Posts

Playing Music.

Image
Though I do read music, I hate playing scores. My mind sees the notes that comprise the chord on a page and will fight to play anything except those actual positions, preferring to find my own chord spellings. However, entering rehearsals on this show with Blake Zolfo -- they've asked us to return next month, May 25th -- I dutifully tried to learn how to play music he brought in. Particularly, his tap number, "What's The Point?", by John Kander and "Dreamscape" by Stephen Schwartz. Lots of notes on those pages. I drilled and drilled every morning, wanting Blake and Andy Gale, our director, to be proud of me. Wanting to get them "right," as if John and Stephen would be there in the room grading me. (If I hit all the notes, do I get an "A"?). But, to be honest, in rehearsal, I sucked. By having to stick so closely to the score, all the life was drained from my performance. It's just not how I play. So, finally, in a desperate attempt …

BroadwayWorld announces Friday night's show

Worst Song Title Ever

Last night at dinner with our friend, Mary Jo Catlett, who is in town for the opening of "Hello Dolly" with Bette Midler, the waiter told us of the most romantic moment he had with his new beau: When the boyfriend said, of the site where they met,

"I'm gonna delete my account for you. Would you delete yours?"

Our waiter responded to him, "Yes! I had already decided to delete mine!"

And now a year has gone by for them.

As a songwriter, I'm sitting there thinking, "I would delete my account for you," is the worst idea for a song hook ever.

Blake and Steve at the Metropolitan Room on April 21.

Image
Come have fun with us!

Blake Zolfo & Steve Schalchlin in
25! A Premature Retrospective

A cabaret directed by Andy Gale

April 21, 2017
7pm
The Metropolitan Room
34 W. 22nd St. NY NY
Phone: 212-206-0440

LINK FOR TICKETS

Frederick Douglass, Rise Up!

Image
Recorded live. St. Clement's Episcopal Church, NYC, Sanctuary Choir. Vocalist: Steve Schalchlin. Music & Lyrics by Steve Schalchlin. Video by Jim Freeman & Steve Schalchlin. Fr. Jeff Hamblin, priest. Darryl Curry, Minister of Music.

Frederick Douglass and Religion.

A week ago, we sang the Frederick Douglass song I wrote. The video will be available soon. And just when I thought I was done...

I performed a speech of Frederick Douglass' in church this past Sunday. I hadn't planned it. It was the speech about slavery and religion -- and how the religious leaders of the time -- so blithely accepted discrimination with a Biblical defense. And I spent the whole week memorizing it.

Christian leaders were on the forefront of maintaining this cruelty. But... many were not.

He used Christianity as one of his main sources for arguing, logically, for the end of slavery. He also knew the Constitution and used it in his arguments. He was a devout Christian.

So why bring up slavery and religion? Aren't we nicely over it? I can tell you why. It's in the DNA of our country and our faith. Until I read Douglass, slavery wasn't real to me. Yes, I had seen images of floggings, etc. I understood the human physical suffering.

It's the mental a…

Frederick Douglass Tribute.

Image
On Sunday morning, Feb. 19 at 11am, we will attempt to bring Frederick Douglass into the beautiful chapel at St. Clement's Church with a new composition I've been working on. (Our choir is a highly trained, world class choir with magnificent voices and Broadway credits. I'd be a fool to not use them. I'm so excited. If you're planning to come, come early because we'll be in the tiny chapel rather than on the stage in the main theater).

For weeks, I have been obsessing over this great man, reading all his speeches and rereading his autobiographies. I feel wholly inadequate to the task, so I will have to pray for his spirit to rise up and guide me -- and us.

But the only way I truly know how to learn about him is to listen to his words as I say them aloud in my work sessions. Listen to the meticulously careful way he allows his deeply felt, pain and anger to be expressed. Graceful, humble, hilarious, truthful, gentle, unrelenting, credible, sometimes with sarcas…