Kay Thompson News

Photo Flash: Birdland Presents 7th Annual A SWINGING BIRDLAND CHRISTMASPhoto Flash: Birdland Presents 7th Annual A SWINGING BIRDLAND CHRISTMAS
by BWW News Desk - Dec 24, 2016

Birdland is proud to present the seventh consecutive year of "A Swinging Birdland Christmas," starring Birdland regulars Klea Blackhurst, Jim Caruso and Billy Stritch.  This is a limited engagement of 3 performances, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, December 23, 24 and 25.  All shows are at 6pm. (more...)

Jim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Leslie Odom Jr. Will Be Home for ChristmasJim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Leslie Odom Jr. Will Be Home for Christmas
by Jim Caruso - Dec 22, 2016

I'm pretty sure there's nothing Leslie Odom, Jr. can't do. This recording of "I'll Be Home For Christmas" perfectly shows off his good taste, style and that exemplary voice. The song is, of course, an American classic, with lyrics by Kim Gannon and a melody by Walter Kent. Gannon wrote it from the point of a World War II soldier stationed overseas, telling his family that he'll be home for the holidays, and to prepare the Christmas fun. Of course, the last lyric is one of the most melancholy ever written - "I'll be home for Christmas, if only in my dreams." When the song was first pitched to folks in the music business, it was roundly refused, since it all seemed incredibly sad. But Bing Crosby smartly threw caution to the wind and recorded the tune, with immense success. Interestingly, after the lyricist's death, he left the royalty rights to the American Heart Association, which has benefitted greatly ever since. (more...)

Jim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Barbra Streisand Reinvents a ClassicJim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Barbra Streisand Reinvents a Classic
by Jim Caruso - Dec 21, 2016

Love it or hate it, this souped-up arrangement of 'Jingle Bells?' has become an iconic recording by the one and only Barbra Streisand. Of course, it's from her first Christmas album, which came out in 1967, but I was introduced to it in 1970 when it was released on a special promo album for Maxwell House coffee, along with cuts by Doris Day and (yes) Jim Nabors. I thought it was funny then, and I think it's funny now. I especially love the Brooklyn-ese reading of the word 'upsot.' It was all very sophisticated and slightly oddball to the young Jimmy Caruso, and takes me right back to Wexford, Pennsylvania, where I'd listen over and over on my little record player. (Google that word, kids.) (more...)

Jim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Nat King Cole Wishes You a Merry ChristmasJim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Nat King Cole Wishes You a Merry Christmas
by Jim Caruso - Dec 20, 2016

I don't care how old you are, I'm pretty sure this recording sounds like home. Nat King Cole, with his velvety croon, sings one of the more perfect songs ever written with simplicity and good taste. It's been recorded thousands of times, in every conceivable style - with riffs and shrieks and all kinds of dazzlement. But this arrangement and performance is the only one I want to hear. (more...)

Jim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Miranda Sings Gets Into the Holiday SpiritJim Caruso's 12 Days of Christmas... Miranda Sings Gets Into the Holiday Spirit
by Jim Caruso - Dec 19, 2016

If you have spent more than twelve minutes with me, you know that I am in love with a fake person named Miranda Sings. I first saw her on YouTube when she gave a 'free voice lesson' to the interwebs. I thought she was a neo-Florence Foster Jenkins, as did most everyone. I wrote to 'her,' inviting her to Cast Party, my weekly open mic night at Birdland. I heard back from her creator, Colleen Ballinger, a wildly intelligent and brilliantly funny actress. That was the beginning of a wonderful friendship and subsequent business relationship. 'Miranda' became a regular on my Broadway at Birdland concert series, until our walls couldn't hold her fan base. Now, she's playing the biggest theaters in the world (Kennedy Center!), just signed for the second season of her Netflix sit-com 'Haters Back Off,' had a #1 book on the New York Times Bestseller List, has guested on the Tonight Show, and hangs with Jerry Seinfeld. Colleen's online following rivals the Catholic Church (almost a billion hits), yet she's still as funny and normal and adorable as ever. This insane video clip makes me hysterical, as do most of her awkward shenanigans. (more...)

