Liza Minnelli Stepping Out! 2015

Liza Minnelli Stepping Out! 2015

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Liza Minnelli - a Performer's Performer! Friday, March 28, 2008

Liza with Voice Coach

Liza Minnelli suddenly goes from 5'4" to 7' tall when she hits the stage lights, dazzling her audience with her own 10,000 watts of pure energy, 'til she leaves the stage, and the audience's standing ovation behind.She started out Friday, March 28 at Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall in Fort Myers, with a throaty voice, more suited for her torch songs, and her voice then gained back its' strength and upper register as the evening progressed. With a great 16 piece band, 4 dancers and a spartan black stage and set, the lighting and inventive choreography gave a wonderful support and emphasis to her captivating acting and singing. She gives full credit to her highly talented band members-briefly, the piano player even got up and sang, while a dancer took over the keyboard. Her drummer, said to be formerly with Henry Mancini, is second to none.The audience ooh-ed and aah-ed with the frequently changing, stunning stage lighting on her face and simple black outfits, contributing to her larger-than-life stage persona. She sang old favorites like New York, New York, Cabaret, and even snippets from Mammy and other oldies. She added a new one honoring a wonderful woman, Sara Lee, and her tasty goodies!She gave a heartfelt tribute to her godmother and guiding light, Kay Thompson, who was always there for Liza, especially after Liza's mother, Judy Garland, died when Liza was 22 years old. Kay was also vocal coach to Judy and to Frank Sinatra.Born in 1946, Liza's dancing can exhaust most 20-somethings. When seen quite close up,she looks 38-40 years old ! That's with two hip replacements and a shiny new knee, mind you. Top that energy! Slender, leggy and petite, she confided that she recently lost 62 lbs, just kidding, no, actually 42 lbs on a popular diet. Sign me up!Her strength is in her Oscar, Tony and Emmy award winning acting, her shtick, her expressive face and her sharing with the audience. The singing is a bonus, people get goose bumps and drop their jaws when she sings her sultry "Life is a Cabaret". After belting out quite a few big songs, she said "I don't have any more loud ones left", cracking up her audience!There's a stage presence, a charisma that Liza has, that few other living performers, save, say Tina Turner have; both performers give 110% of their all to an audience. This audience reflected back Liza's same dazzling intensity with enthusiasm. What amazed me is that in two days, she will be performing again with her 20 piece orchestra and dancers in Melbourne, Fl, and then a Mexico tour, then off to Europe. Whew!Don't miss her. This living legend has enough firepower to electrify all on her world tour. After a scant couple days of rest, she's ready to let her light blaze forth anew, illuminating her adoring audiences' faces and hearts.
Posted by Ivan de Naples at 11:19 PM

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Liza "LEGS" !

Liza's Sardi's Portrait...

Lucky Lady (1975)

Liza & Peter

Review: Liza can still entertain crowd...Show biz legend's humor shines through performance

By DREW STERWALD • • March 29, 2008

"I Can See Clearly Now," Liza Minnelli sang in the opening number of her show Friday night at Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall in Fort Myers.

Whether the choice of song was meant as a statement on her current health is hard to say. But the 62-year-old showbiz legend did prove she can still belt a song, hoof a little and entertain a crowd of fans. Even if she has to stop and catch her breath now and then. Even if she has to sit more often than she'd like. Even if her voice occasionally wobbles.
From the sixth row, she looked better than she has in years. She thanked Jenny Craig for helping her lose 62 pounds.
"I'm lying," she said, "It was 42, but it feels like 62."
Minnelli's humor shone throughout the performance. She poked fun at her own troubles, which have included double hip replacement, a rod in one leg and a bout with viral encephalitis, She wisecracked about her four marriages and paid tribute to her parents and her musical influences.
Members of the audience shouted out their love for the daughter of Judy Garland, sometimes interrupting the narrative of her show. Minnelli took it in stride, closing the show with a heart-felt encore of "I'll Be Seeing You" - bravely sung a cappella.
That might have been the highlight of the night, which cost ticket-buyers up to $130 a seat. The 12-piece orchestra often drowned out the star of the show, especially when her vocals turned whispery.
Minnelli fared well on jazzy numbers such as "The Man I Love" and "He's Funny That Way," which showcased her vocal stylings. And the second section of the program, a tribute to her godmother and musical arranger Kay Thompson, featured tight harmonies and a little light choreography with her four male backup singers. Minnelli appeared to move stiffly at times and fumbled a few steps, jokingly blaming some new choreography.
The crowd roared for rousing interpretations of "Maybe This Time," "Cabaret" and the finale of "New York, New York" - Minnelli's signature songs.
They could see clearly now that even if her body's not always in step, Liza Minnelli's heart is still in it.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Liza Minnelli looks back...New show highlights career, honors influences

