Monday, March 27, 2017

Nicolas King: A New CD.. AND MORE!

Happy March 27th, 2017!
March 27 is the 86th day of the year. It is a rainy day here in New York. As I sit down to begin today's blog, I'm listening to The Andrews Sisters singing Mister Five by Five on the 40s channel on Sirius XM Radio.

Today is Gloria Swanson's Birthday. I was lucky enough to meet her shortly after I moved to New York in 1979, a
Happy Birthday to "Sassy" Sarah Vaughan
memory I will never forget!

It is also Sarah Vaughan's birthday. I regret that I never saw her live but I'm a huge fan.
Michael York, who starred in Cabaret with Liza Minnelli and Joel Grey!

Speaking of cabaret, tomorrow officially ends cabaret month here with the MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs) Awards. Unfortunately, a conflict precludes my attending. I wish all the nominees and everyone else a fun filled successful evening. The festivities take place at B.B. King Blues Club in Times Square.
Richard Skipper Celebrates EY Harburg on April 8th 1PM Laurie Beechman Theater
I want all who see this to set aside a minimum of five minutes today for taking a walk outdoors or in your home. 
As you do this, reflect on those things that you are grateful for.  Perhaps you're grateful for the beautiful flowers growing in a nearby park, a refrigerator full of food in your home, or a kind neighbor on your street. Try to stay in the moment and concentrate on your feelings of gratitude until the walk is over.
Most people tend to see the same things day after day, taking people and objects in our lives for granted.
Taking a gratitude walk in your everyday environment can give you a lasting emotional health boost.
I'm grateful that Karen Oberlin is part of my EY Harburg Celebration. (Details Below)



I am grateful for my friends and the good times we have together. This weekend I saw two shows that were top notch. First, David Maiocco and Chuck Sweeney have joined forces for a masterpiece called Lee Squared. David plays Liberace and Chuck Sweeney is Peggy Lee and they share brilliance equally!
Two Lees for the price of one: Maiocco pays tribute to flamboyant pianist and candelabra enthusiast
Liberace, and Sweeney keeps the memory of Peggy Lee alive with a fevered impersonation that includes a heavy dose of camp hilarity.
We went with a group of friends from the cabaret community,  there to support other artists. We met at Almond. The company was great. The food was great. AND the conversation is great! We ALL should be doing this. We need to support each other instead of being an island when going out to these shows. Go as a group!
On Saturday night, I had a dinner with six friends OUTSIDE the cabaret community! That's important too! 
Yesterday was a full day. First of all, I was fortunate to be asked to interview David France (How To Survive a Plague). This was an event for Gay Pride Rockland to benefit the new Pride Center. It was great meeting David and his husband, John.
Richard Skipper Interviews David France (How To Survive a Plague) for Gay Pride Rockland (also pictured Diana Wilkins) 3/26/17
                                                                                     

with Sharon McNight at Don't Tell Mama last night
I thank Brooke Malloy and Diana Wilkins for asking me. Anytime they need me, I'm there. I also encourage EVERYONE to buy David's book. It should be required reading in every school!
Afterwords, we joined my friend and producer Russ Woolley and his parents for an intimate dinner at Russ' home. After dinner, Danny, myself, and Russ went to Don't Tell Mama to see Sharon McNight.
Sharon is in town to present tomorrow night at the MAC Awards. 
Her show was a celebration of her first show at Don't Tell Mama thirty years ago. It was great to go down that nostalgic journey with her. She will be back on Thursday night.
David Maiocco as Liberace and Chuck Sweeney as Peggy Lee
GO! GO!! GO!!! see her! It is a masterclass in how to do it! It was great to see so many friends there as well.

In celebration of the end of cabaret month, the MAC Awards, and April showers ahead, today, I'm launching a new series beginning with today's blog. Each day, I will be celebrating a different artist who is making contributions to the world of entertainment.  I will also be listing some of my recommendations. PLEASE go see these shows and tell them I sent you!

Today. I start this series with Nicolas King and his latest CD. My grandmother used to refer to me
as an old soul. I feel the same about Nicholas. Don't let his young years full you!
Nicolas has been performing since age 4. He was seen first on Broadway in Beauty and The Beast, then in ‘A Thousand Clowns’ opposite Tom Selleck, and ‘Hollywood Arms’ directed by Hal Prince, all before age 13. Other credits include 8 consecutive annual performances on The Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon, ‘The View’, ‘Today’ show, ‘Liza & David’, ‘Sally Jesse Raphael’ and twice on ‘The Tonight Show’ with Jay Leno.

