DC Cabaret Network Honors Erv Raible at March 10, 2014 — Open Mic


It was another wintry evening on March 10, 2014 for the DC Cabaret Network’s Open Mic at the Warehouse. But spirits were bright as members remembered Erv Raible, cabaret impresario, who recently died. `

Erv influenced many singers in New York and throughout the country. Most recently, he was the Executive Artistic Director of the Cabaret Conference at Yale. (Many local singers have trained at the Cabaret Conference or the Cabaret training sessions held at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre, where Erv served as Co-Director.) Erv was also instrumental in the start-up of the DC Cabaret Network and served on the Advisory Board.

Steven Cupo talked about Erv’s contributions to cabaret as a club owner and manager in New York in the 1970’s, and stated unequivocally that “there would have been no cabaret in New York as we know it today without Erv.” Beverly Cosham talked about knowing Erv and performing in his clubs during that time.

Terri Allen brought a photo of Erv and George Fulginiti-Shakar had magically found purple boas in a garbage bag near his house, (yes, this is true), that adorned the music stand. Performers wore the boas as the mood struck them.

As several people spoke, references to singers came up and the audience was introduced to important icons like Nancy Lamott and Karen Mason who began their careers as singers in New York as Erv launched his clubs.

With George Fulginiti-Shakar at the keyboards and Jeff Tucker, Art of Music, on sound, it was a memorable evening for the DC Cabaret Network.

Here’s the rundown of singers and songs:

1) Steven Cupo, One/What I Did for Love, Marvin Hamlisch/Edward Kleban
2) Maris Wicker, Never Never Land, Jule Styne/Comden and Green
3) Beverly Cosham, From Where I Stand
4) Marsha Katz, The Old Folks, Jacques Brel
5) Donald Davidson, My Lean Baby, Billy May/Roy Alfred
6) Tracy Simpson, Oh How I Loved You, Marcy Heisler/Zina Goldrich
7) Joenn Khoo, I Think That He Likes Me, Kooman and Diamond
8) Mary Reilly, A Fine Romance, Jerome Kern/Dorothy Field
9) Jeff Stern, In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning, David Mann/Bob Hilliard
10) Christy Trapp, Please Make a Decision
11) Maureen Kerrigan, The Ladies Who Lunch, Stephen Sondheim
12) Terri Allen, Come Rain or Come Shine, Harold Arlen/Johnny Mercer

Set 2

1) Marsha Katz, Long Ago (and Far Away), Jerome Kern/Ira Gershwin
2) Mary Reilly
3) Beverly Cosham, My Favorite Year, Michelle Brourman/Karen Gottlieb
4) Maureen Kerrigan, Lazy Afternoon, Jerome Moross/John Treville Latouche
5) Tracy Simpson, Every Road Leads Back to You, Diane Warren
6) Christy Trapp, The Nearness of You, Hoagy Carmichael
7) Terri Allen, I’ll Be Here With You, David Friedman

A final thought:

Although Erv began his career in New York as a club owner, he believed it was important that singers have the opportunity to work on their craft with other great performers and musicians, and that is why he worked with the two Cabaret Conferences.

Erv will be missed. He was a teacher, coach and mentor to many and he always had ideas about what songs to sing, how a song could be arranged, and how to structure a show. In the midst of trying to work through material, he might offer advice like “less is more”. But, an Ervism, could also have been — “Sometimes you have to just sing the damn song!”

By Terri Allen and Tracey Simpson

February Open Mic

It’s always a great adventure to hear the songs singers bring to an Open Mic.  This February’s Open Mic seemed ripe with love songs — as Valentine’s Day was just a few days later in the week.

There were traditional love songs and some non-traditional ones sung.  But, as an audience member said — “it was all about love”.
The DC Cabaret Network Open Mic was held Feb. 10 at the Warehouse with Jeff Tucker on sound and Reenie Codelka as musical director.

Set 1
Terri Allen — Music, by Carole King
Mary Reilly — Hooray for love, by Harold Arlen
Stephanie Aboukasm — I Had Myself a True Love
Rick Gondelman — Run for the Roses, by Dan Fogelberg
Kendra Keller — Merry Go Round, by Casey Musgraves
Tracy Simpson — Laughing Matters, by Dick Gallagher/Mark Waldrop
Steven Cupo — Take Me to the World, by Stephen Sondheim

Set 2
Terri Allen — My Father, by Judy Collins
Stephanie Aboukasm — I Won’t Mind, by Jeff Blumenkrantz
Mary Reilly — What Did I Have I Don’t Have Now, by Lerner & Lane
Steven Cupo — How Lovely to be a Woman, by Charles Strouse
Tracy Simpson — Say the Word, by Kait Kerrigan and Brian Lowdermilk
Rick Gondelman — Leader of the Band, by Dan Fogelberg
Kendra Keller — Follow Your Arrow, by Casey Musgraves
Terri Allen — My Funny Valentine, by Richard Rogers and Lorenz Hart

