Friday, June 8, 2018

Between Yesterday and Tomorrow: Marieann Meringolo and More

Marieann Meringolo
If your dreams don't scare you, they are too small. 
-Richard Branson

Happy Friday, June 8th, 2018!
June 8 is the 159th day of the year. There are 206 days remaining until the end of the year.
As I sit down to write today's blog, I'm listening to Cole Porter.  Tomorrow afternoon, I am hosting the final show of the American Popular Song Society. Please join us as we celebrate Cabaret and Cole on Cole Porter's 128th Birthday.
Happy Birthday, Nancy Sinatra!

Marieann Meringolo's new CD, Between Yesterday and Tomorrow, The Songs of Alan and Marilyn Bergman: Recorded LIVE at The Iridium.

It is absolutely sublime. I have been a fan of Richard Skipper Celebrates on June 24th. Details about that at the end of this blog.
Today, inspired by this CD, I am writing about a few artists that inspire me that I hope you will support. Go see them! If you can't, treat a friend.
Marieann's since I first heard her sing with Spiritus years ago.  She has a voice that can only be described as heavenly. Get this CD. I'm also thrilled to say that Marieann is a guest in the next edition of
I also got the latest CD of Andrew Heller, Sinatra All The Way featuring The Nelson Riddle Orchestra.
Ever since I can remember, from the first moment I got my hands on my first album, I loved to immerse myself in musical worlds. I can still feel the excitement when hearing the sound of Judy Garland on my first album, The Best of Judy Garland. I still have that album. In time, it became more than mere immersion. I would use these albums to escape, to drown my sorrows with distractions.
I was bullied at school and didn’t have many friends. I was sufficiently different from my parents and siblings, who I struggled to talk with. Instead, all I did was play music for hours on end. I would go to my room and spend days listening to my tape recorder of things I taped from TV.
I discovered a world I was competent in, a place where I could lose the dread of my embodied existence and enter a virtual world that seemingly held more meaning.
The pattern was set.
Speaking of Judy Garland, June 8, 1935:  “The Garland Sisters” performed at the Lomita Theater in Lomita, California.  This was Judy’s father’s, Frank Gumm’s, theater.  At this point, both Judy’s mother and father began using the “Garland” name instead of the family surname of “Gumm.”  Ads for the theater at this time referred to it as “Garland’s Lomita Theater.”
The Garland Sisters performing at the Paramount Theater in Los Angeles in March 1935 (Photo courtesy): Scott Brogan
This was the first of only two appearances the sisters made on the stage of their father’s last movie house.  The second (and last) was on June 14, 1935.

June 8, 1937:  Judy’s weekly appearance on the “Jack Oakie’s College” show broadcast by CBS
Radio.  Judy sang “All God’s Chillun Got Rhythm” and “Shine On Harvest Moon.”  No recordings of the show are known to exist.  Also on this date Louella Parsons reported that Judy would be starred in a film titled Ugly Duckling.  Luckily the title was changed to Everybody Sing.
Happy Early Birthday to Judy! Sunday
Happy Best Friend’s Day!
You see? There’s ALWAYS something to celebrate!

Performances to See in N.Y.C. This Weekend and Beyond!

Everyone needs to take time off every now and then. Further, you need this time to connect with yourself and to be able to gain greater expression. Take a musical break and see a LIVE show! OR Just got off of your devices and get out and enjoy what New York has to offer! There is great power to introspect in this method, and plenty of information out there to help you along.
Come to Piermont where I live and as you walk on the Old Erie Path, visit the train station and step back in history and then join me in the city as I celebrate Broadway and The Tony Awards.
Sunday - Tony Night at the Palm - the place to be. Hosted by Tony Winner for Jersey Boys Christian
Hoff, emceed by the “Dean of Broadway History “ ME! Oh what a night!!!
Speaking of the Tonys, The Boss is coming—and you can watch him perform live! Click HERE for more info.

Speaking of the Tony Awards, Glenda Jackson has already won a 2018 Drama Desk Award for her work in the Broadway revival of Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women, which I love and Sunday night, my prediction is that she will also take home the Tony Award for the role. But for Jackson, a two-time Oscar winner, and five-time overall Tony nominee, the great reward is in being onstage. Read MORE

What can make Tony Awards night even more thrilling? A Tony year in which both the leading actor and actress of a play (or musical) walk off with Tony honors. Read MORE