Nicolas King ~~~ NEW ALBUM On Another Note featuring Mike Renzi was released MARCH 1! 

This album is a collection of standards, that,when played from track one to the end, lyrically tell a very complete, very specific love story.

Why THIS project?
It's been my dream to return back to the studio with Mike Renzi, especially since he's been on the road for the last three years with Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga! This album is a total passion project, something we've both wanted to do for a while now. The timing was finally right! 

 
Finish this sentence: I'm very bad at...
Math


Who are your artistic heroes
I really admire Jamie Cullum's approach to his craft. Nothing scares him, musically. He's one of the most innovative artists we have in the industry.

Who have had an impact on you and your work? 
Liza Minnelli for one. She has given me an great deal of one-on-one training, support, and brainstorming. 

She directed every nightclub act I've ever done, from my first when I was 11, and has remained a very present force in my life. I'm eternally grateful for everything she's given me.

If you had the opportunity to stand up for the NEA, what would
With Tom Selleck
you say?

I think the NEA's reputation speaks for itself. Art and expression are the very core of every nation around the world. Regardless of whatever may occur around us, our community is stronger than ever, and impossible to knock down. 


What is it about the business that you think has changed for the better...and for the worst since you began in it?
The business that constantly changes is a healthy one. A pond that stays stagnant becomes hazardous without a fresh water supply bringing oxygen and life. In the same way, the ever evolving business is exciting! (My only complaint is I wish we had more venues for the jazz and cabaret world.)

How important are the arts to you personally?  
Crazy important. I've never known anything else! The arts are more to me than just a way  of making a living- they're a hobby, a passion.

Are you making the kind of art that you envisioned you'd be making? 
Absolutely!

How would you describe the arts scene where you grew up? 
I grew up in Rhode Island, a state legendarily rooted in jazz history, and a family full of musicians.
Nicholas with Donna McKechnie and Linda Hart
My parents were always taking me to see my grandmother or aunt perform somewhere, or any band that they liked, so I grew up around live music constantly.

Do you recall some great parties in real living rooms where people got up and sang and told stories?
The most legendary have, of course, been at Liza's house. 

When everyone's taking turns singing, and you're sharing a couch with Lauren Bacall, Rosie O'Donnell, Tony Danza and Michele Lee, watching Liza and Lorna singing
something from Easter Parade, it truly doesn't get any better than that. Of course, nothing beats the music that comes from home. My grandmother, Angela, puts her baby grand piano to good use quite frequently, especially when Renzi comes over for dinner. We'll hang by that piano for hours just calling tunes and having a blast!

Do you feel like you’re playing a party in somebody’s living room when you are on stage. 
Sometimes!

What are you most proud of?

My parents. Their outlook and core value system is absolutely invaluable to me, and I'm so proud of all they've taught me.

What is the one song that resonates most with you?
That depends on the day! 


Rrad MORE at BroadwayWorld.com

Order Nicolas King: On Another Note featuring Mike Renzi HERE


In Other Cabaret News
Do you have your MAC Awards ticket yet?
Tickets will be available through Brown Paper Tickets through tonight.
To order tickets online, GO HERE   


Leslie Orofino presents Cocktails With Cole
Did you get your table yet? We are going to have a ball. This Sat., April 1 at 5:00 and Thurs. April 20 at 7:00 . Don't miss out !
Dedicated to Julie Wilson.
Call 212 -757-0788 after 4 pm or go to www.donttellmamanyc.com



Next Monday, 4/4 is  TOMATOES GOT TALENT fourth annual talent show laced with fabulous
Cheryl Benton and Randie Levine-Miller
performances with Randi Levine-Miller hosting! And Cathy Szabo, who Randi picked up at Richard Skipper Celebrates is in the finals. The Triad | NYC Tickets $35.00. Watch the video of this year's finalists at the auditions.  Learn more about them HERE.  


