15th Annual Long Beach, L.I. Cabaret Festival

| May 8, 2017

15th Annual Long Beach, L.I. Cabaret Festival

May 17-21

Long Beach Public Library
111 West Park Avenue
Long Beach, NY

Artists in Partnership (A.I.P.) and the Long Beach Public Library proudly present the 15th Annual Long Beach, L.I. Cabaret Festival from Wednesday, May 17 through May 21 (Sunday), 2017.  All performances are free and open to the public, held in the library’s second-floor performance space, 111 West Park Avenue, Long Beach, NY, a few blocks from the Long Island Railroad stop, making it accessible for out-of-towners traveling by rail. This year’s theme is “Cabaret… at Any Age” and that is underscored by the inclusion of three impressive and serious-minded singers aged 9, almost 13, and recently turned 16; two acclaimed vocalists in their early 20s; five over the age of 60 (two of them actually over 80!); and one ageless local favorite returnee.  The   eclectic roster features singers and musicians of different stripes who have won acclaim and awards. 

A.I.P.’s special guest star, with a full-length show on Friday the 19th is the sophisticated and beloved singer-pianist Steve Ross, dubbed the “Crown Prince of Cabaret,” who plays posh rooms all over the world.  He has been especially celebrated for his interpretations of songwriters Cole Porter and Noël  Coward (in whose Present Laughter he appeared on Broadway) and was recently honored by the Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs (MAC) with a Lifetime Achievement Award.  Several other MAC Award winners are included in the week’s musical events, too. 

The weekend schedule is the busiest.  Saturday afternoon’s event is a panel discussion, peppered by performances, led by AIP Founder Susan James and cabaret journalist Rob Lester (Cabaret Scenes Magazine, www.NiteLifeExchange.com) with comments, anecdotes and songs from 25-year-old veteran of cabarets, nightclubs, Broadway (three shows), and Liza Minnelli protegé Nicolas King (currently pictured on the cover of Cabaret Scenes, with a featured article within), plus 22-year-old jazz sensation, now a regular at Birdland, Veronica Swift, first runner-up in the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition.  Both come from musical families and began performing professionally as kids.  Joining them are jazz pianist/composer/arranger extraordinaire Matt Baker, and two NYC-based singers on opposite ends of the age/experience spectrum: veteran actress/singer/comedienne Joan Jaffe, a MAC Award winner in the Musical Comedy category, and Joie Bianco, 16-year-old winner of a singing contest at Manhattan’s Metropolitan Room and a special award from Michael Feinstein’s annual competition for teens, who scored quite a coup being included in the annual Cabaret Convention’s opening night, garnering notice in The New York Times.  King, Swift, and Baker all perform in concert Saturday night, while Bianco opens Sunday afternoon’s events with her solo show. Also on stage on Sunday will be New York cabaret favorite Robin Westle (Robin’s Nest host/creator, with three solo shows to her credit), and three vital singers who have passed the milestone age of still sing regularly in the clubs, proving that age is no barrier: Barbara Malley (another MAC Award winner in Musical Comedy) and this year’s winner of MAC’s special Hanson Award, Ira Lee Collings. The third of these merry musical musketeers  is paying a return visit to the Festival: effervescent singer/recording artist and Bistro Award winner Cynthia Crane. These folks will be on the bill that day with two NYC youngsters studying voice, acting, and cabaret who—like their seniors—love the Great American Songbook.  They are Nyla Robotham, who is 12-going-on-13, and Julian Lerner, who is all of 9 years old.  They’ll all be joined by Musical Director/jazz pianist Jon Weber, also a festival returnee.

Sunday wraps up the festival which is set to begin cozily on the afternoon of  Wednesday, May 17 with Ms. James, a singer herself, chronicling AIP’s Cabaret Memories with archival video clips and her perspective and musical appreciation.  The Thursday event brings back to the festival the popular singer and Long Island resident Pamela Lewis, winner of a Broadway World cabaret award for her work in the city. 

See the organization’s website www.AIP-Arts.org for full schedule, exact times, membership information, and details of other arts-related events during the year.  All activities for this non-profit are made possible by local memberships, donations, and grants from local government and civic organizations.  All performers subject to availability.  See also the Facebook page /www.facebook.com/AIPArts/.

For more information, call Susan James 516-322-1138 or write james22go@aol.com

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