Emily Skinner: Broadway, Her Way
Continuing its reputation for presenting some of the best New York nighttime entertainment, the Feinstein's at the Regency concert series is pleased to debut the ever-impressive and bombastic Emily Skinner in her original act "Broadway, My Way" on Sundays, June 1 and 8.
A favorite among the vixens of Broadway, Emily Skinner has garnered a fierce fan-following with star-turns in The Full Monty, Jekyll & Hyde and her Tony Award-nominated performance in Side Show. She has also enjoyed appearances with Encores! and The Actor's Fund, and kept the laughs "raw" at Town Hall opposite Alice Ripley.
With "Broadway, My Way," Emily pulls some of her favorite (and arcane) tunes from the classic song-book… with the signature Skinner-style twist!
On a relaxing summer afternoon, Emily Skinner spent a few minutes chatting with BroadwayWorld about her up-coming cabaret – and her excitement of directing the season finale "Broadway By The Year - 1979" concert on Monday, June 16…
Eugene Lovendusky: Thanks so much for taking time out to talk with BroadwayWorld. You've always kept your fans on their toes with your sass and spunk and style – and on June 1 and 8, you'll be making your Feinstein's debut with your original cabaret "Broadway, My Way" – what kind of Emily Skinner are audiences in for?
Emily Skinner: [laughs] I've really tried to put together a program that's both funny and sexy at the same time! It's a good, eclectic program. I think an audience should be interested in what they're hearing – it's not going to be just me singing 19 ballads in a row!
Eugene: Who helped you put the show together?
Emily: I put it together myself. It's all me! No one is to blame but myself [laughs] for its total failure or its success.
Eugene: Your accompanist?
Emily: Ross Patterson is musical directing – he's a wonderful pianist mainly from the jazz-world – which is one of the reasons I love him so much. He comes to the theatre-world with a really fresh take on things.
Eugene: Your show is going to include songs from the legends Rodgers and Hammerstein, Sondheim, Gershwin… How are you going to transform these classics into Broadway "your way"?
Emily: "Broadway, My Way" is my take on why I appreciate this material. I tend to gravitate towards more-so the classic material rather than the newer ilk of music – that's the stuff I like to listen to and perform.
Eugene: Your cabaret is also being described as a "journey through the best of the Great White Way" with shows including Gypsy, Funny Girl, Into the Woods, Nine… And it's not hard for me to close my eyes and picture you in these larger-than-life iconic roles. Is it sort of the same for you?
Emily: Well that's nice, gosh! I hope I've got some of those coming my way! These are some of the shows I grew-up listening to; and therefore, wanting to get inside and emulate. There's a reason they say: "They don't write 'em like that anymore!" Some of the material in my show (I'll give this surprise away)… Dolores Gray was a big Broadway diva in the 1950s. She did a number of movies as well. She holds the record for a person to win a Tony Award in a show of the shortest length – she starred in Carnival in Flanders which lasted 6 days! [laughs] She was a very interesting woman and I tell a bunch of stories about her, and I do some of her material. She's someone I've always been fascinated with. She had a beautiful voice but she always played arched, stylized, campy women on film and on-stage. I also talk about some of the women performers that I've always admired – and she's one of them!