Jim Caruso's Sixth Day of Christmas... Get Jolly with the Carpenters!Jim Caruso's Sixth Day of Christmas... Get Jolly with the Carpenters!
by BWW News Desk - Dec 18, 2016

This ravishing song has an interesting history. The lyric was written in 1946 by a nineteen-year old Frank Pooler, as a gift to a girlfriend he was missing. Twenty years later, a nineteen-year old Richard Carpenter set it to music. In four years, this recording by The Carpenters went to #1, which it did for three consecutive holiday seasons. It sounds as fresh today as it did in 1970, partly because of Richard's lush arrangement and backup vocals, and that famous tenor sax solo. But honestly, it's all about Karen. For my money, Karen Carpenter had one of the warmest and truest voices in the history of popular music. Sometimes the universe makes a terrible mistake and we lose someone way too soon…long before they've finished. That's how I feel about Karen Carpenter. (more...)

SWINGIN' BIRDLAND CHRISTMAS and More Coming Up This Month at BirdlandSWINGIN' BIRDLAND CHRISTMAS and More Coming Up This Month at Birdland
by BWW News Desk - Dec 8, 2016

Birdland Jazz Club has announced its schedule for December 19-25, featuring Freddy Cole, Swingin' Birdland Christmas, Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasano 'Downton Abbey Road: The Best of Britain,' and more. Scroll down for details! (more...)

Boston Gay Men's Chorus to Present JINGLE ALL THE WAY Holiday Concert of Reimagined CarolsBoston Gay Men's Chorus to Present JINGLE ALL THE WAY Holiday Concert of Reimagined Carols
by BWW News Desk - Nov 22, 2016

Boston Gay Men's Chorus (BGMC) will present Jingle All the Way, a holiday concert of traditional carols reimagined, beloved classic Christmas songs, and contemporary works from Grammy-winning composer Craig Hella Johnson and others -- all wrapped up in BGMC's signature blend of class and camp. (more...)

James Barbour, Daniel Reichard, Klea Blackhurst and More to Bring the Holidays to Birdland This DecemberJames Barbour, Daniel Reichard, Klea Blackhurst and More to Bring the Holidays to Birdland This December
by BWW News Desk - Nov 15, 2016

Birdland Jazz Club has announced its December 2016 schedule, featuring Stacey Kent, A Swingin' Birdland Christmas, Daniel Reichard's 'Guide to Christmas,' The Birdland Big Band, Freddy Cole, Karrin Allyson, ShowBiz After Hours with Frank DiLella, Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasano, James Barbour, Barbara Carroll, Jim Caruso's Cast Party, and more. Scroll down for details! (more...)


by BWW Contests - Nov 2, 2016

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Miss Vodka Stinger to Haunt Feinstein's/54 Below with 'GRAVEYARD SHIFT'Miss Vodka Stinger to Haunt Feinstein's/54 Below with 'GRAVEYARD SHIFT'
by BWW News Desk - Oct 29, 2016

After numerous sold-out appearances, boozy chanteuse Miss Vodka Stinger returns to Feinstein's/54 Below to serve as your Halloween hostess, serving ghoulish humor and haunting renditions of American songbook classics in her brand new show, Vodka Stinger's Graveyard Shift, on October 29th, 2016 at 11:30pm. (more...)

Miss Vodka Stinger to Haunt Feinstein's/54 Below with 'GRAVEYARD SHIFT'Miss Vodka Stinger to Haunt Feinstein's/54 Below with 'GRAVEYARD SHIFT'
by BWW News Desk - Oct 19, 2016

After numerous sold-out appearances, boozy chanteuse Miss Vodka Stinger returns to Feinstein's/54 Below to serve as your Halloween hostess, serving ghoulish humor and haunting renditions of American songbook classics in her brand new show, Vodka Stinger's Graveyard Shift, on October 29th, 2016 at 11:30pm. (more...)

BWW Review: 'John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known As Lypsinka' is a Toned Down, Engaging Look Into the PerformerBWW Review: 'John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known As Lypsinka' is a Toned Down, Engaging Look Into the Performer
by Karis Rogerson - Sep 2, 2016

In his new solo show at Joe's Pub, John Epperson, the adored drag artist widely known as his character Lypsinka, sits at the piano dressed conservatively in a green blazer, a rarity for him--- no flashy dresses, wigs, or makeup. For this show, he's performing not as Lypsinka but as himself. But the performance itself is far from conservative. John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known As Lypsinka, which debuted on August 15, is billed as a 'personal musical memoir,' but in many ways it's a tribute show--- specifically, a tribute to the women who shaped his life. (more...)

