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Online Summer Music Intensive Jul y 12 -17, 2020

Virtual Masterclasses: July 13- 15, 2020 Final Online Showcases: July 25, 2020

INDEX Welcome from Michael Feinstein


Virtual Masterclass and Showcase Schedule


Meet the Top 40 Finalists


Guest Mentors


Music Directors and Vocal Coaches


Get Involved: The Songbook Academy ®


Thank you to our Partners


The Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation Mentor Champions


Songbook Donors


Board of Directors


Songbook Foundation Staff and Program Credits


ABOUT THE SONGBOOK ACADEMY® Now in its 11th year, the Songbook Academy ® is a national summer music intensive for young singers who have an interest in the music of classic Broadway shows, jazz and the American Songbook. Forty talented high school students are invited to participate in a life-changing week of learning alongside music industry pros, award-winning singers and performers, and educators from top university music and theatre programs. In this week of mentoring that culminates with a dazzling final showcase of performances, students form lasting connections with peers, alumni and professional mentors as, together, they celebrate and reinterpret the timeless repertoire of the Great American Songbook.


WELCOME FROM MICHAEL FEINSTEIN “The more I read the papers, the less I comprehend, the world and all its capers and how it all will end. Nothing seems to be lasting, but that isn’t our affair. We’ve got something permanent, I mean, in the way we care.” – Ira Gershwin Friends, we are living in an extraordinary time. Yet, despite the great transition and emotion we have all experienced over the last several months, I fervently believe that good can come from this. I believe this because I have seen what the power of music has done in the past, continues to do and will do always. It is music that not only keeps us connected, but also has an amazing way of healing. During this unprecedented era we are facing, the enduring lyrics of the tune “Love is Here to Stay,” written by my friend and mentor Ira Gershwin, continue to ring true for our Songbook family. Our love for the arts; our love for human connection; our love and passion for providing impactful opportunities for young people to grow and find their way through music. Our love is here to stay. With this in mind, and on behalf of the Songbook Foundation team, I am thrilled to welcome you to the first-ever virtual Songbook Academy week – a celebration of music, an opportunity for togetherness, and a platform for young people who have nothing but bright futures ahead of them. Not only is this an important step in the collective journey of our talented young singers, it is also a gift for our global community of students and music lovers who will now have the unique opportunity to engage in the extraordinary learning that happens here at the Songbook Academy. During this week of workshops, masterclasses, and performances, I invite you to join us. Delve into the timeless lyrics of Irving Berlin, Johnny Mercer, and Jimmy Van Heusen. Listen to the melodies of George Gershwin, Richard Rodgers, Cole Porter, and Duke Ellington. Find YOUR story in this music just as Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, and Nat King Cole once did. I promise that our mentors and students will lead the way and show you how. This virtual experience would not have been possible without the flexibility, hard work and undying commitment of our Songbook Academy team of staff and educators. Likewise, I thank our students for their dedication to their craft and willingness to take this educational adventure with us! Together, we will continue to inspire and educate by celebrating the Great American Songbook. Welcome to Songbook Academy Online! Gratefully,

Michael Feinstein 3

VIRTUAL MASTERCLASS SCHEDULE NEW this year, we invite YOU to view a selection of our Songbook Academy workshops, lectures and masterclasses throughout the week of July 13-17, 2020. Listed below, you will find one activity a day that will be available for live streaming on the Songbook Academy’s (@songbookacademy) Facebook page. You can visit TheSongBook.org/SongBookLivestream to view the full classes after they have premiered. Vocal Technique Lecture – Catherine Walker (University of Michigan) Monday, July 13 at 1:15pm ET In this hour-long lecture by University of Michigan professor Catherine Walker, you will dig deeper into the anatomical structure of the voice, understand the definition of “body mapping” and learn warmup and cooldown techniques that will support overall vocal technique. Want to join the fun? Make sure to have a straw, kazoo, or theraband handy to try out some of Catherine’s exercises! Songbook 101 – Michael Feinstein, GASF Archivist Lisa Lobdell and special guests Tuesday, July 14 at 1:45pm ET In this hour-long talkback introduced by our founder, Michael Feinstein, and moderated by Songbook Foundation Archivist Lisa Lobdell, you will hear directly from family members and personal connections of some of the original Songbook legends who wrote and performed the timeless tunes you recognize today. Go behind the scenes in the Songbook Foundation Archives to learn about the importance of preservation work and view some of the treasures in our care. Guest speakers include family and associates of the great Peggy Lee, Jimmy Van Heusen, Duke Ellington, Meredith Willson, and more. Public Masterclass – Michael Feinstein and Broadway’s Faith Prince Wednesday, July 15 at 3:00pm ET In this two-hour virtual masterclass, join our Founder Michael Feinstein and Tony Award winner Faith Prince as they critique the performances of 10 randomly selected finalists of the 2020 Academy. Submit questions for Michael and Faith to answer at the end of the class on our Facebook page.


FINAL SHOWCASE FESTIVAL SCHEDULE Get ready for a WHOLE DAY of music with this year’s Songbook Academy Final Showcase Festival hosted by our fearless leader, Michael Feinstein. On Saturday, July 25, we will premiere five showcases, featuring eight students each (based on their assigned Music Director and Vocal Coach team), that will include student performances, faculty testimonials, and special guest appearances! The schedule for the day is below. *Students are not listed in show order. TEAM BECKIE & ELAINE – 1pm ET


Hannah Bank Tess Biberaj Michael Di Leo Lydia Diekmann Lila Harris Maggie MacKenzie Grant Nalty Ava Nicole Frances Special Guests: Michael Feinstein, Beckie Menzie, Elaine Moebius, Sadie Fridley ‘19

Sean Hodges Natalie Johnson Eleni Kontzamanys Oliviana Marie Graham Montgomery Cara Nowlin Samantha Shelton Amanda Swickle Special Guests: Michael Feinstein, Jeff Harris, Lynne Rothrock, surprise guests



