Peter Filichia, James Marino, and Michael Portantiere talk with Alysha Umphress and Jeff Blumenkrantz. We talk about Pocatello @ Playrights Horizons, City Center Announces 2015 Encores! Off-Center Season, In Fields Where They Lay, Into The Woods (Movie), The New York Pops: Rudolph, The Red Nose Reindeer @ Carnegie Hall, A Christmas Story – The Musical @ John W. Engeman Theater, and Mary Poppins @ Walnut Street Theatre. Plus Peter Filichia’s Trivia Challenge!
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PETER FILICHIA is a theater journalist and historian with a number of books, with Strippers, Showgirls and Sharks being his most recent. His columns appear at MTI, Kritzerland, Masterworks Broadway and many other places.
MICHAEL PORTANTIERE is a theater reviewer and essayist, whose work appears at TalkinBroadway, The Sondheim Review and BroadwayStars. He is also a photographer whose work can be seen at FollowSpotPhoto.com and many other places on the internet.
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Guests: Alysha Umphress and Jeff Blumenkrantz
I’ve Been Played: Alysha Umphress Swings Jeff Blumenkrantz will be released on Yellow Sound Label in January 2015, featuring the vocals of Alysha Umphress, currently starring in the new Broadway revival of ON THE TOWN, and original jazz songs and arrangements by Tony Award-nominated composer and performer Jeff Blumenkrantz. Produced by Jeff Blumenkrantz and Michael Croiter, the album will be available via Amazon and iTunes beginning January 6, 2015. It is now available for pre-order at Amazon.com.
I’ve Been Played: Alysha Umphress Swings Jeff Blumenkrantz will feature Umphress singing original songs by Blumenkrantz, and several original arrangements created specifically for Umphress of the standards “Spring Is Here/Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most”, “I Don’t Need Anything But You”, and “You Are Never Away/ Ten Minutes Ago”. The track listing is as follows:
1. TWO CENTS
2. WHY CAN’T I KISS YOU?
3. I DON’T NEED ANYTHING BUT YOU
4. I’VE BEEN PLAYED
5. MAYDAY! M’AIDER!
6. TIME DOES NOT BRING RELIEF
8. STEAL AWAY
9. SPRING IS HERE/SPRING CAN REALLY HANG YOU UP THE MOST
10. MAN IN THE MOON
11. YOU ARE NEVER AWAY/TEN MINUTES AGO
12. GIVING THANKS
13. BONUS TRACK: YOU SMELL SO GOOD
An album release party and concert will be held on January 5, 2015 at Birdland in New York City (315 W. 44th Street, New York, NY 10036). Tickets are available now at BirdlandJazz.com.
Alysha Umphress currently stars on Broadway as “red-hot mama with bebop gusto” (Ben Brantley, The New York Times) ‘Hildy’ in the acclaimed revival of On the Town. Her other Broadway credits include American Idiot, On a Clear Day…, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, and Bring It On. She recently appeared as ‘Cee Cee Bloom in the world premiere of Beaches, the musical, at The Signature Theatre. Known in the Broadway community for her incredible vocals, this CD marks her debut solo studio recording.
Jeff Blumenkrantz received a Best Score Tony nomination for Urban Cowboy, the musical. His songs have been recorded by Audra McDonald, Sutton Foster, Rebecca Luker, Victoria Clark, Megan Mullally and more. As a performer, he most recently starred as “The Suspects” in the Off-Broadway hit musical, Murder for Two, for which he received a Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical. His performing credits also include the Broadway productions of Into the Woods, Threepenny Opera, Damn Yankees, How to Succeed in Business…, and A Class Act, as well as the PBS-televised concerts of Candide and Sweeney Todd with The New York Philharmonic.
I’ve Been Played: Alysha Umphress Swings Jeff Blumenkrantz features Alysha Umphress and Jeff Blumenkrantz on vocals, Tedd Firth on piano, Pete Donovan on bass, Ray Marchica on drums, Dan Willis on tenor sax and flute, and Peter Sachon on cello.
I’ve Been Played: Alysha Umphress Swings Jeff Blumenkrantz was recorded at Yellow Sound Lab, NYC.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
PF + MP: Pocatello @ Playrights Horizons, 416 West 42nd St., through January 4, 2015
New York City Center Announces 2015 Encores! Off-Center Season
A New Brain
Music and Lyrics by William Finn
Book by William Finn and James Lapine
Starring Jonathan Groff
Directed by James Lapine
Little Shop of Horrors
Book and Lyrics by Howard Ashman; Music by Alan Menken
Starring Ellen Greene
Directed by Dick Scanlan; Choreographed by Patricia Wilcox
The Wild Party
Book, Music and Lyrics by Andrew Lippa
Starring Sutton Foster and Joshua Henry
Directed by Leigh Silverman; Choreographed by Sonya Tayeh
June 24 – July 18, 2015
Jeanine Tesori, Artistic Director; Chris Fenwick, Music Director
MP: In Fields Where They Lay
— LISTEN TO: Go See A Show Podcast: Brad Raimondo, director, and Spencer Davis Milford, actor, of “In Fields Where They Lay”
The Last Five Years Movie coming February 14, 2015 (!)
MP: The New York Pops: Rudolph, The Red Nose Reindeer @ Carnegie Hall (December 21, 2014)
PF: A Christmas Story – The Musical @ John W. Engeman Theater (Northport, NY) through January 4, 2015
PF: Mary Poppins @ Walnut Street Theatre (825 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA) through January 4, 2015
1. Two Cents
3. I Don’t Need Anything But You
11. You Are Never Away/Ten Minutes Ago
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