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Benjamin Scheuer
Award-winning American singer/songwriter, guitar player and playwright Benjamin Scheuer will release his debut recording, Songs from The Lion, this spring. The album, featuring music from Scheuer’s critically acclaimed one-man musical memoir The Lion, is out June 3 via Warner/ADA.
 
Glide Magazine is currently premiering the Peter Baynton-directed video for the single “Weather the Storm,” which recently won the Public Choice Award for Best Music Video at the British Animation Awards, at http://goo.gl/mRj1HR. The video uses Baynton’s own watercolor paintings to produce cubist Lowry-inspired designs. At one point during the production of the video, one of the paintings blew out the window of Trunk Pictures’ London-based studio and narrowly avoided landing in the Thames River thanks to a producer’s successful race against a rising tide. The Washington Post praises the track, calling it “wise and catchy,” while The New York Times notes that the song “gets to the heart of the matter.” “Weather the Storm” is available for purchase via iTunes and Amazon now.
 
The music that makes up Songs from The Lion came together as Scheuer performed around his hometown of New York City. “I was performing autobiographical songs in the coffee shops around Greenwich Village,” says Scheuer. “I was singing about my dad, who died when I was thirteen. Singing about a romantic relationship I was in that went well until it went bad. Singing about my diagnosis with, treatment for, and cure of advanced stage cancer.”
 
Scheuer goes on to elaborate, “Record producer Geoff Kraly and I decided that we wanted the production on this album to fulfill the same purpose that the lighting, set design, directing, acting, costume design and all that stuff fulfills in the theatre show. To create atmosphere. In many ways, this album is the way I hear the songs in my head while I’m performing The Lion in a theatre.”
 
The Lion has won numerous awards in both the U.S. and U.K., including the 2015 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance, a 2015 Theatre World Award, and the Off-West End Award for Best New Musical.
 
Best known for his work Off-Broadway and Off-West End, Scheuer—hailed by the New York Times for his “reflective pop-folk songs with catchy choruses and just the occasional burst of angst,” has also toured with Mary Chapin Carpenter and performed at venues including New York’s Lincoln Center and London’s Royal Albert Hall. Scheuer and photographer Riya Lerner are also co-creators of the art book Between Two Spaces, from which 50 percent of proceeds go to the Leukemia/Lymphoma Society. Scheuer has won prizes for his two previous collaborations with animator Peter Baynton on the videos for “Cookie-tin Banjo” and “The Lion.”

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

Celebrity

Items From Taylor Swift, Amy Winehouse and Elvis to be Auctioned Off at Kruse GWS Auctions

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The personal Bible Elvis had on his nightstand the night he died with his favorite passages underlined, fashion worn by Taylor Swift and Amy Winehouse, and luxury items from Bibi and Eric Hilton of the famed hotel family are big draws for this May 25th megawattage event from Kruse GWS Auctions.

Before going on stage, Elvis often would read the Bible to calm his nerves and pray for a good show. The Bible, embossed with Elvis Aaron Presley in gold, comes with a handwritten letter from his cousin Patsy, who was given the book by the Elvis’ dad Vernon when they were packing up his son’s belongings at Graceland.

Five years into his illustrious career and already insanely popular, Elvis was drafted into the US Army and the auction will feature a set of the fatigues he wore, replete with his name on front and original sleeve patches. Serving from March 1958 to March 1960, the megastar was offered special treatment but declined, opting instead to be treated like a regular G.I Joe. Though a brief interruption in his music career, his military service had a huge impact on his personal life as he would meet future wife Priscilla, whose stepfather was stationed near where Elvis served in Germany.

Swifties are sure to flock to the gorgeous dresses up for auction that Taylor has been photographed wearing. One is a Sure Fire Coral Dress the pop star wore during an “Access Hollywood” interview on April 29, 2015, promoting her 1989 World Tour. Crafted by the esteemed fashion label Three Floor, the dress’s coral hue perfectly complements Taylor Swift’s radiant personality. The other is a floral peach zip dress worn backstage during her milestone Speak Now World Tour (2011-2012).

Amy Winehouse’s life was cut short but her musical legacy lives on. The auction is selling the black stretch cotton tube top and Tina Kalivas fitted peplum skirt the British singer-songwriter wore when she appeared via satellite from London on the 50th annual Grammy Awards in 2008 and the same outfit is featured in the buzzy new film “Back to Black” about Winehouse’s life. A monumental moment in her career, she won five awards, tying the then record for the most wins by a female artist in a single night.