Emily Chrzanowski Ava DeCroix Annie Flowers Mahesh Gupta Elizabeth Howlett Quiana Morris Brooke Wilson Camden Zetty Special Guests: Michael Feinstein, Janis Siegel, Daryl Kojak, Catherine Walker

Lauren Effertz Hayden Elefante Ellie Lauter Emily Legg Rob Luedtke Alexa Margolius Grace Mozitis Alexandria Reese Special Guests: Michael Feinstein, Mel Shore, Daniel Narducci, Tex Arnold Tribute

TEAM RUSS & KATHLEEN – 7pm ET Eve Begelman Lily Cross Grace Elliott Jonathan Grimes Tessa Korver Olivia Scott Leah Spurlock Victoria Lourdes Whatley Special Guests: Michael Feinstein, Russ Kassoff, Dr. Kathleen Hacker 5




TOP 40 FINALISTS Forty talented high school students are invited to participate in a life-changing week of learning alongside music industry pros, award-winning singers and performers, and educators from top university music and theatre programs.

Hannah Bank, 17 • New Albany, Ohio | Interlochen Arts Academy Future Plans: My biggest goal is to be happy and healthy doing what I love!

Right now I would like to go to college for either a BFA in Musical Theatre or a political science degree. If I do not end up deciding to go on the performing path, I want to become a lawyer. I would love to work for politicians in D.C. or work on criminal justice reform. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Duke Ellington! I grew up listening to jazz music because it was my dad’s favorite and I have grown to really love all of Ellington’s music and swagger. My dad passing away makes me appreciate the music I grew up with, and Duke Ellington really hits home for me.

Eve Begelman, 16 • Greenville, South Carolina | Fine Arts Center Future Plans: My goal is to be a broadway performer, but I would also like to

stay in touch with jazz and continue to perform in that style. I really enjoy writing as well, so I would also love to pursue a career in journalism. What do you love most about music and singing? Music and singing is my form of expression and communicating to the audience. I love the rush I get while performing live and connecting with others. Music has also guided me towards meeting some of my best friends and building stronger bonds with them.

Tess Biberaj, 15 • New York, New York | LaGuardia Arts High School Future Plans: My greatest goal for the future is to become a professional

singer/songwriter who also has involvement in the producing of my own music. With my love of broadway/jazz, pop, and R&B music, I honestly hope to have a wide range of singing opportunities. I hope to explore all genres in my career. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? At the age of 12 years old, I began singing in music venues in NYC and I quickly understood that the American Songbook songs were not only amazing to sing, they were well received and gave me the ability to grow my voice as a young performer.


Emily Chrzanowski, 17 • Carmel, Indiana | Carmel High School Future Plans: My dream is to perform on Broadway. Ever since I stepped on

stage for the first time, I knew that’s where I wanted to be for the rest of my life. I want to teach and inspire others so they can know the joy of performing. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist?

Etta James! My grandma, a singer, introduced me to her music at a young age. We would stand around the television and sing, “At Last” together. Her voice is hypnotizing. She is a brilliant storyteller and every time I hear her sing, I fall right into the story.

Lily Cross, 17 • Zionsville, Indiana | Zionsville Community High School Future Plans: My aspiration for the future is to do work with international

studies or business. I speak Spanish and am learning French, so language is a huge part of my life. Someday I will have two big dogs and will be writing music, hiking, and singing in my free time. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? In fourth grade we were assigned a project where we needed to select a Famous Hoosier and dress like them to embody a wax museum. I chose to dress up as Cole Porter and spent months researching and listening to all of his incredible scores.

Ava DeCroix, 17 • Middleton, Wisconsin | Middleton High School Future Plans: I hope to be able to make an impact in the world of the arts,

whether that be through performance, entrepreneurship, writing, teaching, or something else I have yet to discover! Regardless of what path I end up taking, I know that I will do my best work and be the happiest surrounded by creative people with a passion for music, stories, and connection. What do you love most about music and singing?

I love the community aspect. Music is a common language, and in my experience, those of us who “speak” it share this very special bond that is hard to find anywhere else. It is a platform that allows people from different backgrounds to come together and collaborate.

Michael Di Leo, 17 • Waban, Massachusetts | Newton South High School Future Plans: Ever since I discovered New York City and Broadway I knew in

my heart that this was where I was meant to be. In addition, I am a very passionate dancer and want to continue training and performing in the future. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? When I applied during the 2019 season I was not very knowledgeable about the music from this era until I met all these amazing artists who introduced me to the many different varieties of songs from the Great American Songbook. That one week helped me broaden my understanding of the music that founded what we listen to today.

Lydia Diekmann, 16 • Pittsford, New York | Pittsford Sutherland High School Future Plans: I always say that I want to be the person who 11-year-old me staring out at the New York City skyline looks up to. I want to be a role model to kids with big dreams and I want to help people escape the world with music and performance. When did you begin singing? My parents met doing Radio City Christmas Spectacular (my dad was on tech and my mom, a performer). I began performing when I was about three years old in a production of the Lion King, and have loved it and poured everything into music ever since.


Lauren Effertz, 15 • Los Angeles, California | Chaminade College Preparatory Future Plans: I hope to continue on to college to study voice, music, and drama.

My goal is to be able to perform professionally and make my living as an artist. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Julie Andrews! I love Julie Andrews because her vocal quality and range is amazing. She seems to glide effortlessly through songs. I also enjoy watching her theatrical performances and I look up to her as a performer and an actor.

Hayden Elefante, 18 • Zionsville, Indiana | Zionsville Community High School Future Plans: I have a desire to perform on the Broadway stage and in front of

the Hollywood camera. If I had to pick somebody to model my life after, I’d choose Hugh Jackman. His career on stage and on screen has been so impressive and speaks to his skills as a triple threat performer! What do you love most about music and singing? I love telling a story (whether that be my own or a character’s) and sharing my experiences in front of an audience. I love music because it is a universal language and impacts all of us, especially through the times where we need something to brighten our day.

