Songs: A Cabaret Sisterhood

Alison Nusbaum – Don’t Tell Mama
Bob Diamond/The Game of Life, Arturo Padilla/Angel, Rian Keating/In this Traveling Heart, Lucille Carr-Kaffishan/How the Light Gets In, Mary Ellen Ryan/No Apologies

Jean-Pierre Perreaux – The Laurie Beechman Theatre
Mark Nadler/The Old Razzle Dazzle, Jennifer Barnhart/It’s About Time, Eric Michael Gillett/Stop This Train, KT Sullivan and Jeff Harnar/Sullivan and Harnar sing Harnick and Strouse, Dawn Derow/The House That Built Me

SONG

ASKING FOR IT
Music and lyrics by Nora Terzo

EVERYTHING MUST GO
Music by Matthew Levine, lyrics by Hillary Rollins

LOOKS LIKE THEY’RE IN LOVE
Music by Alex Rybeck, lyrics by Bob Levy

THIS OLD YEAR
Music by David Alpher, lyrics by Jennie Litt

WHEN MICHAEL WAS THERE
Music and lyrics by Billy Recce

COMEDY/NOVELTY SONG

I’D HAVE REHEARSED
Music and lyrics by Amy Engelhardt

KIND OF GAY
Music by Jeff Hardy, lyrics by David Dreyfus

NOTHING VENTURED…
Music and lyrics by John Forster

A PRIME LITTLE NUMBER
Music by David Alpher, lyrics by Jennie Litt

STRAIGHT GIRL IN THE GAY BAR
Music and lyrics by Billy Recce

RECORDING (LaMott Friedman Award)

John DePalma
Something Shiny

Kevin Dozier
Christmas Eve

Bob Levy
Why Wait?

WENDY SCHERL
You’ll See

MAJOR RECORDING

Gretchen Reinhagen
Take It With Me

KT Sullivan AND Mark Nadler
Thanks for the Memory-25 Years of Duets

Stacy Sullivan
Tornado Alley

Max von Essen
Call Me Old Fashioned-The Broadway Standard

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

Cabaret

Finding Words for Spring 

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And who better to lead a search like this than every lyricist’s best friend, the incomparable Steve Ross!  Dressed all in green like a musical Pied Piper, Steve began our adventure with “Mountain Greenery”, one of the best examples of the verbal dexterity of Larry Hart.  Having arrived in this luscious verdancy, Steve highlighted the ever-clever Alan Jay Lerner by slowing his delivery a tad so we could savor every word in “Hurry, It’s Lovely Up Here”.  Those words, like all that Steve served up, deserved the attention he gave them. It’s amazing that even though one has heard a song many times, a thoughtful delivery can reveal more than had been realized. Johnny Mercer had his moment for admiration with “I’m Old Fashioned”, which curiously has the hallmarks of a lyric by Oscar Hammerstein.   

Mr. H. joined the party when Steve made “Younger Than Springtime” sound so full of yearning yet with a touch of sorrow.  Steve’s patter is always welcome for not only his wry humor but his instructive sensibility. He related how when Oscar Hammerstein declined the opportunity to write the lyrics for Annie, Get Your Gun, the torch was handed to Irving Berlin. He eagerly stepped up to the proverbial plate and in true Berlin fashion grand-slammed yet another terrific score. The contemporary of Noel Coward, Ivor Novello, dropped by with his “We’ll Gather Lilacs”, a wistful song that evoked the hopeful longing of the WW II years. 

A personal highlight was Steve’s rendition of “Send in the Clowns”—not a song evoking Spring, for sure, but one that deals with the complications that can ensue in falling in love.  Steve’s attention to one word in the lyric made the sardonic pathos of the situation almost palpable. (No, I won’t reveal the word—you must hear it for yourself next time!) And such is the magic of Steve Ross. He sprinkled this magical evening with several songs made famous by Fred Astaire and others in films which rounded out the evening beautifully. 

Steve swung into optimistic territory with “Make Our Garden Grow” adding a delicate touch of “‘Tis the Gift To be Simple”– a perfect ending to this show. But wait—there was more! He coaxed us into a sing-along to celebrate Eliza Doolittle Day, May 20. How “Lover-ly” it was! 

Any Steve Ross show is worth the time of any aficionado of the Great American Songbook. This show was especially notable. Each lyric shined under Steve’s masterful interpretation, and the entire room was silent throughout—nary a cough or ice-cube tinkle to be found. We were spellbound. If you are in the market for a spa treatment for the heart/soul, catch Steve’s next show. They don’t call him the Crown Prince of Cabaret for nothing! 

