Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Wendy Anne Russell...She's one of THOSE GIRLS!

Tonight at The Laurie Beechman Theatre!
We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about.
-Charles Kingsley

Happy Wednesday, April 20th, 2016!
April 20 is the 111th day of the year. There are 255 days remaining until the end of the year. As I sat down to begin my blog, Johnny Mercer's One More for the Road was playing on the radio.
Wendy Anne Russell
What a great Primary Day in New York yesterday, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are the front runners.
Wednesdays are a good work day. Get all of your hardest tasks completed today so the rest of the week is easy ; )
1939 – Billie Holiday records the first civil rights song "Strange Fruit".

Tonight is a show called Those Girls at the Beechman. Two of those girls, Wendy Russell and Karen Mack, I know personally.  I sat down to get a little more insight into Wendy recently. Here are the results: A native New Yorker, Wendy has performed as a jazz and cabaret vocalist at Clubs in and around NYC including the Allen Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Hudson Theater, Don’t Tell Mama, The Duplex, The Metropolitan Room, etc.  She just completed a well reviewed run of her Cabaret show Where Have I Been All My Life?She was part of the series Under the Covers where she earned high praise for her  People show.  She was a featured soloist in the First Accoustics Concert series, working with Stefan Bauer (vibraphone) and his trio.  She regularly collaborates with Director Lennie Watts and Music Director Steven Ray Watkins. 
Lisa Yaeger, Savannah Brown, Chase O'Donnell and Wendy Anne Russell.
She began her Cabaret career with the show Survive It: A Reality Cabaret conceived and written with Ave Lindon and Margaret Curry. Wendy is a singer, songwriter, arranger and a sought after back-up vocalist.  She has performed back up for many acclaimed Cabaret Artists such as Lennie Watts, Jim Speake, Kathleen France, Eve Eaton, and Kim Grogg, among others.

Jim Speake, Eve Eaton, Tracy Stark, Lynne Hildebrand, Wendy Anne Russell and Karen Mack.
Stacy Sullivan, Wendy Anne Russell and Richard Becker.
What is your advice for people to get past their own needs to really be selfless and do something to make the world a better place for all people.
Do unto others…Hold the door for people, say please and thank you, smile!
Volunteer for causes you believe in (Soup kitchens, political candidates, human rights org, Etc) or institutions that you love (Museums, Theaters, etc).
Say this every day (in your head or out loud) to other people and, maybe even more importantly, to yourself:  “I’m sorry, I forgive you, Thank you, I love you”

What motivates you to do what you do?
The whole process of music making.   I love singing. I love teaching singing & performing.  I love almost any type of music.  I love harmony     and blending.  I love finding music and rhythm in ordinary, every day things - like the sound of my wiper blades when it’s raining.  I love taking a song and turning it inside out, making it a whole new experience.
Khader Khalilia, Wendy Anne Russell, Cara Arcuni, Helen Davies and Walter Leong.
Music making and collaborating with others is what keeps my fire burning. I like working with people who think they can’t sing, and watching them find a voice - even just for their own personal pleasure.  It’s very important to me that people allow themselves that.  I like working with children because they are already pretty free and haven’t learned yet how to be self conscious.
Our show, Those Girls (playing tonight in NYC at the Laurie Beechman Theatre), showcases all that
I love about music.  The women I’m working with are spectacular: Eve Eaton, Rachel Hanser, and Karen Mack. 
You can find all the info at
Loren Finkelstein, Kim Grogg Marin, Lennie Watts, Pamela Russell, Wendy Anne Russell, Karen Mack, Eve Eaton, Helen McGivney Glassman, Lynne Hildebrand and Steven Ray Watkins

What advice would you give entertainers who wish to pursue a career in this business?
Study, study, study and practice, practice, practice your craft…there’s always improvement to be made and something new to discover - be it about yourself or your material.  Take classes, trust your instincts but listen to your instructors.  Do the work!  Don’t compare yourself to anyone else - make your own mark. 
Tower of terror.with Randy Cohen Lester, Lynne Hildebrand, Amorika Amoroso, Loren Finkelstein, Steven Ray Watkins, Helen McGivney Glassman and Wendy Anne Russell.

What are you currently reading?
I don’t read a lot these days (other than books to my grandchildren) but I like a good detective story and I love books by Chefs… Life on the Line by Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas and Tender at the Bone by Ruth Reichl.   And my all time favorite book is The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-ExupĂ©ry
Loren Finkelstein, Wendy Anne Russell, Steven Ray Watkins, Lennie Watts, Pamela Russell, Lynne Hildebrand and Karen Mack

If you could travel to ANY destination for a vacation or getaway, regardless of cost or practicality, where would if be... and why?
France - especially Paris.. I love the food, the fashion, the character, the Eiffel Tower, the people, the sounds, the smells…. Also, I’d like to go to Italy since I’ve never been.  Wait, also Hawaii because it’s so incredibly beautiful.  Also Prince Edward Island, Costa Rica, Spain…etc.

What’s Your Specialty that might surprise many?
Re-decorating/re-organizing/re-purposing a room with what one already has.  I am good at organizing anything. 