John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka Plays Joe's Pub 8/15 & 8/17John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka Plays Joe's Pub 8/15 & 8/17
by BWW News Desk - Aug 13, 2016

In an evening that encompasses a personal and rarified experience of moving to and living in New York City, John Epperson - the real person behind Lypsinka - will take the stage in John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka for four nights only at Joe's Pub at The Public. With a nod to the urbane cabaret style of Bobby Short, Epperson's evening embraces classic entertainment filled with stories, tunes, and a few surprises. The entertainer, aka The Goddess of Showbiz Lypsinka, commands the piano and stage with a musical journey that weaves together Stephen Sondheim, Frank Loesser, Jule Styne, Kay Thompson, Kander & Ebb, Comden & Green, Rodgers & Hammerstein, and transgender icon Christine Jorgenson. Jay Rogers directs the limited engagement show which takes place at Joe's Pub (425 Lafayette Street) on four nights only, August 15th & 17th at 9:30 and September 13th & 16th at 7:30. Tickets are $25 and are available at www.joespub.com or by calling 212 967-7555. (more...)

John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka to Play Limited Engagement at Joe's PubJohn Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka to Play Limited Engagement at Joe's Pub
by BWW News Desk - Aug 2, 2016

In an evening that encompasses a personal and rarified experience of moving to and living in New York City, John Epperson - the real person behind Lypsinka - will take the stage in John Epperson: The Artist Principally Known as Lypsinka for four nights only at Joe's Pub at The Public. (more...)

Jim Caruso, Billy Stritch & More Set for First Dallas Cabaret FestivalJim Caruso, Billy Stritch & More Set for First Dallas Cabaret Festival
by BWW News Desk - Jun 28, 2016

Denise Lee Onstage and Fair Park Dallas have set the stage for the first-ever Dallas Cabaret Festival, July 28-30, 2016. (more...)

BWW Interview: Paul Sand on Getting KURT WEILL On the Boards & Working Actors Off the StreetsBWW Interview: Paul Sand on Getting KURT WEILL On the Boards & Working Actors Off the Streets
by Gil Kaan - Jun 22, 2016

Tony Award-winning actor Paul Sand took time out of his Sunday afternoon off to talk with BWW. He is currently putting on his third-ish re-incarnation of KURT WEILL AT THE CUTTLEFISH HOTEL at the Miles Memorial Playhouse. Inspiration for CUTTLEFISH initially hit Paul as he was walking on the Santa Monica Pier. 'Wouldn't Kurt Weill's nasty songs about murder and revenge and broken hearts be terrific down here?' (more...)

Charles Busch, Lorna Luft & More Coming to Feinstein's/54 Below in JuneCharles Busch, Lorna Luft & More Coming to Feinstein's/54 Below in June
by BWW News Desk - May 31, 2016

This June, FEINSTEIN'S/54 BELOW, Broadway's Supper Club, presents some of the brightest stars from Broadway, cabaret, jazz and beyond. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.54Below.com/Feinsteins or call (646) 476-3551. (more...)

 MAKE WAY FOR THE LADY ENSIGN: An American Memoir is Published After 25 Years MAKE WAY FOR THE LADY ENSIGN: An American Memoir is Published After 25 Years
by BWW News Desk - May 10, 2016

In 1991, Kay Thompson Baxter's adult children asked her to write her memoir. They wanted to know more about their mother's life growing up on a farm in the Piedmont region of North Carolina and her experiences as a United States Navy Nurse during World War II. Twenty-five years later, her book remains an eloquent personal history. (more...)

BWW 2015 NY Cabaret Awards: 'Editor's Choice' Honors Go To Karen Mason, Mark Nadler, Steve Ross, Alex Rybeck, Jim Caruso, Sean Harkness and Ian HermanBWW 2015 NY Cabaret Awards: 'Editor's Choice' Honors Go To Karen Mason, Mark Nadler, Steve Ross, Alex Rybeck, Jim Caruso, Sean Harkness and Ian Herman
by Stephen Hanks - Jan 20, 2016

After BroadwayWorld launched its New York Cabaret Awards in 2012, the cabaret section's editors realized that the selected categories and the popular vote nature of the election didn't adequately recognize some great performances and shows for that particular year. So in 2013, BWW added "Editor's Choice Awards" to the mix to not only reward special performances but also to acknowledge people who have helped grow cabaret and foster the spirit of the art form. This year, BWW New York Cabaret Editor Stephen Hanks and his reviewing staff-including Alix Cohen, David Clarke, Billie Roe, Rembert Block, and John Hoglund-selected seven stars of cabaret for this special honor. Now that the Awards for 2015 performances and shows are official, we wanted to tell you a bit about this year's "Editor's Choice Award" winners and offer them a chance to thank the New York cabaret community. Congratulations to all these worthy Award recipients. (more...)

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