Marilyn Maye, JayCee Driesen , Max Von Sydow...and MORE!

Marilyn Maye, one of my favorite Dollys!
“Calling Marilyn Maye a cabaret singer is like calling Pablo Picasso a painter; it’s true all right, but it leaves a lot out!” Philadelphia Inquirer

Today is April 10th, 2016.  April 10 is the 101st day of this year. There are 265 days remaining until the end of the year.Happy Birthday to friend, the incredible Marilyn Maye! Marilyn Maye is a highly praised singer, actress, director, arranger, educator, a Grammy nominated recording artist and a musical treasure. Her entire life has been committed to the art of song and performance. If you've experienced her, you KNOW! If you haven't, you haven't seen the BEST in cabaret. When I came into the world of cabaret, I was lucky enough to call Margaret Whiting and Julie Wilson friend. I can say at he same about Marilyn Maye. I just adore her. She is the best both on and off stage. She is CLASS and ELEGANCE! Marilyn, today I celebrate YOU!
 Kari Strand put this photo montage together and Ann Hampton Callaway wrote a perky birthday ditty! Tonight at Feinstein's 54 Below, she has a birthday show. It is KILLING ME that I cannot be there. Enjoy celebrating the Diva of all Diva's by clicking HERE. Thank you, Ann and Kari!

"Like drum rolls and colored lights, Marilyn Maye is pure Show Biz, electrifying the room when she steps on the stage. She comes from a time when cabaret’s were nightclubs and the vibe was entertainment. This magical musician has many moods - - she is a treat, a bonanza. She’s entertainment!!!” Elizabeth Ahlfors, Birdland, September 2014.
The award-winning Ms. Maye appeared 76 times on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson – the record for a singer. Perhaps the simplest Marilyn Maye accolade came after one of her show-stopping appearances on The Tonight Show when turning to his audience of millions, Johnny Carson said, “And that, young singers, is the way it’s done.” 
Marilyn began her professional singing career by winning a 13-week appearance on radio station WIBW, Topeka, Kansas, at age 9. She has been committed her entire life to the art of song and performance. 
During her eleven-year engagement at the Colony in Kansas City, she was “discovered” by Steve
Allen who was the first to present her various times to a national television audience. The Steve Allen performances led her to an RCA recording contract.
Her RCA recordings consist of seven albums and 34 singles, including the first hit recordings of “Cabaret” and “Step to the Rear.” Her album with full orchestra, The Lamp is Low, is considered a classic.
Her place in American music history was assured when the Arts Council of the Smithsonian Institution selected one of her recordings, “Too Late Now” for the Smithsonian-produced album of the 110 Best American Compositions of the Twentieth Century.
Her many symphony concert appearances around the United States, include the Florida Symphony, The Philly Pops, The Phoenix Symphony, The Kansas City Symphony, The Omaha Symphony, and in June, 2015, The Pasadena Symphony, Michael Feinstein conducting. Her two appearances with the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall for tributes to Stephen Sondheim and Frank Loesser. These two performances received show-stopping applause and rave reviews.
Her more than 100 engagements in the last nine years in New York include; sold-out multiple-nights at the Metropolitan Room, Birdland, five two-week runs at Feinstein’s at The Loews Regency Hotel, New York’s Town Hall, the 92nd Street Y Theater. She presented Marilyn Maye, “Her Way”, A Salute to Sinatra - her fifth appearance at 54 Below, April, 2015 – an 8-day engagement was received by standing-room-only audiences.
In the Wall Street Journal last year, Will Friedwald wrote, “When going to hear Marilyn Maye, you’ll find on one side of the room are the Broadway and cabaret people, who tend to like their singing big and theatrical, with a lot of drama and stage presence. On the other side is the jazz crowd, who want everything hip and cool and understated, and will split the scene if anything doesn’t swing. Ms. Maye is the only pop-song diva working today who can satisfy both crowds at once”.
Cabaret Scenes magazine recently noted, “She’s reached the pinnacle of icon status. ... Ms. Maye casts a unique spell on the young.” And Opera News raved “No
entertainer gives you more in terms of great music, great theater, and great comedy.”
Broadway Times Square Chronicles’ critic, Steven Sorokoff wrote “If you’re in a Marilyn Maye audience you will become an eyewitness to the constant expansion and the proficiency of an experienced artist whose voice has thrilled entertainment connoisseurs for decades. It doesn’t get any better than this.

