SPRING AWAKENING AT THE MAY OPEN MIC

The spring rains of May brought on more than just flowers; music was blooming as well at The Black Squirrel.  An enthusiastic group was ready to welcome in good music along with a wonderful evening of fun and camaraderie.  With Reenie Codelka at the piano, the creative spirit blossomed.  Reenie even shone with her own versatility as she played for one singer with nothing but basic chords and lyrics in front of her.  Everyone was duly impressed; especially the singer!  Host, Steven Cupo, brought his 90 year old Dad, Ev, to help add to the entertainment.  Ev had been to past Open Mics, but this was the first time he sang twice.  And, boy, what a huge treat that was.  He really still has the magic one needs in order to put across a song.  Board member, Cindy Hutchins, brought along a new voice student.  They both ended up singing by using music from the just completed lesson.  Now that is what you call “getting into the swing of things”!  Speaking of Board members, Monday was the birthday of DC Cabaret Network Board President, George Fulginiti-Shakar.  Even though he wasn’t in attendance, he was remembered from the stage.  Happy Birthday, Georgie!
As all were leaving at the end of the night, everyone agreed that it was a very special coming together of music and great story telling; just the perfect evening.

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – Mama, a Rainbow
Marcia Kass  – Timid Frieda
Paul Pompeo – Here’s That Rainy Day
Stephanie Dailey – Hard Hearted Hannah
Len Borges – Beyond the Sea
Heidi Mayor – Hang on Little Tomato
Everard Cupo – Wandering
Steven Cupo – With You
Cindy Hutchins – Every Time We Say Goodbye
Magdalena Kuszmileva – The Man I Love
Paul Pompeo – Fly Me to the Moon
Stephanie Dailey – I Believe in You and Me
Heidi Mayor – I’ve Been Lonely Before
Everard Cupo – Old Man River

AN INTIMATE EVENING AT THE APRIL OPEN MIC

An April evening in spring must have inspired folks to stay outside and enjoy the weather, because they didn’t seem to be going indoors to take in the lovely ambiance of the DC Cabaret Network’s April Open Mic  at The Black Squirrel.   However, even though the group was small, our evening was “yuge” with good music and wonderful versatility.  As Steven Cupo hosted, Bill Yanesh’s talents were on full display at the keyboard.  Because the group was small, Steven kept encouraging Bill to go for a solo himself.  The Rachmaninoff never appeared, but he clearly showed that, if given the opportunity, he would have been fully capable!
It was a bit sentimental having Board member Tracy Simpson sing a couple of songs.  She will be leaving for a couple of months to take advantage of a great job opportunity in New York City.  She said she will be back, but in the meantime, is looking forward to attending some cabaret in The Big Apple herself!
Announcements were made regarding the DC Cabaret Network’s Annual Members Showcase on Thursday, April 14th at the Metropolitan Church of Washington.  It always is a great way to see the range of performers in DC.
At the end of the night, everyone concurred that, after all, a small group listening to live music in an intimate space was a wonderful way to spend a spring evening.

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – House of the Rising Sun
Michael Miyazaki  – Making Love Alone
Byron Murray – You’d Be So Easy to Love
Juan Marroquin – En Mi Viejo San Juan
Ron Squeri – Leaving on a Jet Plane
Tracy Simpson – When She Loved Me
Stephanie Dailey – Will You Love Me Tomorrow?
Steven Cupo – My Funny Valentine
Byron Murray – You’d Be So Nice to Come Home to
Ron Squeri – So In Love
Juan Marroquin – My Way
Tracy Simpson – Manhattan
Michael Miyazaki – Get Here
Stephanie Dailey – When Did You Leave Heaven?

WARM GROUP / COLD NIGHT AT THE JANUARY OPEN MIC

The DC Cabaret Network’s January Open Mic at The Black Squirrel saw in the new year with an intimate group of participants, who braved a cold January night in order to share talent, song and camaraderie.  Even though the group was small, the evening was large with good music.  Steven Cupo hosted, while Jeff Hamlin’s talented hands were at the keyboard.  Jeff’s versatility shone through when the piano stand holding the music fell off the back of the piano while one of our singers was in mid-song.  Jeff didn’t “bat-an-eye’ and just kept playing as though the ghost of the sheet music was still in front of him.  Way to go, Jeff!
It was also heartening to have Sherri Kuznicki Owen and her husband, Mark, drive all the way from Annapolis to be with the Open Mic gang.  The cold certainly didn’t stop them!  Everyone received an extra special treat when Steve Cupo’s 89 yesr old dad, Everard, got up to the stage and sang “That Lucky Old Sun”; without a mic and a cappella, no less.  He was GREAT!
Announcements were made to watch for our upcoming party to celebrate the new “Terri Allen Legacy Fund”.  So, watch your email for this gala, as well as the notice for our next Open Mic.
It was agreed that an intimate group in an intimate space was a wonderful way to spend a chilly evening.