KAREN MASON'S NEW ALBUM IS HERE!
"It's the best Karen Mason CD ever!"
ORDER YOURS HERE



Dancing To The Movies comes to the St. George Playhouse in Staten Island on April 8th and I will be there!  Starring Mirror Ball winner Tony Dovolani, Academy Award-nominee Lesley Ann Warren, Dancing With The Stars pro Anna Trebunskaya and more! Click HERE to order your tickets!

Go See A Live Show! Please support these artists! Join me tomorrow as I celebrate Susan Eichorn-Young!
In closing, I'd like to say that my intent is never to offend but we have to stop giving those who do, a free pass!

Life is so much better when you stop caring about what everyone thinks, and start to actually live for yourself!!


Sit back! A new news cycle is about to begin!



Looking forward to seeing Lesley Ann Warren again next month!



Thank you, to ALL who are mentioned in this blog for showing me that it is up to ME to lead by example!


With grateful XOXOXs ,
 






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NO COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT INTENDED.  FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY!


Please do what YOU can to be more aware that words and actions DO HURT...but they can also heal and help!  

Richard Skipper Celebrates...The Birthday of EY (Yip) Harburg.

The cast includes Karen Oberlin, Leslie Orofino, Maureen Kelley Stewart,...and a few more surprises! With musical direction by Daryl Kojak (with Rex Benincasa on percussion, and Jeff Carney on bass). The Laurie Beechman Thater 1PM April 8th

 12 Days From Today!  Check out our promo video: https://youtu.be/MfRwPjs45Vc 

Keeping America great through Art!

Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!
Please leave a comment and share on Twitter and Facebook
Keeping Entertainment LIVE!

 
TILL TOMORROW...HERE'S TO AN ARTS FILLED DAY

Richard Skipper, Richard@RichardSkipper.com







Saturday, March 25, 2017

Clifford Bell Honors Barbra Streisand for Project Angel Food


The important thing is to go with what you've got.
-Barbra Streisand, Vogue (mid 70's)

Happy Saturday! March 25th, 2017
March 24 is the 84th day of the year. There are 281 days remaining until the end of the year. 
It is a beautiful day here in New York and I am listening to Barbra Streisand singing Here We Are At Last in the background as I embark on today's blog. 
How appropriate because today I celebrate Clifford Bell and HIS celebration of Barbra Streisand.
CLIFFORD BELL, known affectionately as "Lawrence of Cabarabia", is one of the leading producer/directors in the fields of Cabaret, Concerts, and One Person Shows. As a thirty year veteran of the Los Angeles nightclub scene, Clifford has been most identified in the past with the legendary Cinegrill at the historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, and currently at the popular MBar in Hollywood, and the prestigious Catalina Jazz Club.A BENEFIT FOR PROJECT ANGEL FOOD.
 
Mary Wilson is one of this year's entertainers!
This is Clifford's 19th year of celebrating Barbra's Birthday with a Charity event featuring all the best singers in town singing songs associated with Ms.S. - This year is OUR NAME IS BARBRA 2017: A BENEFIT FOR PROJECT ANGEL FOOD.

They feature popular performers from the world of Broadway, TV and Cabaret delivering both fresh and familiar takes on anything from The Gospel According to Barbra-

Very exciting entertainers this year include Mary Wilson (The Supremes), Allan Rich
Brad Ellis and Eydie Alyson
("The Bodyguard" Soundtrack/Barbra's song "Lessons To Be Learned"), Ilene Graff (TV's "Mr. Belvedere", Broadway's "Grease", "I Love My Wife"- mother of Nikka Lanzarone) & Bill Lanzarone, and Jodi Burnett Mandel (Cellist from Barbra tours and studio recording and daughter of legends Irene Kral  and Joe Burnett), Dana Meller: Les Miserables-Broadway, Shelly Goldstein, Mark Arthur Miller, Joshua Lance Dixon, Mitch Ellis, and more!!

Clifford Bell


Why THIS project? 
(Singing) It's the Most Wonderful Time Of The Year.....Doing OUR NAME IS BARBRA is probably my favorite thing I do all year...It's so much fun to be both creative choosing songs and to pay homage to the huge source of inspiration that the Great Barbra Streisand has been to so many.


Finish this sentence: I'm very bad at... accepting  the worst in people.  Being hurt or disappointed by someone still can destroy me.

Who are your artistic heroes – who have had an impact on you and your work?