Grace Elliott, 17 • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania | North Allegheny Senior High School Future Plans: My aspiration is to never let music be a chore for me or a “job”.

I want to always be creating, writing, performing, and recording music to impact people with music the same way music impacts me. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? My favorite Songbook performer is Betty Carter. She is so unpredictable and surprising in every different note she sings. I strive to have the amount of creativity, tone, pitch, and storytelling abilities that she does.

Annie Flowers, 17 • Indianapolis, Indiana | Park Tudor School Future Plans: I feel most called to international law and diplomacy. I debate

for the greatest good, and by my definition, that’s fighting for the underdog. Additionally, I’m interested in researching the gender dynamic in professions related to international relations and minoring in Mandarin and musical theater. When did you begin singing?

My parents performed at various different clubs and events in their jazz band, “The Flowers Arrangement”...ironic because my last name is Flowers. Additionally, my dad is a band teacher at my high school, thus, a greater appreciation for music, specifically jazz, is in my blood.

Jonathan Grimes, 16 • Indianapolis, Indiana | Avon High School Future Plans: My longterm goal is to become a music teacher for young

students. I was young when I was first inspired by my teachers, and I would like to gift the same inspiratioin to younger generations to come. What do you love most about music and singing? I love that music can be formed into anything you want it to be. It can be a range of emotions in one song, or it can be the only outlet you have to express your emotions in troubling times.


Mahesh Gupta, 18 • Zionsville, Indiana | Zionsville Community High School Future Plans: I aspire to become a physician working in a major hospital. I

want to specifically treat patients in poverty or of underrepresented backgrounds because I want to support this demographic which may not receive the quality of healthcare needed. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist?

Gene Kelly! I enjoy listening to his music because I feel transported into the scene with him. His songs also incorporate positive themes that I personally am attracted to no matter my mood.

Lila Harris, 16 • Ann Arbor, Michigan | Pioneer High School Future Plans: My greatest goal for the future is to be truly happy, and have a

career that I enjoy, which I hope is musical theater. I would like to be successful in my career but more importantly, enjoy my career and have a space to be creative. So far, I have found that the arts make me most happy, and give me that a creative space.. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Cole Porter! I love his music and am a big fan of his musicals such as Anything Goes and Kiss me Kate. My Mother used to play songs for me, written by Cole Porter when I was younger, so his music has been in my life for a long time.

Sean Hodges, 18 • Sterling Heights, Michigan | Interlochen Arts Academy Future Plans: My overall career goal is to become a Public Figure of

Entertainment in hopes that my efforts towards the arts will intertwine with those of the Academy’s incredible artists. Through the arts, I hope to untangle even more of who I am as I continue to grow and become the artist I am meant to be. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? The Francis Albert Sinatra. He was my first experience into the genre and so I owe the Chairman of The Board a lot in relation to his music. I respect him as a performer very very much and admire his versatility in the entertainment business as well as music industry.

Elizabeth Howlett, 16 • Lake Forest Park, Washington | Shorecrest High School Future Plans: In addition to being immersed in the world of theater and music,

I also enjoy doing math and am passionate about environmental sciences. I don’t know what I want to do with my life yet or what my adult dreams and goals are, but I will continue to study music and math and things I enjoy. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? In the fifth grade talent show I sang “Tonight” from West Side Story, and I watched the film with my family and got to see the musical in Seattle a year ago. A family friend recorded an album with all Gershwin songs and I listened to that a lot.

Natalie Johnson, 18 • Aurora, Illinois | Metea Valley High School Future Plans: My greatest career related goal right now is to become a member

of a vocal ensemble called The Voices of Liberty. They sing everyday at Walt Disney World in Epcot. The level of musicianship they exhibit as member of that ensemble is amazing and I hope to one day be apart of the ensemble. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Ella Fitzgerald! While I know this may sound predicable or generic, her artistry paved the way for jazz vocalists. Her level of musicianship and her impact in the jazz community is something that cannot be topped.


Eleni Kontzamanys, 19 • Cora Gables, Florida | New World School of the Arts Future Plans: I would like to be a working actress, singer, and dancer in

musicals, but I would also love to write my own music on the side and hopefully produce my own my albums. I would like to be a leader in the group of artists who tell stories for those who can’t. As long as I’m creating meaningful art, I’m happy.

Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Sarah Vaughan! I love her vocal clarity, how deep her voice is, her control, how incredibly rich and smooth it is, and her insane range. Sarah Vaughan navigates each song she sings with such ease and she always adds her own twist to every song she sings.

Tessa Korver, 16 • Seattle, Washington | Roosevelt High School Future Plans: I’m not sure what I want to do in the future but I guess my goal is

to discover my strengths and use them in a positive way. I want to be myself. What do you love most about music and singing?

My favorite Songbook performer is Ella Fitzgerald she was the first woman to become majorly successful in jazz, and she set the framework for being a financially independent woman during her time. Today her style is still learned from and admired by everybody, especially in the jazz world.

Ellie Lauter, 16 • Larkspur, California | Redwood High School Future Plans: I hope to someday be a working singer and actress who will sing

songs I love and participate in projects that I am proud of. If I do turn out to be a singer and performer, I hope to influence people with my storytelling and provide people with an escape from everyday life. What do you love most about music and singing? Music is one aspect of my life that has always been a constant for me, and will always be something that I can turn to during hard moments in my life. Singing is one of the only ways in which I feel like I can express myself accurately.

Emily Legg, 17 • Fishers, Indiana | Fishers High School Future Plans: My dream is to pursue musical theater throughout college and

throughout my life. I love performing and being on stage and cannot wait to see where my passion and hard work takes me. I want to continue performing and be someone that can inspire others to pursue their dreams. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? I love listening to the golden era of Broadway, and having the ability to see the progression of musical theater. It’s really the beginning of so many genres, and the foundation of all music. The Great American Songbook is like a time capsule of appreciable music.

