Liza Minnelli Stepping Out! 2015

Liza Minnelli Stepping Out! 2015

Monday, March 31, 2014

Liza Minnelli-"I CAN'T GIVE YOU ANYTHING BUT LOVE"[HD Live 3.28.14]Davie...

Liza Minnelli-"MAYBE THIS TIME"[HD][Live 3.28.14] Davies Symphony Hall, ...

Thursday, March 27, 2014

BWW Reviews: Endearing LIZA Minnelli Performs at Walt Disney Concert Hall Review

http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwmusic/article/BWW-Reviews-Endearing-LIZA-Minnelli-Performs-at-Walt-Disney-Concert-Hall-20140326#.UzSIKs4ZttE


The one and only Liza Minnelli performed last night March 25 in Los Angeles, making her concert debut at the Walt Disney Hall downtown in her new show entitled Simply Liza. Her reception was incredible; with a multitude of standing ovations throughout from members of the packed house, it was obvious that the lady is still very much adored. In spite of some difficulty in walking and standing for a very long time, Liza gave her fans what they wanted, she put on one helluva show. She sat in a large director's chair while singing much of the time, kicking her feet in steady rhythms as if she were dancing. Later in the 100 minute one-act set she affectionately patted her chair and said she wanted to give it - her dear friend - a name. Adorable! Her rhythm, her intense passion for the music, the stage and for her audience is still very much a part of her. Liza is a true showman, has a fiercely funny sense of humor, loves being in front of her fans and adores her audience right back. When I saw her do The Act on Broadway in 1977, she amazed me with her vitality, stamina and nonstop dancing moves. Now some 40 years later, as much as I wanted to see the exact same Liza, it took me a while to realize... that I was. Her very presence lifted me and made me feel good. She is still amazing!She gets her sense of humor from her mother, Judy Garland. It's definitely her own, but there were times I felt like I was watching Judy. In her later years, if Judy couldn't hit a high note, she would not raise her arm. She shared this tidbit with Jack Paar on his show. She was brutally honest and oh so lovable. When Liza doesn't quite hit or sustain the high notes, as with "New York, New York" - she made a whole humorous production out of anticipating the final bars - it doesn't matter, because she is Liza, she is there, never giving up, giving it her best shot, entertaining us through and through and for that alone, she merits our deepest appreciation and love.
Backing up Liza was remarkable musical director Billy Stritch at the piano. The other six stellar musicians were: Chip Wilson on bass, Brian Brake on drums, Bill Hayes on percussion, Ross Konikoff on trumpet, Dave Trigg also on trumpet and Dan Willis on reeds, many of whom have been with Liza throughout her performing years.


The show was a musical walk down memory lane through Liza's career with some very fine unforgettable moments. Highlights included: her opening "Teach Me Tonight", "Our Love Is Here to Stay" and a dizzyingly delightful rendition of "Liza with a Z", which Kander & Ebb had written especially for her early on. She performed a very sturdy "What Did I Have I Don't Have Now", a terrific "Maybe This Time" followed by a super great rendition of "Cabaret". Funny, funny, funny... when Liza got to the lyric line about Elsie dying "Well, that's what comes from too much pills and liquor", she stopped with a long frozen pause, bringing down the house. There were two sensational Charles Aznavour songs: "You've Let Yourself Go", about a couple who have magically been in love a long, long time and "What Makes a Man a Man", one of the most dramatic and touching stories through song... ever. Liza adored Aznavour and her interpretation of the latter was simply the best... she got up walked around and struck a theatrical pose from behind at song's beginning and end. Remarkable stuff! Also on tap were more Kander & Ebb greats, a feverishly happy "Ring Them Bells", and "The World Goes Round" - Liza's favorite. Up then, a lovely duet with Stritch on "I Can't Give You Anything But Love". Stritch directly preceded this with a delightfully jazzy solo "No Moon At All" featuring great solo moments on bass and drums.
Liza described quite intimately what was to have been her Broadway debut in 1962 A Little Night Music by lyricist Marshall Barer and music by Hugh Martin - she would have worked with Jeanette MacDonald. Sadly, MacDonald passed away and the show never got produced. Liza treated us to a song from that ill-fated show "On Such a Night As This", filled with precious allusions to Hollywood and to other celebrities besides Miss MacDonald, such as Judy Garland. Wonderful, delicious, riveting material!
As her encore, Liza chose "Every Time We Say Goodbye", which really brought out her genuine warmth, sincerity and unique way with a lyric. Liza Minnelli is still a dynamic, personal storyteller via song, an endearing performer whose passion is full and eternal. It's no wonder she is so loved and cherished by one and all!

