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BIRDLAND presents the return of KAREN AKERS - acclaimed Broadway and concert artist - with ENCORE PERFORMANCE, 9/12
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 03:25 pm EDT 08/12/22

BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB

PRESENTS

THE RETURN OF ACCLAIMED BROADWAY AND CONCERT ARTIST

KAREN AKERS

WITH A SPECIAL ENCORE PERFOMANACE AFTER HER SOLD-OUT DEBUT IN APRIL


"WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE"

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 12

BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB will present award-winning vocalist Karen Akers in the return of her acclaimed new concert "Water Under the Bridge" on Monday, September 12 at 7:00 PM. Returning to Birdland after the sold-out debut of this show in April, Akers once again takes a look back at some of the songs that first brought her attention in cabaret as well as on Broadway, television, and recordings: works by Craig Carnelia, Maury Yeston, Edith Piaf, and Stephen Sondheim, among other treasures. The show features musical director Alex Rybeck. There is a $40 music charge. Birdland is located at 315 West 44th Street in New York.

Karen Akers, one of America's more arresting and successful concert and cabaret stars, is the recipient of the 2005 New York Nightlife Award for Outstanding Female Cabaret Vocalist in a Major Engagement, as well as the 2009 Nightlife Legend Award. Ms. Akers has appeared in venues worldwide, including Carnegie Hall and The Hollywood Bowl, as well as New York's premiere nightspots, the Cafe Carlyle and The Oak Room at The Algonquin Hotel. She has taken her music to the south of France, Russia, Barcelona's Liceu Opera House and more recently, to The Crazy Coqs in London.

Concert performances are only a part of Ms. Akers multifaceted career, which encompasses theatre, television, film, and recordings. She appeared at the Martin Beck Theatre on Broadway as one of the original stars of the Tony Award-winning musical Grand Hotel, directed by Tommy Tune. She made her Broadway debut in the original production of Nine, also directed by Tommy Tune, receiving a Tony nomination. Ms. Akers television appearances include "Cheers," "The Tonight Show," "Hart to Hart," "The Merv Griffin Show" and the PBS Specials: "Ellington: The Music Lives On" and "Ira Gershwin at 100: A Celebration at Carnegie Hall." In addition, her own PBS specials are "Presenting Karen Akers" and "On Stage at Wolf Trap." Her film roles include the femme fatale in Mike Nichols' Heartburn, opposite Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep; Woody Allen's The Purple Rose of Cairo; and Vibes.

BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB will present Karen Akers in "Water Under the Bridge" on Monday, September 12 at 7:00 PM. There is a $40 music charge and a $20 food and beverage minimum. Birdland is located at 315 West 44th Street (between 8th and 9th Avenues) in Manhattan. For reservations, please call (212) 581-3080 or visit www.BirdlandJazz.com. In compliance with New York City rules for indoor activities, Birdland requires proof of vaccination or a verified medical exemption from all customers, staff, and performers.

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UPCOMING HIGHLIGHTS AT
BIRDLAND THEATER AND BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB

Every Monday at 9:30 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Jim Caruso's Cast Party
"Jim Caruso's Cast Party," a New York institution for almost two decades, is a wildly popular weekly open mic night/variety show that has brought a sprinkling of Broadway glitz and urbane wit to Birdland since 2004. Called "show-business heaven" by The New York Times and "the gold-standard of open mic nights" by The Wall Street Journal, "Cast Party" will take advantage of the city's post-pandemic nightlife renaissance to keep presenting a potent mix of Broadway stars, jazz swingers and cabaret legends, in addition to new faces and rising talent from every genre. The buoyant, sharp and charming Caruso guides the entire affair, while musical genius Billy Stritch (Liza Minnelli, Tony Bennett) holds court at the ivories and leads the Cast Party Symphony Orchestra (Steve Doyle on bass and Daniel Glass on drums).
$30 + $20 food/drink minimum

Every Tuesday at 8:30 PM – Birdland Theater
The Lineup with Susie Mosher
"The Lineup with Susie Mosher" is a wild, anything-goes variety show featuring entertainers from the Broadway, cabaret and comedy scenes, ranging from today's hottest headliners to the best up-and-coming stars of tomorrow. Mosher – the noted actress and singer from Broadway and beyond, called "one of those talents you need to see to believe" by Time Out New York – hosts the spontaneous extravaganza every Tuesday, and each Lineup is unique and promises to deliver an unforgettable night of quintessential New York City entertainment.
$20 + $20 food/drink minimum

