Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Update from Producer Tanya Moberly - August 29, 2012

THERE WILL BE NO SALON SEPTEMBER 2ND.

SALON – that unique, MULTIPLE AWARD WINNING, Weekly Open Mic Event, created and hosted by Mark Janas will return to Etcetera, Etcetera - 352 West 44th Street, NYC 10036 – on Sunday, September 9th from 7-10:30PM. (Sign-Up Begins at 6:15.)

Salon will then continue every Sunday …

September 9th:
Theme: Relationships – The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
Co-Host: Dana Lorge

September 16th:
Theme: Whatever Quirks – Quirky Songs, Songwriters & Subjects
Co-Host: Annie LeBeaux

September 23rd:
Theme: That Foreign Mystique
Co-Host: Parker Scott

September 30th:
Theme: TBA
Co-Host: Anna Bergman
Salon Spotlight: Joshua Desjardins & Joshua Warr

Salon is an ongoing open entertainment event in which singers, writers and musicians share their talent with each other and audience members.

There is a $10 cash cover collected at the door and a $15 food/drink minimum (cash or credit) per person. (For more information about Etcetera, Etcetera's delicious menu: www.etcetcnyc.com. A 20% gratuity is added to all checks.) There are no reservations; seating is on a first come/first served basis, Doors open and sign up begins at 6:15pm. The evening begins at 7:00, has a 15-minute break at 8:30 and ends promptly at 10:30. If you would like to sign up to perform, see one the evening's 'Etceterettes' to fill out a card with your name, the name of your song, whether or not Mark will be playing for you and any upcoming events you'd like to promote. We do not present performers in order of sign-up, however, indicating requests as clearly and as early as possible as far as time restraints are concerned always makes everything much more possible. ALWAYS BRING SEVERAL SONG SELECTIONS to avoid duplication. All types of material, on or off theme are always welcome at Salon. We enthusiastically welcome instrumentalists, poets, playwrights, essayists, comics, illusionists and performance artists. Please limit your selections to three or four minutes in length (including introductions). Please also bring clear, complete charts for Mark to read. Sitting on the piano is not allowed, nor is flash photography. Please turn off all noise making devices and give performers your undivided attention.

Visit our website at www.markjanasthesalon.com and look for us on Facebook!

Thank you to our sponsors Dr. Garrett Bennett & Father Jeffrey Hamblin, MD!

Looking forward to seeing you all Sunday, September 9th!

Thanks,

Tanya Moberly
Salon Producer

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Salon Wrap Up for August 26, 2012 - "Happy Birthday, Mr. Bernstein"


Tonight's Salon was about celebrating.  There were many things to celebrate, but the main celebration that brought us together this evening was the anniversary of what would have been Leonard Bernstein's 94th birthday.  As most of you who attend Salon know, Mark Janas worked with Bernstein for many years and has some amazing first hand knowledge of the man and his work. Every year, Mark shares some of his  experiences with us.

Mark told us the story of how he first met Bernstein.  While he was at Tanglewood, Mark was invited to attend a house party where Bernstein was in attendance.  Over the course of the evening, Bernstein began several word games - at which he was pretty much unbeatable.  When he began a game of Botticelli  and seemed un-stumpable, Mark became determined to stump him.  Mark nearly stumped Bernstein, which impressed Bernstein enough to prompt him to invite Mark to his rehearsal the next day.

As people began filtering in to the Salon, Mark Janas and Matthew Martin Ward played through most of the music from West Side Story, Salon member punctuating the America section with many "Ay, ay, ay's!"

Mark Janas and Matthew Martin Ward four handed piano. Photo by Sierra Rein




The evening officially began with Mark and Matthew playing a four handed piano arrangement of the Candide overture.  I've heard this piece many times, and it always thrills me.

Our co-host for the evening was the always lovely - and the Salon's original Blogette - Sierra Rein.  She started off by singing Bernstein's My Twelve Tone Melody - a less than soothing lullaby.

Charles Lindberg joined Mark at the piano for a four handed piano arrangement of Glitter and be Gay.  Mark and Charles played off each other beautifully, giving a symphonic sound and comedic visuals.  Charles is currently performing a show with Rain Pryor at the Actors Temple Theatre on Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays.

Richie Eisenberg sang us a political parody of Officer Krupke entitled The Impeachment Song about the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky trial. While it is somewhat out of date, it still sounds fresh and had us all laughing out loud.  Richie is currently working on booking some new show dates.  Watch this space for information!

 Parker Scott began his performance of Candide's It Must be So sans microphone from the back of the audience, making his way up to the stage.  Parker will be co-hosting the Salon on September 23rd, and can be seen October 7th in his own show, entitled No Expectations, at the Metropolitan Room.

MAC nominee Joey Infante, accompanied by Barry Levitt on piano, sang a lovely bit of Maria that led into Tonight.  Joey is currently prepping a new show.

Charlotte Patton, also accompanied by Barry Levitt, was out first singer of the evening to break from the Bernstein songbook to sing from Alan Menken's songbook.  Her selection was a comedic piece about the conflicts in a relationship called Ah, Men!  It was definitely a departure from Menken's Disney fare, and we all loved it!  Charlotte will be performing her cabaret show, Looking for Love in the 21st Century at the Duplex on September 19th.

Barry Levitt finished up his accompaniment duties with Sunny Leigh who sang us a jazzy Then I'll be Tired of You.  Sunny and Barry are currently working on putting a show together and working on a date with the Metropolitan Room.

In her second Salon appearance, Irene Aguilar sang a lovely On My Own, complete with lead in.  Irene will be returning to her native Spain, but has hopes of returning to New York in the near future and joining us for more Salons.

Joann Sicoli sang a passionate Goin' Out of My Head.  Joann is currently working on putting a show together.

Marnie Klar has one of the most wonderful abilities to put across a song lyric, which she demonstrated to great effect on It's a Quiet Thing from Flora, the Red Menace.

Barry Levitt returned to the keys to accompany Lou Iacovino on Witchcraft.

Gary Crawford graced us with his smooth baritone for If I Ever Say I'm Over You.

Arianna (c'est moi!) returned to the theme with the only Bernstein piece she knows, Glitter and be Gay - because, really, no one is looking for an Irish Maria.  Arianna is pretty certain that the first time she performed Glitter and be Gay in public was at the Algonquin Salon for Bernstein's birthday celebration in 2009.  Arianna is currently auditioning and looking for new projects.  You can find her Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays belting out show tunes, the occasional opera aria, and serving breakfast and lunch at Ellen's Stardust Diner.