By DREW STERWALD • • March 28, 2008

But Liza Minnelli? She has had a third act, fourth act and fifth act.
She won a Tony Award in each decade from the 1960s to the 1990s. She won an Oscar, an Emmy and a Golden Globe in the 1970s. She won the 1989 Grammy Legend Award.
Along the way, the star has survived viral encephalitis, hip and knee replacements, obesity, addictions to alcohol and prescription drugs, nasty divorces and tabloid headlines.
Nevertheless, performing the show she'll do tonight in Fort Myers still scares her a little. The song-and-dance production features highlights of her career as well as a tribute to her godmother, the singer and musical arranger Kay Thompson. Minnelli tells stories, sings and dances.
"I've never talked about myself on stage before," she says. "It's like you're opening yourself up, and it's the most terrible thing if somebody doesn't like it and you're talking about your life. It's personal."
It's personal, but it's also public.
Minnelli has lived all of her 62 years in the spotlight, first as the daughter of Hollywood legend Judy Garland and film director Vincent Minnelli and then as a stage and screen star in her own right.

But she's just beginning to open up, Minnelli said in a phone interview from New York. Her conversation bubbled with laughter, well-timed punch lines and the occasional dash of profanity.
"For chrissakes, I made it this far," she said. "I can say anything I want."
In other words, she's exactly how you expect "Liza with a Z" to be.
This is the woman whose big break came 30-plus years ago playing a louche and loose American singer in a 1930s girlie club in "Cabaret." Her first film appearance came at age 3 beside her mother in the 1949 musical "In the Good Old Summertime."
After nearly 60 years in show business, she's still working. Minnelli appeared in 10 episodes of the snarky sitcom "Arrested Development" from 2003 to 2005. She has appeared on "Law and Order: Criminal Intent" and even sang on a 2006 album by My Chemical Romance.
With her current show, Minnelli wants to "look at all the wonderful things that happened to me, look who influenced me," she said.
The evening begins with her signature songs, such as "New York, New York" and "Maybe This Time" from "Cabaret."
The second part of the show focuses on her late godmother with songs such as "The Atcheson, Topeka and the Santa Fe" from Garland's 1946 film "The Harvey Girls." A singer and actress, Thompson was a vocal coach to Garland, Lena Horne and other stars. As music director at MGM studios, she also wrote arrangements for iconic musicals like "Funny Face," "Good News" and "Till the Clouds Roll By."
"There was nobody like Kay," Minnelli said. "These numbers just even vocally were so far ahead of their time. I just want to be able to do it half as good as she did."
Minnelli has almost finished recording the material and hopes to turn it into a Broadway or off-Broadway show and a TV special like her classic "Liza with a Z."
For now, she performs it around the country in short stints. Then she rests before hitting the road again.
"I feel insanely good," she said. "I've lost a lot of weight because I'm dancing again. Never in my life have I danced this much."
The comeback queen almost didn't get her latest act in life. Both hips have been replaced and a leg wired. After a 2000 battle with viral encephalitis, she was told she might spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair.
"From the waist down, I'm the Tin Man," she cracked. "They said I would never walk and talk again. I wanted to say, 'Bullshit!' "
Once again, Minnelli's determination brought her back again. After all the ups and downs, what keeps this triple threat going?
"It's fun," she said. "I'm sorry it's so simple, but it is. I don't know how to do anything else."
Minnelli said she stopped taking money from her parents when she was 15. Her first job was moving scenery at a theater in Hyannis, Mass., called Melody Tent.
Does she really still have to work after all these years?
"Are you kidding?" she said. "I think everybody thinks we grew up rich."
No silver spoons in the Minnelli household?
"We grew up with a silver spoon, but it was Hollywood - it was fake," she said.
When Minnelli was a kid, she wanted to be an ice skater. Watching her parents make movies was the most boring thing in the world, she said.
Seeing "Bye, Bye, Birdie," which opened in New York in 1960, changed her mind.
"I thought, 'That's what I want to do - be on Broadway,' " she recalled.
By the time she was 19, she had won a 1965 Tony award for best actress in a musical for "Flora the Red Menace." At the time, she was the youngest person ever to win a Tony.
A year later, the show that would give Minnelli the role of a lifetime opened on Broadway. Although she did not originate the role of Sally Bowles in that 1966 production, the 1972 movie version of "Cabaret" gave her a couple of signature songs and even her iconic look: the lush lashes framing her big eyes, the bright red lipstick, the shaggy black bob under a bowler.
Looking back, the pan-sexually charged movie seems pretty tame compared with the darker 1998 Broadway revival, Minnelli said.
But she's proud of it.
"It's a good movie - it was kind of a first," she said. "(Director) Bob Fosse took a lot of chances. He made a very mysterious, dark, wonderfully funny and sexy movie."

