Saturday, May 30, 2009


Can you believe we are ending another month? I certainly can't. I feel like I just took down my Christmas Tree and here we are going into June! A lot to cover this week so I'm jumping right in! Here goes...Hope you enjoy!

Rock star icon Billy Idol and special guests Dave Mason, co-founder of the legendary rock group Traffic, and Venice are performing today (May 30th) Saturday at a benefit to support the arts in the local public schools.

Keeping the Arts Alive! -- sponsored by Artists For The Arts Foundation and For The Arts -- will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the Samohi Greek Amphitheater on the Santa Monica High School campus.

“This concert has become our most anticipated event of the year,” said Linda Gross, executive director of the Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation.

"When professional musicians share the stage with students, the evening transforms into an ideal showcase for the caliber of arts programs we strive to bring to our students."

Idol, who was a member of the punk band Generation X, launched a solo career with a series of stylish music videos that made him one of MTV’s first big stars. In 1983, he achieved superstar status with his second LP, Rebel Yell, which included the hits "Eyes Without a Face" and "Flesh For Fantasy."

Mason, who penned the rock standard “Feelin’ Alright” while with Traffic, played on Jimi Hendrix’s landmark recording of “All Along the Watchtower,” before embarking on a solo career.

Venice band members Michael, Kipp, Mark and Pat Lennon have performed in many shows to support and sustain the arts in public schools, including numerous appearances for the Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation featuring Jackson Browne, David Crosby and Heart.
During a worsening economic crisis, Keeping the Arts Alive! will help fund and sustain arts programs in the Santa Monica- Malibu public schools, said Marty Carrillo, president of Artists for the Arts Foundation (AFTAF).
“With the state's financial crisis impacting schools and causing cutbacks, this concert gives the community an opportunity to support a positive and resounding voice for the future of our children," Carrillo said.

Tickets for Keeping the Arts Alive! on sale at
The Samohi Greek Amphitheater is located at 601 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica CA 90405.

For The Arts is a community-wide effort to raise awareness and an arts endowment to ensure that every student in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District receives a broad introduction to the arts as part of their complete education.

Artists For The Arts Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping public school districts sustain and create Arts Programs. This is our fourth consecutive year helping to fund the For The Arts endowment.

It's "wait till next year" -- again -- for a bill in the state legislature that would have provided a boost of about $30 million a year for the California Arts Council and raised the state's per-capita arts funding from last in the nation to the middle of the pack.

The bill, titled the "Creative Industries and Community Economic Revitalization Act," was put on hold until 2010 on Thursday in the Assembly's Appropriations Committee. Two earlier bills to increase arts funding had died in committees since 2005.
This one calls for one-fifth of the state sales taxes collected from arts-related businesses such as art galleries, record shops and musical instrument stores to be reserved for the state arts council's grants to nonprofit arts organizations.
With California facing deficits of more than $20 billion and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proposing cuts to healthcare, social services and education, backers of the arts funding bill took a page out of Shakespeare and decided that discretion would be the better part of valor.

The California Taxpayers' Assn. opposes the bill and will continue to do so, spokesman David Kline said -- not because of antipathy for arts funding, but because it doesn't want more revenue tagged for a restricted, predetermined use. As the state tries to unravel its fiscal problems, he said, "it's especially important not to tie your hands for the future."

I want to encourage you once more to attend the 5th Annual CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE Birthday Party - their 19th, celebrating the start of their 20th year of
publication! I actually was in the very first issue when they were hard copies and found in the clubs! This celebration will be at at THE WEST BANK CAFE/LAURIE BEECHMAN THEATER (407 West
42nd Street, NYC - 212-695-6909 - ) on
Thursday, July 9th at 7:00 pm.
Just to be perfectly clear, you must have
joined or renewed as a 2009-2010 member to get the special MEMBER PRICE of
$15 - non-member price is $25. Its like getting an instant $10 discount on
your membership. And members can purchase one additional ticket at the
member price (making a $20 discount, the cost of a SILVER membership and
more than 1/4 the cost of a GOLD membership)
There are only 75 seats on sale. The room holds more than 75 but they have to
save seats for some special people who will be our guests: the past
recipients of the JEFF MATSON and DOTTIE BURMAN awards of the past 4 years:

2005 - DC Anderson: JEFF MATSON AWARD
2006 - Hector Coris & Trudi Mann JEFF MATSON AWARD
2007 - Collette Black & Joe Regan JEFF MATSON AWARD and Maria Gentile DOTTIE
2008 - Miles Phillips JEFF MATSON AWARD and Tracy Stark DOTTIE BURMAN AWARD

This year's winners will be invited to attend no charge as well - plus each
SPONSOR receives a free ticket, and any one who joins as a $250 Crystal
Member or above gets 2 free tickets (subject to availability).