It was a good night for Candide as Janice Hall, this evening's Etcetterette, gave a brilliant interpretation of I Am Easily Assimilated with back up vocals from Mark Janas and Matthew Martin Ward.  Janice will be leaving us for a short period to star in James Joyce's The Dead at the Quotidian In Washington DC, and will be returning as the co-host for our Halloween Salon.

Mark devoted Classical Corner to the music of West Side Story, extrapolating on Bernstein's use of tritones and dissonance throughout the score.  He then gave a detailed explanation of the Twelve Tone Technique, or Tone Row.   He also gave us more stories about Bernstein.

The beginning of the second half of tonight's Salon was bitter sweet. Our evening's co-host, Sierra Rein, had a big announcement.  After struggling to make things work in New York - as we all do - Sierra has landed one of the biggest opportunities of her career.  Starting September 19th, Sierra will be leaving us to start rehearsals in Toronto for Disney Cruiselines.  She will be appearing as Cinderella's Fairy Godmother and Ursula, the Sea Witch on the main stage of the Disney Magic.  She will be gone until June 1st of 2013.

 Let me step out of my role as a somewhat impartial observer and chronicler of the evenings events to talk a bit more personally about Sierra:

I was introduced to Sierra in late 2008 by a mutual friend.  Over the years, Sierra has become one of my closest friends, confidants, and someone who helps keep me sane in this crazy profession we have chosen.  She has been an inspiration and a sounding board.  She has taken care of my cats when I have gone on vacation, listened to me vent without judgment when an audition didn't go well for me, and offered advice and support to help me put things in perspective and continue moving my own journey forward.

Sierra introduced me to the Salon when it was still at the Algonquin Hotel and brought me in as both and Etcetterette (then we were Gonquettes) and Blogette.  Sierra has always been very supportive of the talent coming through the Salon and active in promoting and helping the Salon to grow.  I have seen Sierra grow as a performer, watched her hone her skills on the business side of things, and can't think of anyone who deserves such a fantastic opportunity as much.  I know there is a lot of affection for Sierra among the rest of the Salon members, and while we are sad to see her leave us for such an extended period of time, I know we all wish her the very best and expect updates via her website and new letter.

And now, back to your regularly scheduled Salon Report....

Sierra began the second half of the evening with her audition cuts for Disney Cruiselines - Bibbidi Boppity Boo and Poor Unfortunate Souls. It was easy to see why she was cast.  Her Fairy Godmother was warm and energetic, while Ursula was nice and vampy.  She followed that up with a very emotional We'll be Together Again.  She ended her set with What a Movie! from Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, a song she had been given to learn awhile back by Parker Scott for an audition.  It was beautifully comical with the personal twist of reflecting on her and her husband's shared love of watching - and mocking - bad movies.

Sierra remained onstage to duet with Tanya Moberly on A Boy Like That/I Have a Love from West Side Story.  Tanya's show, Tanya Lorraine Moberly Sings Barbra Joan Streisand will play at Don't Tell Mama's on September 28th, October 18th, November 14th, and December 4t at 7pm.

Susan Hodgdon, accompanied by Barry Levitt sang a very vampy Sooner or Later that nearly ended with Barry Levitt knocked off his piano bench!  Susan's show, On the Bumpy Road to Love will be at Don't Tell Mama's on September 8th.

Joining us all the way from Connecticut was Joel Harrington accompanying himself on a lovely ballad.  Joel will be appearing at the Metropolitan Room on September 9th with his show We're Gonna Light Up the Sky.

Joel remained at the piano to accompany his voice student, Carolyn Hricik for the lovely ballad But Where Can We Go From here.  Carolyn made her Metropolitan Room debut this past May.

Robin Westle sang Sondheim's comedically suggestive Can That Boy Foxtrot.  Robin will be appearing at the Laurie Beechman Theatre on September 9th in her show Why Are You Telling Me?

MAC Award nominee Joan Jaffe sang us a medley of New York songs by Bernstein and Sondheim arranged by Jerry Scott.

Eric Michael Gillett - whose previous appearance at Salon involved a motor boating of Sierra Rein - related a racy anecdote about Bernstein's attempt to speak with a particular Tony after a performance of West Side Story.  Said Tony was otherwise embarrassingly engaged and the discussion never took place.  The anecdote gave a comical twist and slightly different meaning to Eric's smoothly sung A Little Bit in Love.  Turns out, it was also Eric's birthday, so we sang him Happy Birthday and watched him blow out the candle on his cupcake.

Sierra closed out the evening with the fun uptempo I Can Cook Too from Bernstein's On the Town.

All in all, it was a wonderful celebration of Bernstein, music, and wonderful people!

Remember!  There is NO Salon next week, September 2nd due to the Labor Day holiday.  Everyone have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend!  Salon returns on September 9th with the hilarious Dana Lorge as our co-host.  The theme is still TBA, but songs on or off theme are always welcome.


-Arianna Armon
Blogette for The Salon
Please email me.

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Salon Wrap Up for August 19, 2012 "Then & Now: Anniversaries and Remembrances"

It was warm, it was festive, it was magical! This Sunday we ushered in the 7th Anniversary of The Salon.

The Salon has had an illustrious past: from its humble beginnings in the lobby of The Algonquin beginning in 2005, to the Rouge Bar, back to the Algonquin, expanding to The Oak Room for a summer, and finally moving to our current home at Etc Etc Restaurant in November 2009.

Our fearless co-hosts were none other that the first performers of The Salon - Jeffrey Biering, Donna Coney Island, Kristin Maloney, Chris Weikel and Stephen Wilde. Their production of Talk of the Town took over The Oak Room at The Algonquin Hotel in 2004. After many shows, the cast & music director (Mark Janas) would gather around the grand piano in the lobby of the hotel to sing songs and improvise all kinds of music shenanigans. It was through this camaraderie that The Salon was born.

Our co-hosts first number was “Saloning on a Sunday”, with a clever set of new lyrics matched to the tune of “A Weekend in the Country” from A Little Night Music.