March Open Mic

Monday, March 10, 2014
Musical Director:   George Fulginiti-Shakar

A Few Words about Erv Raible, Director of the Yale Cabaret Conference


Erv Raible was a great friend of the DC Cabaret Network and a member of our Advisory Board.  Erv moved to New York City over 30 years ago where he established cabaret venues including 88’s, Brandys and Don’t Tell Mama.  Erv was one of the founders of the Cabaret Convention at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre, and was the Executive Director of the International Cabaret Conference at Yale.  He was instrumental in helping DC foster a cabaret community. 

Erv coached and encouraged many singers and was always generous and truthful.  The DC Cabaret Network was lucky to host him two years ago when he gave a talk about the history of cabaret. 

Erv died on Feb. 19 after a long illness.  He was a colorful character and will be missed.  (to be continued)

TIN PAN LADIES! The Unsung Women Songwriters from Tin Pan Alley

The women of Tin Pan Alley were writers and composers who wrote memorable lyrics and songs when the odds were against them — from approximately 1920 – 1949.  Although songwriting had always been considered a man’s game, these women wrote songs that reflected their times – with smart lyrics and moving melodies.  

Tin Pan Alley really did exist – on 28th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues, in New York City. That’s where the music publishers had their offices and songwriters worked. 

Joanne Schmoll, who wrote the cabaret show, TIN PAN LADIES!  The Unsung Women Songwriters from Tin Pan Alley, shared some of her research for the show, on Sunday, Jan. 26 at the Warehouse.

 Accompanied by musical director, Reenie Codelka, Joanne opened the afternoon with the classic, I Feel a Song Coming On, (written by  Jimmy McHugh with lyrics by Dorothy Fields)  and sang a few of the songs we now know as standards – including I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, and The Way You Look Tonight also written by Dorothy Fields.  She talked about Ms. Field’s career and some of her  notable songs including Pick Yourself Up, Big Spender, I’m in the Mood for Love, Don’t Blame MeA Fine Romance, and The Sunny Side of the Street.

Ms. Schmoll also talked about the ground-breaking composer Kay Swift who wrote the score for the musical Fine and Dandy (1930), and worked with George Gershwin.  Other composers and lyricists were mentioned including Ann Ronell (Willow Weep for Me, Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf), Irene Franklin, Anne Caldwell and Nancy Hamilton (How High the Moon).       

August Open Mic Night Recap

DC Cabaret Network

August Open Mic – August 14, 2013 

Was it an Open Mic or group therapy?  Either way, it was a great evening of song with Reenie Codelka on the keyboards and Jeff Tucker on sound.  Songs about love, loss, rejection, and reunion.  At the Black Fox on Connecticut Avenue, NW.


The singers:

Byron Murray – Stardust, This Nearly Was Mine/Some Enchanted Evening

Kendra Keller – Vegas, What I Did for Love

Colleen Brown – Blue Hair, Bill 

Steve Cupo – Tomorrow, With You!

Marcia Kass  – Distant Melody, Miss Otis Regrets

Maureen Kerrigan – Cry Me a River, All or Nothing

Faith Garber – Glitter in the Air, Losing My Mind

Terri Allen – Come Back to Me, Moon River, Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? (duet with Reenie C.)


Next Open Mic

Wed., Sept. 11, 2013

Musical Director – Alex Tang

Black Fox



July Open Mic Report

If you missed the July Open Mic of the DC Cabaret Network, held at the Black Fox at 1723 Connecticut Avenue, NW, you missed some great singers and songs!  Jazz, musical theatre, contemporary cabaret and songs from the American Songbook were all represented. Musical accompaniment by the incomparable Jonathan Tuzman. 

Here’s a partial list of singers and music: 

  • Michael Miyzaki -  Boom, Sweetest of Nights
  • Steve Cupo – Does Anyone Love you?  I’m Complete with You
  • Eileen Warner – A Quiet Thing
  • Kate McCann – Glitter in the Air
  • Ron Squeri – So In Love, An American Hymn
  • Maureen Kerrigan – How Deep is the Ocean? Lazy Afternoon
  • Marcia Kass – Neverland, Kind of Woman (Pippin)
  • Stephanie Dailey – ‘Round Midnight
  • Terri Allen – Taking a Chance on Love, Come Rain or Come Shine


Next Open Mic:  Wed., August 14, 2013

Musical Director:  Reenie Codelka

Location:  Black Fox.  1723 Connecticut Avenue, NW

May 2013 DCCN Newsletter Is Out!

Be sure to check your inbox or go to http://www.dccabaretnetwork.org to see this month’s newsletter!


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