Manlow, Mathis, Bolton & More to Guest on Elaine Paige DUETS
Elaine Paige, the renowned British musical stage star, recording artist and actress who recently celebrated her 40th anniversary on stage, is in New York City recording a new "Duets" album for Warner Bros Records that is being produced by the legendary Phil Ramone. Tentatively titled "Elaine and Friends," the album will include duets of Elaine singing with such internationally renowned recording artists as (in alphabetical order): Paul Anka, John Barrowman, Michael Bolton, Kenny G, Olivia Newton John, Barry Manilow, Johnny Mathis, Billy Ocean, Le Ann Rimes, Jon Secada, Neil Sedaka and Dionne Warwick. The album is scheduled to be released in the UK on November 1, 2010, with a US release early in 2011.
"I am very excited by this project," Elaine said, "I have been waiting for this opportunity for 20 years to work with the legendary Phil Ramone. He is a true magician in the recording studio. And being able to sing with some of my idols, people I have admired for years, is an absolute pleasure, a dream come true!"
Phil Ramone is equally excited for this opportunity to work with Elaine Paige. "She is one of the great musical artists of our generation," he said. "I have admired her from afar for many years. She has an exquisite voice and really knows how to sell a song. She is known - and rightfully so - as 'The First Lady of Musical Theatre.' Being able to team her with some of the giant vocalists of the music industry is magical."
As an actress, recording artist, producer and broadcaster, Elaine Paige has made a major contribution to the modern musical genre which ensures her own special chapter in the entertainment world. She first came to fame when she created her award winning performance as Eva Peron in Evita in 1978. Shortly afterwards she originated the role of Grizabella in the original production of Cats and the classic song Memory became the first of Elaine's many hit records. Her subsequent theatre productions included Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, Grease, Billy, Anything Goes, Piaf, Sunset Boulevard in London and Broadway, The King and I, Sweeney Todd and Chess (with her record breaking Number One hit I Know Him So Well).
Elaine last performed on the West End stage in 2007 when she returned to critical acclaim in the title role of The Drowsy Chaperone at the Novello Theatre, for which she received a Best Supporting Actress in a Musical nomination at the What's On Stage Awards, London.
Elaine has recorded 20 solo albums (four multi Platinum and eight consecutive Gold) and six cast albums, and has also recorded a track with Secret Garden, The Things You Are To Me, for their Number One quadruple-platinum selling album. In 2006 she released an album of songs from the stage entitled Essential Musicals.
September 2008 marked the 40th anniversary of Elaine's West End debut and was celebrated with a sold-out international celebratory concert tour across the world, entitled Elaine Paige Celebrating 40 Years On Stage, including stops in Scandinavia, the UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, where the Sydney concert was filmed for DVD release in March 2010, and China. The TV special of the recorded performance was broadcast in the United States over PBS in June 2010.
This year marks the sixth anniversary of her hugely successful weekly BBC Radio 2 show Elaine Paige on Sunday, a program devoted to musical theatre, film music and interviews that continues to delight audiences of over 2-million listeners each week in the UK alone with its mix of music, competitions and interviews with show business luminaries.
In her illustrious career, Elaine Paige has been honored with many awards: Society of West End Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Musical and Variety Club Award for Show Business Personality of the year (1978); Variety Club Awards in 1986 and 1995; Gold Badge of Merit from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (1994); HMV Lifetime Achievement Award (1996); Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Operatic and Dramatic Association (1999); Order of the British Empire for services to Musical Theatre (1995), Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Actress in a Musical (2004) and Variety Club Special Presentation for 40 Years on Stage (2009).
Phil Ramone, known as "The Master Music Maker," is one of the most respected and prolific music producers in the recording industry. With 33 Grammy nominations, 14 Grammy Awards, including a Technical Grammy for his lifetime of innovative contributions to the recording industry, an Emmy, and numerous honors and accolades to his credit, Ramone's musical acumen and his use of audio technology are unmatched among his peers. Acknowledged as one of the top creative producers, Ramone has also played an integral role in pioneering many of the technological developments in the music industry. He ardently supported the use of the compact disc, digital video disc, hi-definition recording and surround sound. Appropriately, the first CD ever pressed, Billy Joel's 52nd Street, was a Phil Ramone production as was the first pop DVD release, Dave Grusin Presents West Side Story. His use of a fiber optics system (EDNet) to record tracks in "real time" from different locations for Frank Sinatra's Duets I & II was a groundbreaking achievement. In 2005, Ramone was a recipient of the first Grammy given for Best Surround Sound Album, Ray Charles Genius Loves Company.
Ramone's unique skills make him invaluable to the artists with whom he works. Ramone has long been recognized for the diversity of his work, as evidenced by his recordings with artists ranging from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Gladys Knight, Sheryl Crow, Chaka Khan, Nancy Wilson, Dianne Reeves, Queen Latifah, Ruben Studdard, kd Lang, Keith Urban, Wynona and the Dixie Chicks to Michael Buble, Dave Koz, John Legend, and Juanes. The 2006 Tony Bennett Duets, An American Classic, which Phil produced, pairs Tony with some of the industry's most honored musicians including Bono, Elvis Costello, Billy Joel, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Barbra Streisand, and Sting.
A passionate fan of all forms of entertainment, Ramone has numerous concert, film, Broadway and teleVision Productions to his credit to include A Star is Born, August Rush, Beyond the Sea, Flashdance, Ghostbusters, Midnight Cowboy, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Passion, Seussical, Simon and Garfunkel: The Concert In Central Park, Songwriters Hall of Fame Awards, The Score, VH1/BBC Queens Jubilee Party at the Palace, and The Good Thief.