Rob Luedtke, 17 • Sugar Grove, Illinois | Kaneland High School Future Plans: My biggest aspiration is to keep living life in color. I hope to

continue being creative. I never want to stop creating art, whether it be singing, theatre, fashion, photography, painting, or videography. What do you love most about music and singing? The power of music is like no other. I am the happiest when I sing. Singing and dancing around my room while listening to jazz always puts a big smile on my face.


Maggie MacKenzie, 17 • La Cañada Flintridge, California | La Cañada High School Future Plans: As cliche as it may be, I would love to be a Broadway actress one

day. Theater is something so thrilling, and provides people with an experience they will always remember. Theater has brought so much joy into my life, and I would love to be able to do the same for others one day. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Nat King Cole! He has such a warm, comforting tone. It is just so beautiful. I love his renditions of the Songbook pieces, and how he can portray his emotions so well through his music.

Alexa Margolius, 17 • Avon, Indiana | Avon High School Future Plans: Ever since I was young I wanted to be a professional singer in the

commercial music area, and I want to continue to chase that dream and make it my reality. Are you involved in extracurricular activities? I will be starting my fourth year in Accents--Avon High Schools Mixed Show Choir and my fourth year in Chamber Singers Advanced Concert Choir. I just joined a band with some of my friends as a lead singer and enjoy leading worship at my church.

Oliviana Marie, 17 • Los Angeles, California | Laurel Springs School Future Plans: I know that as long as I am involved in the arts, I will be happy!

Since I love both writing and performing, probably my greatest goal would be to write and star in my own Broadway musical. Some of my idols are Sara Bareilles, Betty Comden, Lin Manuel-Miranda and Rachel Bloom. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? Yes, the Great American Songbook is one of my favorite eras of music! My Godfather was a composer of this time who had songs recorded by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Tony Bennett, Peggy Lee, Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Bing Crosby, Dinah Shore and more.

Graham Montgomery, 17 • Bossier City, Louisiana | Loyola College Preparatory School Future Plans: My greatest goal would be to win a Tony Award. However, if we

doubt our dreams, they will never happen for us. I would love to be like Brian Stokes Mitchell someday. He has portrayed so many different characters within his career and has given 150% for all his performances! Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Frank Sinatra is my idol. His voice carries such an uplifting sound. As cheesy as it may sound, his voice makes me feel as if I’m in the clouds with no worries. I have tried to shape my voice like his simply because of that beautiful sound it makes.

Quiana Morris, 17 • Savannah, Georgia | Savannah Arts Academy Future Plans: My greatest goal in life is to build a career off of my dream.

I dream to sing in New York with an opera or an orchestra as my profession, while still booking jazz events. I also dream to own some music organization or corporation where people can showcase their talents just as I do now. When did you begin singing? I would sing with my mom, aunt, and grandmother as they would sing gospel songs and hymns around the piano. I never understood that I had the gift of singing, because my mother could sing; I thought it was normal, until I earned my first solo in the kindergarten Christmas Showcase.


Grace Mozitis, 18 • Linwood, New Jersey | Mainland Regional High School Future Plans: I have decided to be a vocal teacher and possibly work in a school

or create my own platform. Having a life changing experience on a daily would truly be impactful. I want to change young adults lives just like Songbook did for me.

Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? I became familiar with the Great American Songbook after performing in a Cole Porter Review in my town. I have went on to perform “I Get a Kick Out of You”, “Dream A Little Dream”, and “If My Friends Could See Me Now” at local events.

Grant Nalty, 18 • Doylestown, Pennsylvania | Central Bucks High School West Future Plans: My current goal is to be an actor in live theater or film. I also

want to constantly improve myself through piano, singing, and acting. I’ll be completely satisfied with my life if I can keep doing music and acting in some way. What do you love most about music and singing? Through music I have met so many amazing people and started to figure out who I am as a person. I always had trouble concentrating on certain subjects in school. With music, I can completely focus in because I love it. It has given me confidence in myself like nothing else.

Ava Nicole Frances, 16 • San Francisco, California | Ruth Asowa School of the Arts Future Plans: My goal is to ultimately be on Broadway. I want to be new and

original and authentic. I want to change people’s lives through music, but I want to do it as me. When did you begin singing? I grew up in a very musical family and one of my dads and I would watch all the classic musicals. I would learn entire scores to these musicals and my dad and I would recreate the musical numbers in our living room. I actually became the character with homemade costumes, accents, choreography, you name it!

Cara Nowlin, 17 • Carmel, Indiana | Carmel High School Future Plans: My future goal is to be a songwriter and singer. I write songs

mostly about overcoming tough times and I hope to continue to write this type of song. If someone can hear my songs and feel hopeful, encouraged or inspired I will have attained my greatest goal. What do you love most about music and singing? I love most that it helps me express myself and my emotions. It is a release and therapy, and whenever I am singing or playing the piano, I feel transported and in a more positive mood. Music has the power to give hope, and I know it has done this for me.

Alexandria Reese, 16 • Chicago, Illinois | Lincoln-Way Central High School Future Plans: I am so grateful to have music in my life, so my number one

aspiration would be to have the opportunity to share it with everyone. I crave to be a part of projects that inspire and raise awareness! I would love to teach and mentor as well, and share my knowledge with aspiring singers! Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Billie Holiday! Her voice told stories when she sang, every performance I heard she was emotional and raw. She of course, advocated for herself and her community, and “Strange Fruit” will forever give me chills.


Olivia Scott, 16 • Panama City, Florida | A Crawford Mosley High School Future Plans: I know that I want to continue with music in my future. It might be

through musical theater, music education or even just joining a church choir. But one day, I would love to have another professional gig in the theater. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? Earlier this year I met my best friend and through her I was introduced to the Songbook Era. She’s completely obsessed with it and I can totally see why. The music is just beautiful and nothing like we’ve heard before. My desire just to learn more about it grew, and to have an oppoortunity like the Songbook Academy to learn more about it and how my voice can expland upon it is absolutely amazing.