Up next to the mic was Natasha Castillo. With a beautiful pop alto voice, she sang “I’ve Never Been To Me.” Natasha is doing her debut show, “Anything by Ordinary” at The Duplex November 2, 10, 16, directed by Lennie Watts and Music Directed by Steven Ray Watkins. Natasha was kind enough to bring red velvet cupcakes for the entire Salon to enjoy! (A special note - this might be the first time I’ve seen someone bring in sheet music on an iPad. It’s certainly the technological age!)

Maria Moncada sang the charming spanish/english tango, “Perfidia.” Chris Weikel, Salon Charter Member, brought in the lovely song, “I Live Alone Again.” Not only is he a talented performer, but he just got a masters in playwriting. Maybe he can write up some monologues or scenes and workshop them at The Salon! (just putting it out there!) Irene Aquilar sang a very charming version of “L.O.V.E.”Christy got to NYC 2-3 weeks ago from Spain and is here to go to school. We’re thrilled to welcome her to The Salon! Charlotte Patton was next with an incredibly well acted number. Charlotte is performing a show on September 19 at The Duplex called “Love in the 21st Century.” Be sure to check out her website for more details.

Donna Coney Island, Salon Charter Member, performed the hilarious and powerful, “Come Back For More” written by Salon member Nick Levin. Donna is now the music teacher at her son’s school teaching grade 3, 4, 5 & 6. I’m trying to decide if that’s more challenging than hitting the EPA circuit - the jury is still out on this one. Barb Malley sang a beautiful rendition of “Try To Remember” from The Fantasticks - such an appropriate song for tonight’s festivities! Barb is working on a YouTube project to dress up in silly costumes and record herself “singing inappropriate songs in inappropriate places” in the hopes that the videos go viral! She said she’ll let us know when the YouTube Channel goes live. I for one cannot wait.

Richie Eisenberg sang his heartfelt, original ballad, “Love Isn’t Easy.” Richie has a show, Smile On My Face: The Songs of Richie Eisenberg” which is scheduled to come back for 3 shows between October and December 2012. Stay tuned for more details!

Kristin Maloney, Salon Charter Member, sang the touching, “Old Friend” in a lovely duet with Mark Janas. After she broke our hearts a little, she gave us the one-two punch with her sparkling wit 0 when asked “What do you have cooking?” with regard to a career update, she said, ”I cooked a baby last year!” So nice to have you back at Salon, Kristin! Joey Infante (with Mike McDonald on piano) performed a lively “Shall We Dance” from the Gene Kelly/Ginger Rigers movie of the ams name. Joey has a show coming up called “Cubanisimo.” Stay tuned for more detail.s

Salon Board Member Sierra Rein came to the mic talking about her journey through the Metro Star competition and theorized (through song, naturally) why she didn’t make it into the Top 5 (a travesty!) She started with some of “Sing” from A Chorus Line (ably backed up by fellow board member, Bill Zeffiro, on piano and vocals), but them promptly threw that theory away and sang, “If You Feel Like Singing, Sing” from Summer Stock. Sierra will be making a huge announcement next week - be sure to be here to hear it LIVE! :)

Salon Charter Member Stephen Wilde (who often brings the comedy) sang an inspired, “I Was Here” by Flaherty & Ahrens. Janice Hall, tonight’s Etceterette, brought in the French/English chanson, “Different… New” which she also sang in her debut at The Salon. She gave a very touching tribute to Salon as being an amazing safe place where she can sing whatever kind of music she wants and gets the chance to mix with an incredible community of artists. Thank you for so beautifully sharing what many of us feel. Janice is leaving town to do a production of James Joyce’s The Dead in Washington DC - we’re sad to see you go for so long, but are excited about this adventure!

Salon Charter Member Jeff Biering (the self proclaimed “Bitchy One”) was next with “The Mister Softee Song.” Since Talk of the Town, Jeff has become a prolific Musical Director for all kinds of productions around town. We’re thrilled for his success! Tonight’s Blogette (me!) Erin Cronican recounted where she was 7 years ago when The Salon was born - she had just moved to NYC after a bad breakup which happened in an eerily similar fashion to the show she was starring in, Jason Robert Brown’s The Last Five Years. So, she sang his powerful ballad, “I’m Still Hurting.” Erin is excited to announce that her production of Danny and the Deep Blue Sea was extended for one week Off-Broadway.

For tonight’s Classical Corner Mark Janas played through a few strains from Erin’s song selection, and asked those in the crowd if it sounded familiar. Turns out, Jason Robert Brown borrows a few “quotes” from Bach, which Mark pointed out and used to start our discussion.

While recently in the Poconos, Mark started having some problems with his right arm and wondered which songs he could practice that might encourage healthy playing. One composer kept coming to mind: Bach. Mark told us a story about how he used to use Bach as a warm up because of all of the rapid scales. There’s an evenness in his music where all notes get similar emphasis. The instruments that Bach used, most notably the organ and the harpsichord, didn’t allow the kind of dynamics we’re accustomed to now.

Mark also talked about the concerto, which is normally for an orchestra and solo instrument. But in Bach’s concertos, the solo interments ate within the orchestra. When the harpsichord was featured, the instrumentalist would improvise when not soloing so very few of the notes would be written down in music. Bach’s “Italian Concerto” featured no orchestra - it was made for 2 manual harpsichord, with two different levels. Why two levels? There wasn’t the ability to have sustained notes because the harpsichord didn’t have sustain pedals. When one hand is playing more legato, the other wants to be more staccato, resulting in two voices back and forth.

In contrast, modern pianists will usually add some pedal (to taste). Chopin fully explored the idea of an instrument that could play loud and soft. Mark said he could spend a whole other Classical Corner on pedals alone. But tonight, he would play Classical Corner while being both a conductor and soloist - to show a little about what Bach was thinking in making this a concerto. It was brilliant!


Second Set

Mark introduced us to this idea of a song Trifeca - same song done three times in 3 different styles. This was something our co-hosts would often play around with while in the early days of The Salon, and they decide to show us a little of it tonight. They chose the Lerner & Loewe tune, “On The Street Where You Live” from My Fair Lady and did it in these 3 styles:

Traditional - by Chris Weikel
Swung - by Donna Coney Island
Kurt Weill Inspired - by Jeff Biering

Co-Host Kristin Maloney then gave us a powerful, “Night and Day.” Stephen Wilde, with guitar in hand, finished out the Co-Host set with the Radiohead song, “How To Disappear Completely.” We love it when artists come to the stage with their own instruments - was a treat.

