Current News Archive Pre-2023
Host Michael Musto with honorees Loni Ackerman, Bobby Hedglin-Tayhlor, Linda Rose Iennaco, Yvonne Puckett, Roger Pucket and DO40 president John Sefakis
14th ANNUAL LEGACY AWARDS NOW IN THE HISTORY BOOKS!
At the honorees table, L to R: Host Michael Musto, Linda Rose Iennaco, DO40 president John Sefakis, Roger Puckett, Yvonne Puckett, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor and Loni Ackerman)
Our December 5th DO40 Legacy Awards were a huge hit! So much talent on stage, so many decades of service to the community - and STILL paying it back to the next generation! Honorees Loni Ackerman, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Linda Rose Iennaco, Yvonne and Roger Puckett were in top form (and all with short speeches!) Host Michael Musto announced and DO40 president John Sefakis accepted the award in honor of DO40 Advisory Board Member Caterina Valente, who now lives in Switzerland. Extra special performances by Boudoir LeFleur and Busted livened up the evening, featuring numbers from our honorees' careers. More photos and video clips to follow of all of the illustrious dancers in the audience, and super supportive family members and friends as well.
Fabulously full room at LIPS Restaurant!
In the audience, former DO40 Legacy Award honorees Lawrence Leritz, Leni Anders, Sharon Wendrow, Virginia Seidel, Sasha Spielvogel, Lori Tan Chinn, Susan Sigrist, Mary Jane Houdina, Ed Gaynes, Francis J. Roach, Karin Baker, Joy Serio Dunbar, Mercedes Ellington, James Dybas and Mary McCatty. Also in the audience, members Darlene Larson, Kurt Peterson, Greg Kayne, Francine Storey, Jean Preece, Annie Johnson, Carole Banninger, Judy Wong, Tom McRoberts, Damon Evans, Trudy Carson Sales, Ken Bloom and more, as well as family and friends of all the honorees. A truly FULL HOUSE! Stay tuned to our website for updates!
DO40 members James Dybas, Advisory Board member Lori Tan Chinn, Damon Evans and Lawrence Leritz
DANCERS OVER 40 RAISES OVER $4,700.00 AT A JOYOUS BC/EFA FLEA MARKET SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25TH DESPITE THE RAINDROPS THAT KEPT FALLIN’ ON OUR … MERCH!
Hail, Hail, the gang's almost all there! So many volunteers, some came in the AM, some in the PM, and some stayed all day! With Ken Bloom, DO40 prez John Sefakis, Sandy Nance, Charles Kirsch, Sharon Wendrow, Virginia Seidel, Patti Mariano, Francine Storey, David Schmittou, Sasha Spielvogel, Scott Raneri, JoAnn Marianso, Greg Kayne, Karin Baker, Patrick McCarthy and Mary McCatty. (not shown, Susan Sigrist, Penny Worth and board member Eileen Casey and three wonderful BC/EFA volunteers who helped with Playbill patrol and charge card central!)
Well, what can you say about Mother Nature (remember, you don’t fool around with her!). All the tables had to call it a day at 4pm instead of 6pm because of an oncoming “deluge” that never came, just sputtered and then stopped. So, unfortunately, we couldn’t beat last year’s total, but did pretty well despite the semi-lousy-looking weather. Other than that, the temps were mild, the crowd was strong (at least at our five DO40 tables!) and selling was brisk! But we have to remind ourselves we ARE 16 years older than when we started with just one itsy-bitzy table and $1,200 in sales in 2007. These ole bones can’t cart around as many heavy boxes of Playbills any more! And standing on concrete the entire day like our intrepid, valiant and resolute members Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Ken Bloom, Board members Sharon Wendrow and Patrick McCarthy and DO40 prez John Sefakis did meant Advil or Alleve when they got home!