Tickets and memberships are on sale right now via the website - and we
advise you use PayPal so that your reservations will be confirmed
If you plan to send a check, please let me know first so that I
can make sure there are seats available. And don't forget - postage rates
have gone up. Please remember, all checks should be made out simply to STU
HAMSTRA and mailed to 676A Ninth Avenue #120, New York, NY 10036.
Each event lately, instead of a raffle, we have presented each paying guest
a free cabaret CD from what was once our vast collection of unopened
duplicate CDs in our collection. But the cupboard is bare - the last of the
collection were given out at the MARCH IS CABARET MONTH show in (naturally)
March. If you would like to contribute some CDs (wrapped) for this event,
send them to CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE at 676A Ninth Avenue #120, New York, NY
10036. (You can also drop them off - it is a MAILBOX ETC. store just around
the corner from DON'T TELL MAMA - closes at 7:00 pm weekdays, 5:00 pm
Saturdays and closed on Sundays).

They are lining up some fantastic performers - many of whom you have not seen
before, as well as some old favorites. And they pledge that this year's show
will be held to 90 minutes tops - there is a show following this one (what a novel idea!) at 9:30 pm
at THE LAURIE BEECHMAN so after the show everyone will move upstairs for
schmoozing and cake. Next year - Stu's 20th - he promises champagne!

Want to be a $100 sponsor? Want to run an ad in the program? Go to the
website for all the details and links to sign up. All sponsors are mentioned
in every promotional item Stu writes about the party. (You can remain anonymous, if you wish).

If you're going to be in SF...GO SEE WESLA WHITFIELD
May 26 to June 7
"As Time Goes By"
With The Mike Greensill Trio

Congratulations to all of the wonderful talents, those that won REEL AWARDS and those that didn't. Want to check out one of the winners? Check out this! You will be amazed!

Wednesday, the 27th, was Dolores Hope's (Bob Hope's wife)100th Birthday! I got a group of incredible singers together to sing at CBS Monday morning for Mrs. Hope Wednesday AM only to be told we could not sing HAPPY BIRTHDAY on the air!
Is Singing Happy Birthday in Public Really Copyright Infringement?
According to United States copyright law in United States Code, Title 17 §106, authors of works such as musical compositions have the exclusive right "to perform the copyrighted work publicly." In United States Code, Title 17 §101, the law defines publicly performing a work as "to perform or display it at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered."
This means that if you sing Happy Birthday to your family at home, you're probably not committing copyright infringement.
However, if you do it in an restaurant — and if the restaurant hasn't already worked out a deal with ASCAP — you may be engaging in copyright infringement.
How Can I Help Stop Infringement?

The best way to stop infringement is to tell the authorities and the owners so that they can follow up and arrange for a license and for royalties to be paid.
Licenses for Happy Birthday are controlled by ASCAP. While monetary royalties will be negligible for a single restaurant performance, it is the principle that is at stake.
If you have seen someone singing Happy Birthday in a restaurant, a park, or at a school, you should tell ASCAP so that they can arrange for a license.
If you are an offender, you should apologize and offer to pay whatever is due — a nickel, a quarter, a dollar — whatever ASCAP demands.
There is an overwhelming amount of copyright infringement of Happy Birthday. Let's right the balance and tell ASCAP about every one of these violations!
It's not the lyric, but the tune...they wrote the song: "Good Morning to You" for the kids in their school...they own the music now. Sad, but true.

Jerry Herman: Once in a Lifetime
The 77-year-old composer/lyricist and recipient of the 2009 Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement looks back on his career.
By: Brian Scott Lipton · May 27, 2009 · New York

Jerry Herman has one of the most enviable track records in Tony Awards history, earning nominations for six of the seven Broadway shows he created (Milk and Honey, Hello, Dolly!, Mame, Mack & Mabel, The Grand Tour, and La Cage Aux Folles) and taking home the trophy for both Dolly and La Cage.
Yet, the 77-year-old composer and lyricist simply could not be more thrilled about receiving the 2009 Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement on Sunday, June 7.

