Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Dr. Bradley and MORE!

If you think you can do it, you can.
Naturalist John Burroughs

Happy April 17th, 2018!
April 17 is the 107th day of the year. There are 258 days remaining until the end of the year.
It is an overcast cold day here in New York. As I sit down to begin today's blog, There's No Business Like Show Business is playing in the background.
Lots going on in the world. We live in complex times, with a lot of history. We must remember how far we’ve come, and not forget how far we can still yet go. Ideas are the lifeblood of business.
Today, I celebrate Bradley Jones.
He made his Broadway debut in ‘77. The Bus and Truck of JC Superstar landed at The Longacre Theater for the ‘78 holiday season. They ran 4 months.  Thrilling to Daniel. Broadway!

He also did a lovely National Tour of My Fair Lady for a year with Douglas Fairbanks JR.
Photo credit Michael Stever
Lots of dinner theater, Westbury, and off-broadway show in between. He was an acrobat.

A Chorus Line got Bradley for the original Bus and Truck in ‘80. Michael Bennett hired Bradley. 93 cities in 9 mos. Split weeks and one nighters. It was a young company, and many of them got introduced to cocaine. That is all in his upcoming show. Broadway called in ‘81 and he stayed until ‘89. His knees blew out 9 months before the show was to close at The Shubert. Finis. Applause.


 The veteran Broadway chorus boy Bradley Jones, who segued into a career as a psychoanalytic clinician and author, is currently in the midst of a crowd-pleasing comeback to the stage.  His cabaret debut, which took off in a sold-out, one-night stand at The Metropolitan Room last year, continues for three nights this spring.  “Dr. Bradley’s Fabulous Functional Narcissism: The Solo Show,” Jones’s raucously funny and insightful coming of age story that rockets through the ‘60s of his childhood, through the ‘70s and ‘80s of his Broadway years, all the way to the present, gets started for two
nights at The Laurie Beechman at the West Bank Café, 407 West 42nd Street, on Friday, May 11, at 7pm and Saturday, May 19, at 1pm.  The fun continues for a third date at Don’t Tell Mama, 343 West 46th Street, on Friday, June 15 at 8pm.
Jones is supported by a quartet, The Freudians, led by Mike Pettry, the show’s music director, on piano, with Alden Banta on woodwinds, Jacob Silver on bass, and Zack Eldridge on percussion.
Joined Baayork Lee's tour in ‘90 to make more money for school.He was also in the original “Angels, Punks, and Raging Queens: an AIDS Anthology” around the time of the pandemic. That show was a miracle. That was the swan song. Daniel went to undergraduate, masters, doctoral studies, and 5 years of formal psychoanalytic training.He opened s successful practice and has been doing it for 20 years.

Enjoy our Interview...
Are you unstoppable?
Oh Christ, Richard, I HOPE not! When I am inadvertently being unkind, grumpy, or overly narcissistic I hope I can either catch it myself or be open enough for someone to STOP me! In terms of my career as a psychoanalyst, I also hope I can be stopped when I am pushing a patient a little too hard, or have too much of an agenda for them.
An early headshot
I am fallible, so I hope I can be stopped when the need arises. As for show business, it is great to be back. It feels like being home again, and in many ways, I feel much more confident now than I did when I was making a living at it. Am I unstoppable? When I ignore the silly things I tell myself about not measuring up, then I suppose I am perhaps closer to being more “unstoppable” than ever!
Just do it, and see what happens.

If you had unlimitless funds, what's one purchase you would instantly make and why?
I would “buy" the “mental health" field. I would rename it “emotional health,” and I would socialize people’s access to treatment. I resent the fact that people have to pay so much money for “getting better.” I would also not put any limits on treatments. They would take as long as they need to take, and everyone would get paid.

I would also buy Broadway Dance Center, and I would make sure everyone who needed a scholarship had a scholarship. Kids coming to NY these days have such a hard time of it. They need access to training and everything is so goddam expensive.