The ladies who sell! Sandy Nance, The flying Mariano sisters, JoAnne and Patti, Susan Sigrist, Sasha Spielvogel and DO40 prez John Sefakis
Most of our members volunteered for 3-4 hour shifts, and we appreciated every minute! Our youngest member, Charles Kirsch, we’re sure sailed through the day (he just turned 15!). The others of our gallant group included Sandy Nance, Francine Storey, Lawrence Leritz, Scott Raneri, Mary McCatty, Karin Baker and hubby Greg, Sasha Spielvogel, Susan Sigrist, the flying Mariano sisters, Patti and JoAnn, Penny Worth, Eileen Casey and our beefy, helpful luggers Fernando Carillo, Scott Raneri and Bobby Hedglin-Taylor. Our Playbill tables actually looked like a beehive, with worker bees coming and going, darting around the tables to find that ONE Playbill that they just HAD to HAVE! And we had Playbills going all the way back to 1927 and a book of theater seating charts from 1901!! Show jackets were a hit, including Sunday in the Park with George, My One and Only, Stop the World, 42nd Street and Radio City Music Hall Rockettes. And with or without the real Sutton Foster, our Sutton Foster box of clothing (she never wore) was again a huge hit and Instagram sensation. However, we realized, we never put our DO40 logo on our little joke placard! Next year! It’s all about branding!
Sandy Nance with our ever-popular Sutton Foster and Donna McKechnie bins!
Seen browsing, producer Ed Gaynes and wife Pamela Hall, Fosse honcho Brian Cumming and media maven Michael Musto, Christopher Seiber, BC/EFA exec Tom Viola and Flea market producer Valerie Lau-Kee Lai. We’re sure more celebs stopped by, but we were too busy selling to look up to see!
OUR HISTORY, OUR LEGACY, OUR MEMBERS!
DO40 ZOOM MEMBERSHIP MEETING SEPT. 19TH
WITH A VARIETY OF DANCERS FROM ALL DISCIPLINES
Great DO40 Zoom Membership meeting Monday night, highlighting our upcoming season - and of course our members! There were Broadway, ballet, modern, tap and jazzers, singers, trapeze and circus performers and actors - don’t forget about them (!!!) - all represented. In attendance (and in computer order!) DO40 president John Sefakis (taking the computer selfie), Scott Raneri, DO40 board member Sasha Spielvogel, Joy Serio Dunbar, Ellen Fluhr, DO40 board member and 2022 Legacy Honoree Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Martha Warschau, Kurt Peterson, Mary McCatty, Tom McRoberts, 2022 Legacy Honoree Linda Rose Iennaco, DO40 board member Lawrence Leritz, Judy Wong (live from London!) James Dybas, Candy Brown (live from Colorado) Leni Anders, DO40 Legacy Honorees Yvonne and Roger Puckett, Michon Peacock (looking to maybe... move back to NYC from Colorado!) DO40 board members Patrick McCarthy and Eileen Casey, Karmen Herman (not seen) and co-host Joshua Wellman. Linda Rose Iennaco spoke about her upcoming events on body wellness and Kurt Peterson discussed his upcoming concert at Merkin Hall celebrating the DIVAS he has worked with throughout the years. And NOW, looking for volunteers for the Broadway Cares/EFA Flea Market this Sunday, September 25th, 10 - 6 in Shubert Alley. We have FIVE TABLES on our favorite corner, 44th and Eighth Avenue. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you can volunteer!
42 YEARS OF MEMORIES FROM THE CAST OF 42ND STREET
DO40 prez John Sefakis with cast and crew members of the original 42nd Street: Joel Blum, Nikki Sahagen, Karin Baker, Lee Roy Reams, Tony Parise, Lars Rosager, Cathy Greco, Linda Carelli, Carole Banninger and Arturo Porazzi
It was quite a memorable night at the Triad Theater, Wednesday, August 24th where Dancers over 40 celebrated the 42nd Anniversary and Reunion of the original Broadway cast of 42nd Street. DO40’s first “official” panel & performance was a celebration of Gower Champion in 2008, and then a David Merrick event in 2019 which featured the cast. Of course COVID prevented a real 40th anniversary of the show – so when former DO40 board member Karin Baker suggested we step in and celebrate the cast – who were we to turn her down (she is extremely persistent)?!?!
