Tony Nominee Walter Willison Comes to the Metropolitan Room this Month
Tony Award nominee and Theatre World Award winner Walter Willison celebrates his 50th year in show business with Walter Willison: MUSIC IN MY HEART, his first solo cabaret appearance since 1978, at The Metropolitan Room on Tuesday, September 19th at 7pm. He'll sing iconic songs and share personal anecdotes and reminiscences about the legendary songwriters he has known and worked with, including Richard Rodgers, Martin Charnin, Robert Wright and George Forrest, Stephen Schwartz, Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse and more. Award winning musical director Ian Herman will be at the piano, with Sam Lazzara on drums.
Walter Willison starred on Broadway in shows including GRAND HOTEL, TWO BY TWO, PIPPIN, NORMAN, IS THAT YOU?, and WILD AND WONDERFUL. Other New York appearances include A CHRISTMAS CAROL at Madison Square Garden, ANYONE CAN WHISTLE at Carnegie Hall, and the title role in Robert Wright & George Forrest's KEAN at The York Theater. He was The Celebrant in Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Schwartz' MASS, the opening production at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., costarred in Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse's IT'S A MUSICAL WORLD at the Hollywood Palladium, and starred as El Gallo in The First International Japan Tour of THE FANTASTICKS, directed by and costarring authors Tom Jones & Harvey Schmidt.
His films include the Emmy winning Ziegfeld: The Man and His Women, for which he was personally chosen by Irving Berlin to croon his iconic "A Pretty Girl is Like a Melody", Harry and Walter Go to New York, Fantasies, supplying lyrics for the four songs he sings in the film, and The Initiation. On TV, he starred in NBC's 1976 series McDuff, The Talking Dog, as Clyde Griffiths in Theodore Dreiser's An American Tragedy on PBS' The Great Novelists, and as Dr. George "Buck" Wheaton on Days of Our Lives.
Mr. Willison has written and directed musicals across the US from San Diego's Old Globe to Off-Broadway and nightclub acts including Steve Ross and Karen Oberlin in CHEEK TO CHEEK: The Songs of Astaire & Rogers at 54 Below and The Crazy Coqs in the West End. In 2015 he conceived, wrote & directed the critically acclaimed GRAND HOTEL: The 25th Anniversary Reunion Concert at 54 Below, also costarring opposite fellow original Broadway cast members including Karen Akers and Liliane Montevecchi.
Earlier this year Mr. Willison, currently Artistic Director for The Ziegfeld Society, conceived and directed ZIEGFELD FOLLIES OF THE AIR: The New 1934 Live from Broadway Broadcast Revue at Birdland, starring with Miss Montevecchi, THE UNSINKABLE Tammy Grimes: A Musical Life in Revue, and WE'LL TAKE A GLASS TOGETHER!: The Songs of Robert Wright & George Forrest, starring with Karen Akers, Heather Mac Rae, Lynnette Perry and Liliane Montevecchi. In December, he will write and direct HERE'S LOVE TO THE MUSIC MAN: A Tribute to Legendary Songwriter MerEdith Wilson, also for The Ziegfeld Society, and he costars with a cast of Broadway Legends in Rick McKay's new documentary Broadway: Beyond The Golden Age, to be released in 2018.
Tickets for Walter Willison: MUSIC IN MY HEART are $25, with a $25 menu minimum. The Metropolitan Room, the internationally acclaimed jazz cabaret, is located at 34 West 22nd Street. For reservations call 212.206.0440 or visit metropolitanroom.com.