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Posts Tagged ‘“Follies”’

Wow, wow, wow is what I have to say after attending the opening night of T. Oliver Reid’s show “This Love I Know” at the Metropolitan Room in NYC. I have never heard T. Oliver Reid sing prior to tonight, but I now see why he was the winner of the 2010 “MetroStar Talent Challenge.” Beating out the other 51 contestants during the 8-week jury and audience-voted elimination-round competition, T. Oliver dazzled throughout.

“This Love I Know” takes the audience on a journey of love. T. Oliver chose songs that have helped him through many loves, both the “falling-in-love” and “on-to-the-next” variety. T. Oliver’s voice is powerful, skilled, and most of all wide-ranged! His voice shined and sparkled throughout the whole set with such classics as “Hooray For Love,” “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” “Autumn In New York,” “This Can’t Be Love,” and “I Can’t Make You Love Me.”  If you are looking for a show to attend with that special someone or someone you love, then “This Love I Know” at the Metropolitan Room (34 West 22nd Street, between 5th & 6th Ave) is the place to be through February 14 at 7pm! $25 + 2 drink minimum.

T. Oliver Reid has spent the past 12 years entertaining audiences on Broadway in “Chicago,” “Kiss Me Kate,” “Follies,” “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “Never Gonna Dance,” “La Cage Aux Folles,” “The Wedding Singer,” “Damn Yankees,” and “Mary Poppins.” He has also had the privilege of working onstage with Chita Rivera, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jane Krakowski, Karen Ziemba, Blythe Danner, Judith Ivey, Marin Mazzie, Sutton Foster, and Robert Goulet. He’s worked with some of the best directors, choreographers, and musical directors including Kathleen Marshall, Rob Marshall, Rob Ashford, Jerry Zaks, Ann Reinking, and Jerry Mitchell.

Over the past decade, he has donated his time and resources to The Actor’s Fund, Jeffrey Fashion Cares, and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS where he’s served on several fund raising and grant committees as well as committees to help with the distribution of funds to food banks across the country. He is also a charter member of G4G/NYC (Gay for Good, a non-profit service organization). For more on T. Oliver Reid be sure to visit http://toliverreid.com/

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? It would be what. Literally every Saturday morning growing up I watched Turner Classical Movies and the MGM movie musicals. I would sing along to them and get different cast recordings and sing to those. I had the “Annie” cast recording and would sing to it everyday until my mother finally took me to see the road show which was in Charlotte. We went there and that’s where it all started for me.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? That’s a good question. The highest is a Soprano B flat. I used to be able to sing higher, like high E flats, but somewhere along the way, I lost a few notes. The lowest note I can sing is the low F.

3. Who’s the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? I’d love to have David Foster produce something for me. It really goes back and forth between musical theatre and standard pop music composer/lyricists. There are a lot of new composer/lyricist’s I’d like to work with. Me: Which ones? T: I like Scott Alan’s work. I think he’s fantastic.

4. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? “You should be singing and not dancing.”

5. What do you get from performing in a solo show that you don’t get from performing in a Broadway show? It’s all about me. Whatever choices I make and songs I choose is about the journey I want to take as opposed to me just being there for someone else’s journey or me filling a part for someone else. It’s a great thing to be able to shape a show myself and to choose all the numbers and sing all the songs and sort of figure out what I want to do. It really becomes more part of you than being part of someone else’s idea.

6. How did you come up with the concept and song selection for your show “This Love I Know?” I had a list of about 40 songs and I would just listen to every song everyday and after a while I was like I don’t want to listen to this one anymore and then take it off the list until I got the list down to a smaller number and then put them in an order that made sense. Me: You did achieve that. I think there was a story that went with the songs and that came through to the audience. T: Thank you, thank you very much.

7. Favorite place to practice/rehearse on your own? When a train is coming into the subway platform that is when I do my loudest singing because I don’t like singing loud around people. When I’m on the train I’m always humming or thinking of songs. I also like to practice in a cafe somewhere because I can’t concentrate well in my apartment, so I’ll go to a cafe and brainstorm my ideas.