Hosted by that perky, peripatetic performer Lee Roy Reams, the cast revealed personal, intimate and moving stories of their lives during auditions and the run of the show, how Gower Champion’s death affected them, and how a glitch in stage management (as per SM Arturo Porazzi) became the iconic opening tap dance tableau! Some cast members were still in high school when hired, others twice their age when they went into the show. And of course, Lee Roy offered up tasty stories (and imitations!) of Tammy Grimes and Carole Cook (still with us at 98!) 42nd Street publicist Josh Ellis handed the Q & A portion of the evening, passed forward from the audience an answered by the cast. And we wonder where that $25,000.00 gown is that was worn ONCE and then cut from the show!?!?
And from our wonderful accompanist, Fred Barton, he wrote what he felt was the most moving story of the evening, a very emotional moment from Karin Baker (Gower Champion's dance assistant, who actually devised the specific tap steps for his vision). She recalled the last time she saw Gower. He had stopped coming to rehearsal, mainly because of his severe illness (the severity was kept secret from the cast and the public) – and partly because of David Merrick's peculiar game of persistently delaying and postponing the opening
The cast not exactly “going into their dance!”
For a long stretch, Merrick kept the public out and had the entire cast run the show for an audience of one – himself, sitting out there alone in the orchestra section of the Winter Garden Theatre. The day before what turned out to be show's opening, Karin Baker got a call from Gower's wife Karla, telling her that he requested her to visit him in the hospital. She went, and was absolutely shocked to find him very near death – one look and she knew "he was simply not going to make it." He couldn't speak, and tried to make himself understood, and she did the best she could with the situation – she just assured him the show was about to be a giant hit and everything was great. (Only later did she find out he was trying to say, "Did the show open yet?")
Then she described walking to the hospital room door – and turning to look at him one more time, he winked at her. And she never saw him again. At that moment, Karin got a catch in her throat and the tears began, as they did for many of us hearing this previously unknown story.
On hand were SM Arturo Porazzi, Gower Champion assistant Karin Baker, Carole Banninger, Linda Carelli, Denise DiRenzo, Joel Blum, Cathy Greco, Nikki Sahagen, Alison Sherve and co-conspirators in organizing the shindig for DO40 Tony Parise and Lars Rosager. In the audience, lots of theater and dance folk, including Karin Akers, Sydney Myer, Harry Haun, DO40 members Patti Mariano, Annie Johnson, Darlene Larson, Ken Bloom, Josh Ellis, Backstage Babble honcho and youngest member Charles Kirsch, DO40 board members Patrick McCarthy, Sasha Spielvogel, Lawrence Leritz, Sharon Wendrow and Leni Anders.
Lee Roy Reams with Gower assistant Karin Baker
We celebrated birthday boys Lee Roy Reams and Harry Haun with cakes and (a few) candles (!!!) and joined in a champagne toast at the end of the evening to celebrate the cast – and honor those who are no longer with us. The evening ended with Lee Roy leading the cast in a rousing Lullaby of Broadway, with musical accompaniment by Fred Barton.
This is what we do. Celebrate and promote the History, Legacy and Lives of the mature dance community while paying it forward to the next generation – who can learn from our panels and performances, which are all taped and sent to the Jerome Robbins Dance Collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center.
“Official” photos to come soon! These are just iPhone clicks from audience members.
Packing up to leave the Triad Theater, with Linda Carelli, Lee Roy Reams, Lars Rosager, Charles Kirsch, Patrick McCarthy, Leni Anders, Tony Parise and Sharon Wendrow
TRIVIA NIGHT AUGUST 3RD KICKS OFF DO40’S
MEMBERSHIP DRIVE AND EVENTS COMING UP
FOR OUR 2022 – 2023 SEASON
DO40 prez John Sefakis and the talented troupe of questioners and answerers for our third Trivia Night Special!