 

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Cabaret

My View: Julie Wilson Honored By The Mabel Mercer Foundation at The Pierre Hotel

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Cabaret luminaries, supporters, and officers of The Mabel Mercer Foundation gathered at The Pierre Hotel last night to celebrate the100th anniversary of the birth year of cabaret legend Julie Wilson.  Julie’s dominant presence in the cabaret world over the many decades led her to be called “The Queen of Cabaret”. Cabaret’s current guiding light, KT Sullivan, the artistic director of The Mabel Mercer Foundation hosted the evening’s celebration which included a gourmet buffet followed by performances from some of cabaret’s most beloved artists and friends of Julie Wilson.  Entertaining the Gala audience of music connoisseurs and honoring the legacy of Julie Wilson were: Karen Akers, Carole J. Bufford, Melissa Errico, Jeff Harnar, Sue Matsuki, MOIPEI ( Mary, Maggy & Marta), Sidney Myer, Craig Rubano, KT Sullivan and Amra-Faye Wright…. John Weber (piano) and Steve Doyle (Bass).

An especially emotional moment of the evening was actor Holt McCallany (son of Julie Wilson) paying tribute to his mother and singing “I’m Becoming My Mother”.

HOLT McCALLANY (son of Julie Wilson)

KT SULLIVAN, artistic director The Mabel Mercer Foundation

KT SULLIVAN

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

JEFF HARNAR

JEFF HARNAR

SUE MATSUKI

SUE MATSUKI

CRAIG RUBANO

CRAIG RUBANO

KAREN AKERS

KAREN AKERS

SIDNEY MYER

SIDNEY MYER

AMRA-FAYE WRIGHT

AMRA-FAYE WRIGHT

HOLT McCALLANY

HOLT McCALLANY

HOLT McCALLANY (son of Julie Wilson)

MOIPEI

MOIPEI

PATRICK McENROE, KT SULLIVAN,MELISSA ERRICO,MOIPEI

HOLT McCALLANY & CAROLE J. BUFFORD

MOIPEI & HOLT McCALLANY

EDA SOROKOFF & ELIZABETH SULLIVAN (Happy 94th Birthday)

MELISSA ERRICO PATRICK McENROE, KT SULLIVAN

JEFF HARNAR & MOIPEI

HEATHER SULLIVAN, HOWARD MORGAN, Chairman of the board Mabel Mercer Foundation, ELANOR MORGAN

KT SULLIVAN, ELIZABETH SULLIVAN, HEATHER SULLIVAN,Dr. Patrick Sullivan

KT SULLIVAN

KT SULLIVAN, PETER HANSON, Linda Hanson

EDA SOROKOFF & CRHRISTEL IBSEN

MONAH GETTNER,KT SULLIVAN, ALAN GETTNER

BRIAN KALTNER, Board Member Mabel Mercer Foundation & DEBBIE DAMP

HOWARD MORGAN, KT SULLIVAN, CAROLE J. BUFFORD,MOIPEI, MATHEW INGE

PATRICK McENROE & MELISSA ERRICO

KT SULLIVAN & STEPHEN SOROKOFF

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Cabaret

Karen Mason and Louis Rosen

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Karen Mason and Louis Rosen met back in the 70s in Chicago. Karen was a young singer accompanied by a the incomparable pianist-songwriter Brian Lasser. He was close friends with guitarist, pianist-songwriter, Louis Rosen. Mason and Lasser moved to New York and two years later Rosen was there as well. A little over ten years later Lasser died of AIDS. Rosen and Mason have made sure that Lasser’s music is remembered.

Karen Mason

Louis Rosen

Mason and Rosen are back together again celebrating nearly 50 years of collaboration and friendship. The evening is stripped down bare with Rosen on guitar and piano and Mason and Rosen on vocals. Most of the material is Rosen’s songs many from his most recent albums, but added are a few selections by  Lasser, that make you know he died way to soon.

Karen Mason

Louis Rosen

Rosen’s music is what singer/songwriters use to write, full of blues riffs, uplifting swing, folk melodies, jazz cadences and soulful powerful lyrics. It is like an old soul left their words to impart. This night so made me want to hear his newest album “Love and Ashes”. Rosen is a musicians musician.

“A master interpreter… Mason produces a depth of sound and brilliance of color that converge in the work of very few singers!” (Chicago Tribune)

Mason has an authenticity to her voice. She is a storyteller, rich in tone and truly excels on Lasser’s music. She is a belter at heart, but Rosen’s music has her venerable and exposed, which is a new side to her art.

