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Archive for September, 2010

With the voice of a goddess, it’s no wonder Liz McCartney is a Bistro Award Winner for her one woman show “Rosemary and Time, a musical tribute to Rosemary Clooney.” Liz has been a fixture on Broadway starring in the Tony Award winning revival of “South Pacific,” “Mamma Mia,” “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “Taboo,” “Dance of the Vampires,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” and “Les Miserables.” Audiences around the country have also been dazzled by the talent that is Liz McCartney. Her regional credits include “Working” at the Asolo Repertory Theatre with new material added by Tony Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, “Souvenir” at George Street Playhouse, and “Pirates!” at the Paper Mill Playhouse. Currently, Liz can be seen lighting up the stage in “Nighttime Traffic” as part of the NYMF festival in NYC through October 10. For much more on Liz, be sure to visit http://www.lizmccartney.com.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? I always knew I wanted to perform. I am the youngest of four children and percentage-wise most performers are the youngest in their family.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Lowest I don’t know, highest, I have a whistle tone, so I don’t think really counts, but highest on stage was an “E” in “Phantom” and “Dance Of The Vampires.”

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? I worked with George Hearn twice, so I think the only other person is, Angela Lansbury.

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? It would have to be something creative, designing, or writing.

5. Do you have any rituals that you must do before a show? How do you decompress after a show? No pre-show rituals, after I watch the food network or “Law and Order.”

6. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I don’t consider any of my talents strange or unusual…I bake , I sew, I write music, I draw…

7. Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts? What do you order? Starbucks…Dunkin Donuts has started tasting funny over the years.

8. Favorite skin care product? Skyn…it’s from Iceland

9. Favorite website? YouTube…I’m a YouTube junkie!

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman all the way.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. What is the best advice you’ve ever received? Never try and guess what they want…and never use an audition for practice! Oh yes, and this one is the MOST IMPORTANT…Always be nice to the monitor, you never know who they’re friends with.

12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Antonio Banderas…during Zorro…the first one, I didn’t like the sequel when he got his hair straightened!

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This contest is now over and today’s winner is Benjamin! Congratulations Benjamin! Tune in next week for another edition of “Win It Wednesday” because you never know, the winner just might be you! It’s another edition of “Win It Wednesday” here on “Adaumbelle’s Quest” where one lucky reader, at random, will win a CD from “Glitterball 2010” by answering the question below. The winner will be announced at 5pm!

“Glitterball 2010: Disc Edition” features fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participants Marty Thomas, Titus Burgess, Kate Pazakis, and Katie Thompson along with Emily McNamara, Aubrey Mae Davis, Natalie Weiss, Danny Calvert and a host of others! This exclusive CD is not available in any store or online because it was given out only at Marty Thomas’ “Glitterball 2010” party! Tracks include: “Instant Replay,” “Never Can Say Goodbye,” “Hot Shot,” “Stayin’ Alive,” “Turn The Beat Around,” “Bad Girls,” “Macarthur Park” and many other disco hits!

If you create a Broadway show featuring disco hits, what would you title it and who would you have star in it?

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If you are looking for a performer with strong vocals, good looks, and most of all talent, then Curtis Holbrook is your guy! A performer on the definite rise, Curtis has delighted Broadway audiences in “Xanadu,” “Follies,” “All Shook Up,” “The Boy From Oz,” “Taboo,” “Fosse,” and “Footloose,” and the current Broadway revival of “West Side Story.”  His Off-Broadway credits include “Saved!” at Playwrights Horizon and “Radiant Baby” at the Public Theater. Curtis has also lit up the screen in such films and television shows as “Hairspray,” “Across the Universe,” “Law and Order: SVU,” “Sesame Street,” “All My Children,” and “As The World Turns.” Curtis can currently be seen in “Frog Kiss” (along with fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Kate Pazakis) produced by Brierpatch Productions as part of the NYMF festival from September 30-October 11 at the Theater at St. Clements (423 West 46th Street).

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? First, I would have to say my mother…Because she put in me in tap class at the age of 2 🙂 But when I was old enough to know what being inspired was, I saw Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor in Singin’ in the Rain. That moment was truly magical for me. I was hooked.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? I don’t actually read sheet music…I do everything by ear. I try not to think about what notes I am singing because it can mess with your head, ya know?…But I think when we filmed Across the Universe I sang a high D.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Just one? There are so many!!! Well even though it isn’t possible…Bob Fosse. His way of storytelling is like no other.

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? Marine Biology.

5. Do you have any rituals that you must do before a show? Depends on the show… Usually, I listen to music that could be the soundtrack of the characters life… That helps to get me focused and fired up. How do you decompress after a show? An adult beverage.

6. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? Hand Farting.

7. Favorite ride at an amusement park? All of them! The X Factor @ Magic Mountain might be my favorite though.

8. Favorite way to stay in shape? Really just by doing what I do…and Yoga. I don’t do gyms.

9. Boxers or Briefs? Really??? If you must know…square cut boxer briefs. So both!

10. Favorite website? YouTube.

11. Superman or Wonder Woman? Batman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

12. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? My Grandfather always told me…”Think For Yourself.”

13. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My wife 🙂

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Back Row: Johnny Tammaro, Lynne Koplitz, Gina Ferranti, Valerie Smaldone, Middle Row: Ralph Macchio, John Barbieri, Mario Cantone, Bottom Row: Kendra Jain

On Monday, September 20, I was invited by to an industry reading of a new play called “A Room Of My Own,” written and directed by Charles Messina. It starred Ralph Macchio, Mario Cantone, Gina Ferranti, John Barbieri, Kendra Jain, Johnny Tammaro, Lynne Koplitz (who was last minute substitute for an ill-stricken Shannen Doherty), and narrated by Valerie Smaldone.

This hilarious, witty, politically incorrect show is about a writer’s attempt to tell the story of growing up with his wacky Italian-American family in a small tenement apartment in the 1970s Greenwhich Village. Headed by a conniving, thieving matriarch, a gambling addicted patriarch, and an uncle with a secret that everyone knows, The Morelli Clan of Thompson Street is one outrageous bunch. Their struggles are retold through the eyes of Adult Carl Morelli and relived through Little Carl Morelli.

Charles Messina has written a script so funny, I spent the whole night laughing. Gina Ferranti (“Dotty Morelli”) and Mario Cantone (“Jackie Morelli”) stole the show with their superb acting and comedic timing! Gina’s facial expressions were priceless while Mario’s signature inflection stole the show! Ralph Macchio and John Barbieri were perfectly cast as “Adult Carl Morelli” and “Little Carl Morelli,” respectively, many times thinking Ralph was the adult version of John. Johnny Tammaro was also cast well as the father, Peter Morelli, playing off of Gina’s moments. Kendra Jain shined as the daughter, “Jeannine Morelli,” especially when she needed to be sarcastic. Lynne Koplitz should be applauded for filling in at the last moment as “Sister Rita.” Using her comedic talents, Lynne was able to hold her own and shine brightly.

Tonight’s performance was just an industry reading. So much can change, from the script to the cast, between now and if/when this becomes a full production, but one never knows until the show is up and running. If this show becomes a full-length production, “Adaumbelle’s Quest” will be here to let you know!

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Be sure to catch fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Kate Pazakis and upcoming participant Curtis Holbrook, along with Hanley Smith, Terry Burrell, Joseph Dellger, Manna Nichols, Theis Weckesser, Jordan Barbour, Kenita Miller, Herman Sebek, Andrew Cao, and Lindsay Chambers in “Frog Kiss” at NYMF (New York Musical Festival).

Produced by Brierpatch Productions and Tamara Tunie the Production Advisor, “Frog Kiss” is about a very scientific princess named “Clementine” who meets a frog she is determined to turn into a prince-with the help of a troupe of Celestial Tap-Dancing Taoist Masters. Will Clementine get the Prince of her dreams, or will she find herself in bed with just another horny toad? It’s a bedtime story with a bawdy twist! Based on the Stephen Mitchell novella “The Frog Prince.”

“Frog Kiss” plays the Theater at St. Clements (423 West 46th Street):

Thursday, Sept. 30: 8pm

Sunday, October 3: 7:30pm

Monday, October 4: 9pm

Wednesday, October 6: 5pm

Sunday, October 10: 7:30pm

Monday, October 11: 1pm

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Be sure to catch award winning composer and fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Billy Stritch on “The Oprah Winfrey” show tomorrow, Tuesday, September 21 as he plays alongside his longtime friend Liza Minnelli! In NY, “The Oprah Winfrey Show” airs at 4pm on ABC.

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Joshua Henry is another one of our next generation actors on the rise! He won the Drama Desk Award for Best Featured Ensemble for “In The Heights,” which he also starred in on Broadway and he originated the role of the “Favorite Son” military hero in Broadway’s “American Idiot.” His other theatrical credits include “The Wiz” (City Center), “Godspell” (Papermill Playhouse), and “Being Alive” (Westport Country Playhouse). On television, Joshua has been seen in HBO’s “Sex and the City” as well as NBC’s “Kings.” Joshua is currently in Minneapolis making his Guthrie debut, in the pre-Broadway run of “The Scottsboro Boys” through September 25. “The Scottsboro Boys” will arrive on Broadway starting October 7. Be sure to check out this amazing talent!

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? It was just one person, but I remember being twelve years old watching Michael Jackson on TV and in awe at the power he had over an audience.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Why? Is this the final callback? I fancy myself a tenor 2 range with a little extra on the bottom and a few surprises on top.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Brian McKnight. Amazing musician and song writer. Brian, if you listening, let’s jam together!

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? Music Therapy.

5. Do you have any rituals that you must do before a performance? How do you decompress after a show? After shoulder rolls forward and back I like to have a moment of silence to remind myself how blessed I am to be doing what I love. Most nights after a show, I zone out to ESPN on the couch.

6. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? Well, I can make my voice sound computerized/audio-tuned.

7. Favorite way to stay in shape? I’m all about supersets at the gym. Although I’ve recently discovered Sculpt Yoga.

8. Boxers or Briefs? Recently briefs.

9. Favorite website? Facebook. Sometimes it’s annoying, but when it comes down to it, it’s perfect for the NYC lifestyle.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Superman because he can fly and see through walls. I haven’t done much research on Wonder Woman..I’m on it.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. What is the best advice you’ve ever received? Always do your best.

12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Beyonce. And I mean that in the most respectful, professional way.

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