It was a wonderfully hilarious evening of theater, dance and media mavens at Dancers Over 40’s third Trivia Night August 3rd, courtesy of our youngest DO40 member, Charles Kirsch of Backstage Babble podcast fame! The evening highlighted the beginning of DO40’s 2022 – 2023 season and membership and renewal drive. COVID may have knocked the wind out of some of us, but DO40 has grown over the past two years – and we think it’s actually because more people did get together on these internet platforms and “word got out” about us so much more easily! Now we are doing a “mix” of virtual and “live” events, a Fall so chock full we hope we can fit everything in!
So many people to thank for putting together this event, especially Charles and our participants. The evening consisted of five celebrity guest askers asking ten questions each to a panel of four distinguished musical theatre and media experts.
Loni Ackerman, star of Evita, Cats, and more, asked questions about legendary choreographer Joe Layton, whom she worked with on the original production of George M!, veteran Broadway dancer Candy Brown (Hello, Dolly, Pippin) asked about the Broadway sensation Chicago, which she appeared in in its original 1975 production as "June/Six!" Also on hand, Jim Brochu, who won the Ovation Award and the Drama Desk Award for his memorable portrayal of Zero Mostel in the play he penned, Zero Hour. He doled out anecdotes and questions about Mostel and Fiddler on the Roof. Broadway actress/singer/comedienne Alix Korey who has worked with many great choreographers, appearing on Broadway in All Shook Up, Triumph of Love, Is there life after high school? and waxed poetic about theatrical pioneer Graciela Daniele, with whom she worked on The Pirates of Penzance. And newbie to Trivia Night, JoAnn M. Hunter, one of theater's foremost choreographers. Two of her most recent credits include Broadway's School of Rock and Cinderella on the West End. She “Webberized” the group with questions about Sir Andrew!
As panelist Jim Brochu said, Charles Kirsch’s Trivia Nights make him the John Charles Daly of the new Millenium! (Google, kids!)
The panel of experts and “answerers” included Matt Koplik, the host of the podcast "Broadway Breakdown," Michael Musto, legendary columnist for The Village Voice, Queerty, and more, Michael Portantiere, theatrical photographer and cabaret producer, and Glenn Rosenblum, theater lecturer and president of the talent agency Celebrity Access, Inc.
It was much more than just fascinating trivia. There were wonderful anecdotes and never-before-heard memories about many of the shows we have known and loved. It is still available to stream on Dancers Over 40’s Facebook and Youtube channel, as well as on Charles’ youtube platform. We hope you will all join/renew/donate to allow us to continue our work to promote the History, Legacy and Lives of the mature dance community. We simply cannot do it alone!
And - you can catch Charles’ first-ever show at 54Below on September 6th at 7pm with a multitude of singer/dancers/actors who have appeared on his podcast!
Dancers Over 40: https://dancersover40.org/
Backstage Babble: https://cbroadwaypodcast.podbean.com/
54 Below: https://54below.com/.../charles-kirschs-backstage-babble.../
Loads of Laughs and Lots of Theater Lore Uncovered!
DANCERS OVER 40 PRESENTS
A TOAST TO ONE OF THE BEST
DO40 SALUTES HARVEY EVANS
AT THE TRIAD THEATER, NYC
Curtain Call with DO40 president John Sefakis, Penny Worth, Jim Brochu, Marianne Tatu, Kurt Peterson, host Lee Roy Reams, Tony Yazbeck, Anita Gillette and director Lawrence Leritz
It was a sold-out lovefest at the Triad Theater Wednesday night, honoring long time member Harvey Evans. Harvey’s family flew in from Cincinnati, best friends and peers were there, DO40 members and lots of people who have never come to a DO40 event before. And this one was like no other – not a panel or “performance,” just remembrances and songs dedicated to Harvey, and a toast to him at the end of the evening. THESE ARE JUST AMATEUR PHOTOS taken that evening. Our photographer and DO40 member Cynthia Elane will send professional pics soon!