he one and only Liza Minnelli performed last night March 25 in Los Angeles, making her concert debut at the Walt Disney Hall downtown in her new show entitled Simply Liza. Her reception was incredible; with a multitude of standing ovations throughout from members of the packed house, it was obvious that the lady is still very much adored. In spite of some difficulty in walking and standing for a very long time, Liza gave her fans what they wanted, she put on one helluva show. She sat in a large director's chair while singing much of the time, kicking her feet in steady rhythms as if she were dancing. Later in the 100 minute one-act set she affectionately patted her chair and said she wanted to give it - her dear friend - a name. Adorable! Her rhythm, her intense passion for the music, the stage and for her audience is still very much a part of her. Liza is a true showman, has a fiercely funny sense of humor, loves being in front of her fans and adores her audience right back. When I saw her do The Act on Broadway in 1977, she amazed me with her vitality, stamina and nonstop dancing moves. Now some 40 years later, as much as I wanted to see the exact same Liza, it took me a while to realize... that I was. Her very presence lifted me and made me feel good. She is still amazing!
She gets her sense of humor from her mother, Judy Garland. It's definitely her own, but there were times I felt like I was watching Judy. In her later years, if Judy couldn't hit a high note, she would not raise her arm. She shared this tidbit with Jack Paar on his show. She was brutally honest and oh so lovable. When Liza doesn't quite hit or sustain the high notes, as with "New York, New York" - she made a whole humorous production out of anticipating the final bars - it doesn't matter, because she is Liza, she is there, never giving up, giving it her best shot, entertaining us through and through and for that alone, she merits our deepest appreciation and love.
Backing up Liza was remarkable musical director Billy Stritch at the piano. The other six stellar musicians were: Chip Wilson on bass, Brian Brake on drums, Bill Hayes on percussion, Ross Konikoff on trumpet, Dave Trigg also on trumpet and Dan Willis on reeds, many of whom have been with Liza throughout her performing years.



More On: Liza Minnelli, Walt Disney, Judy Garland, Billy Stritch, Brian Brake, Bill Hayes, Ross Konikoff, Dave Trigg, Dan Willis, Charles Aznavour.

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Don Grigware Don Grigware is an Ovation nominated actor and writer whose contributions to theatre through the years have included 6 years as theatre editor of NoHoLA, a contributor to LA Stage Magazine and currently on his own website:
www.grigwaretalkstheatre.com
Don hails from Holyoke, Massachusetts and holds two Masters Degrees from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in Education and Bilingual Studies. Don is a teacher of foreign language and ESL.
Don is a member of the prestigious Road Theatre Company in NoHo and is in his fifth year with BWW, currently serving as Senior Editor of the Los Angeles Page.

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Read more at http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwmusic/article/BWW-Reviews-Endearing-LIZA-Minnelli-Performs-at-Walt-Disney-Concert-Hall-20140326#pIcAk45XePgTQY22.99

Liza Live @ Walt Disney Music Hall March 25th 2014!

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Liza Minnelli keeping things simple and having fun on 2014 concert tour

http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/liza-minnelli-keeping-things-simple-and-having-fun-on-2014-concert-tour/Content?oid=2743560



March 25, 2014 Arts » Pop Music & Jazz

Liza Minnelli keeping things simple and having fun on 2014 concert tour 

Some performers are mononyms by design, like Cher or Madonna. Others evolve into mononyms because the sheer force of their talent and personality makes a surname, no matter how celebrated, superfluous. The point will be proven Friday when Davies Symphony Hall is home to “Simply Liza.”
The concert title is unintentionally ironic, since there’s rarely been anything simple about Liza Minnelli. Complexity is in her genes. The triple-threat artist — the child of Judy Garland, one of the world’s legendary performers, and masterful film director Vincent Minnelli — has been in the spotlight since she made her film debut as a toddler in her parents’ film “In the Good Old Summertime” in 1949.
“This one’s called ‘Simply Liza’ because it’s small,” says Minnelli. “There’s only six or seven musicians and me. That’s it!”
She laughs at the suggestion that it could have been called “Unencumbered Liza” when compared with her lavish and Emmy-winning television concert “Liza with a Z” or her many returns to Broadway’s Palace Theater. “Absolutely! But I’m having such fun with this one.”

She’s having fun with lots of things. She turned 68 this month and is making several tour stops in California. In between concerts she continues her philanthropic efforts, including appearing at a Los Angeles fundraiser last week.
The event was hosted by drag performer Miss Coco Peru and Liza commented online, “Coco and I are going to share an intimate conversation between a couple of girlfriends and raise a whole bunch of money for the LGBT homeless youth.”
Earlier this month, Minnelli had another drag moment, but only by proxy, when Oscar ceremony host Ellen DeGeneres made reference to her as “one of the most amazing Liza Minnelli impersonators I have ever seen in my life,” closing with, “Good job, sir!”
Minnelli shrugged it off, later commenting that she didn’t think the joke landed, as comedians say, and that she didn’t think Ellen meant anything disrespectful on the night when Minnelli was there with half-siblings Lorna and Joe Luft to pay tribute to their mother, an experience she called “so emotional and so thrilling.”
Honoring her parental legacy — the Minnellis are the only Oscar-winning mother-father-daughter clan, among so many other accomplishments — has always been important to the also Tony-winning star. Still, she demurs when asked about what she sees as her own legacy.
“I think you think about that when you think you’re gonna die, don’t you?” She’d rather keep it in the present. “I’m excited about the new show,” she says, “and I’m really excited about coming to you!”
IF YOU GO
Liza Minnelli
Where: Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Ave., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. Friday
Tickets: $25 to $150
Contact: (415) 864-6000, www.sfsymphony.org
Robert Sokol