8. Favorite way to stay in shape? The gym. Summers I like to ride my bike.

9. Boxers or Briefs? I’ll say briefs, but they are somewhere in between. They are not the usual tighty whities. They are a little bit looser.

10. Favorite website? Facebook.com. I feel like I’m on it all the time.

11. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman definitely!

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite place to go on a date in NYC? It would be my favorite restaurant which is actually in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn called Buttermilk Channel. They have the best food on the planet. You really feel like you’re in Brooklyn and the food is amazing.

12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My best friend who I lost in April 2010.

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When three time Tony Award nominee Kelli O’Hara sings, people listen! People listen so intently they are taken away from their daily lives to another world, a world of extraordinary talent, beauty and passion. I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Kelli after her triumphant opening night of her one woman show “Beyond the Ingenue” at Feinstein’s at the Regency (click here for my review).

From Oklahoma to New York City, Kelli O’Hara moved here to pursue her dream of becoming a performer and a performer she has become, in every sense of the word! Kelli made her Broadway debut in “Jekyll & Hyde” then going on to star in “Follies,” “Sweet Smell of Success,” and “Dracula.” Kelli earned her three Tony Award nominations in a row: her first nomination was for her performance in “The Light in the Piazza” co-starring Matthew Morrison, she received her second nomination for her performance in “The Pajama Game” co-starring Harry Connick Jr, and her third nomination was for her performance in “South Pacific,” co-starring Paulo Szot and Matthew Morrison.

In between “The Pajama Game” & “South Pacific,” Kelli made her Carnegie Hall debut in the NY Philharmonic production of “My Fair Lady” and released her debut album “Wonder in the World.” Kelli then went on to perform solo concerts at some of the biggest halls in New York and DC including Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Cooper Union, Joe’s Pub, and Cafe Carlyle.

Off-Broadway and regionally, Kelli has been seen in “Sunday in the Park with George” (Reprise) “My Life With Albertine” (Playwright’s Horizons), and “Beauty” (La Jolla Playhouse). In addition to theatre, Kelli’s film and television credits include “The Dying Gaul,” “Alexander Hamilton,” “NUMB3RS,” “All My Children,” and the upcoming animated series “Car Talk.”

There are two chances now to catch Kelli live on stage: Now through October 30 at Feinstein’s at the Regency in her one woman show “Beyond the Ingenue” and then November 18-21 in “Bells Are Ringing” at Encores! For more on Kelli, be sure to visit http://www.kelliohara.com.

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? My voice teacher Florence Birdwell in Oklahoma. She’s pretty amazing. She was my mentor and inspired me to come here and do what I’m doing.

2. What’s the highest and lowest note you can sing? Well, I sang a high F above high C in “Magic Flute,” an opera. The lowest note I sing is probably F below middle C.

3. Who’s the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Mmmm…Hugh Jackman because I almost have worked with him a few times and it just hasn’t worked out yet. I would also love to work with Megan Mullally.

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? I would be a teacher. I love teaching. I teach, but not full time, just when I can. What do you teach? I teach musical theatre master classes.

5. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? No one’s me. So I’m the only one who can do things the way I do them.  So be proud of it and sell it.

6. Favorite way to stay in shape? Jogging.

7. Favorite skin care product? Clinique Exfoliating scrub.

8. Favorite store to shop in? Anthropology for sure.

9. Favorite website? Etsy.com

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My husband, Greg Naughton.

12. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I can imitate people’s walks almost perfectly.

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There are many performers with talented and powerful voices, but then there are those with exceptional ones like Kelli O’Hara, a three-time Tony Award Nominee. When Kelli sings, a hush comes over the room so you can not only hear her pristine voice, but feel it throughout your soul and that is exactly how I felt while watching Kelli O’Hara sing at Feinstein’s at the Regency in NYC on Tuesday, October 19, 2010 in her one woman show “Beyond the Ingenue.”

Singing some of the greatest songs written as well as new ones, Kelli knows how to hit each note with the perfect amount of energy, vocal power, and most of all heart! Grateful, personable, and delightful are just some of the ways to describe Kelli’s personality in between songs (and when I got to interview her after the show, which will be posting soon). She really has worked hard to get to where she is and deserves all the success she has had!

