Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Can you believe another month in 2009 is slipping through our fingers today? I certainly can't. The month began with me in Malibu. Next month, I go to Louisville, Kentucky with Steven Brinberg and Tommy Femia.
Wednesday Night at The Iguana continues to be a great success. THANK YOU, DANA LORGE! We had some incredible entertainers this month.
Here is the latest on a few of those. Sue Matsuki kicked off our month. She has gone on to a succesful run at The Laurie Beechman Theatre. I have heard through the grapevine that this is her best work to date.
Congrats on a successful run, Sue Matsuki! They are putting it up one more night Mon, Nov. 9th at 7:00 at Beechman.

The following week we were lucky enough to get Val Ryder in a rare NY appearance. He brought the house down (as usual). I hope that he will be doing his own show in the near future. We need it!

Last week, we had David Gurland and UPTOWN EXPRESS. The critically-acclaimed show, Brand New Day, returns to the Metropolitan Room for three more shows this Fall.

The show on Sunday, October 18 at 7:00 p.m. features special guest KT Sullivan, and the Thursday, October 29, and Wednesday, November 11 shows, both at 7:30 p.m. features special guest Julie Gold, whose new song "Love is Love is Love" the group is among the first to perform.

Uptown Express has been delighting concert and cabaret audiences with musical direction and arrangements by James Followell for more than two decades.
The group's diverse repertoire ranges from pop standards and show tunes to rock and roll, with a special fondness for guy groups like the Four Seasons, the Beatles and the Plaids. Uptown Express has had the privilege of performing with many Broadway and cabaret greats, including Kristin Chenoweth, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Karen Mason, Sam Harris, Terri White, KT Sullivan, Klea Blackhurst, Melissa Errico, Steve Ross, Lina Koutrakous, Sidney Meyer and Mario Cantone.

Most recently, the group has been nominated for two MAC Awards from the Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs: Recording and Vocal Group. Also, this year, the group has been honored to win awards from two distinguished New York City cabaret organizations: 2008 Best Vocal Group Recording from Cabaret Hotline for their CD "Walk Like A Man," and Outstanding Vocal Group from Back Stage Bistro for their 2008 shows at the Metropolitan Room.
Uptown Express features Christopher Caswell, John DePalma, David Gurland and Brad Parks. The group is backed by Dan Gross on drums, Sean Conly on bass and Musical Director James Followell at the grand piano. The show is directed by Lennie Watts.

For more information about Uptown Express, visit

Copies of their CD, "Walk Like A Man" are available at (SOURCE: BROADWAY WORLD.)

We are ending the month with a bang! Tonight we have Wendy Lane Bailey and an incredible line-up of entertainers! You can read more about Wendy by visiting her website:

We also have Bobby Belfry!
Rick Younger:

Stewart Brodian:

and Paul & Rochelle Chamlin
... and a few other surprises as well.

Over the next few weeks, Melissa Young, Edd Clark, and many others will be dropping by.
Please keep checking for updates.

by opening its door to the general public (non-members) for the first time.

On November 2nd, The Academy of Magical Arts is planning a week long celebration of Magic for the 100th anniversary of the structure known today as The Magic Castle, culminating in a show at the Kodak Theatre called IT's MAGIC! on Nov 8th (Attached).

There will be a number of promotions involved, featuring such personalities as Neil Patrick Harris (Board Member), Romi Dames, Sam Freberg, Phill Lewis, and Florence Henderson as well as performers from Lance Burton and Shimada to Kevin James. In fact, one of their attractions involves recreating one of Harry Houdini's great escapes by using a crane to raise escape artist, 100 feet above the Castle in a straight jacket.
In addition, for the first time in their history the World Famous Magic Castle will open its doors to the general public for one night only on Monday, November 2nd. Space is very limited so guests will be selected through a random raffle. Those interested can sign up at for a chance to win entry for 2. Dinner reservations are required for all winners. Food and Beverage charges, gratuities and valet charges are the responsibility of the winner. All contestants must be 21 years of age.
Also, all guests must be 21 years of age with photo ID and in proper dress code, which can be found at, to enter the club.

The Castle has been the location for many of Hollywood films as well as TV Series including Hart to Hart, Murder She Wrote, the Mae West Story, Monk, Barnaby Jones, Matlock, VH1, Top Chef, America's Top Model, etc.
Over the years members have included and include many of the industry's elite such as Johnny Carson, Gary Grant, Dom Deluise, Johnny Depp, Buzz Aldrin, Sean Penn, Carol Channing, Nicholas Cage, Tony Shaloub, Drew Barrymore, JoAnne Worley, Loni Anderson, Steve Martin, Buddy Ebsen, Rose Marie, Tippi Hedren, Walter Mathau, Karl Maldin, as well as some of the greatest magicians including Penn & Teller, Doug Henning, Sigfried and Roy to name only a few.