Amy Winehouse dress

“No one on the planet is hotter than Taylor Swift, and Amy Winehouse is having her moment with the release of the biopic “Back to Black,” says Brigitte Kruse, founder of Kruse GWS Auctions. “Plus, there’s been a scarcity of new Presley items up for auction, but Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis” film has re-energized the marketplace.”

Elvis’s Diamond Ring

When it comes to memorabilia from the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Kruse reigns, having previously sold hisengine-less private jet for half a million. Among the handful of women at the top of the global multi-billion dollar auction industry, she has sold an astounding $4.2 billion in assets and was the first woman auctioneer to set a Guinness World Record.

Taylor Swift backstage dress

While stationed in Germany, Elvis–looking to get away from media attention—took a two-week “secret” vacation in 1959, staying at a lakeside resort area. At a local beer garden, he signed a chair, which is available for bidding and comes with documentation and holiday photos.

Taylor Swift backstage dress

For fans of the rock star’s more flamboyant sartorial looks, there’s a custom mink and leather coat that he loved and wore and a pair of his cult classic Neostyle Nautic sunglasses with a 14k gold TCB logo worn during the filming of “Elvis on Tour.”

What would an Elvis-oriented auction be without a little bling? The sale includes a 6.00ct black star sapphire, diamond and 14K gold ring, a rather substantial diamond ring highlighted by its intricate beveled design and ornate texture, and his well-known 14K yellow gold ring, with a 1929 Indian Head $2.50 gold coin.

Perhaps more unusual though, is an Elvis-designed watch, (one of perhaps two dozen) given to his closest friends. It features a Star of David intertwined with a Christian cross and photos show him wearing one of these customized time pieces. And a treat for rat-pack fans: two pieces Elvis gifted to entertainer, friend and Vegas regular Sammy Davis Jr.,–a gold claw pendant with EP initials and a gold lion at the tip, and a 14K Yellow Gold TCB Necklace, the logo he created with former wife Priscilla. And, music fans will want to take advantage of the opportunity to get one of his personal guitars, a Guild D-40 sunburst acoustic model and accompanying hard case.

Hilton Emerald Ring

Bibi and Eric Hilton—yes, they’re Paris’s great aunt and uncle—were indeed hotel royalty. Eric was the former Vice Chairman of the Hilton Hotels Corporation and as a longtime resident of Las Vegas active in a variety of local philanthropic endeavors. His wife Bibi traveled the world as a goodwill ambassadress for the hotel chain, rubbing shoulders with the who’s who of entertainment, fashion, business, and government, working alongside her husband to ensure the Hilton brand rose to the internationally iconic status it enjoys today.

Hilton Engagement Ring

Eric booked Elvis for the Vegas Hilton and he still holds the record for the longest running residency. The auction pays homage to Sin City’s main industry with Hilton’s set of limited edition solid 18K gold poker chips emblematic of the city’s illustrious gaming history. The 5 chips—in $25,000, $5,000, $1000, $500, and $100 denominations—were minted solely for the Hilton Entertainment Family Caesar’s Palace Board of Directors.

The estate’s jewelry offerings–from fun faux to fine and fab–include several truly outstanding pieces. Romantics will appreciate the lovely engagement ring that Eric Hilton gave to his soon-to-be wife Bibi. This 18K gold ring was custom made and designed by the couple, and features a brilliant use of fiery white diamonds, embellished with vivid red rubies. Another gorgeous ring crafted in 14k gold boasts a stunning 11.20ct pear cut emerald surrounded by 1.30ctw brilliant round cut fiery white diamonds.

Additionally, the sale contains several exquisite emeralds. One is a pendant crafted in 14k yellow gold and boasts a spectacular 25.72ct emerald cut emerald that exhibits a vibrant lush green color that only the finest display and is surrounded by 2.75ctw brilliant round cut diamonds. There’s also a 14k gold ring distinguished by an impressive 11.20ct pear cut emerald center.

Live bidding begins on May 25th at 7am PT at bid.gwsauctions.com. All Presley pieces come with detailed letter of provenance and the Hilton items with a letter of appreciation signed by the estate executor. Pre-bidding is also available on the website now.

