Tuesday, August 17, 2010

July/August Tour 2010


It was a wonderful whirlwind of singing and traveling...exhausting perhaps, but very worthwhile. I began on July 25 at Feinstein's in New York--superstar Michael Feinstein's elite Park Avenue nightclub where every singer in the world (it seems) dreams of performing. This experience was all it was cracked up to be! I was there in an absolutely gorgeous Kay Unger gown performing with Grammy-winning jazz pianist, Bill Cunliffe. We were premiering "The Peggy Lee Songbook," a celebration of the songwriting talents of iconic singer Peggy Lee. The audience was very receptive and appreciative and I will treasure the memory always... The best part? Getting asked back by the club's manager before the gig, after only hearing our sound check! Here is what fellow cabaret singer and writer Jenna Esposito had to say about the show on BroadwayWorld.com...

Far too early the next morning I boarded a plane for Los Angeles where I spent two sunny days in Redondo Beach. I adore walking on the sand and spending a little time at the oceanside, so I fit it in whenever possible... On the 27th I performed a return engagement at the classic jazz hangout Charlie O's with my "Charlie O's band," John Chiodini on guitar, Chris Conner on bass and Roy McCurdy on drums. There are never any worries when performing with these guys...whatever comes out is how the tune was meant to be played at that moment! Being "in the moment" is very easy with performers of this caliber and I always cherish the opportunity to share music with them. Roy was my drumset instructor at USC, so I especially love watching him play! It's a bit more challenging to watch him when I'm fronting the band, though...I digress...

The following morning (again, FAR too early) I boarded another plane--this time to Honolulu where I was a guest performer at the Hawai'i Convention Center. My Friday performances there (at the International Music Festival where I was honored to represent the indigenous music from the United States--none other than America's classical music, JAZZ!) were a highlight of my trip--we had 4500 people in attendance from 105 countries around the world during my mainstage show and they were all LISTENING! What a blessing this was--I am still thanking God for this opportunity...

A few days later I performed a "crossover" concert of baroque, contemporary sacred and jazz music at First Baptist Church of Honolulu. I began with three soprano arias by J.S. Bach (in German and Latin) featuring oboe and organ accompaniment (provided by Roy and Carolyn Yanagida). I then moved to the piano where I remained for the rest of the program, playing and singing my original compositions and my arrangements of hymns. The second half of the show consisted of straight-ahead jazz--some new original songs as well as my arrangements of standards. We had a record-setting audience at this venue and I am very grateful to all who attended, enjoyed the concert and showed their support! Thanks to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser for the generous writeup they published to advertise this performance! (click to read)

Following this concert I finally allowed myself to have a few days of vacation time in Hawai'i with my family. We enjoyed the mountains, ocean, scenery, culture and the people so much that we are already looking forward to returning as soon as possible! Because I have a new show opening in less than a month, there is not a lot of time for R&R though, so it's already back to work...

Until next time, Mahalo!