Tanya Moberly, Salon’s producer, came to the stage and told her story of coming to The Salon for the first time in 2007. It was at the Rouge Bar and the theme was “The Movies.” So, she brought in “The Man That Got Away” from A Star is Born - and we were lucky to have her sing it for us tonight! Tanya has a show coming up at Don’t Tell Mama, opening Sept 28 - “Tanya Lorraine Moberly sings Barbra Joan Streisand with Steven Ray Watkins.” I cannot wait to see/hear what she does with this amazing material.

Longtime Salon regular, Sunny Leigh, was next with “Everything But You.” Marnie Klar came to the stage with the powerful and lovely, “Portrait.” Mark Levy got the audience in the palm of his hand with the bitterly heartfelt, “Mister Cellophane” (complete with kick line!) from the musical, Chicago. Co-host Jeff Bierling was next with, “Goodie Goodie.”

Parker Scott sang the powerful and regal “Where ‘er You Walk” by Handel (complete with trills!) Parker’s next show is performing October 7 at 4pm at Don’t Tell Mama. The show is called “No Expectations” based on the Rolling Stones song. Be sure to see it! Stephen Hanks brought in the Al Jolson tune, “The Anniversary Song.” David Ballard, our trusty server, sang his original tune, “I’m Sorry Abut Your Baby” which always has the audience in stitches. David is doing a 5 minute set at The Comedy Cellar in his newest venture into stand-up comedy - is there anything this guy can;t do?

Susan Hodgdon sang a rousing, “Love Will Keep Us Together.” Her next show, “On The Bumpy Road to Love,” is September 8 at 3pm at Don’t Tell Mama, and the cover is only $5! Be sure not to miss it. Co-host Donna Coney Island was next with “Dream a Little Dream” Stephanie Zagorin brought in a great version of, “The Wicked Witch Is Dead” from The Wizard of Oz.

Matthew Martin Ward (who played Keyboard Two on The Talk of the Town) started by giving us a sense of what he played in the song, “Restorative Lunch” (which was hilariously mimicked!) Then Mark Janas came up and played the main piano part while Matthew played what he’s just demonstrated. It’s amazing how much the Keyboard Two parts make a huge difference in filling out a score. Matthew is playing for Elizabeth Tryon in her show, “There’s a Phantom in my Opera” - 129 W 67th St, at 7:30pm. Best of all, it’s free! Matthew wasn’t at liberty to give up the song list, but he did float a rumor that there would be a Bellini/Lady Gaga mashup.

Oliver Donaldson brought up his guitar and sang/played a very moving, Eric Clapton’s “Tears In Heaven” which he dedicated to his grandfather. Salon newbie Francesca Caviglia was next with Kurt Weill’s “I’m a Stranger Here Myself.” Co-host Chris Weikel gave us the hilarious before-and-after song, “Cosmetic Surgery.” Father Jeff Hamblin, one of The Salon’s generous sponsors, came up with a glowing tribute of The Salon and what it means to this community of artists. He then sang, “There’ll Be Bluebirds Over the White Cliffs of Dover.”

Kevin McMullan brought in a lovely song by his late partner, Jim Fradrich, called “Till A Moment Ago.” Kevin is putting out an album on Stephen Wilde’s record label sometime this fall. He’s also writing a book. We hope he still has time to come to The Salon! Bill Zeffiro, Salon Board Member, brought us his love song to Dorothy Parker, and to all at The Salon: “Happy Birthday, Mrs. Parker.” According to Bill, Dorothy would have been 119 on August 22, 2012. You can see Bill next playing Marissa Mulder’s show, “Illusions” (which includes his original tune “Line Up If You’re a Loser”) and he’ll also be playing a show with the legendary, KT Sullivan.

Elaine St George was next with “Still Crazy After Al These Years.” Elaine is doing a play in Provincetown, playing the drunken aunt from New Jersey (go figure!) Elaine says she’ll back in late October - we’ll miss you! Lou Iacovino, who has been coming to The Salon for the last five years, sang, “Old Black Magic.” Joe Regan Jr was next with a song that reminded us that “I’ll never forget how much I loved you.” Danielle Erin Rhodes was next with the song, “Andrew Lloyd Webber” - the “then and now of Eva Peron” from her new show, Hell’s Belles.

As a finale, the co-hosts all asked the Salon participants to join in the inspiring (and tear inducing) “What I Did For Love” from A Chorus Line, partially in honor of the recent death of legend Marvin Hamlisch.

Next week we’re delighted to announce that Sierra Rein will be our Co-Host, with the optional theme, “Happy Birthday, Mr Bernstein!” Bring in any song by Bernstein or his colleagues - it’s sure to be an amazing evening.

-Erin Cronican
Blogette for The Salon
Need anything? Please email me

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Salon Wrap Up for August 12, 2012 - "Another Kind of Light"

The speed of light, 299,792,458 meters per second, is a constant of nature - brilliantly or softly illuminating our way through the galaxy in a consistently loving manner.  We had another kind of light visit us at The Salon this past Sunday, a light made of love, joy, and soooooong!  Our Guest Host at the piano was deft singer and pianist Kenneth Gartman, and our luminous Co-Host was singer/producer/B'way alum and Cabaret star Raissa Katona Bennett.  Raissa has been on Broadway in The Phantom of the Opera and Chess, in the first National Tours of Cats and Parade, is a Producer for the monthly "Concerts for City Greens" shows, and can be seen at Feinstein's with her show "Another Kind of Light" from August 21st to the 25th, all shows at 8pm.  Use the code "GREEN" when you order tickets for the 22nd and 23rd shows, and the service fees from said tickets will be donated to the "Concerts for City Greens" fund!  The show is directed by Eric Michael Gillett, and will have David Caldwell on the piano/MD, Ritt Henn on bass, Sean Harkness on guitar, and Ray Marchica on percussion. 