Click here for link to entire catalogue of auction items with descriptions

Kruse GWS Inc. is the world-record breaking auction house specializing in Entertainment Memorabilia, Fine Jewelry, Master Timepieces, Royal Artifacts, Real Estate, Luxury Automobiles, Whiskey/Spirits, NFTs and NFT appraisals. Founder Dame Brigitte Kruse is the first auctioneer to be knighted by a Royal Family, the first female auctioneer to set a Guinness World Record and is a member of the Forbes Los Angeles Business Council. The auction house continues to be featured in world-wide press. Brigitte Kruse built the world’s first NFT marketplace with a live auction feature. The globally respected auction house has been featured around the world for sales of such notable items as Elvis Presley’s personal jet, Marilyn Monroe’s famous black dress, Marlon Brando’s historic Rolex watch, Italian Renaissance philosopher Machiavelli’s estate in Florence, Italy, and the 14th century celadon bowl owned by the last Empress of Vietnam. For more information please visit bid.gwsauctions.com.

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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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Music

The Rascals Were Back at Sony Hall

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The Rascals performed at Sony Hall New York City. Two original members of the group Felix Cavaliere and Gene Cornishwere joined on stage by Aria Cavaliere (Felix Cavaliere daughter) and Benny Harrison on keyboard. They were an amazing band.
The original band disbanded in the 1970’s. Felix Cavaliere and the band opened the first half of the show featuring Cavaliere’s very talented daughter Aria. She has an amazing voice. The second half Gene Cornish joined on stage  playing guitar and harmonica. Time has not diminished the Rascals talents and appeal.

Aria Cavaliere

All through the evening video  of the group at the hight of their popularity was flashed on monitors on the stage.

Felix Cavaliere

The Rascals defined a generation with songs that included “Beautiful Morning”, “I’ve Been Lonely Too Long,” People Got To be Free,” “Groovin,” among others.

Gene Cornish

Stephen Miller and Bill Murray

In the audience enjoying the evening was actor Bill Murray. Murray  is a big fan of the Rascals. Also in the audience was best selling author and Gene Cornish biographer Stephen Miller.

Gene Cornish

The rollercoaster ride of Gene and the Rascals is told in Stephen Miller’s riveting book “Good Lovin.”
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Celebrity

The Glorious Corner

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G.H. Harding

TRUMPED AT CANNES — What with Francis Ford Coppola’s Megalopolis and Kevin Costner’s Horizon garnering most of the pre-Cannes ink, it turns out that The Apprentice; the so-called rise of Donald Trump, has become to must-see attraction there.

Starring Sebastian Stan

Sebastian Stan

and Jeremy Strong -as Roy Cohn-  its received the most attention after its screening this week. Check out this up-to-date spot from The Hollywood Reporter:


The Trump camp has threatened a lawsuit over a somewhat graphic scene between Trump and Ivana in the movie. The filmmaker Ali Abbasi has said that while the lawsuits may fly fast and furious from the Trump-camp, their success rate should be re-examined. A pretty savvy response if you ask me.

MORE TREK — (Via Deadline) Oscar winner  Holly Hunter has been tapped to star in Paramount+’s upcoming series Star Trek: Starfleet Academy. Hunter will play the captain and chancellor of Starfleet Academy in the series which will begin production later this summer.

Produced by CBS Studios, the series will follow the adventures of a new class of Starfleet cadets as they come of age in one of the most legendary places in the galaxy.

Per the logline: Star Trek: Starfleet Academy introduces viewers to a young group of cadets who come together to pursue a common dream of hope and optimism. Under the watchful and demanding eyes of their instructors, they discover what it takes to become Starfleet officers as they navigate blossoming friendships, explosive rivalries, first loves and a new enemy that threatens both the Academy and the Federation itself.

As a Treker-from the 60’s, where the hell is the next proper Star Trek-movie with Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto? They both were fantastic in my mind. Into Darkness was sensational? Weird for sure.