TUESDAY EVENING, JUNE 12 AT 7:30PM for the Paper Mill Playhouse East Coast premiere ofMarvin Hamlisch and Ester Dean.
Half Time, a new musical, with book by Bob Martin and Chad Beguelin, music by Matthew Sklar, lyrics by Nell Benjamin and additional music by
HALFTIME at  Paper  Mill  Playhouse;  Photo  by  Matthew  Murphy; The Company of  Half  Time
Half Time is directed and choreographed by Tony Award winner Jerry Mitchell and co-choreographed by Nick Kenkel with music direction by Charlie Alterman. The cast features five-time Emmy nominee Georgia Engel (“The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” The Drowsy Chaperone) and Tony and Emmy Award winner Lillias White (The Life, “Sesame Street”) along with André De Shields (The Wiz, The Full Monty, Ain’t Misbehavin’) and Tony award winner and Broadway legend Donna McKechnie (A Chorus Line) who with this all-star cast tell the uplifting true story of ten New Jersey seniors with extraordinary dreams.
 Half Time is based on the motion picture Gotta Dance, directed, written and produced by Dori Berinstein.
The principal cast features André De Shields as Ron, Georgia Engel as Dorothy/Dottie, Donna McKechnie as Joanne, Lillias White as Bea, who are joined by Haven Burton as Tara, Lori Tan Chinn as Mae, Nkeki Obi-Melekwe as Kendra, Nancy Ticotin as Camilla, Madeleine Doherty as Estelle, Tracy Jai Edwards as Alison Prager, Mary-Claire King as Jenny, Lenora Nemetz as Fran, and Kay Walbye as Muriel.
HALFTIME at  Paper  Mill  Playhouse; Photo by Jerry  Dalia; From left to right:  Garrett  Turner,  Georgia  Engel  (Dorothy/Dottie),  Alexander Aguilar and Lori  Tan  Chinn(Mae).

Rounding out the cast are Alexander Aguilar, Ken Ard, Sydni Beaudoin, Tami Dahbura, Paula DeLuise, Gabriela Garcia, Talya Groves, Kathryn Kendall, Valton Jackson, Summerisa Bell Stevens, Garrett Turner and Gayle Turner.
Half Time began performances May 31, 2018, for a limited engagement through Sunday, July 1, 2018, at Paper Mill Playhouse (22 Brookside Drive) in Millburn, NJ.  Half Time is produced in association with Dori Berinstein and Bill Damaschke. Bank of America is the Major Sponsor of Half Time. Paper Mill Playhouse's 2017-2018 season is proudly sponsored by Investors Bank.

JayCee Drieson is at Sergio’s in Massapequa on Friday, June 15 It will be a Great night of Celebrating the music of Streisand And Friends!! Only $35.00 pp includes Dinner and Show!

You have one more chance to see it! MONDAY JUNE 18, 7pm at PANGEA. Go check out Lisa Yaeger and celebrate the musical legends from New Jersey! Tickets are on sale now. MAC discount code is JerseyG

David Damiani and The No Vacancy Orchestra with special guest Renee Olstead
Sunday, Jul 8, 2018
Birdland NYC
Doors: 5:00 PM
Show: 6:00 PM
Order Tickets HERE.
Here is the link to the new CD.

Hello, Donna Murphy!
Donna is thrilled to be putting on her Sunday clothes again as Dolly Gallagher Levi in Hello, Dolly on Broadway! She will return for five Sundays at 3pm (7/22, 7/29, 8/5, 8/12 and 8/19) and will play her final performance on Monday night 8/20 at 7pm!

Kerry Washington (ABC’s Scandal) and Steven Pasquale (this season’s Junk) will return to the stage to headline the Broadway premiere of Christopher Demos-Brown’s American Son. Tony winner Kenny Leon (represented on Broadway this season with Children of a Lesser God) will direct.

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

Danny, ME, Lauren 'Coco' Cohn, Jackie Joseph
June 24th, 2018

Russ Woolley Proudly Presents
Richard Skipper Celebrates
New York and Pride

Last Show of this Season

1 PM Brunch Show Laurie Beechman Theater 
As we Celebrate Pride, we celebrate Michael Kirk Lane, Sue Matsuki, Marieann Meringolo (joined by Doyle Newmyer), Tanya Moberly, and Sheree Sano
Tickets are now on sale! Reserve TODAY and Let's Celebrate! 
So — Order your tickets now online… RESERVATIONS A MUST!

Musical Direction Matthew Martin Ward with Rex Benincasa on Percussion, Steve Doyle on bass, and Erik Lawrence on Sax.
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, June 24th - 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 each other. 

So — Order your tickets now online…
A Few Audience Testimonials about Richard Skipper Celebrates
What a fabulous show!! Richard Skipper leads a pack of draw dropping talent that had the packed room constantly on its feet applauding!! Richard was his charming self interviewing the fiercely talented cast, then bringing on stage, out of the audience a young hopeful actress!! Incredible! Best show in town.
Lisa Martinez, Garnerville  NY

Wow! After interviewing Richard Skipper on our podcast Behind the Curtain: Broadway's Living Legends, I was on Cloud 9. Well, his show put me on Cloud 11! How he is able to create such magical events, time and time again astounds me. Richard Skipper is a national treasure and no one can really call themselves a New Yorker until they have seen a Richard Skipper show.
Robert W Schneider,

I was so happy that we attended Richard Skipper Celebrates, thanks to Arlene Jacks, who recommended it very highly.  What a great experience - it was fun, heartwarming and sentimental.  Great performers and great audience!  What a treat to see Kathryn Crosby - that really took me back in time to all the Bing Crosby Christmas specials. Richard: you and your team are a class act!
Diane Merklinger, Briarwood, New York

The show is also made possible by Wright Bros. Real Estate.  

Season Three Begins September 9th!

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, 

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