It is always wonderful to watch two artists collaborate,

Luba Mason and Karen Mason

Louis Rosen

Karen Mason and Louis Rosen: Ages Since the Last Time: Chelsea Table + Stage, 152 West 26th Street.

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Cabaret

My View: Why CAN’T A Woman…? This Woman Can…Lianne Marie Dobbs

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The actor Lianne Marie Dobbs played a 1900’s woman in the HBO series The Gilded Age. You also might have seen her in Law & Order, The Equalizer and F.B.I., but yesterday at Chelsea Tables + Stage she wasn’t just playing the part of a Cabaret singer!  Ms. Dobbs is the real deal, and she captivated an audience of music connoisseurs with her formidable vocal talents and wit in her show titled “Why CAN’T a Woman…? 

Lianne’s cabaret act utilizes Broadway leading men’s songs and sassy standards, served up with a twist of SHE, to celebrate all the hats that women wear, and she answered the shows question authoritatively….This woman sure can!

Lianne Marie Dobbs was named one of the Best Vocalists of the Decade (BroadwayWorld, 2020) and has filled The Green Room 42, 54Below, Feinstein’s at Hotel Carmichael, Feinstein’s at the Nikko, Blue Strawberry in St. Louis, and will be featured in Chicago’s Cabaret Week later in May.  “Why CAN’T a Woman…?” was named one of the best cabaret shows of the year (2022) by BroadwayWorld, and called “an honest to goodness emerging work of art”.  She has appeared in leading roles Off-Broadway, in National Tours, and at renowned theaters such as Denver Center, Repertory of St. Louis, Ogunquit Playhouse, Goodspeed and many more.

Ron Abel is Lianne’s music director and arranger, whose accolades include: LA Critics Circle Award Winner and L.A. Weekly Award Winner for his original compositions and unique arrangements of Broadway hits for orchestras and singers. He has been the music director for acclaimed vocalists such as Lucie Arnaz, Peter Allen, Joely Fisher, Valarie Pettiford, Julia Migenes, Helen Reddy, and John Lloyd Young.

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS & RON ABEL

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS & RON ABEL

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS & RON ABEL

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS & RON ABEL

CHELSEA TABLE + STAGE

CHELSEA TABLE + STAGE

STANDING OVATION

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS

LIANNE MARIE DOBBS & CAROLE J. BUFFORD

PAUL KREPPEL, RON ABEL, EDA SOROKOFF, MURPHY CROSS

EDA SOROKOFF & TAKAKO HARKNESS

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Cabaret

My View: The City Was Special Last Night….Melissa Errico at 54 Below

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The evening at 54 Below was advertised as a “ Vinyl Release Celebration Concert” and how apt that VINYL, the unrivaled substance utilized to capture the subtle nuances and breadth of music has now been used to capture the elegant voice of Melissa Errico singing the songs of  “Sondheim in the City” for posterity. 

Caveat: While Vinyl may capture in analog glory the beautiful notes and words of Melissa, one must be in her presence to experience her irrepressible beauty, wit, and intelligence on stage.

Melissa Errico….Sondheim In The City Vinyl Release Celebration at 54 Below May 7,8,9…..

Tedd Firth Music Director, David Finck (Bass), Eric Halvorson (Drums) Bruce Harris (Trumpet)

About the show:

After the critical triumph of her Sondheim Sublime album-called “the finest all Sondheim recording ever made” by the Wall Street Journal, Melissa Errico returned to one of her cabaret homes (54 Below) last night and to her favorite songwriter with an entire new program of Sondheim songs, celebrating her new album (released February 16, 2024 on Concord) and a different side of Steve, praised in The New York Times as “a New York house tour of thrill and heartbreak..from one of Sondheim’s deepest-hearted yet lightest-touch interpreters.”

Sondheim in the City is the Sondheim of smart, sophisticated New York, the Sondheim of the quick, witty, sardonic, love-seeking and sex-driven city that he recorded and worked in through his long life. From the anthem of city busyness “Another Hundred People” to the bittersweet hymns of city marriage, “Sorry, Grateful” and “Good Thing Going,” with time for hardboiled surprises like “Uptown, Downtown” and surprisingly soft-centered ballads like “All That I Need” and “Dawn”

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO

MELISSA ERRICO & TEDD FIRTH, music director

54 Below, Eda Sorokoff

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