Stories & Cast Interviews

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Cab Calloway Awards

Posted by: wbtpress on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 at 10:10:21 am Comments (0)

On Monday, May 19th, The Arts community of Westchester County came out to honor their own when the Cab Calloway Lifetime Achievement  Awards were presented At Westchester Broadway Theatre.  (See more photos below story!)

 George Puello, John Treacy Egan, Daniel Carlino

  The Master Of Ceremonies for The stellar evening was Broadway actor, John Treacy Egan. Mr. Egan has starred in The Producers and Jekyl And Hyde and can be seen currently as Chef Louis in The Little Mermaid.   George Puello, looking smart in his signature white tux and ruby red accessories, was the host and has organized this annual event since 2001.  Cab Calloway was a  resident of Elmsford for 34 years. His career spanned at least six decades and was highlighted by his work on stage, film, television and the recording industry. It is an honor to have the award bear his name. The recipients are recognized for their body of work, dedication and contribution to the performing arts in Westchester County. Invited performers for the evening included;  John Coppola (Jersey Boys, Chicago company.) with twin, Tom Coppola, Scott Ramsey and Steve Loftus who all sang a ditty from Forever Plaid,  The Lighthouse Youth Theatre, The Westchester Dreamcoats, Peter Iasillo, Alysa Haas, Shana Buxton, Danceworks (The Dance Company of WCC) and Karen Beals, singing George Puello's song, "In My Dream", as a moving tribute to the late Mort Clark.  Mr. Egan sang excerpts from The Producers, as well as a selection from his newly-released CD "Count The Stars."

2008 HONOREES

ALAN BRAMSON

FOUNDER OF THE BRAMSON SCHOOL OF MUSIC. HIS WIFE BERENICE  BRAMSON IS BEING HONORED POSTHUMOUSLY.

JOHN B. COPPOLA

FOUNDING MEMBER OF THE NEW ROCHELLE COMMUNITY THEATER (ESTABLISHED IN 1968). HE HAS SERVED IN MANY CAPACITIES FROM SET DESIGNER AND DIRECTOR TO PRODUCER.

SIR MORT CLARK (1928-2007)

HONORED POSTHUMOUSLY FOR HIS GREAT CONTRIBUTIONS TO NATIONAL & INTERNATIONAL AMATEUR THEATRE.  HE WAS PROFESSOR OF SPEECH AND THEATER AT WESTCHESTER COMMUNITY COLLEGE FOR OVER THIRTY YEARS.

PHIL GABERMAN

IN RECOGNITION OF HIS LIFELONG DEDICATION AS A  MUSIC TEACHER AND MUSICAL DIRECTOR FOR OVER FORTY YEARS THROUGHOUT WESTCHESTER COUNTY. HIS WIFE,  

JUDY GABERMAN, AN ACCOMPLISHED AUTHOR OF CHILDREN'S BOOKS, WIILL BE HONORED POSTHUMOUSLY.

 

SUSAN (RYAN) KATZ

FOUNDER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF WESTCO PRODUCTIONS. HER FATHER SEYMOUR "SONNY" KATZ. A GREAT SUPPORTER OF THEATER WILL BE HONORED POSTHUMOUSLY.

BARRY LIEBMAN

FOUNDER AND PRODUCER OF YORKTOWN STAGE. A LONGTIME DIRECTOR/CHOREOGRAPHER AND ACTOR IN PROFESSIONAL AND

COMMUNITY THEATER

JOAN MORENSTEIN

MUSIC TEACHER AND DRAMA DIRECTOR AT PORT CHESTER MIDDLE SCHOOL FOR THIRTY FOUR YEARS. MUSICAL DIRECTOR FOR MANY

COMMUNITY  THEATER GROUPS IN WESTCHESTER.

JO ROBBINS

DANCE PROFESSOR AT WESTCHESTER COMMUNITY COLLEGE FOR THE PAST THIRTY-FOUR YEARS. AND CO-FOUNDER OF DANCEWORKS WITH MOLLYANN FRANZBLAU

 

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Mrs Potts Spills all!

Posted by: wbtpress on Tuesday, May 20, 2008 at 10:18:21 am Comments (0)

Stacia Fernandez is bubbling over with  excitement as she appears nightly in Beauty & The Beast!  

I was born in Columbia Missouri, lived in Monmouth, Illinois until I was 9 and then spent the rest of my growing up years in Atlanta, Georgia.   I'm the 4th of 4 girls and we had a blast together!
I think my acting needs are genetic!   My Dad is a great actor.   He never did it for a career, but I saw him in plays from an early age.   I think it's HIS fault!!  :)
I'm just old enough to remember Sunday nights and THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF DISNEY.   It was an important television time every week.   Daniel Boone, Mary Poppins, The Sword in the Stone, The Nutty professor, Mickey and Minnie?  All of them every Sunday night with a bowl of popcorn and my sisters. 
 
I played Mrs. Potts on the National Tour AND on Broadway.   I was lucky enough as an understudy to get the contract in both places for awhile!   My preparation?   Honesty and good spirit.   That's where I try to put my head for the lovely Mrs. Potts.

The costume is a big physical obstacle to conveying emotion.   I happen to be one of the folks that LOVES this show more when we are in rehearsal without all the big costumes.   It's such a sweet story and I think it could be done without costumes completely!   BUT that being said?   The costumes we are wearing are very "user friendly"!

Children are enchanted by this story and show.   I love to see the little girls in their gold dresses and the moms and their sons and daughters holding their hands in the air and singing  BE OUR GUEST.   And it happens a lot!   (oh... and I think some parents are getting their introduction to live theatre THROUGH their children.  That is a beautiful thing too!)
 
My partner and I are finishing renovation on our house!   That takes a lot of time.   But I also walk my dogs, garden, see movies, theatre when I can and see my friends and try to stay happy and busy.   Cause that's what life's all about to me!!  :)  

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

"In The Mood" surprise!

Posted by: wbtpress on Wednesday, May 14, 2008 at 3:53:30 pm Comments (0)

Frank Morganthaler, Bob Funking (holding plaque), Lt. Ryan Miller & Bob Foster 

On May 13th, forty current & veteran servicemen & women attended the production of In The Mood, (a terrific review of the music of the WWII era 1940's.)  Frank Morganthaler and Bob Foster, each a member of  the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign War Posts, surprised owners, Bob Funking & Bill Stutler, with a plaque honoring Westchester Broadway Theatre.  On January 11, 2008, Westchester Broadway Theatre donated $10,000. to the program "Canines for Combat Veterans". This program provides service dogs for wounded veterans. Most of those veterans are victims of the current conflict in Iraq/Afghanistan. 

A special guest was Lt. Ryan Miller, US Army, who will be the recipient of  "wbt" the service dog!

The majority of these wounded vets have suffered amputation, spinal cord injury or traumatic brain injury (TBI) and need assistance. The Eastchester American Legion Post 979 and VFW Post 2285 were the first contributions to the Canines for Combat Veterans Fund in Westchester. Frank Morganthaler and Bob Foster, have valiantly led the fundraising effort to pair wounded combat veterans with trained service dogs. Westchester Broadway Theatre, with the help of our generous patrons, is proud to join the effort  by sponsoring a dog for a deserving veteran! Contact NEADS at 978-422-9064.  or sobrien@neads.org. The website: www.neads.org

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

A tantalizing taste!

Posted by: wbtpress on Wednesday, May 7, 2008 at 1:13:17 pm Comments (0)