Michael Jackson and Ron Alexenburg

SHORT TAKES — Record-industry icon Ron Alexenburg is penning his autobiography to be called From The Warehouse To The Penthouse. Alexenburg, when he ran Epic Records, worked with everyone from Michael Jackson to Meat Loaf, Boston, The Beach Boys, and Charlie Daniels. Here’s a great interview with him:

Oddly, he doesn’t mention his Infinity Records opus, where I worked with him. The opening night party for the label was at the NY Public Library in NYC. It was an awesome event …

Speaking of books, Dave Mason’s Only You Know and I Know is finally out after a massive delay. I saw a video of him opening the first box. Apparently it is only available through his website. Good luck Dave …

We haven’t seen Kevin Costner’s Horizon yet, but a report from Roger Friedman (Showbiz 411), claims Costner doesn’t even appear in the movie for the first hour. Really? …

Christopher Reeve

Great Hamptons Film Festival exclusive by Roger Friedman. Check it out: https://www.showbiz411.com/2024/05/21/hot-ticket-christopher-reeve-super-man-film-to-get-early-look-hamptons-screening-before-release-at-summerdocs … And, great spot on Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show on the new book from Michael McDonald with Paul Reiser (What A Fool Believes/DEY Street):

RIP Fred Roos.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Riley Keough; Edwyn Collins; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Tony Seidel; Jason Cooper; Bob Krasnow; Les Schwartz; Pete Sanders; Jeremy Long; Peter Shendell; Randy Alexander; Carson Daly; Pete Best; Cory Robbins; Bill Adler; Roy Trakin; Mark Bego; Nancy Ruth; Teresa Knox; Kent and Laura Denmark; and BELLA!

Images on this page have been licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

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Events

Shoshana Bean Joins West End Superstar Bradley Jaden At Sony Hall

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West End Superstar Bradley Jaden will make his US debut on Monday June 3rd at Sony Hall along with the iconic, two time Tony Award and Grammy Award nominee Shoshana Bean, currently starring on Broadway in Alicia Keys hit musical Hell’s Kitchen, which is up for 13 Tony Award nominations.

Jaden, fresh from his acclaimed performance in Cameron Mackintosh’s new production of Stephen Sondheim’s Old Friends, at the Gielgud Theatre, will bring his own show Live In Concert to New York City for his US debut ahead of two sold out dates at Cadogan Hall in London. Later in the year he will embark on the Les Misérables Arena Spectacular World Tour recreating the role of ‘Javert’.

Bradley has starred in some of the West End’s most enduring productions including his unforgettable performance as ‘Javert’ in Les Misérables, Fiyero in Wicked and ‘Raoul’ in a new production of The Phantom of the Opera in Trieste, Italy. Other West End theatre credits include Shrek The Musical, Side Show in Concert and Treason The Musical.

Jaden will be recreating the role of ‘Javert’ in the Les Misérables Arena Spectacular which embarks on a World Tour from this September with a cast and orchestra of over 65. He will share the role with Michael Ball, playing opposite Killian Donnelly’s ‘Jean Valjean’.

He is not only one of musical theatre’s most successful leading men, but he’s also a star of the small screen, having seamlessly transitioned to the world of soap, taking roles in both EastEnders as Sonia Fowler’s flatmate ‘Jed’ and in Emmerdale where he played ‘Ben’.

Shoshana Bean

Shoshana Bean

Shoshana Bean can be seen starring in Alicia Keys’ new musical Hell’s Kitchen, which has received 13 Tony Nominations since opening on Broadway this spring. Her portrayal of ‘Jersey’ earned Shoshana her second Tony Award nomination for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical,” a Drama League

Award nomination in the “Distinguished Performance” category, and a Drama Desk nomination for “Outstanding Featured Performance.” Her performance in the Public Theater’s Hell’s Kitchen earned her a Lucille Lortel Award nomination in the “Outstanding Featured Performer in a Musical” category. In 2022, she received Tony and Grammy nominations for her starring role as Susan Young opposite Billy Crystal in Broadway’s Mr. Saturday Night. She previously starred on Broadway as the first replacement for Elphaba in Wicked and as Jenna in Waitress. Her six independent studio albums and EP’s have landed her on top of the iTunes and Billboard charts, including the peak position of #1 on the Billboard Jazz Chart. She has sold out concerts around the globe and lent her voice to countless films and television shows, including Sing, Sing 2, Enchanted, Jersey Boys, Glee and Galavant. Shoshana made her Broadway debut in the original cast of Hairspray, appeared Off-Broadway in the 2000 revival of Godspell, and in Songs for a New World at City Center Encores. She won an IRNE Award for her performance as Fanny Brice in Funny Girl and earned a Jeff Award nomination for her portrayal of CeeCee Bloom in the pre-Broadway musical production of Beaches. She has appeared in Bloodline, Bill and Ted Face The Music, and recently filmed a solo concert special for PBS.

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