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Posts Tagged ‘“Thoroughly Modern Millie”’

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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On Monday, November 1, I attended the first of three concerts from Two-Time Tony Nominee and fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Gavin Creel‘s brand new show “Back To New York” at Birdland as part of Jim Caruso’s Broadway at Birdland Series.

Performing both new material, fan favorites and some fun surprises, Gavin is back home and NY couldn’t be happier. From the moment Gavin took the stage, he had the crowd captivated. Focusing primarily on songs from his new EP “Quiet” (which was released this past June), Gavin also performed a bunch of new material not on the album. Gavin’s new material shows his continued growth as a singer, songwriter (along with his amazing writing partner Robbie Roth), and performer. The new songs featured, but not on “Quiet” were “Doing It,” “Beautifully Wrong,” and “Favorite Chapter”  while some of the songs performed off of “Quiet” were “Love Fell Down,”  “Green To Grey,” “Lonesome,” and “Hot Ohio.”

No Gavin concert would be complete without a few surprises…for starters, Gavin brought fellow “Hair” cast members Caissie Levy and Steel Burkhardt up on stage to sing a song they all wrote together called “Flower Children” which is a song from their view of what’s going on in the world and what’s to become of the “Flower Children.” Another delight of the evening was when Gavin spotlighted his friendship Celia Keenan-Bolger (“Olive” from “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”) and performed a song he wrote for her for her wedding called “You.”  It was a beautiful song about finding the one you love.

Gavin ended the night on quite a high with a new song called “Get Up” about standing up for what you believe in whether that be in a personal relationship with someone or in society. Gavin is many things: an actor, a singer, a songwriter, a performer, and most of all, a genuine, kind, and hard-working individual who values life and the people he has in it!

With only two more chances on November 8 and 15 to see Gavin performing his show “Back To New York” at Birdland, I highly suggest you call 212-581-3080 to see if there are any tickets left!

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Be sure to catch Two Time Tony Nominee and fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Gavin Creel in his brand new show “Back To New York” at Birdland on Monday, November 1, 8, and 15 at 7pm as part of Jim Caruso’s Broadway at Birdland Series!

Gavin will be performing new material from his new EP “Quiet” which is an intimate collection of six original acoustic session songs as well as some favorites!

If you’ve never seen this dynamic performer on stage, now would be a good time to come see why he’s so great!

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Tonight I had the fortunate experience of attending “Project Shaw” at The Players Club in NYC. For those of you who do not know, The Players Club was formed in 1888 by Edwin Booth who wanted to have a gathering place for him and his fellow performing colleagues to go to mingle. Started exclusively for men, The Players Club started to allow women in 1989, on Shakespeare’s Birthday. The first woman to join was Helen Hayes.

Rich in history, The Players Club continues to thrive today.  As the building itself is a preservation of history, so is “Project Shaw,” a monthly series dedicated to the readings of George Bernard Shaw’s plays, bringing in some of the finest performers we have today. With only scripts in hand, these performers continue to bring Shaw’s plays to life, entertaining one generation while introducing it to another. For a piece of theatre history, check out “Project Shaw.”

Tonight’s installment was “Captain Brassbound’s Conversion” starring Harriet Harris, Marc Kudish, Brad Oscar, A.J. Shively, Philip Glassborow, Glenn Kalison, David Ian Lee, Ariel Estrada, Matthew Baldiga, Paul Singleton, James Rana, Michael Feingold (from the Village Voice), and Michael Riedel (from the NY Post). “Captain Brassbound’s Conversion” tells the tale of a world famous British lady traveler (played esquisitly by Harriet Harris) who arrives in a Moroccan port and taken captive by an even more famous revengeful pirate! In no time she takes on his band of pirates, an Arab army, and the entire U.S. fleet!

It was a real treat to get to see Harriet Harris and Marc Kudish back on stage together (they previously starred together in the Tony Award Winning Musical “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” for which Harriet Harris won Best Featured Actress and Marc Kudish received a nomination for Best Featured Actor)! As great as they were together, Harriet Harris really stole the show! Whether it was a look or vocal inflection, Harriet’s brilliant comedic timing hit the target everytime!

After the reading, I went to talk to Harriet Harris. It’s been a few years since I’ve seen her, but after all this time she remembered not only my face, but my name as well. Thank You Harriet Harris for helping make tonight so special and I hope to see you back on Broadway soon!

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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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Be sure to catch fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Gavin Creel at Symphony Space in NYC on Monday, December 7 along with his song-writing partner Robbie Roth performing some of their original music and Broadway favorites. Showtimes are 7pm & 9:30pm!

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Gavin at Ars NovaTony Award nominee, Gavin Creel has conquered Broadway, the London stage, Music, and Television. Gavin made his Broadway debut as “Jimmy” in “Thoroughly Modern Millie” (receiving the Tony nomination for Best Actor in a Musical). He then went on to star in the Broadway Revival of “La Cage Aux Folles”, followed by the premiere of Stephen Sondheim’s musical “Bounce” in Chicago and Washington DC and finally made his London debut in “Mary Poppins” as “Bert”. Gavin has also starred in the TV Movies “Eloise At The Plaza” and “Eloise At Christmastime”.  In 2006, Gavin released his debut record “GOODTIMENATION” and has been playing to sold out crowds at some of New York’s most famous venues such as Joe’s Pub, Irving Plaza, Arelene’s Grocery, and The Zipper Factory. Be sure to catch Gavin in the Broadway revival of “Hair” at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre and for all things Gavin Creel, visit www.gavincreel.com.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? my nana, my sisters, my sixth grade teacher, my show choir director, my u of m professors, my costars, my dog.

2. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? i can do that thing where you make a fart noise with your hand under your armpit. well, with MY hand under MY armpit.  not YOUR hand under– you know.

3. Boxers or Briefs? briefs. in colors.

4. Favorite kind of sundae (ice cream flavor and toppings)? i used to kill for a pint of chubby hubby. but, i realized that i am terribly lactose intolerant (like…REALLY intolerant…like, almost lactose racist) so, now i jam on SOY DELICIOUS or SOY DREAM or SOY GOOD or SOY whatever non-dairy.

5. Animal Crackers or Oreos? every time i check out at Bed Bath and Beyond….i wanna buy those damn animal crackers. they just look so gooooood!  i’ll go for them.  but if they’re double stuffed, then oreos.

6. Peanut Butter: Crunchy or Smooth? smuckers creamy natural.  wally (my dog) is a skippy smooth guy.

7. Books or Magazines? magazines.  i’ve got a sh*t attention span.  but i think EAST OF EDEN is one of the best books ever and that insanity is like 8574 pages long.  so, go figure.

8. Superman or Wonder Woman? both.  at the same time 😉

9. Favorite ride at an amusement park? the tallest, fastest, steepest, craziest roller coaster i can get.  Nobody does it like CEDAR POINT.  america’s rollercoast!  (wow, the dork police just knocked at my door).

10. Favorite kind of shoes? my new diesel boots that i just bought.  they were brand new and i wore them up onto the mountain with wally while i was at my parents for christmas and got them totally muddy and busted. now they make me feel like a poet or something way cooler than i am.

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