Raissa Recommends

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Raissa Recommends - week of 9/1/09

Hi Friends:

Just back from an amazing retreat with Unity Center for Practical Spirituality in CT with Rev. Shawn Moninger, Rev. Carlos Anderson, and David Friedman facilitating his "Thought Exchange". I actually let myself treat it as a real "retreat" and had no real contact with the outside world. I highly recommend it.

But now it's down to work! First, if you can catch Eric Michael Gillett's show at Feinsteins this week, do! I'll be there on Wed. 9/2. It's the debut of his new show WIDESCREEN which I was privileged to get a preview of and I can't wait to see the finished product!
Here's the latest poster for THE CONCERTS AT TUDOR CITY GREENS, courtesy of Hector Coris on graphics, and Feinsteins for printing!

What a line up we have for our final show of the outdoor season: Hector Coris, Cynthia Crane, Baby Jane Dexter, Broadway's Rita Gardner, David Gurland, Cabaret Scene's Peter Haas in a rare public performance, Marcus Simeone, Uptown Express, and Lennie Watts.

The Tudor City Greens FREE outdoor concert series resumes on Wednesday, September 9th at 6:00PM. (Rain date: Thursday, September 10th @ 6PM). This event will feature performers from Broadway and the New York City cabaret scene. The concert will be hosted by Tudor City resident, Broadway and cabaret performer Raissa Katona Bennett (Phantom of the Opera, Chess). Raissa’s guests scheduled to appear are MAC Award nominees Hector Coris and Cynthia Crane, Baby Jane Dexter (MAC Award winner, 5X Bistro Award winner), Rita Gardner (original “Louisa” in The Fantasticks, Broadway’s The Wedding Singer), David Gurland (MAC Award winner, 4X Bistro Award winner), ASCAP Award winner Peter Haas, multiple MAC Award winner Marcus Simeone, Uptown Express (Bistro Award winners) and multiple MAC and Bistro Award winner Lennie Watts. Accompanists are David Caldwell, Sean Harkness, Mark Janas, Jim Followell, Steven Ray Watkins and Bill Zeffiro.

In addition, Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer will speak. Stringer was a strong advocate for the Tudor City Greens Park and he will speak to the crowd there during the concert. Scott M. Stringer, a native New Yorker, is the 26th Manhattan Borough President. Since taking office at the start of 2006, he has dedicated himself to making Manhattan more affordable, livable…and breathable – preserving the sense of neighborhood for the 1.6 million residents of what is best known as a world capital of culture and commerce.

The event will take place in the South Park of Tudor City Greens Park – enter at Tudor City Place between East 41st and 42nd Streets, between 1st and 2nd avenues.
I'm also excited about a brand new venue that Miss KT Sullivan inaugurated last week. Garrett and I went to see her opening night show at City Hall Restaurant down on Duane Street, in the Granite Room. This exciting new room, used to be used for storing coal, and it is literally underneath the sidewalks of NY, making it a perfect place for cabaret, both acoustically and aesthetically! KT sang "sans mic" featuring songs that were pre 1930, and therefore, never intended to be sung on mic. It was a gorgeous trip down memory lane for us, as we watched and listened to KT wrap her magical presence and voice around songs I heard growing up. The incomparable Jon Weber accompanies KT and also treats the pre-show dinner crowd to his delightful renderings of pre - 1930's songs, as well. The prix-fixe menu was fantastic and really, compared to other places, $90 for a 3 course gourmet meal, fantastic service and lovely show, is a very good deal. You have one more chance to see KT, on Sept. 10th - I highly recommend you do!

Hope to see lots of you soon, at one of these events.

Love and light,