If you changed careers, what would it be and why?
I would love to have a chocolate shop (shoppe?).  I love chocolate and started a (very small) chocolate truffle business a couple of years ago.  I imagine myself in a storefront with lace curtains, beautiful marble counters and black and white octagonal floor tiles, with fancy display cases filled with delicious truffles and other confections.  Me and my team in the kitchen creating amazing sweets.

Three words that describe you and why?
Optimistic - No matter how overwhelmed I get, I always think things are going to work out
Extravagant - I’m usually all about saving money except when it comes to certain dining experiences and travel.  I love eating in really good restaurants - I’ve been known to fly to Chicago just to eat at ‘Alinea’ (the restaurant owned by the aforementioned Grant Achatz)…btw, it was amazing and worth every single penny!!
Indecisive - I couldn’t come up with a third word, there were too many to choose from…That happens a lot.
Please Don't Miss Wendy Anne Russell in Those Girls at The Laurie Beechman Theatre!

In Other Entertainment News
BB Kings. May 4, 8PM in the big room, The Quentin Tarantino Songbook.
Scott Coulter, Jessica Hendy, Blaine Krause, Mike Schwitter, Victoria Cook
The Band - John Chudoba (Trumpet - Motown), Brian Pereschi (Trumpet - The Color Purple), Steve Lyon (Sax - Something Rotten), Micah Burgess (Guitar - Beautiful, School of Rock), Matt Scharfglass, Josh Plotner, Donna Kelly
Songs: Little Green Bag, Son of A Preacher Man, Long Time Woman, Street Life, Heartbeat Its A Love Beat, Across 110th Street, Hooked On a Feeling, Midnight Confession, You Never Can Tell, Baby Love, The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia, If Love Is A Red Dress (Hang me in Rags), I Gotcha
Order Tickets HERE. 

Celebrating more than 50 years of world renowned superstar Liza Minnelli's show-stopping performances, HATS OFF TO LIZA - A MUSICAL CELEBRATION will fete the icon and living legend through music, song and dance at The Metropolitan Room on Friday, May 13, 2016. (Read MORE)

Notable Birthdays on This Date
4/20 TV Birthdays,all RIP: host Mother Angelica;musician Tito Puente;actress Edie Sedgwick;singer Luther Vandross
Bruce Cabot (April 20, 1904 – May 3, 1972) is probably best remembered as Jack Driscoll in King Kong (1933) and for his roles in films such as the 1936 version of Last of the Mohicans, Fritz Lang's Fury and the western Dodge City. He was also known as one of "Wayne's Regulars", appearing in a number of John Wayne films beginning with Angel and the Badman.

Remembering the greatjazz musician and composer Lionel Hampton on his birthday with hisMidnight Sun. Hampton worked with jazz musicians from Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, and Buddy Rich to Charlie Parker, Charles Mingus, and Quincy Jones. In 1992, he was inducted into the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, and was awarded the National Medal of Arts in 1996.

beautiful song

Why Bernie staying in the race for a little bit longer could ultimately benefit Hillary. CLICK HERE

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending. - Maria Robinson

Thank you, to all of the artists mentioned in this blog for the gifts you have given to the world and continue to give!

With grateful XOXOXs ,


Check out my site celebrating the legacy of Dolly Gallagher Levi!


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

American Popular Song Society Presents Annual Songwriter's Showcase Hosted by Award Winning Songwriter Tom Toce

Here's to an INCREDIBLE tomorrow for ALL...with NO challenges!
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Keeping Entertainment LIVE!

Richard Skipper,


Don't Tell Mama Presents...

Wendy Scherl returns in What Do You Do All Day?  Directed by the incredible Helen Baldasarre with great musical direction by Matthew Martin Ward. Wendy is an amazing vocalist with a rangy and rich sound. “This is someone to watch!” Go see her, you can thank me later.
- Sue Matsuki   In “What Do You Do All Day”, Wendy Scherl shares anecdotes and song about the numerous hats she wears every single day as a wife, a mother of two boys and two dogs, a short order cook, a daughter, a house manager, a chauffeur and Cabaret Singer! Her show is both touching and real, theatrical and funny!
This show WILL sell out! So reserve today and be a part of his star studded audience!
You will truly be amazed by what this full-time executive director of a family of four accomplishes every day!  Wendy will wow you with both her choice of material and her talent!
After graduating from Northwestern University with a BA in Theatre, Wendy performed in numerous
regional theatre productions around the country, including some of her favorite productions: Hair (The official 20th Anniversary Production in Chicago), Grease (numerous roles), Annie (Grace), The Pajama Game (Babe), and Godspell.  

$20.00 Cover/Two Drink Minimum Cash Only Reserve at 212-757-0788 (after 4PM or through me)

Richard Skipper Celebrates is the publicist for Wendy Scherl and What Do You Do All Day? at NYC's Don't Tell Mama. For press reservations, interview requests, or more information, contact Richard Skipper at or 845-365-0720

Check out Wendy's Interview with Sue Brender HERE

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