I feel like I’ve been living inside of a writing bubble for the past year. Not enough time socializing with my friends. My MacBook is basically glued to my thighs and my fingers think they’re just meant to tickle the ivories. I talk to my dogs ten times more than I do to people. Yup…I’m fast becoming of victim of my own need to be married to my work. My fiancé has taken issue with this. So have I!
I signed up to do dog fostering and adoption events with a couple of organizations in NJ (yes, I fled the chaos of NYC for the beauty of a seven minute commute to Times Square). But due to my schedule being as unpredictable a Miley Cyrus performance, I couldn’t commit to any of the mostly weekend events. Lame.
While driving home from a day writing while looking at the ocean on the Jersey Shore, I found myself singing along to a Phil Collins tune from the mid-80s. Ok, squawking along. But I remembered every lyric, every chord progression (this is one of the songs I taught myself to play on the piano as a kid), every cymbal crash. I clearly had a deep connection with this power ballad. Then a lightbulb went off…an idea that made me almost cross lanes on the Jersey Turnpike. (Hey, I’m from Boston and I thought Massholes were bad drivers…but Jersey totally wins in the bad driver department!) The idea: what if I did a concert of songs that inspired me as a composer/writer? Then I thought, “Who the hell would want to listen to me sing and bang the piano for 90 minutes?! Not me!” More driving, more squawking along… “WAIT! I’ve got it!! What if I got a group of writers together to perform songs that inspired their work?! YES! YES! YES!” And… “What if the concert is a benefit for the shelters I keep failing to help?!” And…”What if I invite my friends and we get to have a few drinks together while saving some lives?!” And this was the birth of INSPIRED: A Benefit Concert.
I immediately reached out to a variety of musical theatre writers, many of whom wrote back with “What a great idea but I’m not available that night. If you do it again…” So, guess what?! Another light bulb lit up my cranium and INSPIRED: A Benefit Concert Series was born.
Our first concert is Sunday September 22nd at 7pm featuring the insane talents of: Brad Alexander, David Are, Carner & Gregor, Drew Fornarola, Michael Holland, Rob Rokicki, Georgia Stitt, Katie Thompson & Michael Patrick Walker. I will be performing a little mash up and will serve as the host for the night. I am hoping to create a relaxing “unplugged” meets “behind the music” vibe where audiences get to learn about the writer, not just their projects and awesome songs, but an insight into what makes them tick.
INSPIRED 1 will benefit the ASPCA of NYC & The Last Resort Rescue, a no-kill shelter in NJ. I have adopted pets from both of these devoted organizations and I cannot wait to give them some money from the Broadway community! I mean, how many times a day do we see some fool Instagraming pics of his puggle chewing a stuffed squirrel? (The story is that person is me… and yes, that’s a CHESS reference.)
The second installment is set for November 18th, 7pm and will benefit The Humane Society of NYC & The Last Resort Rescue. The lineup is already 3/4 full! Can’t wait to announce it!
Okay, it’s 9:15pm and I should really be watching some Netflix with my fiancé and our menagerie of furry children. Spread the word and save a life!
For tickets, visit http://www.brownpapertickets.com/e/445166.
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