Peter Filichia, James Marino, and Michael Portantiere talk with Deborah Grace Winer about her series The Classic American Songbook at Feinstein’s/54 Below. Reviews include A Playwrights Realm Production of Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, A Letter To Harvey Milk @ The Acorn Theatre, Bent @ Sea View Playwright’s Theatre, and The New Group’s production of Good for Otto @ The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre.
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Peter Filichia | [email protected] | Facebook
PETER FILICHIA is a theater journalist and historian with a number of books, his most recent is, “The Great Parade”, available everywhere. His columns appear at MTI, Masterworks Broadway, Broadway Select and many other places.
Michael Portantiere | [email protected] | Facebook
MICHAEL PORTANTIERE is a theater reviewer and essayist. He is also a theatrical photographer whose photos have appeared in The New York Times and other major publications. You can see his photography work at FollowSpotPhoto.com.
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Guest: Deborah Grace Winer
Deborah Grace Winer brings three new jewel box revues celebrating the Classic American Songbook to Feinstein’s/54 Below this spring. The series kicks off on March 27th with “You Took Advantage of Me: Rodgers and Hart on Love” starring Grammy-winner Debby Boone, OBIE-winner Darius De Haas and Tony-nominee Christiane Noll, backed up by a swinging all-star band headed by Musical Director John Oddo. Mark Waldrop (When Pigs Fly) directs this nightclub revue that takes a fresh, irreverent look at Richard Rodgers & Lorenz Hart’s view of love — “I Wish I Were in Love Again,” “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered,” “The Lady is a Tramp” and more. Performances are 7 and 9:30 pm at Feinstein’s/54 Below, 254 West 54th Street, NYC.
The Rodgers & Hart revue will be followed by A Jerome Robbins CENTENNIAL CONCERT on May 8th hosted and directed by 3-time Tony winner Kathleen Marshall who explores how this legendary director/choreographer shaped some of Broadway’s greatest musicals by Bernstein, Sondheim, Bock and Harnick, Jule Styne, Irving Berlin, Comden and Green and others.
On June 17th Ms. Winer hosts TILL THERE WAS YOU: A CELEBRATION OF Barbara Cook, directed by Mark Waldrop. A glittering parade of Broadway divas including Tony Award nominees Christine Andreas, Kate Baldwin, Rebecca Luker, and Christiane Noll; Linda Purl, and Tony Award winner Karen Ziemba and more raise their voices in celebration of Barbara Cook, one of the greatest interpreters of the American Songbook.
As a teaser to her new 54 Below series, Winer made her debut at the supper club in January 17 with Baby, Dream Your Dream: Great Women Writers of the American Songbook. The evening celebrated the often un-sung heroines of the Great American Songbook including Marilyn Bergman. Dorothy Fields. Mary Rodgers. Jeanine Tesori. Betty Comden. Carolyn Leigh and Lynn Ahrens.
Ms. Winer said: “We’re purposely launching this brand new classic American songbook series with Rodgers and Hart’s take on love—because these songs are fresh, fun and relevant, and that’s what these shows will be. It’s truly exciting to be bringing a stellar family of artists and longtime collaborators to the series. We’ll celebrate the greatest songwriters and their greatest songs with ultimate insider stories, the backstage world they were created in, and why these songs are cool today.”
Author, dramatist, historian and artistic director Deborah Grace Winer is a leading expert on the American Songbook and Musical Theatre. She recently completed a nine-season run as Artistic Director of the 92Y’s venerable Lyrics & Lyricists American Songbook concert series, presiding over 50 original shows there and steering the nearly 50-year-old N.Y. tradition to rejuvenated success, while collaborating with the top creative and performing talent from Broadway, jazz and cabaret. Earning audience and critical acclaim, the New York Times recently dubbed one of her personally led and written shows, “A home run…propelled by Ms. Winer’s best script ever.”
MP + PF: A Letter To Harvey Milk @ Theatre Row – The Acorn Theatre, 410 West 42nd Street, through May 13, 2018
MP: Bent @ Sea View Playwright’s Theatre, 460 Brielle Ave, Staten Island, through March 11, 2018
PF: The New Group’s production of Good for Otto @ The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre, 480 West 42nd Street, through April 8, 2018
Television, Film and Streaming:
Encores from City Center Encores! – Great American Musicals in Concert
— Bewitched, bothered and bewildered
— I wish I were in love again
The Concert Sinatra
— My Heart Stood Still
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