Her set list ranged from showtunes to standards to new music as well as taking songs written for men and singing them as if they were written for women.  “Somebody, Somewhere” by Frank Loesser, “The Beauty Is” by Adam Guettel from “The Light in the Piazza,” “This Nearly Was Mine” from “South Pacific,” and “I Could Have Danced All Night” really showcased her high vocals to everyone’s delight! Kelli’s fun/comedic side was displayed perfectly during “Just In Time” (a beautiful song about finding your true love) by Jule Styne/Betty Comden & Aldoph Green, and “Opera Country” (a song about a country singer who wants to sing opera) by Dan Lipton/David Rossmer, and “You’re Always Here” written by Tom Kitt/Brian Yorkey for Kelli in the style of a Stephen Sondheim song which she also sang as part of Sondheim’s 80th Birthday celebration. Other shining moments came when Kelli sang the Frank Sinatra hit “All The Way” by Jimmy Van Heusen/Sammy Cahn, “Finishing The Hat” by Stephen Sondheim, “Tomorrow Lies In The Cradle” by The Weavers, and “Somewhere” by Leonard Bernstein/Stephen Sondheim.

Kelli will be at Feinstein’s at the Regency until October 30! If you never seen Kelli O’Hara live, now would be a great time to go see her! Her voice will leave you wanting more…

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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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Bridie Carroll is an award winning performer to be heard! She can belt the roof off a building and has the personality and stage presence to keep you captivated! Bridie has traveled the country regionally in North Shore Music Theatre’s “Disney’s High School Musical” and “Hairspray” (for which she won the Irne Award), Arundel Barn Playhouse’s “I Love A Piano,” “Bye Bye Birdie,” and “42nd Street,” The Boston Conservatory’s “City of Angels” and “The Rivals,” New London Barn Playhouse’s “The Music Man,” “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change,” “A Chorus Line,” “Annie,” “The Sound of Music,” and “Seven Brides For Seven Brothers,” Aurora Theater’s “You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown” and “Godspell,” Mercyhurst College’s “The Apple Tree,” “Assassins,” and “The Fantastics,” and Conventry Conservatory’s “Anything Goes” and “Oklahoma.” Bridie has also been a soloist with the Boston Pops and currently she can been seen in the First National Tour of “Grease” as “Jan” alongside American Idol Winner Taylor Hicks through May 23. For more on Bridie, be sure to visit www.bridiecarroll.com!

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? Every musical I listened to as a little girl! I never really knew who anyone was I was just attracted to the music and the lyrics! I lived in Hong Kong so wasn’t around to know who and what was popular. It was just the thrill of performing! Today it’s Audra McDonald, Marin Maize, Christiane Noll, Lisa Howard, Laura Osnes, Lauren Kennedy, Christine Ebersole, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Quentin Earl Darrington, Brad Bass, Adam Armstrong, Jon Gealt, Ben Roseberry, Alice Ripley, Debra Monk, Bernadette Peters, lets be honest my list could go on and on and on.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? I think a low E flat to a high E flat… but not sure it sounds good! Currently I sing to a high E flat in the show.

3. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? Just my silly Minnesotan accent, which I think everyone knows about 🙂

4. What is the best advice you’ve given, but not taken for yourself? Oh gosh…well if you ask my friends I give a lot of advice! And I should practice what I preach! We all deserve the best and to be patient because everyone has their own journey in life. Everyone’s individual path is unique and special and we should stay focused on our own journey and not wish we were on someone else’s.

5. Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts? What do you order? Well it used to be Starbucks! But I am no longer allowed coffee or caffeine! So I am now a tea drinker, and I love TeaVana!

6. Books or Magazines? Books.

7. Favorite TV Show? Currently…..LOST and The Biggest Loser.

8. Favorite play/musical? “Follies,” “Man of LaMancha,” “Aida,” The Deaf West Theater’s production of “Big River!,” “August: Osage County.”

9. Favorite website? Facebook.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? um…..the perfect man? Whoever that is? Does that even exist….maybe just in my dreams!

12. Who do you consider to be your hero? My parents.

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