Friday, September 27, 2013

The Salon Wrap-Up for September 22, 2013 "It's My Party and I'll Sing If I Want To"

It certainly felt like a party when we walked into Etc Etc on Sunday. There were colorful feather boas on the piano and people dressed in sparkly outfits. And no wonder - our fun theme for the evening was, “It’s My Party and I’ll Sing If I Want To.” (And we were as obstinate about that as the theme would suggest!)

Our Guest Host/Pianist was the always amazing Jeff Cubeta! Jeff just finished a run of SING THIS – THE SONGS OF JEFF CUBETA at Don’t Tell Mama and is currently campaigning for kickstarted cash to record his premiere CD. Click here for more information.

Guest Host, Jeff Cubeta
Our Co-Host was Cabaret Newcomer Robin Westle! Robin will be bringing NO REGRETS back to The Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 West 42nd St, NYC 10036 - October 22nd at 7pm & October 27th at 7pm. For more information:
Co-Host, Robin Westle
To kick off the evening, Robin started with a fun and jazzy “Throwing A Ball.” Robin then brought up Elaine St George who sang a sweet and warm “Would You Like to Learn To Dance” by Steve Goodman. Speaking of, we were thrilled to find at that this MAC Award winner has a new show coming up: “Elaine George Sings Steve Goodman.” It’ll be at Don’t Tell Mama on Oct 30, Nov 1, 7, & 14 - all at 7:15pm. There is a discount for Salon members - thanks Elaine! Jane Glick as next with the charming story song, “I Never Do Anything Twice.” Jane has a show coming up soon, and as soon as she has dates she’ll make them available to us.

Bennett Silverstein gave us a swinging version of “Ring A Ding Ding” by Jimmy Van Heusen & Sammy Kahn. You can hear that song’s in Bennett’s show honoring the songs of Jimmie Van Heusen, coming up at Don’t Tell Mama Sunday, October 13 at 3pm. Ivan Torzs, in his second outing at The Salon, came to the piano and started with a rudimentary (and comedic) lesson in the Korean language before playing/singing the ballad, “I’ll Count To Ten” - with (get this) call and response…in Korean! Well, he called and we laughed, but you get the picture. (There’s only so much Korean that we can learn in 90 seconds.) Next up was Robin Kradles with a beautifully acted “Lies of Handsome Men.” Robin’s debut cabaret is coming up October 3, 12, & 20 at The Duplex, called, “Icons: A Tribute the the Women Who Inspire Me.” Get out there and support this performer’s fine work!

Kit Benton, in a duet with Guest Host Jeff Cubeta, performed “It’s The Little Things You Do Together” from Company. She’s reviving a show, “Family Matters” on Long Island. If you’re in the area, be sure to get out to see it! In a 2nd visit to The Salon, Lynn Kearney sang the lovely pop country ballad, “Angel From Montgomery.” You can see Lynn in the Metropolitan Room’s Showcase on Wednesday night - good luck, Lynn! Self-proclaimed Salon virgin, Alexis Fishman (who I had the joy of working with for several years in Craig Carnelia’s professional musical theater class) sang a heartbreaking, “What Did I Have” by Lerner & Lane. She was the 2012 NYMF “Next Broadway Sensation” Winner and did 2 sold out nights at 54 Below. Please come back, Alexis!

Long time Salon crooner, Marnie Klar, sang the showstopping medley from her recent cabaret “Ain’t Got No / I Got Life” from the musical, Hair (with a NIna Simone arrangement.) Carolyn Montgomery Forant, a salon “newbie” who claimed she couldn’t use the words “me” and “virgin” in the same sentence, sang a powerful rendition of “But I Want To.” Carolyn just came out of seven years as a restaurant owner and is returning to cabaret, with two shows coming up with dates TBA. Please come back soon, Carolyn! Your Blogette for the evening (aka ME! or, Erin Cronican, if you’d prefer) sang Jason Robert Brown’s “I’m Not Afraid Of Anything.” I would like to point out that throughout the evening Jeff Cubeta underscored people’s entrances and exits tot he stage - I wish he could follow me around and do that ALL the time!

Salon Spotlight

Our Salon Spotlight featured David Ballard!, who spent a rare night seated rather than running around he room fulfilling everyone’s culinary desires! David will be making his cabaret debut with HAVING IT ALL at Don’t Tell Mama – 343 West 46th St, NYC 10036 – September 24th at 7pm, September 25th at 9:30pm, October 11th at 7pm & October 12th at 5pm. For more information:

David’s first song was a haunting ballad by Boy George called “Stranger To This World.” For his second song, he turned things up a little with a funny yet touching rendition of The Beatles’ “Your Mother Should Know” (I won’t give away any news from his show, but it was very colorful.) His final tune was Jillette Johnson’s “Cameron”, an emotional story song which I had never had the luxury to hear, and it was done beautifully. You really should get out and support his fine, fine work.

Cubeta’s Corner

Filling in for Mark Janas’ Classical Corner is no easy feat, so Jeff decided to put his one spin on the segment by sharing 3 of his favorite songs. The first was Bruce Springsteen’s “Fire.” Jeff encouraged those of us who knew the song to sing along with harmonies. I’m embarrassed to say that I didn’t know it before he started but I certainly became a fan by the end!

His second number of the set was “Stop Draggin’ Around My heart” by Tom Petty, which he performed in a duet with Salon Producer, Tanya Moberly. Their voices blended seamlessly and reminded me of how much I love hearing harmonic singing. The final number was original Jeff Cubeta song - “Is There Anybody Really Out There” which I fell in love with!

Second Half

Robin brought us back into the second half with the clever patter song, “Eat The Ice Cream.” She followed that with the charming character song, “Bar at the Piccolo Marina.” She continued to bring the funny in song given right to her husband, Tom, “Minor Changes.”