Every Saturday at 5:30 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Eric Comstock & Barbara Fasano
Hailed as "the truest heir to Bobby Short" in The New York Times, pianist/singer Eric Comstock returns to Birdland with star bassist/composer Sean Smith with songs by everyone from George Gershwin to George Harrison. These two masters met on the Off-Broadway hit Our Sinatra (which Eric co-wrote) and have since worked separately and together around the world. Vocalist Barbara Fasano joins them at Birdland for a swinging Saturday supper where the music and stories are equally great. Sean Smith has been an integral part of the international jazz scene for over 25 years, and has performed with Gerry Mulligan, Phil Woods, Benny Carter, Art Farmer, Flip Phillips, Clark Terry and many others. Barbara Fasano has been praised as "a gorgeous, soulful singer who has an actor's intensity in whatever she sings" by The New York Post and "a lyrically sensitive interpreter" by The New York Times. Her latest album Busy Being Free is the recipient of the MAC Award for "Major Recording of the Year."
$30 + $20 food/drink minimum

August 15 (Monday) 7:00 PM - Birdland Jazz Club
Bobby Conte – "Along the Way"
"Along the Way," Conte's solo concert and subsequent debut studio album, charts the journey of a not-so-fictional young man slowly ridding himself of his ignorance as he strives to carve his own path in this world. It features a 10-piece band and an eclectic array of songs, all re-imagined and orchestrated by conductor/musician and producer, James Sampliner. From classic Broadway ("Time Heals Everything") to funkified Sondheim ("Everybody Says Don't"), acoustic folk ("Here, There and Everywhere"), gospel rat pack ("That's Life"), swinging mambo ("She Loves Me"), 90's R&B ("Me and Mrs. Jones"), Brahms meets Berlin ("How Deep Is the Ocean?") and Steely Dan meets Pasek & Paul ("Along the Way"). Bobby is currently playing the role of PJ in the Broadway revival of Company. He made his Broadway debut originating the role of Calogero in A Bronx Tale, directed by Robert De Niro and Jerry Zaks. Other New York theater: My Fair Lady (Bay Street Theater); Starting Here, Starting Now (York Theatre Company). Film/TV: If Beale Street Could Talk (directed by Barry Jenkins); "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" (Netflix); "Madam Secretary", "The Code" (CBS).
$40 tables / $40 bar + $20 food/drink minimum

August 22 (Monday) 8:30 PM – Birdland Theater
Amy Spanger
Spanger, a Drama Desk-nominated Broadway singer and actress, will sing songs from her celebrated career so far, including beloved tunes by Jonathan Larson, Cole Porter, Kander & Ebb and more. She and her musical director, Paul Masse, have created a rocking set with all the feels. Her special guest will be Broadway veteran Brian Shepard (who also happens to be her husband). Spanger has starred in eight Broadway shows, including Kiss Me, Kate; The Wedding Singer; and Rock of Ages, originating roles in five of them. She was the original Susan in the off-Broadway production of Jonathan Larson's tick, tick... BOOM! and notably played Sally in "Reefer Madness The Movie Musical," and recently guest starred on "Chicago Med."
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum

August 29 (Monday) 7:00 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Julie Benko & Jason Yeager – "Hand in Hand" Release
Funny Girl's Julie Benko joins forces with jazz pianist (and husband) Jason Yeager for an unforgettable evening performing selections from their new duo album, "Hand in Hand". The release, out August 26th on Club44 Records, features the pair's intimate arrangements of songs from Broadway musicals, the Great American Songbook, and Yeager's original compositions. Joined by Michael O'Brien on bass, Jay Sawyer on percussion, and Patrick Laslie on woodwinds, the talented twosome will put their singular spin on favorites by such legendary composers as Jule Styne, Richard Rodgers, Anaïs Mitchell, Janis Joplin, and others. Benko is currently the standby for Fanny Brice in Broadway's Funny Girl. Other Broadway/National Touring credits include Fiddler on the Roof, Les Miserables, and Spring Awakening. A recipient of the Wilde Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Girl in Once, Benko also won the Gold Medal and Johnny Mercer Award at the American Traditions Vocal Competition in 2017. Yeager is a pianist and composer who has performed across five continents at such noteworthy venues as Carnegie Hall, the Blue Note, Panama Jazz Festival, Qintai Concert Hall, and more. A two-time finalist at the Jacksonville Jazz Piano Competition, Yeager has released five albums as a bandleader.
$40 tables / $40 bar + $20 food/drink minimum