Robert Sokol




Being with Liza at the Piano with John Kander!

Liza Minnelli - Interview & God Bless The Child

Monday, March 24, 2014

Liza Minnelli Comments On Oscars, Favorite Actors, Lady Gaga & More

http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/Liza-Minnelli-Comments-On-Oscars-Favorite-Actors-Lady-Gaga-More-20140324#.UzBacc4wDFx




Remarking on the Degeneres dig, Minnelli states, "Ellen - I got my feelings hurt a little bit, but not a lot. And I got over it really quickly. Ellen is terrific, she's really sweet. I don't think she would have necessarily gone out of her way to hurt my feelings - I mean, we know each other. I just think maybe she was advised badly."

Additionally, Minneli shares her opinion on her picks for actors she would love to collaborate with in the future, opining, "Matthew McConaughey. Tom Hanks. Jared Leto. I admire them so much. I'm a big fan of movies."
Furthermore, Minnelli espouses on her enthusiasm for fellow fashionista, artistic boundary-breaker and pop culture figure Lady Gaga, candidly commenting, "Lady Gaga, I love. She's a good singer; she plays the piano. She's a good musician, and she sat down and thought about how to get people's attention."



Liza Minnelli On Hollywood Childhood, Elvis & SIMPLY LIZA

http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/Liza-Minnelli-On-Hollywood-Childhood-Elvis-SIMPLY-LIZA-20140318#.UzBU7s4wDFw




Looking back at her legendary heritage - the only Oscar-winning offspring of two Academy Award winners, mother Judy Garland and father Vincente Minnelli - Minnelli states of her upbringing, "I never felt I had to live up to anything!" 

Commenting upon her affection for her favorite Broadway musical, BYE BYE BIRDIE, and its real-life inspiration, Elvis Presley, Minnelli remembers, "I loved Elvis."
Yet, when questioned why she did not proceed to pursue a career in rock music, Minnelli shares, "I couldn't do that. First of all, I was a girl! But I could dance like that! Still can!"
As for her new show, SIMPLY LIZA, Minnelli reveals, "It's called SIMPLY LIZA. It's songs that I like that other people like, some of which I haven't sung in a while and some that I've never sung, [like] 'Yes [I Can]' which opens the show."



Saturday, March 22, 2014

Liza Minnelli and Miss Coco Peru Raise Over $45K for the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center

http://www.broadwayworld.com/los-angeles/article/Liza-Minnelli-and-Miss-Coco-Peru-Raise-Over-45K-for-the-LA-Gay-Lesbian-Center-20140321#.Uy1lHc4ZttE
by BWW News Desk
For the eighth installment of the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center's ongoing series, Conversations With Coco -- Miss Coco Peru's series of live, unscripted interviews with celebrated performing artists -- the L.A. drag legend welcomed the legendary, entertainer Liza Minnelli to the Center's Renberg Theatre. Like her previous get-togethers with Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin Miss Coco prepared a multi-media presentation featuring highlights of Ms. Minnelli's storied career and a casual yet in-depth conversation.

The sold-out evening raised over $45,000 for the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center.

Conversations With Coco have proven to be among the Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center's most popular offerings. "In case you don't know," says Miss Coco, "Conversations With Coco is sort of like Inside The Actors Studio, only it's much more fun," and I'm prettier than James Lipton -- sort of."

Liza Minnelli is in California with her 2014 tour "Simply Liza" and will perform the following shows:

March 22 Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa Rancho Mirage, CA
March 25 Walt Disney Hall Los Angeles, CA
March 28 Davies Hall San Francisco, CA

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Bruce Fessier: Liza Minnelli's life is a series of exclamation marks....

http://www.mydesert.com/article/20140317/LIFESTYLES0111/303170010/Liza-Minnelli-Bruce-Fessier-The-Show-at-Agua-Caliente-Casino-Judy-Garland-Kaye-Ballard