Samantha Shelton, 18 • Avon, Indiana | Avon High School Future Plans: My greatest goal for the future is to help people and showcase

the importance of music through performing. I want to inspire people to be unapologetically themselves and pursue their dreams, no matter how crazy they might seem. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist?

Rosemary Clooney! When I was eleven, I played Susan Waverly in a production of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas and fell in love with the music and the movie. Whenever I watch Clooney perform, I feel all of the emotions she is presenting.

Leah Spurlock, 18 • Noblesville, Indiana | Noblesville High School Future Plans: My greatest goal for the future is to be a successful musical

theatre actress on Broadway or on a national tour. My dream is to become someone who doesn’t see their job as work, because it is their biggest passion in life and they get immense joy out of it every single day. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? My dad would play this music while my family ate a candlelit pasta dinner, and artists like Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby were very popular in my house around Christmas. I also really enjoy swing dancing, and was exposed to a lot of the Songbook through those events.

Amanda Swickle, 15 • Jericho, New York | Jericho Senior High School Future Plans: My future goal is to share my voice on a large scale, on big

beautiful stages, in front of large crowds. LIke Linda Eder, Katharine McPhee and Celine Dion. Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? I love Barbra Streisand. Her voice is incredible - her tone, poise and the feelings she exudes is one of a kind and I love to listen to her. I’m also inspired by her perseverance and determination to get to where she is today.

Victoria Lourdes Whatley, 17 • Fairhope, Alabama | Baldwin County Virtual School Future Plans: My goal is to make a wonderful living as a performer singing

acting or playing the violin at the highest level. My dream is to be on Broadway and I would like to also be a soloist or in a band that performs only music. Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? As soon I as found out about Songbook Academy, I started researching and listening to the genre. I went down a rabbit hole finding new music and worlds - it was just so fantastic! I still have so much to learn and it is really thrilling. I love this music and I love singing these songs.


Brooke Wilson, 16 • Shreveport, Louisiana | C E Byrd High School Future Plans: My greatest goal is to live in New York and sing on Broadway.

One of my favorite role models is Sutton Foster.

Who is your favorite Songbook performer or artist? I have been a singer for as long as I can remember. My first solo performance was at a Christmas Musical in the first grade. Since then, I have continued to sing through school, church and musical theater. I feel as though the ability to sing and play music is a gift that I have been given. It is also a way that I express myself and it is therapeutic.

Camden Zetty, 16 • Avon, Indiana | Avon High School Future Plans: I hope to continue to learn and grow as a musician! Prior to auditioning for the Songbook Academy, were you familiar with the music of the Great American Songbook? I was first introduced to the Great American Songbook by Joshua Pedde, the Artistic Director for the Indianapolis Children’s Choir. He shared with us his dad’s records and stories around the music in preparation for our Great American Songbook concert during the 2016-2017 season.

ENJOY THE SHOW CAP OFF THE PERFECT EVENING WITH RUTH’S. Downtown or Indy North, dine in or take away from a family-owned favorite. 14



GUEST MENTORS Michael Feinstein, Master of Ceremonies

The founder of the Songbook Foundation – the multi-platinumselling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook – is considered one of the premier interpreters of American standards. His 200-plus shows a year have included performances at Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera House and the Hollywood Bowl as well as the White House and Buckingham Palace. More than simply a performer, Feinstein has received national recognition for his commitment to celebrating America’s popular song and preserving its legacy for the next generation. In 2007, he founded the Great American Songbook Foundation, dedicated to celebrating the art form and preserving it through educational programs, masterclasses, and the annual Songbook Academy. Michael also serves on the Library of Congress’ National Recording Preservation Board, an organization dedicated to ensuring the survival, conservation and increased public availability of America’s sound recording heritage for future generations.

Ashley Park originated and starred as “Gretchen Wieners”

in Mean Girls on Broadway, which garnered her a Tony Award nomination, as well as Drama League, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and Chita Rivera Award nominations. She starred in the award winning KPOP and won the esteemed Lucille Lortel Award for Lead Actress in a Musical, Drama League and Drama Desk nominations. Park was Lincoln Center Theater’s “Tuptim” in the Tony-Award-winning Broadway revival of The King and I, originated the national tour of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella as stepsister “Gabrielle,” appeared in Broadway’s recent revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park With George, and made her Broadway debut in MAMMA MIA! Park is the proud recipient of Actors’ Equity Association’s 2018 Clarence Derwent Award, and the inaugural Marin Mazzie Award for Empowerment by the Cancer Support Community. Park graduated from the University of Michigan with a BFA in Musical Theatre.


GUEST MENTORS Faith Prince has been dazzling Broadway audiences since

winning the Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for her performance as “Ms. Adelaide” in Guys and Dolls. As one of Broadway’s best-loved leading ladies, Faith most recently starred on Broadway in Disaster! the musical. In a role she was born to play, she starred as “Miss Hannigan” in the Broadway revival of Annie and was nominated in 2008 for Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for A Catered Affair. Other Broadway credits include The Little Mermaid, Bells Are Ringing (Tony, DD, OCC noms), Nick & Nora (OCC Award), Jerome Robbins’ Broadway (Tony, DD noms) Little Me, The Dead, and Noises Off. Faith had a recurring role on the ABC hit series Modern Family. Faith’s new album, Total Faith, was recently released by Broadway Records, and her award-winning album, A Leap of Faith, was recorded at Joe’s Pub.

Janis Siegel, a nine-time Grammy winner and a 17-time

Grammy nominee, has been an undeniable force in The Manhattan Transfer’s diverse musical catalog. Alongside her career as a founding member of this musical institution, Siegel has also sustained a solo career that has spawned more than a half-dozen finely crafted solo albums and numerous collaborative projects, amassed a large international fan base and garnered consistently high critical praise. She sang lead on some of the Transfer’s biggest hits, such as “Operator,” “Chanson D’Amour,” “Twilight Zone,” “Birdland,” and co-wrote and sang lead on the Grammy-winning “Sassy.” She also gained a reputation as a vocal arranger by writing five of the charts for the group’s acclaimed masterwork, Vocalese, seven charts for the group’s Grammy-winning album Brasil, and won a Grammy herself in 1980 for her arrangement of “Birdland.”