September 19 (Monday) 7:00 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Billy Stritch & Gabrielle Stravelli – "Mel and Ella Swing!"
Renowned pianist and singer Billy Stritch and award-winning jazz vocalist Gabrielle Stravelli combine their considerable talents for an evening of great music celebrating the legendary Mel Tormé and Ella Fitzgerald. "Mel and Ella Swing!" includes favorites from the Great American Songbook ("The Man I Love," "A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square," "Cheek To Cheek") and swinging jazz standards ("Too Close For Comfort," "Lady Be Good").These two performers have brought their magic to stages all over the world and together bring an incredible knowledge and feel for this great music that's not often seen these days. It's an incredible and joyful evening featuring Patrick O'Leary on bass and Mark McLean on drums. Stritch is one of the premier singer-pianists on the New York and national jazz and cabaret scenes.. In addition to his 25-year collaboration with Liza Minnelli, Billy recently toured with the legendary Tony Bennett as Tony's pianist and musical director. A solo entertainer in his own right, he has performed his own shows (including tributes to Mel Tormé and Cy Coleman) in concert halls and nightclubs across the country. Billy also serves as music director for such leading vocalists as Linda Lavin, Christine Ebersole, Paulo Szot and Marilyn Maye. He has recorded five solo CDs and his latest CD release "Billy's Place" (Club44 Records). Stravelli's pairing of a jazz artist's musicianship with an ability to interpret lyrics and connect with an audience has led to a richly varied career. She regularly leads her quartet in performances at the country's finest jazz clubs and performing arts centers and has headlined domestic and international jazz festivals including the 2021 & 2018 WBGO Jazz on the Mountain Festival in New Paltz, NY, the 2019 Providencia Jazz Festival in Santiago, Chile, the 2016 All That Jazz Festival in Eleuthera, Bahamas and the 2014 Maree Sonore Festival in Venice, Italy.
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum

September 19 (Monday) 8:30 PM - Birdland Theater
Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf
With her long-time friend Charlie Alterman on piano, cellist Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf will perform selections from her debut album, Music of Broadway for Cello and Piano, and welcome her husband, saxophonist Marc Phaneuf, as they celebrate their eighteenth wedding anniversary that night. Special guest star to be announced. Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf has established a busy career in New York City as a solo, chamber, Broadway, and recording artist. Since 2003 she has played in 18 Broadway shows including The Bridges of Madison County, Evita, and Sunday in the Park with George. Off-Broadway credits include the premiere productions of Jason Robert Brown's The Last Five Years (Chicago 2001, NYC 2002). Her debut solo album, Music of Broadway for Cello and Piano, was released in 2021 on Craft Recordings/Concord Theatricals. Following her sold-out debut at Birdland Jazz Club in 2018 she continues to present headlining shows featuring Broadway's greatest stars.
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum

September 26 (Monday) 8:30 PM – Birdland Theater
Phillip Officer – "Let Me Sing And I'm Happy"
It's been a decade since Phillip Officer, one of NYC's favorite singers, stepped into the spotlight. Officer returns to make his Birdland Theater debut with "Let Me Sing And I'm Happy." The Chicago Tribune wrote, "Officer joins the rank of great singers as he elevates his material with a natural effervescence you wish you could bottle." Phillip built a commanding reputation for his commitment to lyrics. The New York Times complimented him as "a master of lyric interpretation – a textbook example of pop understatement." "Let Me Sing And I'm Happy" will celebrate a coterie of great writers and artists who have influenced his musical journey, including Peggy Lee, Carole King, Stephen Sondheim, The Beatles, Irving Berlin, Cher, and Johnny Mercer. The talented trio of musicians include Mark Hartman on piano, Kevin Kuhn on guitar, and Erik Friedlander on cello. Officer made his Broadway debut in the Tony-nominated musical Side Show. He is the recipient of multiple New York Nightlife, Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs, and Backstage Bistro Awards. The show is directed by Bill Russell.
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum
Link http://www.BirdlandJazz.com
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