Marilyn Maye takes a stage like Grant took Richmond. The great cabaret singer doesn’t just reach out to an audience—she overwhelms it with song, but in the hippest, most swinging way imaginable. Will Friedwald, The New York Sun

On this date in 1970, Paul McCartney announces
George Harrison
that he is leaving The Beatles for personal and professional reasons.
The legendary Beatles spent the better part of three years breaking up in the late 1960s, and even longer than that hashing out who did what and why. 
And by the spring of 1970, there was little more than a tangled set of business relationships keeping the group together. Each of the Beatles was pursuing his musical interests outside of the band, and there were no plans in place to record together as a group. But as far as the public knew, this was just a temporary state of affairs. That all changed on April 10, 1970, when an ambiguous Paul McCartney “self-interview” was seized upon by the international media as an official announcement of a Beatles breakup. (Read MORE)
TJay (Taken today!)
On this date in 1866, the ASPCA is founded. Our TJay is from the ASPCA!

Other Notable Birthdays Today
Harry Morgan was born 101 years ago today in Detroit.
Chuck Connors was born on this date in 1921!
Jane Kean's (April 10, 1923 – November 26, 2013) career in show business spanned seven decades and included appearing in nightclubs, on recordings, and in radio, television, Broadway and films. Among her most famous roles were as Trixie Norton on The Honeymooners with Jackie Gleason, and as the voice of Belle in the perennial favorite Mister Magoo's Christmas Carol.
Happy Birthday, Jane Kean

Happy Birthday, Max von Sydow! He became a French citizen in 2002. He has appeared in many films, in many languages, including Swedish, Norwegian, English, Italian, German, Danish, French and Spanish. He received the Royal Foundation of Sweden's Cultural Award in 1954, was made a Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres in 2005, and was named a Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur on 17 October 2012.

 It is like loving someone who is out there in the darkness but never appears, no matter how loudly you call. -Max von Sydow The Seventh Seal
1932 – Omar Sharif, Egyptian actor and screenwriter (d. 2015)

Working gets in the way of living.
Omar Sharif

Notable Transitions
Errol Flynn on the set of "The adventures of Robin Hood" (Michael Curtiz and William Keighley, 1938)

Michael Curtiz was a Hungarian American film director. He had early credits as Mihály Kertész and Michael Kertész.
He directed more than 50 films in Europe and more than 100 in the United States, many of them cinema  classics, including The Adventures of Robin Hood, Captain Blood, Dodge City, The Sea Hawk, The Sea Wolf, Angels with Dirty Faces, Casablanca (for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director), Yankee Doodle Dandy, Mildred Pierce, and White Christmas.

Also, Linda Darnell (1965), Kay Medford (1980), Evelyn Waugh (1966), Sam Kinison (1992), Jean Vander Pyl (1999), Donna Michelle (2004). Linda Darnell was a model as a child, and progressed to theater and film acting as an adolescent. At the encouragement of her mother, she made her first film in 1939, and appeared in supporting roles in big budget films for 20th Century Fox throughout the 1940s. She rose to fame with co-starring roles opposite Tyrone Power in adventure films and established a main character career after her role in Forever Amber (1947). Furthermore, she won critical acclaim for her work in Unfaithfully Yours (1948) and A Letter to Three Wives (1949).

Oscar-nominated actress Marjorie Main died on this date in 1975. She's at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills.
Catch Me If You Can starring Aaron Tveit opened on this day in 2011! Read MORE

Today, I also celebrate Jay Cee Dreisen. She will be
Barbra Streisand with her mother and her sister, Roslyn Kind
performing a tribute to Barbra Streisand on April 24th at The Metropolitan Room here in NYC.