But as always, we must be attentive to the COVID situation, and musical director Fred Barton tested positive after the performance, so we are notifying as many people as we can who came in contact with him.
In attendance, DO40 president John Sefakis and Board of Director members Lawrence Leritz, Sasha Spielvogel, Sharon Wendrow, Patrick McCarthy and Bobby Hedglin-Taylor and Advisory Board member Lori Tan Chinn. DO40 members were everywhere, including Virginia Seidel, James Dybas, John Bate, Francis J. Roach, Kevin Winkler, Ginger Tidwell, Diane Nicole, the flying Mariano sisters, Patti and JoAnn (!!!) Bert and Pat Michaels, Roger and Yvonne Puckett, Stephen Reed, Joe Ahumada, Ken Bloom, Joy Dunbar, Josh Ellis, Barbara Wasson, Leni Anders as well as performers Lee Roy Reams Penny Worth and Anita Gillette. Also on hand to sing and reminisce, “newbie” Tony Yazbeck, Marianne Tatum, Jim Brochu and Kurt Peterson. Producer Ed Gaynes and wife Pamela stepped out, as well as Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS top honcho Tom Viola, Ed Kressley, Sam Viverito, David Bean, Michael Portantiere, Joshua Wellman, Harry Haun and many, many more (over 130 attendees!).
Host Lee Roy Reams with Anita Gillette – DO40 members both!
Anita Gillette and host Lee Roy Reams sang a hysterical duet together, Marianne Tatum sang from Barnum, Tony Yazbeck from Oklahoma (which he did with Harvey in 2002), Jim Brochu made the audience laugh and cry with his reminiscences, Penny Worth sang from Irene, whose star, Debbie Reynolds, was very close with Harvey (as was Penny and Carrie Fisher). Old friend Kurt Peterson sang from Merrily We Roll Along, and Lee Roy Reams closed out the show with a song from La Cage Aux Folles, in which both he and Harvey performed as Za-Za. Lee Roy and Kurt Peterson read regrets from those unable to attend, Donna McKechnie, Joel Grey and Mary Jane Houdina.
We are proud to continue our mission, to promote the History, Legacy and Lives of the mature dance community and pay it forward to the next generation - who never got to know the kindness and talent that was Harvey Evans. We have a vibrant website, www.dancersover40.org, where members can watch Harvey in all our performances, a youtube channel www.youtube.com/dancersover40 with video from the aughts of Harvey moderating panels on Fosse, Gwen Verdon and Ron Field, and we are very proud to donate all our performance and panel videos to the Jerome Robbins Dance Collection at the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts, so that ALL generations can get to know the talent and charm of Harvey Evans.
Old friend Kurt Peterson, singing from Merrily We Roll Along
One of Harvey’s last Broadway shows, a revival of Oklahoma in 2002 was one of Tony Yazbeck’s first!
The lovely Penny Worth paying homage to Harvey, Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, all old friends…
The funny and wickedly adoroable Jim Brochu, reminiscing, bringing the house to tears and laughter.
