Billie Holiday News

BWW Reviews: The Unsingable Blues
by Kristen Morale - Aug 29, 2014

Beautiful Soup Theater's Shades of Blue: The Decline and Fall of Lady Day is an unconventional, almost chilling ode to Holiday that is careful not to emphasize and dwell upon the singer's musical accolades and success; in fact, it does little to promote her career and the person as seen through the eyes of her adoring public. This production, written and directed by the incredibly talented Steven Carl McCasland (who also founded Beautiful Soup and serves as the group's Artistic Director), wades in the realm of storytelling without the fantastical twist that people always enjoy adding to make their lives seem more interesting - to add drama where drama may sometimes be due. (more...)

Marilyn Maye, Christian McBride Trio & More Set for Birdland, 9/8-14
by BWW News Desk - Aug 28, 2014

Birdland Jazz Club has announced its schedule for September 8 - September 14, featuring Marilyn Maye, Christian McBride Trio, Jane Monheit's Jazz Party, Natalie Douglas, and more! (more...)

Photo Flash: First Look at Suzanne Froix and More in Beautiful Soup's SHADES OF BLUE
by BWW News Desk - Aug 27, 2014

After Beautiful Soup Theater's acclaimed and sold-out production of Little Wars in April, they proudly present the last two works in Steven Carl McCasland's trilogy examining women in the arts. SHADES OF BLUE: THE DECLINE AND FALL OF LADY DAY begins tonight, August 27, running in rep with WHAT WAS LOST. BroadwayWorld has a first look at the cast of SHADES OF BLUE in action below! (more...)

Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival to be Held 10/4 at Levine Center for the Arts
by BWW News Desk - Aug 27, 2014

Blumenthal Performing Arts has joined forces with Jazz Arts Initiative to bring a premiere jazz festival to the Queen City. Charlotte Classic Jazz Festival 2014 will take place Saturday, October 4, in Knight Theater at Levine Center for the Arts (430 South Tryon Street). (more...)

Ramsey Lewis, Neil Berg's 100 YEARS OF BROADWAY, Lydia Johnson Dance and More Set for SOPAC's 2014-15 Lineup
by BWW News Desk - Aug 26, 2014

South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) has announced its 2014-15 performance schedule through February 2015. (more...)

MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL Tour to Play Concord, 9/27-28
by BWW News Desk - Aug 25, 2014

GFour Productions, winners of 54 Drama Desk and 44 Tony Awards are proudly bringing the international hit show Menopause The Musical to Concord, New Hampshire and will play the Capitol Center for 2 performances, Saturday, September 27, at 7pm & Sunday, September 28, at 2pm. Menopause The Musical is a groundbreaking celebration of women who are on the brink of, in the middle of, or have survived "The Change." (more...)

Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre to Celebrate South L.A. at the Dunbar Hotel, 9/5-6
by BWW News Desk - Aug 25, 2014

On Saturday, September 6, Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre will present Dancing at Dunbar, a site-specific performance at Dunbar Village, home of The Dunbar Hotel. The piece is based on Life's Tragedy and Sympathy, two poems by Paul Laurence Dunbar. After successful performances of At the Oasis throughout LA, and following a residency for South LA youth at A Place Called Home the day before, on Friday, September 5, Dancing at Dunbar will celebrate Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre's work in the community with two performances at The Dunbar Hotel. The first performance at 5pm will be free for the residents of Dunbar Village, followed by another at 8pm open to the public. (more...)

Estelle Parsons and More to Appear in Palm Beach Dramaworks' 2014-15 Season
by BWW News Desk - Aug 21, 2014

Palm Beach Dramaworks is pleased to announce that Estelle Parsons, Tim Altmeyer, Jim Ballard, Cliff Burgess, Elizabeth Dimon, Rob Donohoe, Patti Gardner, Kate Hampton, Kenneth Kay, Margery Lowe, Colin McPhillamy, Angelica Page, and Angie Radosh are among the outstanding actors scheduled to appear during its upcoming fifteenth anniversary season. (more...)

MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL Comes to The Cape Playhouse, 9/16-21
by BWW News Desk - Aug 21, 2014

The national tour of the international hit show Menopause The Musical comes to The Cape Playhouse for a one week run this fall, playing September 16-21. Menopause The Musical is a groundbreaking celebration of women who are on the brink of, in the middle of, or have survived "The Change." (more...)

Bo Bice to Perform at PTPA, 10/11
by BWW News Desk - Aug 21, 2014

The Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts (PTPA) will present BLOOD SWEAT AND TEARS (BS&T) featuring BO BICE on Saturday, October 11 at 8:00 PM. With World Class vocals, musicianship, and a multitude of solid gold hits, Blood Sweat and Tears is at the top of their game. Vocal dynamo and pop phenomenon Bo Bice fronts the band with a self-assured voice and good looks. They are the band that fused rock, blues, pop music, horn arrangements and jazz improvisation into a hybrid that came to be known as 'jazz-rock.' (more...)

