Friday, November 26, 2010


This year, Gratitude has been such a front and center state of mind, and I am so very thankful for the people in my life who make the world so beautiful.

My husband wakes me up every day with laughter and love. It is truly the best way to start the day. I don't know what I'd do without him. He shares my highs and lows every day, and I am so thankful for him!

I'm also incredibly blessed in my friends and family. My brother, Sean, is one of my very best friends. He's a drummer in CA, and gets the business aspect of show business as well as the artistry, and helps me keep both in balance. I've always said that watching him play the drums is like watching a great painter paint.

Then I have my "soul siblings": Carl, Michael, Lisa, Lani, Ataman, Jayne, Maryanne, and Tina, whom I chat with almost every day. Tina keeps me plugging away when I have my challenging days and reminds me to celebrate each step of the journey.

I feel so fortunate to have performed with and formed friendships with artists like Tracey Gilbert, Omri Schein, Deb Radloff, Billy Hicks, Michelle Liu, Wayne Henry, John Haggerty, Martin Sola, Gina Milo, Billy Konsoer, Prescott Seymour, Richard Binder, Monica McCarthy and so many other incredible casts and crews.

Thanks to the terrifically talented people who hired me to sing their music this year like Andy Monroe, Clare Cooper and Larry Moore. My musical world is so much richer because of you!

I'm thankful for my teachers - Josh Pais, Alaine Alldaffer, Karen Kohlhaas, Chas Elliot, VP Boyle, Carl Danielsen, Seth Weinstein, Marcia Cloyd, Winnie Hammond and coaches from my distant past - whose lessons continue to inform my work as an actress and singer.

I am thankful to my parents were my first teachers and made it so I could pursue all my artistic studies as a kid.

They are still so supportive with my acting and have made a few trips out to NY to see my shows. I love that!

I am thankful to have worked with amazing directors like BT McNicholl, Jonathon Robinson, Kurt Stamm, Michael Schiralli, Dan Wackerman, Daniel Maggio, Brian Swasey, Dennis Anderson, to name a few... musical directors like Jeffrey Campos, Robby Stamper, Matthew Ward... writers like Michael Small, Blair Fell, Bryan D. Leys; and producers like George DeMarco and David Gerard and Eileen and Sharon of Tweiss Productions.

Thanks to Facebook for connecting me to people from grade school to high school and the casts and crews I've worked with throughout the years. I am thankful for you all.

And thanks to everyone who's inspired me and encouraged me to shine my light and keep on making my dreams come true. Much love and many blessings to you all!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Marvelous night for a Moondance

One of the things I love about living in Manhattan is watching the moon rise between the buildings!

 Looks like a giant spotlight, doesn't it?


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

City Sights

Last week, I had the honor of recording some songs for the upcoming CD collection, Unrecorded Victor Herbert Gems, orchestrated by Larry Moore. The recording was done in a sumptuous concert hall at the Academy of Arts and Letters, and the journey there was such a delight!

I loved the cobblestone road on the way to the Academy.

Last month, when I recorded another song there for this project, it poured rain, so I was thrilled with the sunshine and blue skies of this day.

 I could see Jersey across the way. And directly across from the Academy is this fantastic old graveyard.

I wanted to climb up there and explore, but I had to go into the building to start work on the recording.

The Academy is so incredibly gorgeous, and this sculpted doorway made me think of my friend, Tina, who's a writer, growing leaps and bounds with her Essential Herbal magazine and her new book, By The Hearth.

This is dedicated to the Women Writers of America.

The trip down to the theatre held such neat images of shadow and light.

There were all sorts of twists and turns on the way to the stage, and once we were inside the concert hall, the stage was set with a Steinway grand piano, music stands and mics. And when we sang, the music bounced off the walls.

It was me, Sara Jean Ford, Elizabeth Inghram, and Maeve Hoglund with Zachary Stains singing lead, all of us breathing in concert, voices lifted in glorious song, and then the incredible vibration of stillness when we finished. My heart was racing, blood pounding in my ears, and the energy was absolutely electric. It was such a thrill!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Today's Soundtrack

Listening to the Broadway recording of Little Women. An absolute delight for the ears and imagination! Great songs!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

My favorite direction for the day

I'm doing a 15 minute peformance of a new opera tomorrow called La Ribalta, and the scene is quite passionate, so the writer/director said to me, "Think Tony Soprano..."

"... and Gina Lollobrigida."

That made me laugh, because I'm often cast in characters like this: sexy powerhouses who have a sense of drive and tenacity like that of a freight train! Unstoppable!