Tanya began the evening by sending Mark Janas' love from afar - he is in Maine with Always, Patsy Cline, but is excited to return to The Salon next week for the Seventh Anniversary of Salon celebration!  Raissa then took over the mic to sing the hilarious "The Lift," a waltz in funny time by Amanda McBroom reflecting her appreciation for her husband's work (although she's had nothing done, she assures us).  She then brought up the marvelous Rev Yolanda Roger Anthony Mapes, splendid in a beautiful red, who sang a "Hymn Medley" with Kenneth also on vocals - "Down By The Riverside," "Joy Down in My Heart" and "This Little Light of Mine" were all included, and the entire audience was clapping on the 2's and 4's along with it!  The Reverend will perform a "gender bending gospel celebration" entitled "Rev. Yolanda's Old Time Gospel Hour" on August 16th at 9;30pm (with guest Freddy Freeman) and August 26th at 6:30pm at The Duplex - more information and reservations at www.yolanda.net / Facebook.com/revroyo.  Next up was the beacon of light, Maureen Taylor, who sang the gorgeous "Our Children" from Ragtime, quoting her two year-old niece "let's get this show on the road" - ah the positive minds of children!  She is working on a "cosmic cabaret" to be released in October.  Corrina Sowers-Adler was next to the stage, singing "Flight" in a beautiful soprano with sweeping high notes.  Corrina is a part of two performance series - "Music At The Mansion" every last Sunday (the next is August 26th at 3pm, three 25-minute sets by invited singers), and  the ingenious "By Request" series, whereby she collects song requests and personal stories attached to them and creates a show - the next will be at the Metropolitan Room on October 13th (due date for requests is September 15th). 

Barry Levitt then took to the 88's to play for a few performers: Edie Stokes sang the sweet "Tis Autumn" - her upcoming show "Illusions" will be on September 30th, 5:30pm at Don't Tell Mama.  Lou Iacovino shined a torch on the uplifting "Let Me Try Again" and blinded us with the mental image of himself topless in a sauna for a shoot for The Daily Show.  And finally, Sunny Leigh sang the blues song "Cover The Waterfront" by Johnny Green, expressing her joy in never giving up hope.  Matthew Martin Ward then grabbed the piano to play for Janice Hall, who performed the powerfully emotive mezzo-soprano song "Daybreak" from the modern opera Three Decembers.  Janice will be leaving mid-September to perform in The Dead in Washington DC!  Ray of sunshine Maria Moncada then pepped up the mood with the swinging "I Got the Sun in the Morning and the Moon At Night" in her classic big-band voice. 

Natasha Castillo brought her shining attitude and voice to the stage next, singing "Unwritten."  Her show (directed by Lennie Watts with music director Steven Ray Watkins) will take place November 2nd, 10th and 16th).  Then I (Sierra Rein) practiced for my MetroStar competition set with Bill Zeffiro at the piano, singing Noel Coward's "I'll See You Again."  Sadly, I didn't make the Top Five, but Salon alumna Billie Roe did, so everyone should go support her in the final show August 20th!  I had a terrific time on Monday night, and I was excited to sing for Marvin Hamlisch's memorial on Tuesday morning, which was lovely.  Sarah Rice, whose gorgeous voice has lit up many a stage, sang " Nella Fantasia (In My Fantasy)" from The Mission with Matthew Martin Ward on piano.  The Ennio Morricone song was set to lyrics by Chiara FerraĆ¹ only  after Sarah Brightman wore Ennio down with dogged persistence, another form of light and hope.  Sarah (Rice) will be doing the Music at the Mansion show in September and the first Saturday after Thanksgiving will be singing for Zani's Furry Friends. 
 
The Salon Spotlight this week was the sparkling duo Edd Clark and Sue Matsuki!  Sue is a stellar jazz vocalist and Edd is an accomplished classical singer, and the two of them complement each other brilliantly.  They can next be seen in "It's Us Again! The Music of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme," with musical director John DiPinto on Tuesday August 21st, 7pm at Don't Tell Mama.  They had a great set, starting out with the bouncy "I've Heard That Song Before," before moving into a gorgeous solo rendition by Edd on "I Hear a Rhapsody."  Then Sue took the solo mic to sing "The Gypsy in My Soul," which mixed Sue's graceful jazz vocal stylings with Eydie's joyous ones, including a "horn" instrumental section.  To end the set, they duetted on the folksy and upbeat "Side By Side."

Kenneth Gartman then had Kenneth's Korner (I succumbed to the "K" that time...), which he began by his thoughts of Marvin Hamlisch - the lights of Broadway were to be dimmed in his honor.  Kenneth then went into a stirring and fantastically sung "I Still Believe in Love" by Hamlisch.  Ken next gave us another taste of "Reverend Yolanda's Old Time Gospel Hour" (this Thursday at the Duplex, 9:30pm) by singing the rolickin' gospel/rock/country song "Let it Shine" and showed off his amazing belt voice...he's as equally amazing as a singer as he is a pianist, and he certainly let it all out to shine for us!

The second half of the evening featured our gloriuos co-host, Raissa Katona Bennett, whose love of music and musicians has been felt over the years by thousands of singers, instrumentalists, composers, fans, and lovers of music of all types.  She's inspired songwriters to write for her particular vocal abilities and sense of humor - she started out her set by explaining that she has a morning ritual, and that after she "feeds the dogs and walks the husband," she sits down to go through her emails.  Once she was surprised and thrilled to find a song, "Torch Song for Raissa," written by Michael John LaChiusa, in her inbox, and she sang this modern-day humor song to perfection (apparently NIFOTC = "Naked in front of the computer"...I'm going to have to use that from now on...).  She next sang "Ordinary Miracles," a beautiful ballad regarding the big things in life that arise out of the small sparks of imagination.  Raissa completed the set with "A Tomb With a View," a life-affirming song by David Caldwell (lyrics from a poem by Robert Fulghum) about the cycle of life and the view that we can have even from death.

Producer and three-time MAC Award winner Tanya Moberly then sang "Colored Lights" (I don't think I ever got the mixup of the guys' names until she sang it) and was happy to promote her new show at Don't Tell Mama, which opens September 28th.  Barry Levitt then played again for a small set of singers, starting with Joey Infante, who we were SO happy to see return to us - he sang "Who Can I Turn To," a lovely ballad with a powerful ending. Susan Hodgdon sang a mashup of "By Myself" and "Out Here on My Own," a selection from her upcoming show "On The Bumpy Road to Love" September 8th at 3pm, $5 cover charge at Don't Tell Mama.  We then had a Salon debut - Gary Crawford sang "I Can See Clearly Now" and then morphed it into a jazzy "Cockeyed Optimist." Raissa was quick to note that although Gary was a Salon virgin, it did not show!  Kenneth returned to the piano to play for Joann Sicoli, honoring Marvin Hamlisch with his stirring "What I Did For Love" from A Chorus LineMarnie Klar, singing with beguiling smiles and a charming tenderness, then sang "Glitter in the Air."  Matthew Martin Ward then premiered his music (set to a poem by Felix Pollak) of "All Things Are Candles," this time standing at the mic and letting Kenneth play the piano (a gasp of "he has legs!" was heard from the audience).  Matthew can be seen at Ido Sushi for Opera Wednesdays, at Wurtsboro's "Broadway Direct - Classic Quiche" and "There's a Phantom in My Opera" with Elizabeth Tryon August 20th, then a revue of songs of Tom Toce. He's busy!