Marianne Tatum singing from Barnum! where she performed with Harvey
A CELEBRATION OF DO40 LEGACY HONOREE MEMBER JANICE HERBERT’S LIFE
Dr. Heather Mays, Janice’s daughter, leads a toast to Janice
DO40 was honored to participate in the celebration of the life of Legacy Honoree Janice Herbert on Sunday in the Ellington Room at Manhattan Plaza. DO40 president John Sefakis spoke of Janice's devotion to dance, DO40 and the theatrical community she was such a part of. Marilyn D'Honau, Mary McCatty, Virginia Seidel and Leni Anders, all DO40 Legacy Honorees were also on hand to lend a toast. Janice's family brought posters and albums of Janice's career dancing with the Radio City Music Hall Corps de Ballet (1953 - 56), her years on Broadway and on tour (1957 - 1970), before settling into family life with husband Leo. Janice continued to dip her toe and tap shoes in the biz, helping husband Leo, long-time David Merrick prop honcho, and earning an Emmy herself for putting the feathers on Sesame Street's Big Bird! Janice moderated a panel of 18 of her fellow RCMH Corps de Ballet members (with performance roots from 1938 -1978!!) back in 2009, and has championed DO40 throughout the last two decades. And a quote from another DO40 Legacy Honoree and board member Harvey Evans sums up what our organization strives for: "Whatever job you are doing, big or small, do it the best you can. Someone will notice. Love show business more than you love being a star." Thanks again to the Herbert Family for making Sunday such a special day for Janice.
Dr. Heather Mays, Janice’s daughter, with the Herbert clan, spanning the UK, Martha’s Vineyard and NYC!
DO40 Prez John Sefakis with DO40 Legacy Honorees Mary McCatty and Virginia Seidel
DO40 Legacy Honoree (and original West Side Story cast member) Marilyn D’honau and DO40 prez John Sefakis\
DO40 president John Sefakis regaling the audience with Janice Herbert memories
A packed house at the Ellington Room at Manhattan Plaza in honor of Janice Herbert
KARAOKE AND KOMEDY TONIGHT AT DO40!
Leni Anders, Sharon Wendrow, Patrick McCarthy, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Lawrence Leritz, Judy Wong and family. Not pictured, Eileen Casey and John Sefakis
A fun night at RPM for Karaoke and Komedy with Dancers over 40! Well, it IS Dancers over 40, so not many singers showed up! LOLOL Had a good time anyway with DO40 board members Eileen Casey, Lawrence Leritz, Sharon Wendrow and Patrick McCarthy, along with Leni Anders, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, DO40 president John Sefakis and Judy Wong and family! On to our next event, celebrating the life of Harvey Evans. More info soon!
Patrick McCarthy, Judy Wong and family, Lawrence Leritz, Leni Anders, Sharon Wendrow and Bobby Hedglin-Taylor
DO40 prez warbling with Judy Wong on Bette Midler’s FRIENDS, with Bobby Heglin-Taylor and Patrick McCarthy jealously looking on!
Some of the members before we started: Lawrence Leritz, Eileen Casey, Leni Anders, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Patrick McCarthy and Sharon Wendrow (not pictured, DO40 prez John Sefakis and Eileen Casey)
Eileen Casey singing her FAVORITE song (see screen!)
Patrick “The Dentist” McCarthy
Patrick “The Dentist” McCarthy
Bobby Heglin-Taylor Letting Go with many impersonations
Bobby Heglin-Taylor Letting Go with many impersonations
Bobby Heglin-Taylor Letting Go with many impersonations
Judy Wong wows us with some Komedy!
Judy Wong wows us with some Komedy!
The always delightful Leni Anders
Definitely NOT over 40 - our server/singer Chi Lo!
A REALLY NATIONAL DO40 MEMBERSHIP MEETING ON VALENTINE’S DAY!
DO40 prez John Sefakis with national DO40 members
A great national DO40 meeting on Valentine's evening with members from all over the country! DO40 board members Patrick McCarthy, Eileen Casey, along with youngest member Charles Kirsch, author Kevin Winkler, DANCIN' doyenne Christine Colby Jacques, Sandy Nance, flea market whiz Virginia Seidel, Rosalie Gelston, Ellen Fluhr, Joshua Ellis, Cheryl "Pop" Clark, Thomas McRoberts, Leni Anders, Joanna Rush, Martha Martha B. Warschau, Karmen Herman and a few more technically challenged who could not log on!
DO40 members waving to the crowd!
