Soul to Soul returns!

27 12 2017

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One of my favorite projects is returning for two special performances in Baltimore and New York City, brought to you by the National Yiddish Theatre — Folksbiene.

Soul to Soul is a cross-cultural mix of Jewish and African–American folk music that tells the story of immigrants, who were different but very much experienced similar things as they made their way through the American experience.

We’ve done the show all around the country, and in Canada, and in Bucharest, Romania!, and I’m thrilled to be performing it once again in New York City!

I humbly get to share the stage with Broadway veteran Elmore James, Israeli-born singer-songwriter Magda Fishman, and singer-songwriter-actress Lisa Fishman once again, under the musical leadership of Zalmen Mlotek with a terrific four piece klezmer-jazz band.

Now you might think the combination is odd, but the traditions of overcoming persecution and celebrating life through spiritual songs run deep through many cultures, and this show really displays that.

Music by Cab Calloway, Benny Goodman and Paul Robeson are featured, as well as staples from the world of Yiddish theater and soul and gospel music. And there will be a sing-along involved, so get ready to have a great time!

The first show will be performed at 3 p.m. on Sunday, January 14, 2018 at the Gordon Center for Performing Arts courtesy of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Baltimore.

Tickets are $26 in advance and $31 at the door.

More details are at: http://www.jcc.org/gordon-center/event/soul-soul

The second performance will be held at 2 p.m. Monday, January 15 at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, Edmond J. Safra Plaza, 36 Battery Place, NY, NY 10280

Tickets start at $25
CLICK HERE or call 866-811-4111

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2017 in Review

27 12 2017
It’s the time of year that people — at least in this country — traditionally make audible their list of blessings. And in spite of a year that was fraught with turmoil on many levels, I must say that I am so grateful for much of what has come my way that I’d like to take this moment to share some of those things with you!

I had the pleasure of doing background work on several television shows. You may see me wandering around in the world of Luke Cage. And I did several readings of shows that are in development. I also got to perform with the rest of my Soul to Soul cast in Bucharest, Romania! We had a blast performing during the International Festival of Yiddish Theater and the audience was so excited, that we might end up going back next year.

Raisin

I was thrilled to start the year working on a production of Raisin, a musical version of Lorraine Hansberry’s ground-breaking play A Raisin In The Sun.

I truly had a blast working on this show at Astoria Performing Arts Center, and apparently audiences agreed. The show was nominated for eight New York Innovative Theatre Awards and won two of them, one for best musical (way to go, director Dev Bondarin!) and best choreography by Tamrin Goldberg.

The production was then nominated for five “Viv” awards at the AUDELCO Awards Ceremony. And our Musical Director, Darius Smith, brought home the award for Outstanding Music Director!

Bastard Jones

I spent a chunk of the summer working on a labor of love, Bastard Jones, an Off-Broadway musical retelling of the 18th century Henry Fielding novel Tom Jones.

The show, which performed to sold-out crowds at The Cell in Manhattan, was a huge success, and I had the honor of working with an amazing cast and crew. Hats off to authors Marc Acito and Amy Engelhardt, who created something truly special, fun, funny and thought provoking. The performance also raised $20,000 for Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors Fund!

I’m sure there’s a long future ahead for that show, and I hope everyone gets a chance to see it!

Breaking News: The stars of Bastard Jones, Evan Ruggiero and Elena Wang, have been nominated for a Clive Barnes Award, which honors young artists in dance and theater!

Hank Williams: Lost Highway

Most recently, I spent time in Vero Beach, Florida working on Hank Williams: Lost Highway. The cast was incredible and our directors, Sherry and David Lutken, helped create a magical piece of work on the beautiful Riverside Theatre stage about one of the most influential songwriters of the 20th century.

It was an honor to share the stage with such a fine group of artists: David Lutken, Sherry Lutken, Ben Hope, Katie Barton, Marcy McGuigan, Eric Anthony, Sam Sherwood, David Finch and Roger Rettig.

At every performance, the audience gasped upon learning that Hank Williams died at the young age of 29. Those same audiences were standing and singing at the end!





Bastard Jones!

12 06 2017

I am thrilled to announce my next project! It’s called Bastard Jones! It’s the world premiere of a new rock musical by Marc Acito and Amy Englehardt.