How has the Trump Era affected your art? 
I want more now than ever, to tell the truth as I see it. I want to tell my big gay ass truth about equality and the need for all of us to continue to work on developing understanding and empathy for the struggle of others. Trumpity has no empathy or concern for others. I think he should be tortured by being put into a room with nothing but unyielding love and understanding coming his way. Day after day of love and empathy. He would eventually crack, and he would suffer from the intense mourning he would have to face around the losses he has incurred around not having enough emotional care and empathy throughout the course of his miserable life. That would be an intense and vindicating way to see him get out of our hair. His brittle narcissistic shell would explode, and he would fragment into a million sad and unhappy pieces. Now that would be something to see, wouldn’t it?

Has your perspective changed any since starting in this business? 
Yes. I mean I am not in the business anymore, but my perspective has changed on performing. I don’t need it the same way. The desperation has been somewhat attenuated, and love the collaborative process of working on a show. I am also enjoying to process of learning to sing again. Singing has always been hard for me, but I’ve slowed down enough to be a bit more patient with the process. As a kid, I was a kinesthetic learner so dancing came easily. But singing meant I had to face a lot of shame about not being good enough for too long, and I could not tolerate it. So I would start and stop, and I was constantly getting in my own way. Now, I can tolerate the sounds that come out of my face even if they are HORRIBLE, and am learning just what there is to do to make it better. Eric Michael Gillett is a great singing teacher.

Please tell us about Bradley Jones and how you got started in this business?
 I saw the musical Oliver! in 1963, and like “the first Broadway show” does for so many of us, it irrevocably changed my subjectivity. I was never the same after seeing that show. At that moment, I became desperate to be in the theater. I did the High School Theater thing (and Staples High in Westport, CT. really turns out talent), and I was a star in my hometown. People still remember my Nicely, Nicely! I was actually a good little actor. I learned “the method” early on, and carried that training with me. But I loved musicals too, and when it came time to decide whether to “act” or to be a “chorus boy,” there was no choice for me. I had worked many summers at The Westport Country Playhouse and apprenticed at many other summer theaters.
I met many dancers who became my mentors, and I followed their lead to the dancing studios in NY during the 70’s. Ron Forrella, Frank Hatchet, Luigi, and Charles Kelley.
I followed Chuck mostly, because I was also an acrobat, and I got “good enough” fast. I chose not to go to college, came to NY in ’75 when I was 18, and got my first Broadway show when I was 20.
I didn’t stop working for four years, and then finally got into ACL, my ultimate goal at the time. I was hired by Mister “B” for the original B and T that was playing 93 cities in 9 mos, GACK!
And then I was asked to the Broadway company in ’81. I stayed until ’89. Did a lot of growing up while doing ACL. I got sober, and I went to into psychotherapy— a sacred move— the beginning of the new beginning. I was at The Shubert for the performance 3389 Gala when we became the longest-running show on B’way, and I got to stand next to Donna Mckechnie when she returned to recreate her Tony award-winning performance as Cassie. I was also at The Shubert during the AIDS pandemic, and my partner at the time was murdered. I am so grateful to have had that steady paycheck to go through all of that.

The late 1980’s really sucked, and the fact that I have survived HIV seroconversion all these years is a miracle. A goddam miracle—one I do not take for granted.
In ’87 I met a dentist—I am still with him 30years later. And I left ACL in ’89 right before the show closed at The Shubert when my knee blew out for the 2nd time.
as The Cowardly Lion in high school 
I had an inkling I wanted to be a shrink, so I did my undergraduate, my masters, my doctorate, and 5 years of formal psychoanalytic training. I went back on the road for Baayork to make more money for school. I then opened a psychotherapy practice 20 years ago, and I am very lucky to always have a full load. I love working with performers. I “get" them, and even ‘tho the business has changed I still have the ability to help steady their trajectory in the “impossible profession.”

