Hey there, all! Why does it feel like January went as quickly as February usually does? Well, as we head toward Valentine’s Day, here’s what is coming up!
A couple of weeks back, I was cast in a short play by Matthew J. Kaplan for the latest in-person volume of The Playground Experiment. Next thing we know, the play has been accepted into a short play fest in Queens! As a big fan of Matthew’s work, I am very excited to take this piece to the next level. Come on out at the end of the month and check out A Haunting Melody, along with other fab original work at the Queens Short Play Festival at The Secret Theater.
Also, in March, The Rigano Songbook will be back at it for their annual Ides of March Extravaganza! It’s the 10th (Xth?) and thus, it’s gonna be extra fabulous. Look out for details here!
All right, time to get back to audition madness. Peace, my friends 🧡✌🏽
Man, I am so grateful. Last year started with finishing my cabaret run at Don't Tell Mama and getting a couple of stunning reviews, and went out with just as much of a bang. At the end of October, just before the Halloween Parade, I was asked to be backup James Beaman's cabaret comeback show Lived Experience, which was a marvelous show where Jamie, after playing so many characters over his decades long career, finally got to show us himself. Shortly after, I got to sing the music of one of my favorite composers, Rachel Peters, in a new work with collaborator Kevin Townley, Jr. called Manor of Speaking. Based on Oscar Wilde's first speaking tour across America, the piece is a commission for Blythley Oratonio, internationally known mezzo Stephanie Blythe's tenor alter ego. To sing with an incredible cast, including a favorite mezzo was a dream come true. I can't wait to see what happens next with this piece.
Next I was asked by marvelous cabaret artist Goldie Dver to be part of her holiday benefit for St. Jude's, Tis The Season: With A Twist. It was a night of cabaret legends, featuring Lennie Watts, Meg Flather, Tanya Moberly, Aaron Lee Battle, Sidney Meyer, and many more. Goldie raised around $2K for St. Judes and I was so happy to be part of it. And then: BINDERSUZE!
For eight years we've been making mashups and, after being asked if we were ever going to do a show, we finally did! We had a nearly full house at Don't Tell Mama for our show, and had a great reaction from the friends and family who came. The plan is to do it again in the spring so keep an eye out here for the latest.
As for THIS year, it started with an appearance as a wealthy Senator in a 20 minute musical as part of the NYPL's series Across A Crowded Room. Timothy Leech (book, lyrics & music), Nicholas Radu-Blackburn (book & lyrics), and Cheryl Chin (music) met at Across A Crowded Room last summer, and decided to write Polar Excess, a marvelous satire loosely based on the Titanic submarine fiasco.
1/22, I'll be back with the Playground Experiment live in Matt Kaplan's A Haunting Melody.
Hope you all are well and have a happy, healthy, joyful, and prosperous 2024.
What do you mean I have not posted since JULY?
Well, life has been busy with readings and concerts and HALLOWEEN...here's the lowdown friends:
*We did two No Name Shows at QED in August and September (An keep an eye here as there is a chance for a monthly regular spot there.)
*50th Annual Village Halloween Parade - Yes, this year was the 50th Anniversary of this fantastic night of creativity in the city. Marching with Processional Arts is always a joy, particularly after spending Saturdays up there helping build the puppets. This year, the theme was Inside Out/Upside Down because, who isn't these days, and the puppet performance was called Mirror/Mirror. It's a time of reflection, as well as a way for the audience to see themselves in the parade. When Ralph Lee first created the parade, he started with a number of "sweepers" who swept away the bad energy of the day before the creative flow of the evening. The Sweepers were brought back, but this time as 15 foot high illuminated ladies, one of which I had the honor of carrying. "Angela Lansbury" (as I called her) and I had a great night with our fellow sweepers and the mirror shards we had to sweep up. It's always a good crowd and good time.
*11/9 Madison Sounds will feature the MABC Choir in a concert as part of the church's 175th anniversary celebration. We'll do some church favorites, but also show you what else we do. Link with more info, HERE.
*11/14 We all know what a fan I am of the work of composer Rachel Peters. Well, now I will be part of a reading of a work she has put together with librettist Kevin Thomas Townley, Jr featuring Stephanie Blythe as Blthely Oratonio as Oscar Wilde in Manor of Speaking. Manor of Speaking follows Oscar through a tour of the states he made in 1882 discussing home decor. this will be a trip and I am so excited to hear all this out loud. (This is a private reading, otherwise, there would be a link for sure.)
12/8: One night only with BINDERSUZE: Mashup Mixtape. We're taking our mashups on the ro- okay over to Don't Tell Mama for a one night set. We'll have favorites and new ones, so come on down! link for reservations is HERE.