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Brevard fans look forward to Minnelli's return to King Center

Liza Minnelli at King CenterJanuary 2006 Florida Today File PhotoKing Center. Liza Minnelli performs at the King Center for the Performing Arts.

The last time Liza Minnelli wrapped up a performance at the King Center was January 2006.
She had finished two acts of full force entertainment and stood down center facing the audience. Hot, exhausted and wet from sweat, she peeled off her fake eyelashes then wiped her face with a white terry cloth towel.
What was left was pure, authentic Liza. She spread her arms wide and beamed her trademark crooked smile and sang a cappella "I'll Be Seeing You."
"It says all the right things I want to say, but I'm not smart enough to say," Minnelli said recently.
It sure said the right thing to the audience, because they went wild for Liza.
"It was the best show I've seen at the King Center," said fan Brad Cerson of Satellite Beach.
As far as pulling off those fake eyelashes, Minnelli laughed and said she does not do that for every show.
"No, I sure don't," she said. "It's hard to keep them on when you perspire. The first thing with me is my hair gets wet. I took them off because I couldn't see."
Ruth Taylor of Satellite Beach saw her do that. She said the audience loved the moment because it acknowledged the 150 percent she gave. It's the same kind of show you'd expect to see from her in Broadway or Las Vegas theaters, Taylor said.
"I personally felt we were more special because it was a smaller group," Taylor said. "I almost felt like it was an intimate encounter with Liza."
Taylor already has her orchestra seat tickets for this concert.
For sure, there is a love/love relationship between Minnelli and her audience.
"If I paid good money to go see a performer, I expect my money's worth," Minnelli said. "So there's no way I'm not going to give my audience their money's worth."
Minnelli said she loves performing and that her show is meant to entertain through and through: "In a funny kind of way, you know how when you're in a terrible mood and you see a really funny movie, that sense of relief? It changes your mind just for a second, and you take your mind off yourself. I guess that's my job. That's what I think of as entertainment."
Contact Harbaugh at 242-3717 or

Liza's "By Myself" tour...

Liza in a photo of her doing Oscar on the By Myself tour...thanks Bruce.

Liza with Jack Haley Jr. & Kay Thompson

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Liza & Bette at Sardi's...

Lovely Liza!



She was named after a Gershwin song. Her mother was a famous singer and actress, her father a well-respected movie director.
She appeared in her first film at 14 months old at the end of "In the Good Old Summertime."
Or, if you want to count prenatal experience, she was in film before she was even born, bobbing about in her mother's womb in "Till the Clouds Roll By," her mother's pregnant abdomen partially hidden by a large sink and stacks of dirty dishes as she sang "Look for the Silver Lining."
So it should come as no surprise that Liza Minnelli - daughter of Judy Garland and Vincente Minnelli - grew up to be an imposing theatrical figure in her own right, a triple threat, singing, dancing, acting. It seems almost inevitable.

But the 62-year-old Minnelli has her doubts.
"I don't know," Minnelli says from her home in New York City. "I don't think everybody whose parents are famous are talented. There are a lot fewer of us. We're not the norm, we're the exceptions."
And though she had nature and nurture working in her favor, as well as multiple generations in show biz on both sides of the family, initially she wasn't interested, she says.
"Well, I didn't want to do anything my parents did," she explains. "They were living in Hollywood. When you're a kid and you're watching a movie being made, it's really boring. They have to do it over and over and over again. But what I liked to do was hang out in the dance rehearsal halls, where I could watch people dancing. So that's what I wanted to be, a dancer. And then I decided I was going to become an ice skater."

