Tag Archives: I Want To Sing

Mama I Want To Sing’s Gospel For Teens Appears@The Rockefeller Christmas 2013

Ariana Grande Stole The Show With The Aid Of Gospel For Teens!

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Reckefeller Christmas Tree

Reckefeller Christmas Tree

Today, the Rockefeller Christmas is a New York’s tourist-filled, multimillion-dollar special yearly event.

Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey

The holiday special boasted a slew of performers. The highlight performances include Mariah Carey, performing her classic “All I want for Christmas is You”; Tony Braxton and Babyface with a duet of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”; Mary J. Blige, Kelly Clarkson and many others.

It was, however, 20-year-old ‘Mini Mariah,’ Ariana Grande who stole the show. The singer wowed the audience with her powerful performance of her hit single “Love Is Everything” with assistance from a choir, Harlem’s own Gospel For Teens. As you may already know that some members of GFT left for Tokyo for “Mama, I Want To Sing!” Japan tour.

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Emily “Cissy” Houston, Valerie Simpson and Dionne Warwick Attend “Mama, I Want To Sing” 30th Anniversary Gala

MAMA30_3stars

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The 30th Anniversary Celebration of
Mama, I Want To Sing
America’s Longest Running Black Musical
Saturday, March 23, 2013

Among many celebrity guest, Emily “Cissy” Houston, Valerie Simpson and Dionne Warwick attend “Mama, I Want To Sing” 30th Anniversary Gala Celebration at The Dempsey Theater in Harlem Saturday night.

After welcoming all the board members and the benefit committee at Red Carpet, the gala began with a very special performance that includes musical highlights from “Mama, I Want To Sing” and “Sing, Harlem Sing!, ”as well as a performance from the Gospel for Teens Choir.

MAMA30_CISSY_VY

Cissy Houston, Vy Higginson

The Background Story

By Vy Higginsen

I was the youngest of four children growing up on Harlem. My father was a minister and my mother was very involved in his church. My oldest sister, Doris, sang in the choir. She was eventually discovered by James Brown at The Apollo, and went on to a successful career in popular music. Kind and generous, Doris was a big influence on me. I was inspired to tell her story, and so I wrote Mama, I want To Sing with my husband, Ken Wydro.

As we wrote the story, we became aware that is wasn’t just ours. It was the combined stories of numerous African-Americans who grew up on the church, stepped out of the church choir and then made their way into the recording industry and on stage. They created a new sound that was uniquely African-American – Something at once uniquely personal and wholly universal.

Initially the script was rejected by every major producer in New York – none believed that the story was worth telling or that an audience could be found for a Gospel-based production.

With nowhere else to turn, we devoted our entire life savings to opening Mama, I Want to Sing in East Harlem at the Heckscher Theatre which had housed Joe Papp’s New York Shakespeare Festival 15 years earlier. As the doors’ chain was lifted, puffs of dust and dirt greeted us in the abandoned 632-seat theater.

Standing on that dusky, silent stage, dimly lit with coated work lights; I saw the theater filled with senior citizens, church groups, school children, and hard-working black mothers and fathers who had spiritual values and loved soul-stirring music.

Mama, I wan To Sing opened March 25, 1983 with a minuscule advertising, promotional, and publicity budget. Word-of-mouth spread quickly through the black community and the theatrical and traditional musical circles. Mama, I Want To Sing positively the power, spontaneity and emotional uplift of the black church experience.

For thirty years now, Mama, I wan To Sing has been performed all over the world. It has not only entertained, but it has helped introduce gospel music to other cultures, and it has taught audiences everywhere about our community and our people.

Inspired by the show’s worldwide success, I created Mama Foundation for the Arts in 1998 as a cultural space in Harlem where both youth and adults have access to quality training and employment in the performing arts. With a mission to present, preserve, and promote the history and fundamentals of gospel, jazz, and rhythm and blues music, the Gospel for teens program began at the foundation in 2006. Open to the public at no cost, so that all interested could benefit from it, Gospel for Teens provides support to our musically gifted children by replacing the arts programs taken out of many inner city schools. In the past seven years, we have served hundreds of teens. These fine young men and women have now become Ambassadors of the Music, making sure that the music lives on for generations to come.

It is a thrill to have seen these young people evolve through the arts – I’ve witnessed them change mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally.

All of us are part of a community that is rich and full of history, conversation, food, music, and art and culture. To explore all that; to present that on stage – whether through our musicals, performances by the Gospel for Teens Choir, or other events – is a privilege.

During the initial run of Mama, I Want To Sing, Doris Troy played the role of our mother; and my brother, Randy, played the role of our father. Now, my daughter, Knoelle, is playing the role of her Auntie. Doris passed away nine years ago, but her life lives on stage to this very day. For that, I am jumbled, and so grateful.

Thank you for your support.

Blessings,

Vy Higginsen

ママ・アイ・ウォント・トゥ・シングMama, I Want To Sing 追加公演決定!Extended!!

Mama, I Want To Sing

ママ、アイ・ワント・トゥ・シング 追加公演決定!

大好評のハーレム・ゴスペル・オフ・ブロードウェイ・ショー、
「 Mama, I Want To Sing: The Next Generation」の追加公演が決まりました。ハーレム体験をする絶好の機会です。地元のお客さんに混じって本物のゴルペルを堪能して下さい。35ドルだす価値は十分あります。
詳細: www.MamaFoundation.org

春のスケジュールは以下: Spring 2012 Performance schedule

Saturdays, April 21, 28
Saturdays, May 5, 12, 19, 26
Saturday, June 2
At 4:30pm

夏のスケジュールは以下: Summer 2012 Performance Schedule

Saturday, July 21
Saturday, August 18
At 4:30pm

Dempsey Theater
127 West 127th Street
New York, NY 10027 MAP

伊藤弥住子

Knoelle

Mama, I Want To Sing: The Next Generation

“Still a blessing.”
– The Amsterdam News

The acclaimed revival of the Off-Broadway classic extended throughout the summer at Harlem’s Dempsey Theater (127 West 127th Street) performs Saturdays at 4:30pm. Visit www.MamaFoundation.org

Spring 2012 Performance schedule

Saturdays, April 21, 28
Saturdays, May 5, 12, 19, 26
Saturday, June 2
At 4:30pm

Summer 2012 Performance Schedule

Saturday, July 21
Saturday, August 18
At 4:30pm

Dempsey Theater
127 West 127th Street
New York, NY 10027  MAP

Mama, I Wan To Sing – The Next Generation ママ、アイ・ウォント・トゥ・シング 最長のロングランを記録!

Elijah Lewis

Mama, I Want To Sing – The Next Generation 2012

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ママ、アイ・ワント・トゥ・シング、最長のロングラン!

Dempsey Theater – 127 West 127th Street (bet. Lenox & 7th Aves), Harlem, NY 10027  MAP

ハーレムのゴスペル魂は永遠に受け継がれてゆくのです。

「ママ、あたし、どうしても歌を歌いたいの!」と叫んだ少女、ドリスは約30年を経た今も健在。1983年初演の ゴスペル・オフ・ブロードウェイ・ショー、「Mama, I Want To Sing」はさまざまなアーティストに歌い継がれ、なんと前シーズンより作者ヴァイ・ヒギンセンの実の娘、ノエル・ヒギンソンが主演、地元ハーレムはもちろん、全世界の人々を魅了しています。

2月25日、待ちに待った「 Mama, I Want To Sing」春のシーズンの幕開けです。外はまだ真冬の寒さですが、デンプシー・シアターのドアを開けると満員御礼、汗をかいてしまうほど熱気に包まれていました。ハーレムの住人全員が集まってしまったかのようです。正面ステージの前のピットにミュージシャンが待機、右端に設置された架空ラジオ局(WBLSなのは明らかなのですが……)のブースにOn Air という赤いライトが灯りヴァイ・ヒギンセンのナレーションが始まります…….。第一幕ではあどけないドリス・トロイがパパ、ウィンター牧師の教会の聖歌隊のメンバーに加わることを許され、ゴスペルが会場いっぱいに響き渡ります。パパもママもシスター・キャリーもみんなゴスペル・シンガーです。ソウルフルなヴァイブがみなぎります。Amen, Sweet Jesus, Good Lord………コール&リスポンス、日曜日の教会を彷彿とさせます。

Sister Carrie Sings

第二幕はスターとして成長したドリスが登場します。ポップの世界で大成功を収めたドリスですが、ルーツであるゴスペル、神への感謝を忘れることはいちどもありませんでした。1963年、一世を風靡したドリス・トロイの名曲、「ジャスト・ワン・ルック」を姪のノエルがみごとに歌い上げフィナーレのゴスペル・メドレーで頂点に達します。ウィンター牧師役のタイロン・フラワースは十代からのキャスト・メンバーで、日本公演にも同行したベテランです。ママ役のベティーナ・ペノンも貫禄十分、シスター・キャリー役のサンドラ・ハフも好演、そして、聖歌隊のディレクター役を務めたエライジャ・ルイスが最初から最後までテンションあがりっぱなしのエネルギッシュなパフォーマンスで盛り上げてくれました。

Vy and Knoelle

ハーレム126丁目にあった父親の教会で育ったヴァイ・ヒギンセンは同じブロックに「スペル・フォー・ティーンズ(Gospel For Teens)」という非営利団体を設立し、歌を志すティーンたちの音楽指導にあたっています。ゴスペルといっても宗教ではなく、音楽を基礎から勉強するという意味合いのほうが強いそうです。ここで勉強した若者は実力を認められれば様々なチャンスを与えられます。ヴァイのプロデュースする「ママ、アイ・ワント・トゥ・シング」に聖歌隊として出演しているティーンのほとんどがこのプログラムの出身です。ステージで音楽ディレクターを演じているエライジャもGospel For Teens の卒業生です。