There are a couple of things awaiting full confirmation, which I will surely get up on here when, you know, confirmed.
Enjoy the fall weathah, and hope to see you! ✌🏽
Hey there, all! Long time no type! I somehow forgot to mention that there was a BinderSuze sighting at QED for No Name's first show at QED in FOREVAH in May, probably because school was coming to a close, and I remembered that auditions were still happening, and oh hey I have a gig coming up starting rehearsals in mid June(!), so yes, life happened, but what a sweet life.
June 18th: Did my church gig and then drove 7 hours with the delightful Darien Crago up to Tamworth, NH. (Seriously, if you have to spend 7 hours in a car with someone you've just met, Darien's IT.)
June 19th, we started rehearsals and, man, not gonna lie, it was not an easy process. A show gets learned and put together in essentially 6 days, and for someone who had not done a full blown production for some time, I was worried my brain was not going to handle it. But this ridiculous cast (Aimee Doherty, Darien Crago, Cheryl Mullins and Sarah Corey) and production team (Dir. Sarah Rozene, Chor. Alex Davis, MD Michael Ursua, PSM Dierdre Benson) was extremely patient, generous and supportive, and next thing you know, we had a SHOW.
It was a such a joy to watch, learn from, and play with these women on stage and already miss them and the show terribly. It's not every day you get to bring some joy and laughter AND be in the definitively bucolic environs of Tamworth, NH. Here's to more of that for next year!
Sunday was spent visiting my sister and her boo at the J&M diner and then checking out the final day of the Ralph Lee exhibit at the Ballard Museum of Puppetry at UConn, all on the way back to NYC. After having a place to park on a regular basis and nothing louder than some crickets at night, I came back home to hunting down a parking spot in POURING rain, and having to make a noise complaint about a car alarm that kept going off. At least there was getting to hit the Halal truck for dinner.
Monday morning, I got to do a table read of a play in progress then headed downtown to help Doug Shapiro (surely you've heard of Doug Shapiro?) run lines for Fully Committed which he'll be starring in for his 23rd Season at Barnstormers, and then went to get my son at graffiti camp.
Now it's back to singing at MABC (Christmas in July this coming weekend!), being of service to budding doctors at NYMC, a Summer Replacements gig at Word Up Recirculation, and auditions. If you could use this merry mixed mezzo, head over to the contact page and click that button! Peace to you all ✌🏽🧡
In the before times, I got the opportunity, thanks in no small part to the wonderful Doug Shapiro (pictured above in the coffee cup attire), to be an off-stage singer for the opening number of what is now called The Red Bucket Follies, a fabulous fundraising event by the theatre community for those in the theatre community. I did three of those before I finally was able to join the other wonder Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS puts on, The Easter Bonnet Competition. In this event, Broadway (and off-broadway, touring, and affiliate organizations) compete in fundraising, but also with sketches and musical or dance numbers as well as bonnets: great big, beautiful Easter Bonnets.
The last time they did the Bonnet live was 2019, so it was such a thrill to be able to bring it back and be part of it once more. It was so great to join friends old and new as an offstage singer not only for the opening number, but also for the winning Phantom sketch (which included Phantom alum). And then, I got to return as a "bonnet walker". If a show doesn't have sketch, they'll have someone walk their bonnet for the Bonnet Parade mid show. I got to walk a bonnet in 2019, representing Revolucion Latina, but this year, not only did I walk it, I built it!
After years of helping build puppets and lanterns with Processional Arts Workshop, my husband offered to put those skills to use for The Easter Bonnet. We weren't sure we'd hear back at all, assuming all the shows' props or costume departments would be all over this, but then we got an email: could we build a bonnet for a show. And not just any show, but for Broadway sensation SIX. My son LOVES this show and was thrilled to be able to be part of the design process. Jeff, Ben, and I figured out a design, the show gave us fabric from the costumes to use as accents, and thus, using Coro-plast and hot glue, the "Crowning Glory" was born. It may not have won Best Bonnet, but I heard the cast jumped up and down when they saw it, so that is quite enough for me. :)
And it doesn't hurt to share the stage with Aaron Harrington of Little Shop of Horrors, Doug Shapiro, and J Harrison Ghee, and sing with James Jackson, and Howard McGillan among others. Hence the title of this post.
To see more about the event, including video with a soundtrack of the offstage singers(!) click HERE.
If you want to know more about, and donate to, Broadway Cares and all the good work they do, click HERE.
So, Binder wanted to mash up this one song with Butch Walker's "Can We Just Not Talk About Last Night", but realized that it was not going to work. THEN, Binder went to a brunch, brought up our plight to a couple of the folks there and one of them said, "Shallow," as in DUH. And then Charlie Puth came out with one heck of a breakup album which includes the song "Smells Like Me". After far too long, there was time to finally put it all together and thus, the "mashup of shame" was born. And you can check it out, HERE.