Until she saw her first Broadway musical.
"I had my heart set on being an ice skater, and then I saw 'Bye Bye Birdie,' and I thought, 'Wait a minute, that looks like fun! I want to go on Broadway. Maybe that's better than being an ice skater, you know.'"
And she did wind up on Broadway. Though she had appearances on her mom's TV show and sang with her at sold-out shows in London's Paladium, she received a Tony Award at 19 years old for her performance in "Flora the Red Mennace." The show was Kander and Ebb's first Broadway musical and the start of a long, happy relationship with the songwriting duo. They went on to write the music for "Cabaret," "New York, New York" and "Chicago"
"They're wonderful, wonderful artists," Minnelli says of the two. (Fred Ebb died in 2004.) "One of the greatest talents I have is finding people who are more talented than I am, and learning from them. And I think of all the stuff that I do, I am most proud of the music that has been written for me."

"They're wonderful, wonderful artists," Minnelli says of the two. (Fred Ebb died in 2004.) "One of the greatest talents I have is finding people who are more talented than I am, and learning from them. And I think of all the stuff that I do, I am most proud of the music that has been written for me."
Kander and Ebb wrote many songs for Minnelli, including "Liza with a 'Z'," because so many people would call her Lisa instead of Liza. Ironically, her last name was misspelled on the tickets when she performed years later at the Winter Garden - they spelled it with only one "n." (Perhaps Kander and Ebb should've written a second song, about her surname.)

In addition to her theater work and concerts, Minnelli is well known for her film roles, including "The Sterile Cuckoo," "Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon," "New York, New York," "Arthur," "Arthur 2: On the Rocks" and of course, "Cabaret," for which she received an Academy Award.
"Yeah, I was in 'Cabaret' when they wrote 'Cabaret,'" she says. "And then it changed, and they wanted to have an English girl and an American man. So then I didn't do it. But I knew I'd do the movie. I'd just do it." She laughs in her trademark laugh that punctuates many of her statements.
It's the image of Minnelli in black bustier, stockings, garters, and bowler hat, all graceful limbs, big eyes and bigger lashes, which people associate most with "Cabaret." Not only did she win an Academy Award for her portrayal of Sally Bowles, but she also received a Golden Globe and appeared on the covers of "Time" and "Newsweek" magazines during the same week.

And her 1972 TV show, "Liza with a 'Z'," directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse, broke new ground by being filmed before a live audience in New York's Lyceum Theatre, using eight different cameras. Minnelli, wearing revealing costumes designed by Halston, sang and danced to songs such as "Bye Bye Blackbird," "Son of a Preacher Man," and of course, Kander and Ebb's songs, including the a string of songs from "Cabaret" and "Liza With a 'Z'." (A fully restored, digitally remastered copy of the show, which had not been seen on television since a re-airing in 1973, was shown by Showtime last April.)
The TV show won a Peabody Award and a slew of Emmys for Best Outstanding Single Program - Variety and Popular Music, Best Performance, Best Direction and Best Choreography, Best Music, Lyrics and Special Material, and Best Performance, for Minnelli.