It was another of those Palm Springs moments.
Lorna Luft said hello to me in the lobby of the Annenberg Theater and, slightly stunned, I said, “Oh, I just talked to your sister yesterday.”
Her sister, of course, is Liza Minnelli, who I had just interviewed to advance her performance Saturday at The Show at Agua Caliente Casino.
And Liza and I talked about a show she did 31 years ago at the Annenberg. She had created a one-night only tribute to her father, Oscar-winning director Vincente Minnelli, with favorite songs from his movies, including his 1943 debut, “Cabin in the Sky,” “Gigi” and “An American in Paris.”
“You saw that?” Liza exclaimed. “Oh, honey, I’m so glad. Oh, I remember that night so much. Oh, my dad! I remember it was so hard to pick (the songs) because there were so many of them from his films. I wrote the show myself. Did you really like it?”
In that 450-seat theater, it was amazing. It was the first time she had ever performed the songs of her mother, Judy Garland, and I vividly recall her bringing even more energy to “The Trolley Song” from “Meet Me In St. Louis” than Garland did.
Palm Springs’ “A” list was there: Frank Sinatra, Gregory Peck, Kirk Douglas, Walter Annenberg and Lucille Ball – to name just the major celebrities. It was Vincente Minnelli’s 80th birthday and he ended the party by serenading Liza, seated at his feet with her back to the audience, with “Embraceable You,” written by Vincente’s close friend, Ira Gershwin.
The show reminded everyone that Liza was the daughter of two legends. And with people like “Uncle Frank” in her extended family, I wrongly thought she must have felt pressure to follow in their footsteps.
“I never felt I had to live up to anything!” said Liza, who tends to speak in exclamation marks. “I was raised not to feel that. I was raised to be an individual and I’m so grateful to my parents for that! A lot of it had to do with them saying, ‘Don’t listen to us! (laughs) Just listen to yourself. There’s no one like you.’ I could have done anything!”
Originally, she wanted to be an ice skater. Then she saw “Bye Bye Birdie” at 13 and decided she wanted to do musicals. She became her generation’s embodiment of the song-and-dance tradition with her tour-de-force appearance in “Cabaret” and her title song from the big band film, “New York, New York.” Then she became the “kid” in the Rat Pack, touring with Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. and starring with “Uncle Frank” in a Sinatra Celebrity Invitational Gala in the desert.
Funny thing is, “Bye Bye Birdie” was based on the rock ’n’ roll phenomenon of Elvis Presley. Elvis was in the Army when Liza was 13, so she fell in love with his Broadway facsimile, played by Dick Gautier -- Hymie the robot on “Get Smart.” Imagine what might have happened if Liza had seen Elvis before she saw Broadway?
Liza says, “I loved Elvis.” So I asked her why she didn’t sing like the king of rock?

“I couldn’t do that,” she said. “First of all, I was a girl! But I could dance like that! Still can!”
Actually, Liza’s roots go back to Al Jolson, the leading stage performer of 100 years ago. Jolson’s popularity was so immense, songwriters paid him to record their songs. His influence was so pervasive that, even after he died in 1950, Garland saluted him in her stage act. Liza gets her stage strut from Jolson and is proud to be called an extension of his influence.
“Thank you,” she said. “It is a vaudevillian (thing). The (song) pick of the day. But think of all that music that was written, the kind that I love and grew up with. My godfather was Ira Gershwin, so I heard good songs all the time. But I didn’t think I could sing. I wanted to dance!”
Jolson, through his influence on her mother, may have given Liza the drive to sell a song, but an international star who got his start with her mom’s contemporary, Edith Piaf, taught her how to interpret a song.
“I keep trying to find the essence of the song and what it means to me and to other people and become the character who sings it,” she said. “That’s what I learned from Charles Aznavour. I said to him, ‘Please, teach me.’”
Liza, 68, last year recorded her first album of new material in 15 years, titled “Confessions.” She’s now on a world tour in which she may sing some songs from that, plus some of her classic material by Broadway songsmiths John Kander and Fred Ebb, and maybe even some of her mother’s songs.
“It’s called ‘Simply Liza,’” she said. “It’s songs that I like that other people like, some of which I haven’t sung in a while and some that I’ve never sung (like) ‘Yes I Can,’ which opens the show.”
As someone who represents a certain place in pop culture history, Liza is often asked, “What’s it liked to be a legend?” In the past, she’s made fun of her image, appearing in a Snickers commercial as the epitome of a diva. In the Netflix series, “Arrested Development,” she plays a kooky, rich sugar mama who is the opposite of a diva.
But, after Ellen DeGeneres’ crack about her during the Oscars’ 75th anniversary tribute to her mother’s breakthrough film, “The Wizard of Oz,” insinuating that she looked like one of the male drag queens who often impersonate her, I asked if that “legend” title is helping or hindering her career?
“I don’t know!” she exclaimed. “I always feel like I haven’t earned it yet! I’m just hoping it isn’t because of age, you know what I mean? I’m still going and it’s only because I enjoy it.”

 To see her at The Show, call (866) 923-07244