Its a very funny, rollicking adventure based on Henry Fielding’s subversive 18th century novel “The History of Tom Jones, A Foundling” and features a diverse and exciting cast. And 100 percent of ticket sales will be helping a very worthy charity which helps homeless LGBTQ youths. More on that below!

BASTARD JONES runs June 14 (Flag Day) to July 14 (Bastille Day); Tuesday – Thursday & Saturday at 8pm and Friday at 7 & 10 pm. Tickets are $40, available at 800-838-3006 or www.thecelltheatre.org.

(Email me if you want the friends and family discount!)
ABOUT THE SHOW:

For those who don’t remember reading the book in school, or watching the legendary Albert Finney movie, Tom Jones is a rollicking adventure of deception, misunderstanding and bed-hopping.

The story follows Tom Jones, a charmer with a heart of gold but who’s looking for love in all the wrong places. Tom gets banished from the only home he knows simply for expressing his true self, leading him to a series of adventures, including conscription in the army, a half-naked romp at a country inn and a stint as the boy-toy to a manipulative aristocrat.

ABOUT THE PRODUCTION:

Bastard Jones will be directed by Marc Acito and will be performed at The Cell Theater, 338 West 23rd Street.  With music and lyrics by Amy Engelhardt and lyrics and book by Marc Acito, this production is a ribald, hilarious look at the meaning of virtue and goodness. The show is funny, y’all! The music is terrific, and the inventive choreography by Joe Barros is exciting. I’m so trilled about having an opportunity to play Squire Allworthy, Tom’s well-meaning adopted father!

Marc Acito, who wrote the best-selling comic novel “How I Paid for College: A Novel of Sex, Theft, Friendship and Musical Theater,” is coming to this project fresh on the heels of the Broadway hit “Allegiance” for which he wrote the book.

Amy Englehardt, an award-winning songwriter, is a multi-talented composer, lyricist and educator who spent many years as a singer with, and a principal arranger for, the vocal group The Bobs.

Joe Barros is a New York-based stage director and award-winning choreographer with an emphasis on new work development.

nancy manocherian’s the cell is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the incubation and presentation of new works by emerging artists.





Raisin!

12 04 2017

I’m glad to announce that I’m playing a part of this beautiful and rarely staged show!

This will be one that shouldn’t be missed. Click HERE to buy tickets. And if you come the first weekend, use the code TONYP and get a six dollar discount!

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Book by Robert Nemiroff and Charlotte Zaltzberg
Music by Judd Woldin and lyrics by Robert Brittan
Based on Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun.
Directed by Dev Bondarin.
Starring Maia Bedford, Aaron Casey*, Shabazz Green*, Chris Gwynn*, Marcie Henderson*, Greg Horton*, Brandi Knox*, Ebony Marshall-Oliver*, Erich McMillan-McCall*, Sarita Amani Nash, Warren G. Nolan, Jr.*, Chinua B. Payne, Tony Perry*, Joi Danielle Price*, Vanessa Robinson, Alicia Thomas, Cartreze Tucker.
Darius Smith, music director; Tamrin Goldberg, choreographer. Jeannipher Pacheco, costume design; Lawrence E. Moten III, set design; Adam Honoré, lighting design; Emma Wilk, sound design. Michael Cassara, CSA, casting director. Jessica Pecharsky*, stage manager, Vanna Richardson, assistant stage manager.

May 4 – 27
Performances Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m.,
Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.  
Presented at Good Shepherd United Methodist Church
30-44 Crescent St (at 30th Road), Astoria, NY 11102.

Tickets $18 for adults, $12 for students and senior citizens — available online at www.apacny.org or in person at the box office a half-hour prior to each performance.

*Denotes Member of Actors’ Equity Association. An Equity Approved Showcase.





A song from Judson Memorial Church

12 10 2016

Thought I’d share this clip with you all!





More News Coming Soon!

23 05 2016

Hi!

It’s been awhile since an update. Many things to tell you very soon. In the meantime, have a listen to this, recorded recently at Judson Memorial Church.





Soul to Soul!

16 01 2016

Here we are live at NBC New York! Previewing NYTF’s SOUL TO SOUL Concert (1/17) where ‪#‎Yiddish‬ & African-American music meet:

#News4at7