Our stalwart waiter and BMI lyricist, David Ballard, next "Down in the Valley" with lovely high tenor notes.  Michael Colby sang an original ballad, "Old Father Time," from his new musical On With The Show (August 23rd and 24th at the Ta Da Space).  This show has lyrics by Colby, music by many composers (including the composer of "Old Father Time," Ned Paul Ginsberg), is directed by Karen Lynn Carpenter, and will feature Bill Zeffiro as the music director (and a character) and Richard Skipper as the Narrator.  Bobbie Horowitz then sang her funny original "Nothin' To Complain About Blues" and was happy to say her book "Find Your Mini Q's" is still for sale, with a new one on the way!  Barb Malley performed the sweet "Love Is Only Love," originally cut from Mame.  We then heard from Salon debut Lexie Bybee, who has her eye on the part of Christine from The Phantom of the Opera - she sang "Think of Me" from said show, and let us know she's visiting from Idaho, checking out performance arts Colleges.  Adam Gonzalez, who can now safely take a seat in the "Salon regulars" section of the bus, sang Kris Kristofferson's beautiful "Help Me Get Through The Night," accompanying himself on guitar.  Bill Zeffiro then sang (or squawked!) a tour de force song, "Los Penguinos" by Goldrich and Heisler that simply had us all in fits of merriment.  Richie Eisenberg sang his charming, uptempo "Color Blind Blues" (color connected to light, remember!).  And finally, Raissa Katona Bennett returned to the microphone to sing with Kenneth Gartman and encourage audience participation with the lovely "We Can Be Kind" by David Friedman.

NEXT SALON!  IT'S A BIGGIE! MARK JANAS RETURNS!
The optional theme for the evening is “Then and Now / Anniversaries and Remembrances – A Celebration of Seven Years of Salon!” Our Co-Hosts will be Salon Charter Members Jeffrey Biering, Donna Coney Island, Kristin Maloney, Chris Weikel and Stephen Wilde! (Adam McDonald and Rob Seitelman are unable to attend.) Come early to grab a seat and a card for your chance to sing this Sunday!

Reverend Yolanda sets the party ablaze!
Guest Host Kenneth Gartman
Co-Host Raissa Katona Bennett
Matthew Martin Ward
Newcomer Lexie Bybee
-Sierra Rein
Blogette for The Salon
Please email me.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Update from Producer Tanya Moberly - August 13, 2012

SALON – that unique, MULTIPLE AWARD WINNING, Weekly Open Mic Event, created and hosted by Mark Janas returns to Etcetera, Etcetera - 352 West 44th Street, NYC 10036 – on Sunday, August 19th from 7-10:30PM! (Sign-Up Begins at 6:15.)

The optional theme for the evening is “Then and Now / Anniversaries and Remembrances – A Celebration of Seven Years of Salon!”

Remember, any material, on or off theme, is always welcome at Salon.

Our Co-Hosts will be Salon Charter Members Jeffrey Biering, Donna Coney Island, Kristin Maloney, Chris Weikel and Stephen Wilde! (Adam McDonald and Rob Seitelman are unable to attend.) These Original Seven were the cast of TALK OF THE TOWN in The Oak Room with Mark Janas as their Musical Director, and saw Salon through it’s original 2005 Algonquin Days and on to independence at The Rouge Bar in August of 2006. To find out what each of them are up to now – you can find them all on Facebook.



Salon continues every Sunday (except Sept 2nd)…

August 26th:
Theme: Happy Birthday, Mr. Bernstein
Co-Hosts: Members from Mark Janas’ Bernstein Tour

September 2nd: NO SALON

September 9th:
Theme: TBA
Co-Host: Dana Lorge

Salon is an ongoing open entertainment event in which singers, writers and musicians share their talent with each other and audience members. There is a $10 cash cover collected at the door and a $15 food/drink minimum (cash or credit) per person. (For more information about Etcetera, Etcetera's delicious menu: www.etcetcnyc.com. A 20% gratuity is added to all checks.) There are no reservations; seating is on a first come/first served basis, Doors open and sign up begins at 6:15pm. The evening runs 7-10:30, with one intermission. If you would like to sign up to perform, see one the evening's 'Etceterettes' to fill out a card with your name, the name of your song, whether or not Mark will be playing for you and any upcoming events you'd like to promote. We do not present performers in order of sign-up, however, indicating requests as clearly and as early as possible as far as time restraints are concerned always makes everything much more possible. ALWAYS BRING SEVERAL SONG SELECTIONS to avoid duplication. All types of material, on or off theme are always welcome at Salon. We enthusiastically welcome instrumentalists, poets, playwrights, essayists, comics, illusionists and performance artists. Please limit your selections to three or four minutes in length (including introductions). Please also bring clear, complete charts for Mark to read. Sitting on the piano is not allowed, nor is flash photography. Please turn off all noise making devices and give performers your undivided attention.

Visit our website at www.markjanasthesalon.com and look for us on Facebook!

Thank you to our sponsors Dr. Garrett Bennett and Father Jeffrey Hamblin, MD!

Also please know about the exciting evening of One Acts being produced by The Abingdon Theatre Company at Father Hamblin’s Christ Church of Bay Ridge on Saturday, August 25th! Visit www.abingdontheatre.org for more information.

Looking forward to seeing you all Sunday, August 19th!

Thanks,

Tanya Moberly
Salon Producer

P.S. If you would like to remove your name from or add a name to our mailing list please email Tanya.