People's Light & Theatre to Open 40th Season with August Wilson's FENCES, 9/10
by BWW News Desk - Aug 19, 2014

People's Light & Theatre opens its 40th Anniversary Season with August Wilson's Fences running September 10-October 5, 2014 on the Leonard C. Haas Stage. Kamilah Forbes directs. People's Light & Theatre is located at 39 Conestoga Road, Malvern, PA 19355. (more...)

Natalie Douglas to Introduce New Shows Celebrating Dolly Parton, Nina Simone & More at Birdland
by BWW News Desk - Aug 19, 2014

NATALIE DOUGLAS - the acclaimed vocalist hailed as 'sensational' by Time Out New York and 'stirring' by The New York Daily News - will introduce New York audiences to two unique new solo concerts at Birdland Jazz Club in September. 'FOUR WOMEN,' which celebrates the music of Dr. Nina Simone, Lena Horne, Abbey Lincoln and Billie Holiday, will have its US premiere on Monday, September 8 at 7:00 PM. The exciting evening of songs connected with these dynamic, iconic women includes 'Can't Help Lovin' That Man,' 'Throw It Away,' 'God Bless The Child,' and, of course, Dr. Simone's legendary composition, 'Four Women.' This program debuted in London earlier in 2014 and received a rare five-star review in The Times of London, which called her 'a true force of nature.' (more...)

UK Jazz Vocalist Polly Gibbons to Make NYC Debut at Metropolitan Room Sept. 15
by BWW News Desk - Aug 17, 2014

Resonance Records, in conjunction with ScoBar Entertainment & Todd Barkan, will present Polly Gibbons in her New York debut on Monday, Sept 15, at 9:30pm at Metropolitan Room. (more...)

Bettina Coley Denson Joins Cast of Beautiful Soup Theater's SHADES OF BLUE
by BWW News Desk - Aug 15, 2014

Beautiful Soup has announced that Bettina Coley will replace the previously announced Carol Sims as Billie Holiday's mother, Sadie Fagan, in SHADES OF BLUE: THE DECLINE AND FALL OF LADY DAY... The play marks Denson's Beautiful Soup debut, in which she'll appear opposite her husband Ron Denson, who plays Holiday's final husband Louis McKay. (more...)

Chita Rivera, Marilyn Maye, James Synder & More Will Take the Birdland Stage in September
by BWW News Desk - Aug 15, 2014

Birdland Jazz Club has announced its September 2014 schedule, featuring Ralph Alessi Baida Quartet, Marilyn Maye, Coltrane Revisited, Bud Powell Birthday Celebration, Barbara Carroll, Christian McBride Trio, Jane Monheit, Jim Caruso's Cast Party, and more! (more...)

MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL to Return to Detroit, 10/14-16
by BWW News Desk - Aug 14, 2014

GFour Productions, winners of 54 Drama Desk and 44 Tony Awards are proudly bringing the international hit show Menopause The Musical to Detroit's Fisher Theatre for just 4 performances, October 14-16. (more...)

Gloucester Stage Company's 35th Anniversary Season to Conclude with FENCER, 8/21-9/7
by BWW News Desk - Aug 14, 2014

Gloucester Stage Company's 35th Anniversary Season wraps up with August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize winning Fences from August 21 through September 7 at the Gorton Theatre, 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA. The 1987 Winner for Pulitzer Prize in Drama, Fences tells the moving story of Troy Maxson, a former star of the Negro baseball leagues who now works as a garbage man in 1957 Pittsburgh. Excluded from the major leagues during his prime, Troy's bitterness takes its toll on his relationships with his family. Gloucester Stage Artistic Director Eric C. Engel directs this powerful and poignant American work with GSC veteran Boston actress Jacqui Parker as Rose Maxson and a cast of GSC newcomers including Daver Morrison as Troy Maxson; Warren Jackson as Lyons; Gregory Marlow as Jim Bono; Jermel Nakia as Gabriel; Jared Brown as Cory and Gloucester Stage Youth Acting Workshops student Bezawit Strong in her professional stage debut as Raynell. (more...)

Photo Flash: In Rehearsal with Beautiful Soup's WHAT WAS LOST and SHADES OF BLUE in Rep
by BWW News Desk - Aug 13, 2014

Steven Carl McCasland is a rising voice in the world of theatre. After their acclaimed and sold-out production of Little Wars in April, Beautiful Soup presents the last two works in McCasland's trilogy. The plays examine the lives of historical women in the arts. Beginning on August 27th, Shades of Blue: The Decline and Fall of Lady Day and What Was Lost, an examination of Laurette Taylor's preparation for The Glass Menagerie, will open at the Dorothy Strelsin Theatre. Scroll down for a sneak peek at the cast in rehearsal! (more...)

Maggie Rose to Play Metropolitan Room, 8/31
by BWW News Desk - Aug 13, 2014

Poughkeepsie native Maggie Rose will be returning to her first love, American Songbook at the Metropolitan Room on 31 August at 4pm. Rose has been a popular jazz singer around Boston but is now about to take NYC by storm. (more...)

Audra McDonald Embarks on 'Sleep Out' Campaign to Help Homeless Youth
by BWW News Desk - Aug 08, 2014

Tony Award-winner Audra McDonald has announced that she will sleep outside in solidarity with homeless youth one night this summer as part of Sleep Out: Broadway Edition 2014. (more...)

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