Female vocalist, songwriter and producer from Long Island, JayCee Driesen known amongst followers simply as “JayCee” has entertained audiences nationally. Her bold signature voice embraces the true effervescence of America’s rich musical past, with the youthful freshness of the present as she captivates an audience whether she is performing classic standards, hit Broadway Show tunes, mid and up tempo’s, contemporary favorites or her own originals.
“JayCee” titillates and mesmerizes the audience with her soulful renditions of such favorite standards made famous. 
In her own unique and powerful phrasing, she belts out popular  songs such as, At Last (Etta James), All That Jazz (Chicago), I Who Have Nothing (Shirley Bassey). The Music That Makes Me Dance (Barbara Streisand), Why Haven't I Heard From You (Reba McEntire), God Bless The Child (Billie Holiday), Empire Sate Of Mind (Alicia Keys), New York, New York (Frank Sinatra), My Funny Valentine (Sarah Vaughn), Chain Of Fools (Aretha Franklin), Feeling Good (Nina Simone), and more! 
Whether it is a sensual ballad, Cabaret favorite, belting out a hit Broadway Show tune, performing a foot-stompin’ favorite, or as a compliment to established Marquis talent, or even headlining her own show, JayCee can do it all! Her impeccable sense of tone and timing is limitless and she performs all of the attention to detail goodies that remind one of happily misspent youth and fanciful adulthood, without missing a beat!

Here is our mini-interview:

Your show will play The Metropolitan Room later this month! How does that feel to you?

Richard, Being able to present a tribute to my musical idol is not only humbling but inspiring! No other artist has ever affected me the way Barbra Streisand has.
I am so excited to be performing at The Metropolitan Room on Sunday April 24, 2016 at 7:00pm  First of all Sunday is a great day to have  a show in NYC since the traveling time is usually easier coming from Long Island as well as parking!
The owners of The Metropolitan Room, Bernie and Joanne Furshpan  have made me a Resident
Bernie Furshpan, Joanne Furshpan, Alysha Umphress, Stephen Sorokoff
Performer which is thrilling. They have been so gracious to me and will do everything in my power to make them proud. I feel honored to call The Metropolitan Room my home base in NYC.
How do you approach social media marketing?
I am a big fan of Social Media. This is a very good opportunity to reach so many people. I use Facebook to promote events more than anything else! I try to keep personal contact limited.I really don’t think it is that important to let people know how many times i walk my dog. LOL.  I don’t tweet that often due to the fact I usually have to much to say and it takes up too much space which is really not the idea about tweeting!  They want it short and to the point1 I am a talker!! LOL

What do you still want that you don’t have now?
One day I would love to do a concert at Westbury Music Fair (although they have changed the name). Being a Long Island girl that would be so cool.   I would love to invite all my Long Island peeps backstage and make quite a day of it!! I would also love to meet Barbra Streisand in person. A girl can dream!!

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If you could relive ONE day of your life, which one would it be?
That is a tough question!  I have more than one day I would like to have back and do over again!! But keeping a positive mode I would have to say  my performances in my latest Florida Tour were incredible and If I could relive those shows and those appreciative audiences over and over again that would keep me a very happy girl!!

What lesson are you learning in life right now??
The biggest lesson I am learning now is trying to let go of things that are out of my control. Which is a working progress!

How do you stay focused on what matters most?
I was brought up always having to do the right thing.  That keeps me centered. I have to thank my parents for instilling that in me.

What is your secret to keeping the balance between Show Biz and home life?
The balance between show biz and home life is very important and couldn't be mastered without the help of my support system. My family and friends understand me and know my needs and that makes my transition from one to the other wonderful.
My Mom who is the matriarch of my family is the strongest and smartest woman I know! I live every day to make her proud!
I am blessed to have her with me!! I do believe she knows me more than anyone!!
 My husband supports me and helps me in all aspects of my career and is very hands on in it which adds to the transition nicely.
He says its like being married to 2 women which in this case is a good thing!! He is a lucky man!! Lol
And for my friends well they love both sides of me too.  They love to attend my shows and or go out for a pastrami sandwich and just shoot the breeze!!

Don't miss Jay Cee Driesen at The Metropolitan Room on April 24th as she celebrates Barbra Streisand!

In Other Entertainment News
new works that will be given free readings. Andrew Lippa
New Andrew Lippa-Jules Feiffer Musical Will Be Part of Bay Street's New Works Festival. Click HERE for more info.

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!
Marilyn Maye in Hello, Dolly!


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

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


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