Six theatres exist within the walls of The Magic Castle, from the Parlor of Prestidigitation and the Penn & Teller stage to The Palace Theatre itself.
Most recently, their Inner Circle became home of the new Cabaret at the Castle which has featured some of Broadways biggest names including Carol Channing, Jason Graae, Ilene Graff, Phyllis Diller, Rose Marie, Richard Sherman, JoAnne Worley, Rip Taylor and a special guest during the Castle's centennial, Miss Florence Henderson. Up until now, the rarely used space has been virtually unknown to even many of the Castle members. It houses a eclectic collection including WC Field's trick pool table, Marionettes from The Sound of Music, Edgar Bergen's Ventriloquists dummies, Walt Disney's original miniature of the Haunted Mansion, the original automaton Madam Carnak that Johnny Carson (who was an amateur magician and Magic Castle member) based his famous character, and the actual Hello Dolly! bar.
Other attractions include the Hat and Hare Pub, the piano bar, where the ghost of Erma plays nightly and the Houdini seance room which contains one of the largest original collections of Houdini's great tools of the trade including his personal handcuffs, straight jacket, metamorphosis trunk and famous milk can escape.

For more information, acquire artwork or to request interviews with co-founder Milt Larsen, please contact me at 626-296-3757.
SOURCE: Harlan Boll (


If theatergoers were to be polled about what they felt was the most memorable scene in musical comedy, most would probably cite the moment when the curtains part atop the stairs of the Harmonia Gardens Restaurant and Dolly Gallagher Levi appears in her red Freddy Wittop gown and begins her descent to "rejoin the human race."
Well, Carol Channing's latest project, “For Heaven's Sake,” is a gift to the human race and includes many of the songs she came to know and love as a child with spirituals that she learned from her family. The CD features handpicked spirituals from Carol's childhood, taught to her by her father as well as hymns and rousing classic gospel tunes that southern gospel fans and people of all ages will know and love. "I remember touring the country in DOLLY and everywhere we went, they all knew these songs. It was incredibly unifying." The album produced by Larry Ferguson and John Wyatt was released on Sept 18th (2009) by Daywind Records in association with Ferguson Music with major distribution in both secular and Christian retail through New Day and Word Entertainment Association a Warner Brothers Company.

Miss Channing officially launched the CD at the National Gospel and Quartet Convention in Nashville to an estimated crowd of thousands. Miss Channing graciously signed an uncalculated number of CD's for the adoring crowd that had gathered to see the living legend, unit the last possible moment before her hectic schedule required she move on. Channing has had 10 gold records, including the original cast recording for "Hello Dolly!" which bumped the Beattle's out of the number one spot, but this is her first gospel recording. Within hours of the launch, Miss Channing was on her way to sold out engagements at The Derby Theatre in Clarksville, IN and The Dixie Carter Theatre in Huntingdon TN.

Before the official launch, Miss Channing had graciously given a CA landmark church a preview to help them raise the much needed funds to restore their 70 year old roof and beautiful stain glass windows, original to the structure. "The congregation received a blessing from Miss Carol Channing who gave a benefit concert on September 6th to help us raise funds for a new church roof. While spending time with Miss Channing, I discovered two things: one I already new and the second was a discovery.
The one I knew is that no matter what Miss Channing sings, there is JOY in the music. I know this from all of her well loved songs and I realize this as I listen to For Heaven's Sake. In fact, as I enjoy these new recordings she sings, I get swept up in the joy and sing along. The second thing, which was a discovery for me, is that Miss Channing is a very passionate woman. I admire her PASSION in wanting to restore arts funding to public schools. What a rare gift to see someone of her stature willing to spend her time, energy, and financial resources in helping others! Our prayers are with her in this endeavor!" - Rev Joe McGowan/Altadena Community Church

It is true, that Miss Channing's greatest focus is in her effort to secure a place for the arts back into the public school system, “It's got to be included in education because what it does... it fertilizes young minds.
When they are exposed to the arts, they get brighter in everything else. That's what happened to me. We don't need to save the arts, we need to help the Arts save our children." What began as a California based effort has grown with requests for Carol's help in other states including New York, Louisiana, Florida, Tennesse, New Jersey, Indiana and Illinois. So in June of 2010 the Dr. Carol Channing/Harry Kullijian Foundation for the Arts will go national starting in Nashville, TN. "Anything we can do these days to support our youth and encourage their education is too important to ignore. Without the arts, a child's ability to create and to dream is stifled. We can't afford to shortchange our children and our future by denying an arts education for all students," says Harry Kullijian, Carol's husband and foundation co-founder. Over the last three years Miss Channing has been making appearances (performing, speaking, teaching, etc.) at both public schools (Jr and Sr High) as well as universities in order to help them raise the much needed funds for their Arts Departments as well as raise awareness for the need for youth involvement and exposure to the Arts.