It's official. A few weeks back I got the offer and now I can start talking about it! I will be traveling up to Tamworth, NH at the end up June to play Mother Superior in Nunsense at the legendary Barnstormers Theatre. I am SO excited to head up there to do this show, and not just because I will have access to Rosie's Diner. The cast is exceptional and this is going to be a very good time. Come on UP June 30th-July9th and get up to some Nunsense with us!
Speaking of some fun and silliness, I got to be part of Emily Winter's fab fundraiser for Shelter Chic animal shelter, ONE LINER MADNESS. Well, I was the seeing eye human for Eric Vetter as he got to compete. 64 comics compete to win with one liners and it is amazing to watch comics work that special skill.
Before that, I had the pleasure to sing at The Rigano Songbook's 9th Annual Ides of March Extravaganza which featured new voices and new music and after several years got to bring back their song Five Months which will literally make you laugh and make you cry.
In the meantime, I've been at New York Medical College in service to budding doctors as a standardized patient, and I had a whirlwind trip to Boston with my son (Newbury Comics Forever!).
This weekend, it's all about Holy Week. We will have a gorgeous Good Friday service tonight starting at 5:30 featuring the Easter part of The Messiah and closing with a mashup put together by my partner in mashup crime, the inimitable Richard Binder. Doug Shapiro, Brian Long, Binder and I - aka Shlongdersuze- will sing this piece and...it should be seen. Catch it live at Madison Avenue Baptist Church or stream it on the Tube of You at MABCNYC's channel.
And hey, if you could use this merry, mixed, mezzo for your project, hit that 'contact' button and let's talk!
Peace ☮️ ✌🏽
So I was standing in line at Target when, after doing some scrolling and, I...okay, I admit it, I totally went to Broadway World to see if there was a review of my show, and...there it was. And...well, you can read it right HERE. I'm still a little speechless at both the review Stephen Mosher writer and the fab pics he took. It was 4pm on a Saturday afternoon, so you're not sure how things are gonna go, but we were gonna make a party of it anyway, and we did. I can't thank the LB fam enough for helping create and make this show what it is. I've got a seriously badass - as overused as that word may be, it's just true in this situation - band, MD and Director in Matt Scharfglass, David Silliman, Sierra Rein, Ellen White, Goldie Dver, Richard Binder, Tracy Stark and James Beaman. And you can see all of us Wednesday 2/15 at Don't Tell Mama at 7pm. Come on down! You know we'd love to have you.
Now, I also got to help No Name get back to live performance last week as part of the lineup for No Name's Super Story Party co-hosted by No Name impresario Eric Vetter and author and 'teller Michele Carlo. Such a great night with stories from Michele, author and storyteller Tommy Pryor, comic/director and actor Rhonda Handsome, and comic and head writer for Tha God's Honest Truth Charles McBee and...ME! So nice to be back up at Word Up Community Bookstore sharing our stories live to a full house.
No Name...And a Bag of Chips will be having it's 29th anniversary show, yes 29th anniversary, 2/25 at Word Up's sister shop Recirculation, at 5pm. I'll be back behind the kit with the Summer Replacements and providing music with BinderSuze. It's a beautiful location and will indeed be a good time so come on out!
Tonight, I'll be with The PGE for it's Virtual Volume starting at 7pm. Head over to their YouTube Channel and check us out. In the meantime, if you need this merry mixed mezzo for your next project, hit that CONTACT button!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
How're you all doing? The first couple of weeks of this year have been a little whack for me, I mean, there has been proof that Mercury is indeed in retrograde from my Instagram being hacked to cracking a tooth on soggy pizza, but at the same time, lovely things are happening.
1. What would happen if you suddenly woke up with an expiration date on your arm? Shannon Condon's sci-fi podcast "Expired" explores this issue as one family looks to find an answer or cure before their daughter's "expiration date" is up. I was given the opportunity to play the mom, a Type A lawyer who usually can fix things, but is not sure if this is something she can actually just "fix". It's a great and complicated story which I hope you will enjoy. Give it a listen here.
2. Final Two Shows! We had a great night 12/30 at Don't Tell Mama sending out the year with Late Bloomer love, but if you missed it, come on out to DTM and see the last two shows of Late Bloomer 2/11 at 4pm and 2/15 at 7pm. It has been such a joy to perform this show and I really hope you'll join us for our final shows. Come on down! Make your reservation here.
And if YOU need a versatile mezzo and actor, head on over to that contact page! 🧡🤞🏽
Hey there, all!