"It's without any question, the cherry on top of the sundae and a culmination of what has already been a great lifetime with more awards than my shelves can hold," says Herman. "But what makes it so special is because this award comes from my peers, and there's nothing like that. And it's also nicer than my other ones because I am not competing against someone else."
Indeed, Herman says he was shocked both times his name was called as the winner of the Tony. "In 1964, Hello, Dolly! was up against Funny Girl. Jule Styne was and is an idol of mine -- even to this moment. Just last night, I was playing 'Make Someone Happy' (from Do Re Mi) on my piano at home, because it's such a great song," he says. "And I certainly didn't expect to win over Stephen Sondheim for Sunday in the Park With George.
He's the best of the best. So both times, I wasn't going to the ceremony with any expectations, although I did think about nice things to say in case I won. I don't like long speeches, though. Even this one is going to be only two minutes.
I just think I can say it all in that amount of time. Plus I can't mention a name, since if I do, I will offend the 100,000 people who I didn't mention."

Still, one name he might mention if he could is Angela Lansbury, who won Tony Awards as Best Actress in a Musical for both Mame and Herman's 1969 musical Dear World, and who is a nominee this year as Best Featured Actress in a Play for Blithe Spirit. "Nothing could please me more to see her win; she is one of the great ladies of our time, not just one of our great actresses of our time," he says. "Our relationship is so strong and beautiful, and we have even bonded more through all these years."
That relationship has lasted for more than 40 years. "I had never met her. but I saw her in Anyone Can Whistle, and then when we were searching for our Mame, every actress in New York came and sang, but no one hit us in the heart," he recalls. "And then one day, I found the program for Anyone Can Whistle, and I said to the producers that I have an interesting idea -- Angela Lansbury -- and they laughed at me, because they thought of her as this person who played everyone's mother. So they saw her as a favor for me, and that's how she got the part.
And to be honest, I didn't even know she could dance when I called her."

Herman is also excited about the presence of two of the evening's other special honorees: actress Phyllis Newman and publicist Shirley Herz. "Phyllis and I grew up in Jersey City together, and starting out, we did each other's auditions for free for years.
I played for her and she sang my songs. And Shirley has worked on a lot of my shows. So it's almost like kismet and old home week rolled into one for the three of us to be recognized on the same night."
While Herman is still actively involved in new productions of his classic musicals, he does think the term "lifetime achievement" fully applies. "I am too old to go through the process of creating a new musical again; you know what it takes for a show to get on the stage.
And while I wouldn't have given up those days for anything in the world, I am proud of the fact that I knew when to leave that end of the business. I don't know how to write these new contemporary shows -- or want to write them. I never changed my style to fit the changing times," he says. "But the thing that makes me proudest and happiest is that I am still here to receive this extraordinary honor."

For more information or to listen to clips from Herman's shows, visit

(Cynthia Crane seen here with the late great John Wallowitch) Celebrate the Opening of the High Line
Save the date for a special evening with the Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce at Arium Café. Thursday, June 11th from 6-9 PM internationally-acclaimed, award-winning cabaret performer CYNTHIA CRANE will present her show, “I’m Confused, Therefore I Am”, with Barry Levitt at the piano and Boots Maleson on bass Ms. Crane has performed in venues from Tavern on the Green to the Musée de Montmartre in Paris.

I’m Confused, Therefore I Am, Cynthia strung them out like a fine pearl cabaret necklace . . . a lady filled with a love for life, unbounded energy, and enthusiastic about anything she decides to do. This show is a perfect demonstration of her dynamic personality - set to music. . . pure entertainment.”
Stu Hamstra Cabaret Hotline Online

"Anybody who digs quality has to be a sucker for Cynthia Crane." WGBH, Boston

"There is nothing better than a vocalist with a deep, dark vibrato and great intonation. If you like June Christy, Billie Holiday, or Ann Richards, then you will like this one." Jazz Now

"Cynthia Crane deserves to be better known...her style is real, heartfelt and deeply affecting...Crane's voice hits me right where it counts." Eric Meyers, TimeOut NY

"First rate!...Exciting chanteuse! This vivacious singer continues to impress with her considerable vocal talent." Daily Variety

The venue—Arium Café—is a star among stars in the Meatpacking District. Reviewers have said, Arium is “fabulous,” the food is “incredibly good,” and dining at Arium is like “eating in an art gallery.”
The ARIUM Cafe
31 Little West 12th Street
(Washington St./9th Avenue.)
New York, NY 10014
It's our neighborhood, and it keeps getting better! Help celebrate the opening of this important new park with an evening of good entertainment, good food, and good friends.

Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce

Tickets are just $50 or $75 for VIP seating.

Please RSVP to David Lehmann at 212-337-5923 or

Richard Skipper 845-365-0720

With grateful XOXOXs for your support!

Richard Skipper

Follow me on Twitter @RichardSkipper

1 comment: