An Especially Amazing Team

rickjensen

Special Thanks

On a typical Saturday morning you’ll find me in the Advanced Performance Workshop held at Don’t Tell Mama’s, the venerable long running cabaret club.

 

Lucky for me, Kevin Connors was the musical director for my first show and helped get me started. Rick Jensen was the musical director for my last three shows and has, along with Lina Koutrakos, taken me to a place of joy and professionalism that I never thought possible. The workshop is run by my Director, Lina Koutrakos, and my Musical Director, Rick Jensen. Both of these folks are mind-blowingly brilliant and Iā€™m in awe that I get to work with them.

We’ve worked together ever since I auditioned for and attended the International Cabaret Conference at Yale – a 10-day deep immersion of all things cabaret.

The conference opened the door to relationships of the highest order — directors, musical directors, club owners and marketers. I got to learn about the business from the ground up. And work. And work. And work. And work. Learning the craft, learning about the art of “being yourself on purpose,” learning how cabaret is totally different from musical theatre or opera or folk, learning about what it means to “inhabit a song.”

 

After being critiqued, and critiqued, and critiqued until I finally couldn’t stand it any longer, it was time to create and perform my own show.
I worked at first with another Musical Director, Kevin Connors. The first three times we met together, usually for three hours at a time, I did not sing a note and he did not play a note. We talked. What was my life about right now? What was important to me? Why did I want to sing? Where is my life going?
We began to find a narrative thread for my show and then we went about putting the “big pot” of songs together. As we explored the themes and sang and continued to talk, other songs occurred to each of us and we “tried them on” (what Lina calls “finger painting”) to see if they told the right piece of the story, in the right way, at the right time.
For my first show, I met with Kevin twice a week for two hours for over 18 months [when I wasn’t traveling for client business]. We would record songs on my Radio Shack cassette recorder and I’d listen to them, learn them, and begin to inhabit them.

The show emerged and became a wholeness unto itself. And then the day came when I said, “I want to book a club and put some dates on the book!” It was exhilarating and daunting! This made it real!

This Sunday I make the dream a reality once again as a continuation of living my passion and having my love of singing carry me on the crazy, bumpy, beautiful, open road of my life.

Thanks for following and fueling the trip!

Morgan!

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