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – They Were You
Len Borges  – Paper Moon
Marcia Kass – Timid Frieda
Richard Gondelman – Leader of the Band
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – I’ll Be Seeing You
Everard Cupo – That Lucky Old Sun
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – For Good
Richard Gondelman – Hallelujah
Marcia Kass – I Hate Men
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – Waiting for Life to Begin

HOLIDAY MERRIMENT AND A CROWDED BAR AT THE DECEMBER OPEN MIC

The DC Cabaret Network’s December “doings” at The Black Squirrel was packed to the rafters for the “Holiday Open Mic”. Everyone was there to share in some Christmas/Hanukkah/non-denominational good cheer … and wow … were they cheerful!  With the ever lovely Reenie Codelka at the piano and, Christmas elf, Steven Cupo, hosting, folks were guided through a mélange of merriment and memories.  This year, there was a bit of a twist in the proceedings, with the introduction of a grab bag.  Most of the participants brought a wrapped present to put in a festively wrapped box.  After they sang, they got to choose a mystery present from the box to help put them in the holiday spirit.  Marcia Kass was probably the most excited of everybody when she unwrapped a 3-ring hole punch.  Leave to a singer to get revved up over a hole puncher!
Twenty singers filled the evening with their remarkable recitals and reminiscences.  And, just as we have been experiencing over these past few months, it was thrilling to have many “new” faces among our regular, wonderful attendees.  Three DC Cab board members offered us three musical selections spanning the gamut of old and new: Cindy Hutchins, Tracy Simpson and Steven Cupo. Newcomer, Erica Cogliani, gave us a magical “Too Beautiful for Words”.  But it was that clever Michael Miyazaki with his re-written “A Good Gift is Hard to Find” that brought the house down.
It was also announced that the new Terri Allen Legacy Fund web site is up and running.  This site is dedicated to extend Terri’s artistry and passion for the art of cabaret beyond her life. The legacy fund contributes to the activities of the Washington DC Cabaret Network as well as artists and organizations that recognize music which connects artists to audiences.  All donations are completely tax deductible.  (For more information, go to www.terriallenlegacyfund.org )
By the end of the evening, so many had sung, there was only time for a group “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” before we all went on our gay (as in “… let the Yuletide be …”) way.
Our next Open Mic is on Monday, January 11th at 8:00, with Jeff Hamlin at the keyboard.  Come join us in the New Year and get into the enjoyment that is the DC Cabaret Network’s Open Mic.

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – Just in Time for Christmas
Byron Murray – On the Road to Bethlehem
Cindy Hutchins – Make Someone Happy
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – Pick Yourself Up
Tracy Simpson – Wintersong
Maris Wicker – It’s Lovely Here
Heidi Mayor – What a Wonderful World
Maureen Kerrigan  – The Way You Look Tonight
Erica Cogliani – Too Beautiful for Words
Ron Squeri – Christmas Eve in Washington
Marcia Kass – Since You Asked
Eileen Warner  – In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning
Juan Marroquin – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Tiffany Carter  – The Christmas Song
Michael Miyazaki – A Good “Gift” is Hard to Find
Kathy Reilly – Lucky to Be Me
Mary Reilly – We Need a Little Christmas
Parris Daniel  – My Rose-Colored Glasses
Brandi Rose  – Can’t Help Lovin’ That Man of Mine
Brenda Rozier-Clark – How Deep is the Ocean, How High is the Sky?

VARIETY IS THE SPICE AT THE NOVEMBER OPEN MIC

A rainy autumn evening couldn’t keep folks away from the DC Cabaret Network’s November Open Mic at The Black Squirrel, hosted by a wacky Steven Cupo. And with the wide variety of material, people and presentations, everyone was so glad they came!  Joining the Open Mic for the first time was the incredibly talented Bill Yanesh at the piano.  His youthful guise belied his amazing versatility and obvious depth of experience.  With the diverse styles presented, it was good he was there.  His good nature also came into play, as a jerry-rigged bar table and stool “tower” had to stand in for a lack of a music stand.  What a trouper!
It was exciting to have so many “new” faces; which meant “new” songs!  Newcomer, Parris Daniel, brought an entourage of friends to listen to her sing and play one of her own compositions.  One of her friends, Naomi Mason, was then inspired to sing, even though she had not planned to.  It was good our audio tech, Jill Parsons, who is a talented pianist in her own right, knew one of the songs by heart and jumped in “for the assist”.  It should also be pointed out that Jill brought a friend of her own to sing for the first time, Landon Paddock.  He gave us a smooth and Sinatra-like “All the Way” that made everyone dreamy.  Special mention must be made to Board Member, Tracy Simpson, who knocked everyone out with a song from a new musical, “Waitress”, called “She Used to Be Mine”.  In addition, long-time DC Cabaret Network friend Maureen Kerrigan reminded all that there is nothing like listening to a pro, no matter what she is singing.
The night was such a rich combination of “old” and “new”, it was universally agreed that it would be difficult to wait for our next Open Mic on Monday, December 14th at 8:00.  Come join us for the holidays and get into the fun that is always part of the DC Cabaret Network’s Open Mic.