Scott Bradlee, creator of the multimedia Postmodern Jukebox

empire, is a musician, pianist and arranger best known for his viral videos on YouTube. Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox began as a series of online videos featuring a collective of musicians and vocalists performing contemporary pop hits in various vintage musical styles while wearing period fashions. The ever-growing collection of viral videos has amassed nearly 1.4 billion views and 4.5 million subscribers to the project’s YouTube channel, and the PMJ brand now encompasses recordings, merchandise and multiple touring ensembles. Many of the performers have become stars in their own right. In Scott’s words, “My own musical education began with American jazz standards, and to this day I come back to them time and time again for inspiration. When I learned about the mission of the Songbook Foundation and the Songbook Academy, I wanted to be a part of it.” 17



Jeff Harris is a pianist, composer, arranger, conductor and lyricist who has worked with Chaka Khan, Jack Jones, Barbara Cook, Marilyn Maye, Michael Feinstein and Cleo Laine. With Maureen McGovern, he has played and arranged for seven of her CDs, written many songs and appeared frequently on television and in concert. He frequently appears with leading symphony orchestras and has worked on Broadway as pianist-conductor for shows including Gypsy, On the Town, Fosse and Beauty and the Beast. Russ Kassoff is a jazz pianist, conductor, music director, composer, orchestrator and arranger who toured for many years with Frank Sinatra and Liza Minnelli. On Broadway, he was music director and conductor for Twyla Tharp’s Come Fly Away and was conductor-pianist for Charles Aznavour in concert. He has served as music director for Rita Moreno since 2003 and has accompanied and/or recorded with Perry Como, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Carly Simon and Luciano Pavarotti, among other artists.


Beckie Menzie has appeared at such venues as Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center and Birdland in New York and Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre and Park West. Hailed by WGN Radio as “indispensable to Chicago cabaret,” she has performed at many Mabel Mercer Cabaret Conventions in New York and Chicago and has served as a performer, director and musical director for the Chicago Humanities Festival. She conducts masterclasses across the country and tours regularly with vocalist Tom Michael.


Melanie Shore is an accomplished performer, soughtafter studio musician and award-winning composer and arranger who has performed with artists including Chuck Berry, Il Divo, Lea Salonga, David Archuleta, Debby Boone, Restless Heart and Collin Raye. She has worked on many national Broadway tours, most recently as associate music director/conductor for the first U.S. national tour of Matilda the Musical. She is an associate professor of jazz piano at Snow College, University of Utah and Utah Valley University.



Daryl Kojak is a pianist, musical director, producer, composer, arranger and songwriter based in NYC. He has worked with Robin Williams, Billy Crystal, Kristin Chenoweth, Vicki Sue Robinson, George Coleman, Randy Brecker, Kurt Elling, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Mary Testa, Alison Fraser, Emily Skinner, Sandra Bernhard, André De Shields, Sheila Jordan, Jay Clayton, Sheldon Harnick, Tessa Souter, Richard Belzer, Tiny Tim, Ben Vereen, Catherine Russell, Laurie Krauz, Jackie Hoffman, Phoebe Snow, Spider Saloff, Paige Price and Nancy Lamott, among others. Daryl has composed music for film, television, stage and artist’s recordings.

VOCAL COACHES Kathleen Hacker, soprano, made her New York debut as soloist with the American Symphony Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall and has sung with major symphony orchestras across the country and appeared at the Marlboro, Bard and Aspen music festivals. A professor of music and Director of Vocal Studies at the University of Indianapolis, Hacker holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music and earned her doctorate of music from Indiana University.


Elaine Moebius earned her degree in music education from Capital University and taught vocal music for 36 years at schools in Columbus and Delaware, Ohio, and Mooresville, Indiana. Currently a private voice instructor and vocal clinician in central Indiana, she has been a choral and show choir adjudicator in Wisconsin, Illinois, Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky and Indiana and is currently a site coordinator for ISSMA-sanctioned show choir events. Daniel Narducci, baritone, has performed on opera, concert and musical theater stages from Lincoln Center to the Great Hall of the People in Beijing and has appeared with many of the world’s most prestigious orchestras. He played the role of Lancelot during two national tours of Camelot, most notably opposite Robert Goulet’s King Arthur. Narducci holds a doctoral degree in voice from Indiana University and serves on the faculty at the University of Indianapolis. Lynne Rothrock is an entertainer and arts educator who has performed as a solo artist at venues including Birdland (NYC), the Bluebird Café (Nashville), Davenport’s Cabaret (Chicago), Aster Cafe (Minneapolis) and Crown & Anchor (Cape Cod, MA). She has worked as an actress and musical director for theater companies around the country and has taught at Western Michigan, Roosevelt and Ambrose universities, currently serving as instructor of Musical Theatre at Luther College.


Catherine Walker holds a master’s degree in Choral Conducting from Western Michigan University and has worked extensively as a musical director, most recently on productions of Next to Normal, The Great American Trailer Park Musical, Parade, Blood Brothers, Urinetown, The Light in the Piazza and Shenandoah, starring Robert Newman of TV’s Guiding Light. Her work as a choral conductor has been recognized by the Michigan School Vocal Music Association and the American Choral Directors Association. Catherine is an associate professor of music in the Department of Musical Theatre at the University of Michigan. 19

GET INVOLVED APPLY FOR THE SONGBOOK ACADEMY® “To my second home, I will forever be grateful for you and everything you have taught me. I would like to write a whole book about how much I learned about myself as a performer and as a person. May the Academy live on today, tomorrow, and forever.” – Grace Mozitis ’18-20 Current finalist Grace Mozitis is wrapping up her third and final year attending the Songbook Academy. For her senior documentary, she shared with us the impact this program has had on her growth as a human being and as a young artist. If you’re questioning whether to apply, watch this.