-Sierra Rein
Blogette for The Salon
Please email me.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Salon Wrap Up for August 5, 2012 "Ooops, I Did It Again - Blunders and Mistakes”

Angela Schultz at the mic and Brett Kristofferson at the piano.
Although no one fell off the stage at this past Sunday's Salon, there were many reflections on it regarding mistakes, blunders, bad decisions, and faulty relationships.  Luckily, there were few bad notes or lyrics sung all night, and the co-host of the evening, Hanson Award Winner Angela Shultz, was pitch-perfect as she guided the singers through the "Ooops, I Did It Again - Blunders and Mistakes" theme.  MAC and Bistro Award Winner Brett Kristofferson (composer and singer) was at the piano as the guest host, and effortlessly played with nary a miss from his digits!  Angela began by singing "Mistake of My Life," claiming the Olympics were full of mistakes, so why not be inspired by the guts and torn ligaments of the athletes this week?  Angela then quickly brought up now-to-be-considered Salon alumna Natasha Castillo, who sang "I Just Fall In Love Again." Her show"Anything But Ordinary" is being directed by Lennie Watts and musically directed by Steven Ray Watkins, and will perform November 2, 10 and 16th.  Barb Malley next brought in the spritely "Who's That Woman" from Stephen Sondheim's Follies, and let us know that she's planning a skit (which features senior singing in inappropriate places) - let's make it viral when it goes up on YouTube!

Angela (who is going on the National Tour of the musical Titanic soon...talk about big mistakes!) then introduced composer Richie Eisenberg, who let Brett play piano while he sang "What Are You Looking For?", a swinging ballad-type song with the usual Eisenberg charm.  His Revue is coming back in the fall - make no mistake about it!  Jerry Phelps then sang the "Facebook Song," an "oops, I hope I never do it again" song.  It was very funny coming from Jerry's choir-boy face, and well-sung in a beautiful, flexible tenor voice.  He may bring his previously sold-out show back, so keep an eye out for it.  Next, Parker Scott effortlessly sang "Souvenir" by Ricky Ian Gordon, and was happy to claim he has been in the tower mentioned in the song.  He made his Metropolitan Room debut "No Expectations" on Thursday the 9th, along with a piano/cello accompaniment.

Matthew Martin Ward took over piano duties for the next few songs, first accompanying MAC Award-winner Janice Hall, who sang "Les Amants d'un Jour (Lovers For One Day)"; she prefaced the song by saying "oops, I'm going to sing another depressing Edith Piaf song," but we forgave her quickly once we heard the lovely rendition she gave.  Matthew continued to play for Tom White, who sang two quick renditions of Randy Newman's "Maybe I'm Doing It Wrong," followed by James Taylor's "Lonesome Road" - Tom is workshopping a production of The Dutch Play soon.  Matthew Martin Ward then stayed at the piano to Tom Wait's "Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis," a down and dirty, experience-filled song with a long list of life-changing mistakes.  Matthew is excited to perform in "There's a Phantom In My Opera" on August 20th, alongside a legit high soprano - more information to come.  Bill Zeffiro then switched with Matthew to play for himself on his original song, the witty "Better Than Nothing," a song about making a downward choice for some good reasons.  I (Sierra Rein) then joined up with Bill to sing "The Joint Is Really Jumping Down In Carnegie Hall," in preparation for The MetroStar Talent Challenge on Monday night (good news! I went from the Top Ten to the Top Seven, so make reservations to see and vote for me this Monday night, the 13th at The Metropolitan Room!).  After me came my friend Arianna who (although she found a hole in the stage with her heel in the middle of the song) comically sang "Adelaide's Lament" from Guys and Dolls without fail. Arianna is working on a film project at the moment, one which she is both singing in and working with the composer on as music director.

The Salon Spotlight featured Mary Foster Conklin and John DiPinto, a unique duo with a fascinating collection of music to pull from.  They will be seen at the Metropolitan Room on August 16th.  They started with "Phase Two," a DiPinto original with a bluesy feel.  They next sang "Bernie's Tune" by Lieber & Stoller completely a cappella; John began with a vocal baseline, with Mary singing and scatting through the lead vocals.  Then they switched and Mary gave John the bass support while he flitted his way through the main melody.  They then melded together in difficult harmony to the end - it was a great crowd-pleaser.  They completed their set with a medley of two bossa-nova numbers: Andy Williams' "Music to Watch the Girls Go By" and "Toi et Moi."  It was lovely to hear John's vocals sail over Mary's at time, and for them to both embrace the "power of cheese," as they stated.

Kristofferson’s Corner (or should I mistakenly spell it with a "K"?) was next!  Brett did a whole set all by himself, as his voice teacher was in the audience (which turned out to not be a blunder at all - he has a great voice).  He began with "Billy and the Night," which is featured in his BMI-written treatment of the movie Across the Tracks.  Brett was quite excited to announce that he finally has the creative rights to this movie and he will be making a full musical treatment (he is renaming the project Closer Than You Think).  He then sang "People Don't Change," a song from the same musical sung from a Principal's point of view to one of the kids he's in charge of.  He then sang a standalone song, a hilariously sweet song about one man's encounter in a gym with a certain "Paul" (Brett assured us it was not an autobiographical song).

The Second Act found Angela Shultz once again as co-host (she didn't blunder into another open mic after intermission by mistake!).  She started out with "the strangest torch song every written," as one reviewer once put it - the odd "Mexican Wrestler" by Jill Sobule.   Then she sang two Brett Kristofferson songs: the first was "He's Mine," a cute ditty he wrote for Angela whenever she chose to get married, and "The Whole Wide World," a winning and stunning ballad of hope and recovery which happened to be one of the first things Brett ever wrote for Angela (they are roommates and it's easy to imagine that they have some stories between the two of them!).  Our Producer Tanya Moberly was next, singing the perfectly on-theme "Bad Idea" by David Hajdu and Jill Sodule.  Her new Barbara Streisand-themed show at Don't Tell Mama will premiere on September 28th and will continue October 18th, November 14th and December 4th.  Steven Ray Watkins will be her musical director.  Scott Koonce then sang "The Proposal" from Titanic and reminded us it must have been a mistake for someone to ask another to marry them on the Titanic, of all boats.  His Salon debut was certainly no mistake - he has a beautiful voice and flawless vocal lines.  He has a show in September - hopefully he'll come back to another Salon to plug it more!