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – Never Neverland
Heidi Mayor – Dream a Little Dream of Me
Eileen Warner  – It Goes Like it Goes
Paul Pompeo  – Everybody Says Don’t
Parris Daniel  – Hometown Glory
Annie Elliott  – Frank Mills
Mary Reilly – Out of This World
Juan Marroquin – Edelweiss
Tracy Simpson – She Used to Be Mine
Stephanie Dailey – I Was Born in Love With You
Marianne Glass Miller – Poor Everybody Else
Maureen Kerrigan  – At Last
Naomi Mason – Hopelessly Devoted
Paul Pompeo  – Autumn Leaves
Maureen Kerrigan  – Dreamin’
Stephanie Dailey – Home
Landon Paddock – All of Me
Tracy Simpson – Laughing Matters
Parris Daniel – Pride
Naomi Mason – We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
Juan Marroquin – Moon River

A CHEERY WARMTH OF INDIAN SUMMER AT THE OCTOBER OPEN MIC

A beautiful Indian Summer evening wafted into The Black Squirrel, bringing fun spirits and a glow of merriment to our October Open Mic. Hosted by Treasurer of the Board, Steven Cupo, the night was full of hilarious gaffes, glitches and off-color moments that made everyone relaxed and very jolly. All were thankful that hugely talented music director, Howard Breitbart, added much sparkle to our fizz. Our man in charge of audio, Jeff Tucker, got a good work out with uncooperative microphone cords, but all was righted in the end. Richard Dew was a trooper when the sound left him in the middle of his song. He was rewarded by having a chance to re-sing it later in the evening; sparking the comment that it was a Richard “re-Dew”. Johnny Mercer seemed to be the composer of the night, as Board member Cindy Hutchins sang a sexy, smoky version of his “I Thought About You”. New comer Rachel Leanza did a lovely rendition of “Manhattan”, while our beautiful Beverly Cosham gave us her all with a funny and haunting “Why Can’t I Forget?” It really was one of the most entertaining Open Mics we have had; full of a hilarity and, of course, great music.
Please join us for our November Open Mic on Monday, November 9th at 8:00. See you then!

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – Take Me to the World
Rachel Leanza – Manhattan
Paul Pompeo – Cruella De Vil
Kathy Reilly – One Upon a Summertime
Richard Dew – When October Goes
Heidi Mayor – Baby Mine
Cindy Hutchins – I Thought About You
Len Borges – I Don’t Remember You
Eileen Warner – Right as the Rain
Maris Wicker – Look at That Face
Tracy Simpson – You Turned the Tables on Me
Marianne Glass Miller – Come Rain or Come Shine
Beverly Cosham – Why Can’t I Forget?
Beverly Cosham – My Favorite Year
Paul Pompeo – Losing My Mind
Tracy Simpson – My Heart was Set on You
Richard Dew – Pure Imagination

NEW FACES AND SONGS AT THE SEPTEMBER OPEN MIC

A GORGEOUS September evening at the Black Squirrel was enjoyed by some reliable friends and welcomed new faces. As a result, there was a treasure trove of new material presented to our illustrious music director Alex Tang for the pleasure of our listening crowd. And, as per usual, DCCN Board Member Steven Cupo helped to lend his emceeing skills. Some highlights included brand new DCCN member Shannon Polly making us all laugh through her “Rich, Famous and Powerful” and well as Marcia Kass’s “Funeral Tango” from “Jacques Brel”.   But the huge roar of the evening came from Heidi Mayor’s completely irreverent “Please Don’t Hand Me Your Baby”; otherwise known as “Your Baby is Ugly”! (Oh no she didn’t!) Also to be noted was Jill Parsons, a very talented pianist in her own right, substituting on the sound board while Jeff Tucker was on hiatus. Jill presents her own weekly Open Mic on Wednesday’s at Shaw’s Tavern in DC. One of her regulars, Danie Harrow, joined us and blew us all away with her enormous voice, talent and good spirit.
It was wonderfully enjoyable evening, full of a lot of laughter and good music.   Please join us for our October Open Mic on Monday, October 12th at 8:00. See you then!

THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF PARTICIPANTS AND THE SONGS THEY SANG:
Steven Cupo – On My Way to You
Len Borges – Sometimes a Day Goes By
Marcia Kass – Funeral Tango
Norah Delury  – That’s My Life
Miranda Cooter – Always
Shannon Polly – My Simple Christmas Wish (Rich, Famous and Powerful)
Juan Marroquin – Somewhere Out There
Danie Harrow – Love You, I Do
Ron Squeiri – The Mason Song
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – Stars and the Moon
Annie Elliot – No One is Alone
Tracy Simpson – You Can Have Manhattan
Heidi Mayor – Please Don’t Hand Me Your Baby
Danie Harrow – I’m Here
Sheri Kuznicki Owen – Sleepy Man
Ron Squeiri – Strange Sensation
Tracy Simpson – Someone to Cook For
Heidi Mayor – I’m All Right
Norah Delury  – Everything’s Coming Up Roses

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