Next on Channing's itinerary are appearances in Los Angeles to accept The BraveHeart Arts Education Award that will be presented by a fellow blonde, Ms. Loni Anderson on Oct 3rd, followed by a CD signing and Q&A with her friend Bruce Vilanch at the West Hollywood Book Festival on Oct. 4th. She will then return to Los Angeles and be joined by colleagues Joyce Aimee, Mary Jo Catlett, Carole Cook, Jason Graae, Ilene Graff, Sam Harris, and the voices of Los Angeles' Vox Femina and NPYNK of GMCLA, as well as students from Creative Planet School of the Arts for a one night only event at UCLA's Royce Hall entitled BROADWAY VOICES for Arts in Education on Oct 11th. Slated to host the evening is the star of the Disney hit series "Suite Life of Zach & Cody," Kim Rhodes.

Miss Channing will be celebrating 89 years of age in January 2010, just weeks after her husband turns 90 and neither are showing any signs of slowing down. In fact, Channing has already scheduled recording sessions for her follow up CD (the rumor mill says it will be a jazz collection) and has given the greenlight to the production of a documentary on the ultimate Broadway baby's life to TONY Award winning director and producer Dori Berinstein. Earlier this year, Miss Channing was selected as one of the leading ladies of stage and screen for the Smithsonian Institute's first permanent Entertainment Exhibit. In addition, Stars are in the works for Walks and Walls of fame in both Palm Springs and New York, respectively. What may shock most fans of the perennial blond is that the Kennedy Center Honors has never tributed the original Jazz Baby, and, in fact, has declined honoring her every year for the last 10 years that friends and colleagues have been submitting her. When asked about it, Miss Channing simply replied,"It would be nice and I would be extremely honored, but Im not taking it personal. Every time they announce the list I couldnt agree more with their selections." A bigger than life personality with a heart to match, is it any wonder that screen icon Johnny Depp recently announced that his dream role was to portray the legend on film.

Please see PSA at or visit for more information. (SOURCE: HARLAN BOLL,

With grateful XOXOXs for your support!

Richard Skipper

Follow me on Twitter @RichardSkipper


I just love your Carol. She is so captivating by mixing a vibrant, riotous rapporté with touching moments of nostalgic storytelling and song. Her courage to charge into the audience and take no prisoners is brilliant. The audience feels teased, exposed and tickled, but never insulted nor humiliated. Carol's quick wit and warm charm win every heart in the house.
John Tidd, after Malibu appearance earlier this month

Richard - hearing you this past Wednesday nite at The Iguana VIP Lounge pull out of your back pocket a wonderful ballad as 'Old Man River' was so enjoyable! You sang with such tenderness and feeling. You really stopped me dead-in-my-tracks. I always see you exhibiting such energy and excitement in your emceeing duties that to hear you sit and hold court in that spotlight was thrilling for me and the entire audience. You are truly the "consummate entertainer".
Love, Jillian Laurain

Wednesday Night (September 16th) you were so delicious! Strawberry shortcake. You are so sweet. Your voice, the way you speak and sing.. I"ll have sweet dreams tonight thinking of your smiling face. You remind me from my childhood when I used to watch Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Dana was great too! Great show! Glad to see you back!
Sunny Leigh


Now a night out in NY to see a show at a VERY AFFORDABLE price!
Dana Lorge and I have
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NYC (240 West 54th Street 8-11PM/with an intermission). WEDNESDAY NIGHT OF
Each week
will showcase 5 entertainers.
Barry Levitt returns on keyboard and Saadi Zain on bass!
on bass. Time: 8 - 11:00 p.m.
Cover: $10 - no food or drink minimums – but remember – the food is great!

CASH ONLY PAID AT THE DOOR! This is a nice night
out with the family!
"throw back" to the variety shows we grew up with.
For more info, please call 845-365-0720 or visit _www.RichardSkipper.com_


212-765-5454. No one admitted before

October 7th: Edd Clark, Marianne Meringolo, Wendy Russell, Marcus Simeone, Maureen Taylor

October 14th: Kelly Esposito- Broelmann, Barbara Gurskey, Jonathan Long, Andrea Mezvinsky-Kolb , Martin Vidnovic

October 21st: Esther Beckman & Stearns Matthews, Leslie Orofino, Susan Winter

October 28th: Jenna Esposito returns!, Laurie Krauz & Wicked’s very own Walter ONeil, Angela Schultz, Mauricio Villa-Lobos!

November 4th: Arianna, Moira Danis, Elaine St. George, Daryl Glenn, Lynn DiMenna

December 2nd: The debut of The Marquee 5 (Mick Bleyer, Adam Hemming, Vanessa Parvin, Sierra Rein, Julie Reyburn) singing selections from their upcoming revue, "We Can Make It...The Songs of Kander & Ebb"

December 9th: Richard Holbrook, Josh Zuckerman, Helena Grenot

December 30th: Linda Fields, Ritt Henn, Annie Hughes

Keep checking

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