Rain Collazo was next - I can't stress how much I love this woman's powerful and expressive voice! She sang "Tainted Love" in an amazing arrangement by Steven Ray Watkins, a slow sultry version with intense belt vocals.  She is putting together a show for the Spring of 2013, and I swear it would be a blunder to miss it when it arrives!  Following Rain was Stephanie Zagoren, who showed off her lovely soprano and French accent on Edith Piaf's "La Vie En Rose."  Salon debut-er Adam Gonzalez (accompanying himself on guitar) performed his original song "Help Me Get Through The Night" - he recently moved from Los Angeles with his wife and daughter and is currently working with a band and getting his name out!  Lawrence A. Florek, harkening us to the mistakes made by several large banks and corporations in recent years, sang "Buddy, Can You Spare a Dime?", an "oops, THEY did it again" song for sure!  Sue Hodgdon powered through "When You Got it, Flaunt It," a showgirl anthem from The Producers that demands one to "put your hidden treasures on display."  Sue's vocal treasures can be found on the stage at Don't Tell Mama with her show "On the Bumpy Road to Love" Saturday, September 8th at 3pm with only a $5 cover fee.  Jason Watkins sang the second-to-last Brett Kristofferson song, "Micki Go," a loving and touching song that will hopefully be in the show he and Brett are planning to do in the fall!  Angela Shultz finished the evening with Kristofferson's "The Luckiest," another heartful and touching love song that showcased her moving abilities to tell a story with her lyrics.

THIS SUNDAY! The optional theme for the evening is “Another Kind of Light.” Bring in a song about sunshine, candlelight, electricity or seeing things from a new or different perspective.  Our Guest Host will be Kenneth Gartman!  Our Co-Host will be Broadway Veteran and MAC and Bistro Award Winner Raissa Katona Bennett!  The Salon Spotlight will feature MAC Award Nominated Edd Clark and Multiple MAC Award Winner Sue Matsuki!  Bring your sheet music, guitars, duets, etc and be prepared to let the light shine in!

See you then,

-Sierra Rein
Blogette for The Salon
Please email me.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Update from Producer Tanya Moberly - August 8, 2012

SALON – that unique, MULTIPLE AWARD WINNING, Weekly Open Mic Event, created and hosted by Mark Janas returns to Etcetera, Etcetera - 352 West 44th Street, NYC 10036 – on Sunday, August 12th from 7-10:30PM! (Sign-Up Begins at 6:15.)

The optional theme for the evening is “Another Kind of Light.” Bring in a song about sunshine, candlelight, electricity or seeing things from a new or different perspective.


Remember, any material, on or off theme, is always welcome at Salon.

Our Guest Host will be Kenneth Gartman! Kenneth is currently the Musical Director for “Rev. Yolanda’s Old Time Gospel Hour” which has two more performances at The Duplex (61 Christopher St NYC, (212) 255-5438) August 16th at 9:30 and August 26th at 6:30. For more information: www.kennethgartman.com / www.theduplex.com.

Our Co-Host will be Broadway Veteran and MAC and Bistro Award Winner Raissa Katona Bennett! Raissa will be at Feinstein’s (540 Park Avenue (at 61st St) NYC, 212-339-4095) August 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th and 25th at 8pm releasing her new CD “Another Kind of Light”, Raissa is also the Executive Producer of The Concerts for City Greens, a non-profit endeavor dedicated to the greening of New York City while bringing live music to new audiences. (The next concert is scheduled for September 12th with a rain date of September 13th.) If you order tickets for her Aug 22nd or Aug 23rd show and use the code GREEN, Feinstein’s will donate their service fee to The Concerts For City Greens. For more information: www.raissakatonabennett.com / www.feinsteinsattheregency.com.

The Salon Spotlight will feature MAC Award Nominated Edd Clark and Multiple MAC Award Winner Sue Matsuki! Edd and Sue will be at Don’t Tell Mama (343 West 46th St, NYC, 212-757-0788) with their new show “It’s Us Again” on August 14th and August 21st at 7pm. For more information: www.eddclark.com / www.suematsuki.com / www.donttellmamanyc.com.

Salon continues every Sunday (except Sept 2nd)…

August 19th: 
Theme: Then and Now / Remembrances and Anniversaries – Celebrating Seven Years of Salon!
Co-Hosts: Salon Charter Members: Jeffrey Biering, Donna Coney Island, Kristin Maloney, Chris Weikel and Stephen Wilde

August 26th: 
Theme: Happy Birthday, Mr. Bernstein
Co-Host: TBA

September 2nd: NO SALON

September 9th:
Theme: TBA
Co-Host: TBA

Salon is an ongoing open entertainment event in which singers, writers and musicians share their talent with each other and audience members. There is a $10 cash cover collected at the door and a $15 food/drink minimum (cash or credit) per person. (For more information about Etcetera, Etcetera's delicious menu: www.etcetcnyc.com.) There are no reservations; seating is on a first come/first served basis, Doors open and sign up begins at 6:15pm. The evening runs 7-10:30, with one intermission. If you would like to sign up to perform, see one the evening's 'Etceterettes' to fill out a card with your name, the name of your song, whether or not Mark will be playing for you and any upcoming events you'd like to promote. We do not present performers in order of sign-up, however, indicating requests as clearly and as early as possible as far as time restraints are concerned always makes everything much more possible. ALWAYS BRING SEVERAL SONG SELECTIONS to avoid duplication. All types of material, on or off theme are always welcome at Salon. We enthusiastically welcome instrumentalists, poets, playwrights, essayists, comics, illusionists and performance artists. Please limit your selections to three or four minutes in length (including introductions). Please also bring clear, complete charts for Mark to read. Sitting on the piano is not allowed, nor is flash photography. Please turn off all noise making devices and give performers your undivided attention.

Visit our website at www.markjanasthesalon.com and look for us on Facebook!

Thank you to our sponsors Dr. Garrett Bennett and Father Jeffrey Hamblin, MD!

Plus! There is an exciting night of One Acts being produced by The Abingdon Theatre Company at Father Hamblin’s Christ Church of Bay Ridge on Saturday, August 25th!  Visit www.abingdontheatre.org.

Looking forward to seeing you all Sunday, August 12th!

Thanks,

Tanya Moberly Salon Producer

P.S. If you would like to remove your name from or add a name to our mailing list please email us.

-Sierra Rein
Blogette for The Salon
Please email me.