But something had been missing, and my dearest friend in the world, KT Sullivan, has kept after me to get back on the performing horse. (I met KT at The Musical Theater Workshop in LA back in ’80, and we became fast friends.) I recently was asked to guest for someone’s cabaret show and I sang a number. I was good—really solid in front of a crowd and in my interpretation of my song. But my voice was shot, so I found my way to Eric Michael. I started to improve, and KT said, “Darling, the time is now!”
My Fair Lady '79 standing with Don Detrich
So I thought it would be fun to bring my love for psychoanalysis and musical theater together on the cabaret stage. “Dr. Bradley’s FABULOUS Functional Narcissism” was born. The show helps people understand narcissism—it is often misunderstood because people who are narcissistic are impossible. What is hard to remember is the horrible pain that lies underneath. I try to help people remember that. I also try to help them to discover their own narcissistic vulnerability, and not to feel ashamed of it. I start with being a precocious 6-year-old theater queen, move into my showbiz life (I do a whole section about ACL sung to the tune of The Glamorous Life), and finally attempt to show 15 years of intensive psychoanalysis in under 6 minutes with tap shoes! The end of the show is about where I am now. Its fun, moving, and it still makes me cry at the times I don’t expect. Those emergent moments of unexpected vulnerability are both surprising and thrilling.

What sets you apart from others in this business?
What sets me apart from others in the business is that I am not in the business.
KT Sullivan
I am here to have fun and to share my story. I don’t know what might come next, but if nothing else happens I will have had this. What a fabulous experience to have had. And KT says, “You will always have this show.” I suppose she is right.

Is doing what you do at all difficult?
For me, singing is hard. But it is getting easier. And that is what singing is supposed to be. Well, maybe it is supposed to look easy. But the struggle can really mess you up! Great metaphor for our emotional lives, non?

What do you do when you’re not performing?
I see patients, I am a gym rat, and I spend time at home with my partner and my cats Rusty and Lucky. I also am an avid theater goer.

Bradley, are you a narcissist? 
The answer is a rousing “I did get a dose." Unfortunately, emotional trauma is often a precursor to narcissistic vulnerability and I had plenty of that early on.
Original Bus and Truck Company of A Chorus Line (Photo credit: Martha Swope)
After all the treatment I have had in learning to be an analyst, and in my wish to “get better,” I’d like to think I am a narcissist in recovery. I am always honing my ability to empathize, to be interested in others, and not to feel as if I have to do everything myself. But all of this is in my show, so if you want to learn more about my “ism” come see Dr. Bradley’s.

Eric Yves Garcia
Name one person you would like to see profiled on my blog
Eric Yves Garcia. He is a talented man, with a very erudite and sophisticated personality. He seems like a class act. I would love to see you interview him if you have not done so already. He uses words gorgeously. Have you ever seen his writing? (Eric, if you see this, please reach out to me! I would LOVE to interview you).

Anything else you wish included?
I thank you for this chance for people to get to know me a bit better. My first show at The Metropolitan Room in September had three guests. I miss them and hope I can swing this show on my own.
Daniel and KT
There IS safety in numbers, but being a “fallible-ist” make the risk so much easier. You know, maybe I am more unstoppable than I think?

Richard Skipper Also Celebrates...
Church With A Two Drink Minimum is coming up this Sunday, April 22, 3pm at Sidewalk Cafe 94 Ave. A. No cover, 2 menu item minimum, love offering to go to Candy Samples aka Will Harrell's AIDS Walk Team The Candy Wrappers. Candy will be in Georgia helping her mom, but Jesse EA Pasackow and Rebekah Seely will be on hand to share about The Candy Wrappers and get all involved!

They are also celebrating Earth Day that day with music and message by Rev. Yolanda, Rev. Glen Ganaway, Doreen Younglove Philip Carroll, Mercedes Herman, your usherette and socialite Lady D*D* aka Stephen Dunford, and special musical guest,award-winning singer-songwriter, actor, Rosemary Loar who is premiering a brand new song written especially for the occasion.

May 2nd is the last chance to see Those Girls Unplugged at Pangea, and there's a nice discount if you
buy your tickets in advance online!
Wednesday, May 2nd at 7pm, the room opens 6pm
Directed by Lennie Watts and Musical Direction by Steven Ray Watkins
For tickets: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3348487
$15 online in advance (credit card/PayPal), or $20 cash only at the door (space permitting)
$20 room min. can be food as well as beverages, and they have a terrific menu. (They are also guesting in Richard Skipper Celebrates...May 20th. Details Below).
Visit their website HERE

Ronni Faust
GRAVITY IS A BITCH!!!!! RONNI FAUST'S JOURNEY THROUGH THE GOLDEN YEARS -- DEBUT ONLY FIVE DAYS AWAY!!! could miss the chance to watch a woman age before your very eyes! And give to a good cause at the same time! This show will make you laugh, cry and feel good about your self for being younger:)
Lennie Watts directs; Steven Ray Watkins music directs with Don Kelly on drums and Dan Fabricature on bass.
April 21 @ 4
April 26 @ 7
April 28 @ 4
To ensure a seat:
Don’t Tell Mama — call 212-757-0788 (after 4) or go online to donttellmamanyc.com/shows and make your reservation!
100% of proceeds from the cover charge will go to MGFA (Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America). $20 cover and two drink minimum.