Man, it has been a busy time, and it has been awesome 🧡.
I started the month with a week of background work for a television show I cannot name at this time, but I had a great outfit and met some fabulous people on set. They may have been long days, but when you share it with fun people, it makes it all the easier to pass that time.
Right after that, (DURING even) I went into rehearsals for one of my favorite projects, The Prospect Theatre Lab. Each year, music theatre writers are chosen to write short original musicals based on a theme. This year's theme was "Caption This". The writers got to choose from a collection of photos and go from there. The inimitable Amy Englehardt, who I have known since she became a regular guest of No Name Presents: The Uptown Cabaret, chose a photo of one boy and two middle aged men in Annie costumes. The resulting show: "Annie Dream Will Do", about a middle-aged woman named Andrea still dreaming of playing Annie, while her best friend, Sandy (yes, my character was named after the dog in Annie, and there were many other hilarious references) is trying to help her move on. I got to work with one of my best friends, the stupidly talented Doug Shapiro, (surely, you've heard of Doug Shapiro!), finally get to work with the fabulous Dana Aber, as well as meet and be in awe of Sammy Hahn. (And I also got to explain cassette tapes and cassingles to her.) I have to say that this was one of most fun projects I've worked on to date. Thank you, Dev Bondarin, Cara Reichel and everyone at Prospect Theater for this opportunity.
Next up: The DNA Play. Back in 2020, my friend and fellow Emerson alum, Nicole Jesson contacted me about working on a project with a couple of her grad school friends, Elizabeth June and Malini Singh McDonald. It could be over Zoom and maybe grow into something else.
Well, last year, we realized we had something else and we did a reading of this project, then called "Insert Name", sharing our stories of DNA tests and family histories. This year, we worked on it some more and brought it back before an audience 11/27 to record it and...it looks like we still have a thing! I will you all posted on how it evolves and progresses.
In between the background work and Caption This, I got to be a guest star along with cabaret icon Karen Mack at Sue Matsuki's fabulous and warm cabaret open mic at Pangea. Sue does such a great job making a safe space for both established and emerging cabaret artists, and is such a force for good in the biz herself, it was an honor to be able to sing there that afternoon.
So what's next?
*12/11 No Name...And A Bag O' Chips will be returning to a live show at last! I'll be singing and playing drums "behind the funny" once again. HUZZAH!
*12/15 Speaking of things returning to live performance, Madison Avenue Baptist Church's Christmas Extravaganza returns. We sadly couldn't do our concerts during the height of Covid, and then our wonderful MD, Paul Stephan retired to Maine with his husband this year. Our new MD Aza Sydykov, though, believed it was time to bring it back so we are ready for you to come on by and see some wonderful artists perform along with members of the choir singing holiday classics. Check the MABC website for more information.
DRUM ROLL PLEASE...
Come close out the year with LATE BLOOMER!
Yes, we will back at Don't Tell Mama 12/30 (and a couple of dates in February). I am so excited to bring this show back and close out the year with some love. Come on down to Don't Tell Mama, 7pm, $20 cover/$20 minimum, reservations HERE. We'd love to have ya.
That's the news for now, but, like always, if you need a tall, mixed mezzo for your theatre, music, film or TV project, head on over to that CONTACT page 🧡.
When not pandemibaking...
I have finally started a website! I just got these beautiful new headshots done by L Morgan Lee of BLUEphotography, and at last have a place to display them.
I've also been getting this self-tape thing DOWN. Madison Avenue Baptist Church, with whom I've been the alto for going on twelve years, like most churches, has gone virtual, so we are making videos of solos and hymns for the time being. (Someday, I'll release an outtake reel.)
There've been other opportunities, as well, for practicing this process: virtual choir and concert videos.
I've been lucky enough to work with Prospect Theatre Company and, thus, was asked to be part of their lovely video featuring Peter Mills' tune "Two Buoys". (I come in with the alto part and drums>)
Next, a dear friend - a jazz musician and choir director, presently living in Italy - started up Singers Without Borders and asked me to be part of this uplifting number: How Can I Keep From Singing?
Lastly, The Rigano Songbook asked 42(!) of their closest friends to help out with this wonderful song about an all too relevant and growing segment of our lives as we try to communicate with proper social distancing: Screen To Screen
The Rigano has a concert planned for 3/13...and then the world shut down. But far be it for them to not have a show. Yes, the Ides of March Extravaganza is now the Ides of APRIL and will be in virtual form. When those videos go up, I'll be sure to share here.
In the meantime, contact me here if you would like me to be part of YOUR virtual - and/or, eventually, LIVE - project.
Alexandra de Suze is a singer, actor, drummer who also writes a bit and occasionally makes silly videos