Eligibility: High school students who are U.S. residents and live in the 50 continental United States are invited to apply to our annual Songbook Academy summer music intensive. How to Apply: Singers submit video recordings of themselves performing two contrasting selections from the Great American Songbook by visiting our Acceptd application. All Songbook Academy applicants receive written feedback from the screeners who assess their performances! 2021 Program: 40 students will be invited to participate in a week-long performance intensive on the campus of the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, Indiana, the home of the Great American Songbook Foundation, from July 17–24, 2021. *Subject to the recommendations of COVID-19 in the coming months and the recommendations of local and national health officials

For more information about the Songbook Academy, visit TheSongbook.org/ SongbookAcademy or email songbookacademy@thesongbook.org. 20

GET INVOLVED WATCH WEEKLY MASTERCLASS MOMENTS Once a year isn’t enough? Now you can stream some of the most magical Songbook Academy masterclass moments on our Facebook page EVERY Monday night! Our new video series, Masterclass Moments, features archival highlights from masterclasses and workshops at our annual Songbook Academy ® summer intensive, where arts and entertainment professionals like Michael Feinstein, Broadway’s Laura Osnes, and TV producer Marc Cherry share their hard-won expertise with talented high school singers from across the nation. Check out one of our recent episodes featuring 2020 finalist and ’19 alum Michael Di Leo performing “All I Need Is the Girl” from the musical Gypsy:

HOW TO WATCH: New episodes will premiere at 7:30 p.m. EDT each Monday on the Songbook Academy Facebook page and Instagram TV. UPCOMING EPISODE – July 13, 2020: Catch our exclusive Songbook Academy week episode featuring 2018 alum Gabe Schonman singing “No More Blues” by Antonio Carlos Jobim. Michael Feinstein and Marc Cherry coach Gabe on crafting longer, more connected phrases and adding intensity and life to the lyric to take his performance to the next level! Watch here. 21













SONGBOOK ACADEMY MENTOR CHAMPIONS The Songbook Academy begins its second decade with a focus on expanding program awareness and building diversity among participants. To aid this effort, Mentor Champions have stepped up to provide funds to bolster marketing efforts, reach more educators, and promote scholarship opportunities for students of need. Their generosity makes the transformative Songbook Academy available to talented students who otherwise may not have had the chance to attend. Thank you to the Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation and the following donors for helping the Songbook Academy continue to grow in its second decade. Mentor Champions financially support the Songbook Academy and have special access to behind-the-scenes sessions with the Mentor of their choosing during Songbook Academy week: THE JOHN AND DIANE ABRAMS MENTOR












Only 10 Mentor Champion positions are available each year. To learn how you can make an impact on the lives of young artists, contact Marissa Nielsen, Individual Giving Officer, at MNielsen@TheSongbook.org or 317.844.9454.


Friends Thank you to the following individuals and organizations that have contributed to the Great American Songbook Foundation annual fund during the past year. This list reflects gifts received through July 1, 2020. For more information, please contact the Development Office at 317.819.3520.

ANNUAL FUND Diamond Songbook Legacy ($100,000+) City of Carmel Marc Cherry Michael Feinstein & Terrence Flannery William M. Goodwin Sue & Paul Lowden Seedlings Foundation Bren Simon

Songbook Society Platinum ($50,000-$99,999) The Music Man Foundation National Endowment for the Arts

Gold Songbook Legacy ($25,000-$49,999) Robert & Melody Grand Francine A. LeFrak and the Samuel and Ethel LeFrak Trust Dr. & Mrs. Charles M. Simons Bill & Lynn Weidner

Silver Songbook Legacy ($15,000-$24,999) Beineke Memorial Fund, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation Randy & Libby Brown Stan & Sandy Hurt Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation Indiana Arts Commission Central Indiana Senior Fund, a CICF Fund Ruth’s Chris Steak House The Ted Snowdon Foundation

Bronze Songbook Legacy ($10,000-$14,999) Lisa & Paul Andre Mr. and Mrs. Terry W. Anker 24

Gary Carnow Don & Pam Gottwald Karen & Doug Kelsey Maria Ferrer Murdock Izabela & Ersal Ozdemir Troy Payner & Cara Peggs Roger Schmelzer & Lucinda Phillips American Senior Communities Christel DeHaan Family Foundation Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation Ray and Bernice Charles Trust Van Heusen Music Corp.

Hollywood Musical ($5,000-$9,999) Diane & John Abrams Philanthropic Fund Melissa & Bradon Barnes Hal Brody & Don Smith Cheri & Rollie Dick Michael & Margie Draper Bronwen & Marvin Ferguson Peggy Ford William & Barb Hammer Jeffrey C. McDermott Albert B. & Audrey G. Ratner Family Foundation Brian and Kelly Smith Applegate & Dillman Elder Law The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation Salon 01

Broadway Show ($2,500-$4,999) Carla Gordon Jim & Ray Luther-Pfeil Pat & John Schuler Dr. Pamela Steed James B. Winner The Edward and Helen Oppenheimer Foundation

Cabaret ($1,000-$2,499) Jack Bethards Mrs. Sydney Jeanne Book Helen M. Eby Mr. & Mrs. Mark Fine Marjorie M. Fisher Hargrove Pierce Foundation Sam & Mary Haskell Peggy Lee Associates, LLC Rick & Cindy Leffler Chris & Kelli Lewis

Ruth Ann & Bob Loser Ginny Mancini Dr. & Mrs. Ronald T. Maus Timothy S. Needler Dr. Michael & Sharon O’Hair Michael Pettry & John Mainella James & Lilah Rabe Alicia Michal Rasmussen Bruce & Jan Reynolds Sunny Sessa Maryanne Siek Jon & Cleo Sonneborn Susan Springirth Sheila M. Stone Saundra & Mark Truett Mitch & Julie Tull Lawrence Weeda Barrie & Margaret Zimmerman Anonymous

