Saturday, May 7, 2011

Zani's Furry Friends Today at Birdland!

Today's the day! And, no, I'm not writing about The Kentucky Derby. I's the Zani's Furry Friends benefit at Birdland at 4:30. Sara Rice, God bless her, is tireless in the work that she does with this organization and I am thrilled that she asked me to be a part of it!
So come to Birdland! I guarantee a GREAT TIME!Today's show is called LOVE MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND.
4:30PM. Hayley Mills is scheduled to appear. I wrote about Hayley in a previous blog. Hayley Mills

A host of theatre and cabaret performers are lending our talents to an "afternoon of song to help our furry friends" May 7 in Manhattan.
Hayley Mills and Lee Roy Reams co-host the event, which features Elena BennettElena Bennett and Fred Barton, singer/pianist duo extraordinaire, joined forces at the former Eighty-Eights.

Carole DemasCarol Demas has had a distinguished career as an actress and singer in theater, television, and film. She guest-starred on numerous television shows, including "Kojak" (1973), "Mannix" (1967), "Barnaby Jones" (1973), "The Edge of Night" (1956), and "As the World Turns" (1956). Off-Broadway, she starred in The Fantasticks and other productions. On PBS, Carole was a featured guest on Great Performances' Best of Broadway. She has been a principal performer in over 200 commercials for TV, on jingles and voice-overs for radio and television, and has starred in her own cabaret act and in regional theater productions across the country. Carole has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Vermont and Master's Studies in Early Childhood Education at New York University.
Natalie Douglas NATALIE DOUGLAS was born in Los Angeles, California and began her singing career at the ripe old age of four in her mother's kitchen. Given a song to learn while her mother was preparing dinner (really in order to get Natalie out of her hair), Natalie then performed the song for her parents after the meal. Since that auspicious beginning, this performer has garnered rave reviews with multiple awards and nominations for her unique mix of jazz, blues, standards and contemporary country music blended together with the assistance of her Musical Director, Avenue Q's Mark Hartman.
She is a seven-time MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs) Award Winner, a Nightlife Award Winner and a Backstage Bistro Award Winner with appearances at Birdland Jazz Club (her NYC home), The Kennedy Center, Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Herbst Theatre, Town Hall and other New York City, National and International venues. In addition, there is Natalie’s annual New Year’s Eve collaboration with Mark Hartman – a Greenwich Village tradition - which materializes each December 31st at the Duplex Cabaret Theatre.
Rich Flanders,

Janice Hall

Jon & Lynn.
Their sound has been called “Chamber Punk.” Energetic, danceable, fun, beautiful. Throbbing, energetic but gentle. Rooted in jazz, bluegrass and baroque. Funky and sweet.Jon and Lynn’s minimal arrangements express the essence of the American Songbook, 60’s Pop and contemporary jazz. Jon Burr, acoustic bass virtuoso, has worked with Tony Bennett, Chet Baker, Stephane Grappelli, Barbara Cook and others. Artist/curator Lynn Stein returns to her musical roots as a vocalist.
Sue Matsuki
Tanya MoberlyTanya Moberly is probably best known for her cabaret work. She has been performing at Don't Tell Mama since 1998 when she co-created the“The Blonde Leading The Blonde” with partner Susan Hackett and writer/director Ilona Vellios. The show ran for 8 episodes over the course of 5 years and received a MAC Award nomination in 2000 for special production.
Sarah Rice

Steve Ross"No one performing today is his equal. They just don't make 'em like this anymore."
- Philip Elwood, Chronicle Jazz

Steve Schalchlin(Steve Schalchlin and Jim Brochu in The big voice)
Richard Skipper, THAT'S ME!
Julie Wilson"Julie Wilson looks the part. She has the humor, the tolerance, she loves doing it, and it comes across so clearly." Bobby Short, singer/pianist.

and David Vernon
We will be accompanied by Fred Barton, piano;
Ian Herman, pianohe incredibly talented composer, musical director, and extraordinary pianist, Ian Herman, is introduced by Mary Bond Davis. However, Mary digresses before his introduction with a story about a video shoot. Shot by actor-turned-film maker Michael Stever - 5/31/09.
Mark Janas, piano

Sean Harkness, guitar

Amy Ralske, cello;

Jonathan Russell The New York Times has written "When he solos, he embraces his instrument and enters a private cocoon, where he conjures sophisticated improvisations on the melodies of jazz standards".Jonathan Russell is an exciting sixteen-year-old jazz violinist who bridges generational and cultural gaps with improvised jazz. In addition to performing across the country on jazz violin he is currently performing in an Off Broadway show One Night With Fanny Brice. His performances in Europe and throughout the United States at clubs and jazz festivals such as the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and the Bohém Jazz Festival in Hungary have earned the respect and praise of seasoned jazz musicians such as Wynton Marsalis, Bucky Pizzarelli and the late Les Paul.

violin Eve Weiss,

Jon Burr, bass
and Rex Benincasa, percussion
JoAnn Yeoman directsBirdland is located in Manhattan at 315 West 44th Street. For tickets, priced $15-$50 plus a $10 food/drink minimum, call (212) 581-3080 or (877) 435-9849.Zani's Furry Friends rescues dogs, cats and bunnies right out of the euthanasia rooms of the city's animal shelters, gives them medical care, kindness and loving attention and gets them adopted into loving homes through their own tremendous effort and many times paid for out of their own personal pocketbooks.

All I have to do today is bask in the LOVE and talent in that room! I cannot wait and I hope to see YOU there!
(Buy THE THOUGHT EXCHANGE by David Friedman

Tomorrow's blog will be YOU TELL ME...the first three suggestions I receive!

Richard Skipper,

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