Minnelli joined the rare club of those who have received a Tony Award (she has three), an Oscar, and an Emmy. (She's also received a Grammy Legend Award.) She's also noted for being the only Academy Award winner whose parents were both Academy Award winners as well.
Recently, she sang on a My Chemical Romance song ("Mama" on "The Black Parade" CD), was on an episode of "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" and appeared for 10 episodes on "Arrested Development" as Lucille Austero.
This Friday, March 28, Liza Minnelli performs at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall.
"People tell me they're great fun," she says of her concerts. "I have fun."
She performs her hits, as well as some Kay Thompson songs. (Actress Thompson was her godmother, plus the author of the "Eliose" series of children's books, said to be partially based on Minnelli.)
"The Kay Thompson material is wonderful, that's brand-new. Kay did a fabulous arrangement of "Liza (All the Clouds'll Roll Away" at one point, and Ron Lewis, our director/choreographer, staged a great number for the boys. Wait 'til you see the choreography for the Kay Thompson numbers. You'll die, it's just so funny."
Minnelli is working on a CD of Thompson tunes, "The Godmother and the Goddaughter" and is working on a show that will be entirely devoted to Thompson.
"The other songs that I sing, I've always thought of them as a little movie, with their different characters," Minnelli says. "Different characters sing the songs. For example, if I'm singing…let's see… 'Maybe This Time,' that's Sally. So you come at it from the actor's point of view, as opposed to just singing the notes.
"Why is this woman singing 'Maybe This Time?' What happened to her that she's singing those words? It doesn't matter that nobody else knows what it is, as long as you know, so you're specific."
You have to believe the words to deliver the song, she says.
The struggles in her personal life should certainly provide emotional fodder to fuel her songs, including four divorces (the last one dragged through the tabloids), struggles with addictions, three knee surgeries, two hip surgeries and a battle with viral encephalitis. Minnelli is no stranger to difficulty and perseverance. Perhaps that's why she has such a loyal gay following. But when asked her thoughts on why she's adored by so many gay fans, she just laughs and says, "I think they have good taste. I don't know. I haven't a clue. I'm just grateful."
She's also not sure what drives her, simply saying, "I have no idea. I just know that I enjoy [performing.]"
Before a show, she has a feeling of anticipation, she says.
"I think I know what a racehorse must feel like, going into the gate," she says. "That's the feeling I get. I get excited. I don't get scared. I just get excited. I say to myself, 'OK, now, concentrate. Remember what you're supposed to do. What did Ron tell you? You got a note on that last night, so don't do that.' And just thinking, 'These people have paid good money to come in and get some relief for an hour and a half, so give it to them.
"I always strive for excellence, and that's what I like to see in any performance that I go to. I think that if you hit a certain level of excellence in your work, that you don't have to worry, as long as you keep up that excellence."
.. if you go
>>What: Liza Minnelli in concert
>>When: 8 p.m. Friday, March 28
>>Where: The Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall, 8099 College Parkway
>>Cost: $130, $99, $89 and $69
>>Information: Call 481-4849

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Meeting Liza, Jared's dream comes true...March 2008

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Sunrise, FL. Happy Birthday, Liza!

Liza Minnelli, who celebrated her 62nd birthday on March 12, performed live tonight at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Sunrise, FL. Happy Birthday, Liza!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Liza looking beautiful...

Liza's debut in Chicago (1975)

Liza Minnelli signing autographs outside New York's 46th Street Theater after her debut in Chicago, 8/9/1975



Friday, March 7, 2008

Is This Liza's Best Dramatic Performance? "A TIME TO LIVE" (1985)

This is a MUST-SEE film for everyone, one of the best made for Tv films with exceptional dramatic performances by the entire cast.
Golden Globes, USA
1986 WonGolden GlobeBest Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for TV
Liza Minnelli

That LIZA Look...

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Cabaret Trivia

Cabaret Trivia from Running Bear.
"Tomorrow Belongs To Me"
Written by John Kander and Fred Ebb
Sung onscreen by the Nazi youth with singing voice provided by Mark
The movie is set in 1931, but Bryan and Sally stroll down the street
with defaced election posters in the background from the Presidential
elections of 1932
In an interview given at the time of the film's release, Liza Minnelli
said you could tell she was the star of the cabaret in which the movie
is set because she's the only performer with shaved armpits.
Billy Wilder and Gene Kelly turned down the offer to direct the project
before it was accepted by Bob Fosse.
Selected in 2003 by the Smithsonian Institution as one of eight films
being preserved for future generations.
Liza Minnelli designed all her own hair and make-up with the help of her
father, famed musical director Vincente Minnelli.
"Tomorrow Belongs to Me" was written by John Kander and Fred Ebb in the
style of a traditional German song, sung by the Nazi youth in the movie,
to stir up patriotism for the "fatherland". It has often been mistaken
for a genuine "Nazi anthem" and has led to the songwriters being accused
of anti-Semitism. This would be most surprising, as they are, in fact,

20th annual Frank Sinatra Countrywide Celebrity Invitational Golf Tournament

The Desert Sun • March 2, 2008
Dick Van Dyke, Jill St. John, Barbara Sinatra and Robert Wagner were among the dozens of celebrities and sports stars taking part in the 20th annual Frank Sinatra Countrywide Celebrity Invitational Golf Tournament benefitting the Barbara Sinatra Children's Center at Eisenhower.

Liza Minnelli thrilled her 1,000-guest audience with a full concert of singing, dancing and storytelling at the Frank Sinatra Countrywide Celebrity Invitational Golf Tournament's 20th Anniversary Gala.

Saturday, March 1, 2008