Big Band ($500-$999) The Di Leo Family Leslee & Wayne Feinstein Nancy A. Hague Tom & Priscilla Johnson Marjorie Kimes Thomas Kinney Dr. Greg & Rose-Ann Mazanek Joe & Lisa Miller The Rains Family, Michael, Kathryn & Logan Rains Vivian Serota Jerry & DeAnn Shrewsbury Joel Ulster & Michael Hertzman Robert Zaret

Tin Pan Alley ($250-$499) Sheryl Anastas Elbert Bradshaw Sheila Delaney Mr. & Mrs. Hector DesMoine Janice Fitzgerald Roger & Susan Frick Joan & David Golding Mary Kay Graham Linda Hope Karen E. Kennedy Michele Lee Halle Lipton Lisa Lobdell Jerry & Harriet McDermott Mills Family Fund Todd Neal

Hesh Reinfeld John & Madelaine Schiering Spirit Music Group Robert & Suellen Swaney Elayne Techentin Hal & Kathy Thurston Chad & Lynn Winston Barbara Wulfe

MATCHING GIFT COMPANIES Apple, Inc. Bank of America Foundation The Capital Group Companies Charitable Foundation Eli Lilly and Company Foundation

MEMORIAL & HONOR GIFTS In honor of Michael Feinstein & Terrence Flannery Leslee & Wayne Feinstein In honor of Michael Feinstein Albert B. & Audrey G. Ratner Family Foundation In memory of Miss Ella Fitzgerald, the beloved First Lady of Song Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation In honor of Terrence Flannery Hargrove Pierce Foundation In memory of Muriel & Bob Kennedy Karen Kennedy In memory of Mr. & Mrs. Adrian Levy, Jr. and Mr. & Mrs. Adrian Levy, Sr. The Edward and Helen Oppenheimer Foundation In memory of Cloyce Menzie Carla Gordon In memory of John Muldowny Sheila M. Stone In honor of Todd Neal The Capital Group Companies Charitable Foundation

LEGACY GIFTS The Legacy Society recognizes and thanks dedicated individuals who are leaving a future legacy to Great American Songbook Foundation. Cheri & Rollie Dick The Family of Louis F. Edelman Peggy Ford Jeffrey C. McDermott Susan Springirth


BOARD OF DIRECTORS Michael Feinstein Founder Roger Schmelzer Chair Karen Kelsey Vice Chair Rollin Dick Treasurer William Hammer Secretary Carolyn E. Anker Immediate Past Chair


Libby Brown Gary Carnow Marc Cherry Terrence Flannery Peggy Ford Don Gottwald Stan Hurt Kate Edelman Johnson Karen Kelsey Paul Lowden Maria Ferrer Murdock Izabela Ozdemir Troy Payner, M.D. Charles Simons, D.D.S., M.S.D. Michael Strunsky Lynn Weidner Michael Feinstein (Member Emeritus) Irwin Helford (Member Emeritus) Ronald G. Shaw (Member Emeritus)

PROGRAM & PRODUCTION CREDITS MUSIC, VIDEO & EDITING Editing by Wayne Images – Perry & Jeri Reichanadter Footage of Michael Feinstein – Bradley McNett Footage of Students – Top 40 finalists and families Piano Tracks – generously recorded by our Songbook Academy Music Directors SONGBOOK 101 GUEST SPEAKERS Brook Babcock (great nephew of Jimmy Van Heusen) Michael Charles (son of Ray Charles [arranger]) Mercedes Ellington (granddaughter of Duke Ellington) Holly Foster Wells (granddaughter of Peggy Lee) Andy Marx (grandson of Gus Kahn) The Music Man Foundation Mark Cabaniss (connection to Rosemary and Meredith Willson) ALUM APPEARANCES: Sadie Fridley (2018-19), Melinda Rodriguez (2013), Gabe Schonman (2018), Wilson Smith (2017) NATIONAL SCREENERS: Dr. Kathleen Hacker, Daniel Narducci, Beckie Menzie, Elaine Moebius, Lynne Rothrock, Catherine A. Walker

STAFF CREDITS SONGBOOK FOUNDATION STAFF Michael Feinstein Founder Jeffrey C. McDermott President/CEO

Devin Schonsheck Lead Audio Engineer Julia Shildmyer-Heighway Director of Education & Community Engagement Jeff Steeg Vice President of Operations DEVELOPMENT Michael Pettry Vice President of Development Braden Hurley Director of Partnership Development Kendra Latta Director of Individual Development Sheila Delaney Development Strategy & Research Manager Robin Briskey Annual Fund & Corporate Relations Manager Tara Eubanks Individual Giving Associate Sara Landrum Kristina Davis Grant Writers FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION Susan Springirth Chief Financial Officer Christie Gardner Director of Human Resources Cynthia Ille Controller Nancy Hamilton Accounting & Human Resources Manager

Chris Lewis Executive Director

Michelle Oakley Accounting Specialist

Lisa Lobdell Archivist

Lisa Stanke Administrative Assistant/Board Liaison

Renée La Schiazza Director of Programs Marissa Nielsen Individual Giving Officer Chelsea Reynowsky Program Coordinator

SONGBOOK ACADEMY ONLINE TECH SUPPORT *Special thanks to the staff members listed below who helped pivot our live program to an online format

Maryan Douglas Administrative Assistant MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Mark Truett Vice President of Marketing & Communications Becky Lee Meacham Director of Marketing Scott Hall Director of Communications John A. Moskal II Business Intelligence Administrator

Tim Todd Director of Production

Katie Breden Social Media & Digital Marketing Coordinator

Ben Dobler Lead Video Engingeer

Kalie Clark Graphics Production Coordinator


THE 2020 ®



Profile for The Center for the Performing Arts

2020 The Songbook Academy Program book | Online Summer Music Intensive  

For the first time ever, the Great American Songbook Foundation will provide streaming online coverage of key events from its annual Songboo...

2020 The Songbook Academy Program book | Online Summer Music Intensive  

For the first time ever, the Great American Songbook Foundation will provide streaming online coverage of key events from its annual Songboo...


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