Dorothy clicking her ruby-red heels in The Wizard of Oz is one of the most memorable movie
moments of all time. One deep-pocketed film fan can own a piece of that cinematic history now that a pair of the iconic shoes has been put up for sale by auction house Moments in Time. The price tag? A whopping $6 million. (Read MORE).

In a season where Disney's Frozen is heating up the box office on Broadway and an American commoner is preparing to marry an English prince, one of Broadway's most charming princesses, two-time Tony nominee Laura Osnes (Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella on Broadway) is bringing her own Princess Party to Bucks County Playhouse.
The concert is being presented in New Hope as part of the Bucks County Playhouse Visiting Artist Series. Read MORE

Now, go and do something nice for someone without expecting anything in return!

May 20th, 2018 

Russ Woolley Proudly Presents
Richard Skipper Celebrates Liberace and Friends

1 PM Brunch Show Laurie Beechman Theater 
As we Celebrate (Russ' Birthday!), we celebrate Leanne Borghesi, David Maiocco (as Liberace), David Sabella, Jim Speake*, AND Those Girls* (Karen Mack, Eve Eaton, Rachel Hanser, Wendy Anne Russell) Tickets are now on sale! Reserve TODAY and Let's Celebrate!

So — Order your tickets now online…

Musical Direction Joe Goodrich with Don Kelly on Percussion, Matt Scharfglass on bass, and Erik Lawrence on Sax
*Steven Ray Watkins will accompany Jim Speake and Those Girls 
With music, reminisces and an afternoon of fun and show business! 90 minutes of merriment and excitement …Right on the heels of the 4/8 Richard Skipper Celebrates Life in the Theatre

When and Where:
Sunday, May 20th - 1 PM, Doors open 12:15

THE LAURIE BEECHMAN THEATRE, 407 West 42nd Street (lower level of the WEST BANK CAFE) Producer: Russ Woolley $30 ticket plus $20 food/beverage minimum - exquisite and reasonably priced food and drink

Richard Skipper has assembled a great cast to Celebrate and honor … RICHARD SKIPPER has become synonymous with “feel good entertainment of the highest quality”. For decades Richard has entertained thousands and celebrated the careers of many of Theatre Row’s finest and most honored stars… The afternoon will prove to be an event where all will arrive and leave with smiles! This will be similar to the old-fashioned TV specials and series where we get to chat with and honor this Entertainment Icon.

So — Order your tickets now online…


A Few Audience Testimonials about Richard Skipper Celebrates
Richard Skipper has never been better--bristling with excitement and energy, and of course, love.
Congratulations on a well conceived and executed show -- we all enjoyed it.
Keep up the great work, Mr. Ziegfeld
-Jacqueline Parker, NYC

My mom, sister, daughter and I were lucky enough to see Richard Skipper and his stellar guests. We all highly recommend Richard 'a shows!
Christine Milton, Bronx NY

It was such fun being part of Richard Skipper Celebrates.
Richard always brings together the best groups of people and I truly enjoyed being part of the festivities. 
-Adam Shapiro, NYC
This Show Is Also Made Possible by  Wright Bros. Real Estate, Nyack New York

With grateful XOXOXs,


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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!
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Richard Skipper, Richard@RichardSkipper.com 

1 comment:

  1. Dearest Richard, Thank you for making "Dr. Bradley's Fabulous Functional Narcissism" visible to those who might be interested in seeing it. I so very much appreciate the time you spent on our interview, and it is a truly an honor to be greeted into the cabaret world with such open arms. My warm hugs to you and Beck at MediaBlitz!