It reminds me of Rita, the mafia mistress whom I played in the musical Lucky Stiff.

Granted, Elena in La Ribalta is the long-suffering wife of an actor, akin to the wife in NINE, but she's also got the fire of the mistress in that same musical film, so it's an incredible combination to play with. So much fun!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Unrecorded Victor Herbert Gems

I'm recording more songs today for the upcoming "Unrecorded Victor Herbert Gems" project. Larry Moore, whom I worked with on The Tragic and Horrible Life of the Singing Nun, orchestrated the works, and I'm singing with incredible Broadway folks like Zacahry Stains, Sara Jean Ford, and a recent classmate from Alaine Alldaffer's scene study class, Elizabeth Inghram. Aaron Lazar and the gifted Rebecca Luker also star on the album.

 Such a pleasure to work with these talented people! Looking forward to today's recording at the Academy of Arts and Letters.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010


So proud of my friends, Stephen and Mike, who are "rocking the 'stache" for Movember, Men's Health Awareness month, raising funds and awareness regarding prostate cancer.

These guys make me think of one my favorite movies, Anchorman: "You stay classy," gentlemen! :)

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Busy Week

Meeting a writer/director this week to discuss a potential play for next year.

Recording more music for The Victor Herbert Project orchestrated by Larry Moore for The Academy of Arts and Letters.

I had a blast singing with the Broadway folks from last session. The music was bouncing off the walls in the concert hall! Looking forward to singing more tracks for this very fun project!

And I'm performing a comic "torrid scene" with Richard Binder from the new musical "La Ribalta," at Studio 353 on Sunday November 14th at 8 PM.

Presented by Golden Fleece Productions, there will be scenes from 5 other musical theatre works-in-progress, as part of Sunday Nights at Square One. Reservations / tickets / general information: 212-691-6105

Should be a fun week!

Friday, November 05, 2010

You Are Here

"You are here to get kites stuck in trees.

You are not here to catch trains and wear dress socks.

You are here to build things and teach things and jump into lakes.

You are here to make things better for others, better for yourself.

You are here to laugh, take naps, and run around the basepath.

You are here to live well."

- Lynn Grabhorn via GNC

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Make Your Vote Count

This morning, my husband and I voted before the sun was even up. Polls open in Manhattan at 6 AM, and it's become a tradition for us to get our vote in early.

I'm so thankful my honey's an early riser, so we could get to the polls before they're crowded.

And I'm thankful to the folks who were there to assist us in the voting process.

It hasn't been a full 100 years yet since the 19th Amendment was passed and women were granted the right to vote. I am very thankful to the women who fought to make this happen.

Make Your Vote Count!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Great Gratitude

I recently took a scene study class with the lovely casting director, Alaine Alldaffer, and I loved her class immediately because it included a Gratitude Circle, where we introduced ourselves and expressed our gratitude for something.

This gracious gesture is something that I've noticed seems to increase abundance in our lives. It's like opening a funnel for more goodness to flow.

Another friend of mine, Monica McCarthy, whom I met in VP Boyle's Musical Theatre Forum, recently started a Happiness Project where she takes pictures of something every day that makes her happy. By doing this, she increases her scope or vision by focusing on good stuff.

 I love that!

My friend, Tina Sams, also wrote about this in the latest issue of The Essential Herbal magazine. She works with her sister, Maryanne Schwartz, and my husband and I first met these two ladies at the PA Renaissance Faire when we were hired for the Shakespearean improv acting troupe.

I remember it clear as day, Rob asking me if I'd met The Herb Sisters, because they were so incredibly fun. I went over to their lovely herb shoppe, and it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Since leaving the Faire, The Sisters have both stayed wonderfully involved in herbs, soaps, and Maryanne makes gorgeous glass jewelry via her Torchsong Studios. Very artsy ladies indeed!

Tina is celebrating the 10th year of publication for The Essential Herbal magazine, and she gives kudos to her sister, who handles the layout for the magazine.

These two women share laughter with them wherever they go, and Tina says, "For us, it's pretty much all about having fun," and she always encourages me to "keep it fun" in my acting career.

"Do it in such a way that it brings joy and wonder to your life... focus on what you really enjoy."

This makes me think of Monica's Happiness Project and Alaine's Gratitude Circle. By focusing on something every day that gives you happiness, and expressing gratitude for it, you cannot help but expand the happy factor!

Thanks to these ladies for shining their lights on the world. Thanks to my husband, my friends and family for sharing the ride with me and shining their lights as well.

Love you all!