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Ilene Graff & Ben Lanzarone Set for Broadway at Birdland Concert Series, 6/13


The Broadway at Birdland concert series has announced that Grammy-nominated recording artist, television and Broadway star Ilene Graff, along with her husband, ASCAP-Award winning musical director Ben Lanzarone, will present their big band show "It's Better With A Band!" on the Birdland stage Monday, June 13, 2016 at 7 PM. For tickets, call 212-581-3080 or go to

For the first time in New York, Ilene Graff and Ben Lanzarone will present their big band show: "It's Better With A Band," featuring Ben's one-of-a-kind arrangements of songs from Broadway, the movies, and the pop world played by twelve of the best musicians in town. Also appearing with them special guest, their daughter and Broadway performer, NIKKA GRAFF LANZARONE. said: "Graff not only possesses a golden voice, but is warm, charming, and really knows how to captivate an audience - and those arrangements!"

ILENE GRAFF is a Grammy-nominated recording artist (for her CD "Baby's Broadway Lullabies") who is best known as the mom on the TV comedy, "Mr. Belvedere." Most recently, she was a recurring character on the CW's "Hart of Dixie." Broadway work includes runs in Promises, Promises (pit singer; Fran Kubelik), and the original production of Grease (Sandy). The highlight of her Broadway career was creating the role of Cleo in the Cy Coleman-Michael Stewart musical, I Love My Wife. She co-starred with Glenn Close in the Disney film version of "South Pacific," and also has appeared in concerts for The Actors Fund honoring Harold Arlen, Kander and Ebb, Jule Styne and the late, great Cy Coleman. Ilene has performed for the Crystal Cruise line, recently sold out a concert at Hollywood's Catalina Jazz Club, headlined at the legendary Birdland as well as the Metropolitan Room in Manhattan, and along with her family The Graffs, at New York's, 54 Below. Married to composer Ben Lanzarone, they are the proud parents of Nikka Graff Lanzarone, a Broadway musical theatre performer.

BEN LANZARONE (Musical Director), a winner of ASCAP's Most Performed Composer Award, is an arranger, conductor, pianist, and musical director who has composed hundreds of hours of music for television shows. He conducted and played piano for the original Broadway production of Grease, and conducted, played and arranged for some of the biggest names in the business including Frank Sinatra, Bobby Darn, Peter Nero, Art Garfunkle, Mary Travers, Anthony Newley, Petula Clark, Lainie Kazan and Mason Williams. He has also played on countless records, jingles and movie scores and recorded his own piano album, In Classic Form produced by the legendary Bob Crewe. His work on wife Ilene Graff's CD Baby's Broadway Lullabies helped it earn a Grammy nomination

NIKKA GRAFF LANZARONE has followed the family onto the stage, performing in the following: Broadway: Chicago (Velma Kelly), Women on the Verge... (Marisa, Lincoln Center Theater). Off-Broadway/NYC: Hello Again (The Whore, Transport Group), Zorba (Encores!) Seussical (Lucille Lortel Theatre). Las Vegas: Peep Show (dir/chor Jerry Mitchell). Favorite Regional: The Jungle Book (Goodman/Huntington Theatres), My Paris (dir/chor Kathleen Marshall, Long Wharf) A Chorus Line (Bebe, Paper Mill Playhouse) Into the Woods (Baltimore Centerstage/Westport Country Playhouse), Carnival (Paper Mill), Tommy (Bay Street), Nine (Carla, Chance Theatre). Film: Bandslam. TV: "Unforgettable," "Smash," "Live from Lincoln Center." Recordings: "Women on the Verge...," "Seussical" cast albums. BFA: The Boston Conservatory. Podcast: The Ensemblist. Follow: @nikkalanz. More: nikka-

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