Doris Troy – Just One Look

1982年、まだ正式にオープンする前の特別パフォーマンスでは、テレビの子役で売り出し中のティーシャ・キャンベルがドリス役を演じたり、ロンドン遠征公演ではシスター・キャリ−役をシャカ・カーンが熱演したりとさまざまなアーティストが参加しています。

過去にドリス役を演じたアーティストは以下のとおり。

1982                           Tisha Campbell

1983                           Desiree Coleman

1984                           Octavia Lambertis

1985                           Lynda McConnell

1985                           D.K. Dyson

1986 – 1990             D’Atra Hicks (妹はモータウン在籍したことのあるタラル・ヒックス)

1987                           Ramona Keller

1988 – 1990             Noreen Clayton

1989                           Sharlene Nelson

1992 – 1996               Stacy Francis

2004 – Present        Ahmaya Knoelle

1988年にはゴスペル・ブームに乗り日本でも興行、当初5週間上演の予定があまりの反響に追加公演が相次ぎ、11週間に延長されたという音楽ファン必見のミュージカルです。日本の音楽業界の重鎮、湯川れいこ先生もご覧になり、「こんな素晴らしいミュージカルは見たことがない!」と大感激されたそう。それを機会に作者のヴァイと湯川先生は大の仲良しになったそうです。

毎週土曜日4時30分開演、途中15分の休憩があります。チケットは35ドル。10人以上はグループ割引があります。近くにソウル・フードのメッカ、「Sylvia’s」やシェフ、マーカス・サミュエルソンの「Red Rooster」など有名レストランもあるので日本からのお友達と一緒に、またはご家族連れでお出かけ下さい。

Spring Season: Saturdays at 4:30pm 3/3, 3/10, 3/17, 3/24, 3/31, 4/7, 4/14, 4/21, 4/28

Dempsey Theater – 127 West 127th Street (bet. Lenox & 7th Aves), Harlem, NY 10027  MAP

http://www.mamafoundation.org

1963年、全米だけでなくヨーロッパでも大ヒットしたドリス・トロイの「ジャスト・ワン・ルック」のオリジナル・ビデオはこちらをご覧下さい。

伊藤弥住子

English

Mama, I Want To Sing – The Next Generation 2012

Mama, I Want to Sing: The Next Generation, the acclaimed revival of Mama, I Want to Singthe 1983 musical based on the life and times of singer Doris Troy – re-opened at The Dempsey Theater in Harlem on February 25.

People who missed the show in the 80’s are excited about seeing it now, people who saw it in the past will enjoy seeing it again. While the story line is the same, the presentation is exciting, hip, popping, and full of energy.

Mama, I Want to Sing has played to hundreds of thousands of people of many cultures, races, and faiths. The show has touched the hearts of audiences around the world through its universal story and rousing music. The show works well no matter where it plays because the story is timeless and the music is inspired!

Mama, I Want to Sing: The Next Generation tells the story of a talented young gospel singer who embraces secular music, despite the strong objections of her mother. As a tribute to many of the African-American singers who rose from church choirs to stardom during the 1960s and 70s, Vy Higginsen based the musical on the life of her sister, Doris Troy, whose 1963 hit “Just One Look,” launched her to international fame.

The cast of Mama, I Want to Sing: The Next Generation features Ahmaya Knoelle Higginson as Doris, Bettina Pennon as Mama, Sandra Huff as Sister Carrie, Tyrone Flowers as Reverend Winters, Elijah Ahmad Lewis as Minister of Music and Vy Higginsen as The Narrator.

The show also features performers from Ms. Higginsen’s Gospel for Teens, a program of the Mama Foundation for the Arts, Ms. Higginsen’s School of Gospel, Jazz and R&B Arts, which has grown to be a highly respected and influential program for youth between the ages of 13 and 19.

Previous Cast Members Who Played Doris

1982                           Tisha Campbell

1983                           Desiree Coleman

1984                           Octavia Lambertis

1985                           Lynda McConnell

1985                           D.K. Dyson

1986 – 1990             D’Atra Hicks

1987                           Ramona Keller

1988 – 1990             Noreen Clayton

1989                           Sharlene Nelson

1992 – 1996               Stacy Francis

2004 – Present         Ahmaya Knoelle Higginson

Pass the legacy of gospel music on…….

Tickets

$35 general admission

$30 groups of ten or more

$30 students and seniors

Spring Season: Saturdays at 4:30pm 3/3, 3/10, 3/17, 3/24, 3/31, 4/7, 4/14, 4/21, 4/28

Dempsey Theater – 127 West 127th Street (bet. Lenox & 7th Aves), Harlem, NY 10027

http://www.mamafoundation.org

For theater parties and group sales information (10 or more tickets), please call the Mama Foundation for the Arts at 212-280-1045.