Coming back to the mic, Salon Producer (and in-demand director) Tanya Moberly sang “Everything” by Rupert Holmes and Paul Williams. Tanya has announced dates for her next solo cabaret show - “I Love NY Songwriters.” It’ll be happening at Don’t Tell Mama Nov 1 (7pm) & 2, and Dec 3 & 4. She met a lot of the songwriters here at The Salon including Richard Eisenberg, Dan Furman, Ritt Henn, Bobbie Horowitz, Nicholas Levin, Liz McNamara and Bill Zeffiro (plus many others!) She has a discount for Salon members - you have no excuse not to go!

MAC & Bistro award winner, Janice Hall, sang an amazing, haunting version of “Autumn Leaves” which she blended with her own translation of the lyrics into English (oh yeah - did I mention it was in French?) Bill Zeffiro played flawlessly on piano. 2013 MAC Award Winner Adam Shapiro brought in Christine Ebersole’s “Gently Down The Street” - a song he heard at the end credits of the movie, “The Big Wedding.” It’s a jazz version of “Row Row Row Your Boat” with lyrics she added to enhance the song. I loved it! :) Adam is bringing back his holiday show in December -- but he promises there will be no Christmas carols! He’ll give us more details as they become available.

In honor of George Gershwin’s birthday, Marissa Mulder sang the “little known” tune, “Someone To Watch Over Me.” Marissa is a Julie Wilson Award Winner & Noel Coward Competition Winner. She’s reviving her Tom Waits’ show this Saturday, September 28 at Joe’s Pub at 9:30pm. Get out to see it! After playing for 3 people in a row, Bill Zeffiro got to play & sing his own tune “As Long As We’re Loaded” (highly appropriate for the theme, I’ll say!) After singing, he asked if he could pimp something - You can see Bill every Tuesday at La Mediterranee on 2nd Avenue between 5th & 51st. Be sure to bring your tunes and stay to sing!

A Salon newbie, Bob O’Hare, took a seat on the stage, to sing, “Singin’ In The Bathtub.” Bob has a show coming up, “Recovery” at Don’t Tell Mama with Tom Nelson as MD and directed by Eric Michael Gillett. I didn’t catch the dates and he didn’t write them on his card, so contact Don’t Tell Mama for details. Cookie Stark, who our co-host called “the funniest person I know” sang the darling tune, “Hard Hearted Hannah.” Kathleen Stewart brought a great musical theater sensibility to Andrew Lippa’s “Out Of The Blue.” On her card she wrote, “About to start playing ukelele at a new Astoria Restaurant.” I have to see that!

Kathleen’s friend (and Broadway veteran) Stephen Mitchell Brown, sang a powerful and precise “Finishing The Hat” from Sunday in the Park With George. It’s his first time at The Salon and he promised that it will not be his last! Carolyn Ferenczi sang a tender, “Rainbow Connection.” Newbie to The Salon, Stephanie Summerville, brought her delicate soprano to “Grateful” by one f my favorite composers, John Bucchino. MAC Award winner Eric Michael Gillett was next at the mic to sing a Jeff Cubeta original, “There’s An Angel Watching Over Me.” Eric invited everyone to come to the Rodgers & Hart night at the Cabaret Convention. He also said they’re bringing back the Amanda McBroom Project, but this time scaled down to just 10 singers over 4 nights. Sounds amazing, Eric - congrats!

Richard Eisenberg, Salon regular, started by acknowledging those who made this evening possible - Tanya Moberly as Producer, Jeff Cubeta as flawless Guest Host, and The Salon’s Board of Directors (including Roy Sander, who was enjoying the show from the front row.) He followed that with his ode to love, “Never Too Late.” Louisa Poster was next with a sassy “Bei Mir Bist du Shein” (I have no idea what that means but it was great!) Louisa announced that she’s a featured singer with the Rick Bogart Trio every Tues & Fri night at Lybane on 8th Avenue.

For the last number of the evening, our fearless Co-Host Robin Westle sang the glorious Edith Piaf tune, “Je Ne Regrette Rein.” She included an amusing rant of all of the things she DIDN’T regret in her life… except for eating full meals on a day of fasting for her Jewish husband. And with that, the last Salon of the summer was closed. Onwards to autumn!

Next week, The Salon theme is “There Is A Change in the Air” - this should be a great and fun theme to tackle! Bring any song that talks about shifts in time or circumstances. You can even go pun-ny and sing a song about money! (I did not mean to rhyme that, I swear.)

Our Guest Host/Pianist will be Two-Time MAC & Bistro Award Winner Mark Hartman! Mark’s Broadway credits range from PUMP BOYS AND DINETTES to AVENUE Q and his cabaret clients include Scott Barbarino and the Bev-Naps, Baby Jane Dexter, Lina Koutrakos, Rick Skye and for the last seven years Natalie Douglas! He is also one-third of B Major Productions, responsible for the multiple award-winning Silence! The Musical.

Guest Host: Mark Hartman
Our Co-Host will be Seven-Time MAC & Bistro Award Winner, Natalie Douglas! Natalie will be appearing at The CafĂ© Carlyle – 35 East 76th St (at Madison Avenue), NYC 10021 – September 26th& 27th at 10:45pm, She will also be Guest Hosting Jim Caruso’s Cast Party at Birdland – 15 West 44th St, NYC 10036 – October 7th AND will return to the Crazy Coqs in London in 2014.
Co-Host Natalie Douglas
Our Salon Spotlight will feature Sue Matsuki! Sue will be bringing THE BLUES AND COUNTRY SHOW, the second in her GENRES series to The Metropolitan Room – 34 West 22nd St, NYC 10010 – October 19th at 4pm. For more information:

Salon Spotlight: Sue Matsuki

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