Barbra. (Obviously!) Peter Allen.  Oprah.

Name one thing you would like to change about this profession and why

I wish there was more transparency.  Most of the negative things I know about and/or have experienced could have only happened in the cloak of darkness and secrecy.  I think if everything was seen, a lot of bad behavior would be curtailed.

Ilene Graff and Ben Lanzarone
What is it about the business that you think has changed for the better...and for the worst since you began in it? 

I think the Internet has made power more available to the general public...Opportunity is much more available than it was when I began...which is great.

For the worse....I think it's a free for all, which is good for opportunity but bad for standards, or measurements of merit.

How important are the arts to you personally?  

100%  More important than food/water/air.

Are you making the kind of art that you envisioned you'd be making? 
Yes...I think I am.  I did used to think I would have stayed young and cute for longer than I did, but other than that I'm really proud of what I do.

Has it really been 55 years? 1962 opened this week... I Can Get It For You Wholesale at the Shubert Theatre on Broadway.

How would you describe the arts scene where you grew up?
I had two upbringings...One very cultured..while my parents were married...My father was a Symphony Conductor and I was brought up in the world of music.   And two, after my parents' divorce, my Mother remarried a man that had a non-Musical profession so it was less filled with the Arts...but they always took me to see everything that came around and they were always up on the latest Broadway music.

Gordon MacRae
Do you recall some great parties in real living rooms where people got up and sang and told stories?

Yes..in my childhood we had Gordon MacRae sing in the living room.  And Greer Garson came to the house....I was about five so the details are a little fuzzy.

Do you feel like you’re playing a party in somebody’s living room when you are on stage?

I think that is an "as if" to aspire to.

What are you most proud of?

Many many years of sobriety.  Almost three decades.

What is the one song that resonates most with you? 
Here's To Life
Barbra Streisand and Elliot Gould




If you had the opportunity to stand up for the NEA, what would you say?
I understand that this quotation has been erroneously attributed to Winston Churchill but I think it remains one of the most profound statements on the subject,,,,whoever said it...  "When asked to cut funding for the Arts during World War II, Winston Churchill reportedly said "Then what are we fighting for?"

Order your tickets TODAY for  OUR NAME IS BARBRA 2017: A BENEFIT FOR PROJECT ANGEL FOOD

Life is so much better when you stop caring about what everyone thinks, and start to actually live for yourself!!


Sit back! A new news cycle is about to begin!

Maureen Kelley Stewart had her own successful show celebrating EY Harburg
Words make you think. Music makes you feel. A song makes you feel a thought.” — E. Y. “Yip” Harburg

Let's Celebrate: Richard Skipper Celebrates E.Y. (YIP) HARBURG ON HIS BIRTHDAY! April 8th at 1PM at The Laurie Beechman Theater. 

Russ Woolley proudly presents Richard Skipper Celebrates...EY (YIP) HARBURG ON HIS BIRTHDAY!

Richard will be joined by Karen Oberlin, Leslie Orofino, Maureen Kelley Stewart AND...A MYSTERY GUEST

All under the musical Direction of Daryl Kojak with Rex Benincasa on percussion and Jeff Carney on bass. This is a 1PM SHOW! (90 minutes) At The Laurie Beechman Theater Reservations a Must! Please ReserveToday

Nobody celebrates legends like Richard Skipper.
The interior of the Laurie Beechman Theatre
If one of your faves is being feted, there's nowhere on earth more fun to be. And honestly even if you don't care about the honoree, master showman Richard and his talented crew serve up a fabulously good time.
-Ben Rimalower

$30 Cover and $20 Minimum per person

You Never Know Who You Might See There and what might happen!

https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/pe.c/10155315






Thank you, to ALL who are mentioned in this blog for showing me that it is up to ME to lead by example!


With grateful XOXOXs ,
 





Click on banner to go to website



NO COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT INTENDED.  FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY!


Please do what YOU can to be more aware that words and actions DO HURT...but they can also heal and help!  
  

Keeping America great through Art!     


Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!
Please leave a comment and share on Twitter and Facebook
Keeping Entertainment LIVE!

 
TILL TOMORROW...HERE'S TO AN ARTS FILLED DAY

Richard Skipper, Richard@RichardSkipper.com