Thanks to our co-host Reed Black, from the To Proudly Go org for setting up the photos and videos of the evening. We featured, of course a reminscence of members gone from 2021 - Bob Avian, Harvey Evans, Janice Herbert, Kaye Popp Genese and most recently Billie Mahoney. Videos from Hullabaloo, courtesy of new DO40 member John Ganun were great, and identified a lot of dancers we all know and love! These videos are some of the only videos of Michael Bennett dancing! We will continue zooming our membership meetings to bring together our national - and international - members!
Hullabaloo dancer Barbara Alston
We remember Billie Mahoney
WELCOME NEW ADVISORY BOARD MEMBER LORI TAN CHINN!
Lori celebrates her 53rd year as a performer joining DO40’s Advisory Board! She has been an avid booster of DO40 for years and has been very generous to us as an organization. Lori grew up in Seattle, WA, when it was a log town with no promise of a future for her dreams of becoming a dancer, let alone any future for a hopeful ABC (American-Born Chinese), except to be match-married to an indifferent foreign-born Chinese “prince,” with a future of babies and waiting on a mother-in-law!
There was no money to afford dance classes, so she spent weekends at the neighborhood public library, where she found books explaining all the various dance positions. With no dance experience, she had the pluck to win acceptance into the summer dance program at the University of Washington, run by Drama Dept. head, Ms. Ruthanna Boris, dancer and choreographer with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. A summer later, she was accepted into Canada’s Banff School of Performing Arts, and saved enough money for a one-way ticket to NYC. Shortly after arriving, she went to an audition requiring Asian performers: Lovely Ladies, Kind Gentlemen, the musical version of the Pulitzer-Prize-winning play, The Teahouse of the August Moon. She was cast in the chorus, then plucked out of that chorus and cast as the female comic lead. The transition from dancer to actor led way to subsequent performances in films, including: Mickey Blue Eyes, She-Devil, What About Bob? and television appearances on Roseanne, South Pacific, and Orange is the New Black.
Named “The Definitive Bloody Mary” after winning the role over actresses from New York to Los Angeles, Lori appeared in the ABC television version of South Pacific starring Glenn Close and Harry Connick, Jr. She went on to portray this complex Tonkinese Chinese character at Washington, DC’s Arena Stage, which garnered her the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Musical.
After 49 years she was thrilled to appear alongside cast mates Georgia Engel, Donna McKechnie, André De Shields and Lillias White in the last musical project by Marvin Hamlisch and directed by Advisory Board Member Jerry Mitchell called Half Time based on a documentary about a group of senior citizens who audition for the half time show of a NJ basketball team. She is currently co-starring with Awkwafina in Nora from Queens on Comedy Central and still as busy as ever!
DANCERS OVER 40 MOURNS THE LOSS OF FORMER
DO40 BOARD MEMBER HARVEY EVANS
Dancer/Actor/Singer/Host/Moderator/Board Member and all-around great guy,
Harvey Evans at our WSS movie reunion in 2011
One of the best dancers of the 20th century passed away Christmas eve, former DO40 board member Harvey Evans. With a career that spanned over 60 years, from New Girl in Town, WSS, WSS the 1961 movie and even a cameo in the 2021 WSS movie, as well as Anyone can Whistle, Hello, Dolly!, Follies, La Cage aux Folles, Sunset Boulevard, On the Town and Oklahoma! revivals and more - he was the dancer’s dancer. Harvey was more distant the last few years when he became ill, and he was not one to answer emails and phone calls quickly. Everyone loved/loves Harvey. An in demand guy at so many Broadway Cares/EFA Events, our DO40 flea market table, moderating our events on Jack Cole, The Women of Fosse, Gwen Verdon, our WSS movie reunion and more. A real pro.
Marge Champion, Harvey and Lee Roy Reams at the DO40 Gwen Verdon Event
This is when our motto, our History, our Legacy and our Lives really matters. We are so lucky, so honored to be able to have Harvey on tape/DVD multiple times interviewing his peers, talking about his life’s work and performing into his “waaay” over 40 years.
Dancing Buddies Harvey, Advisory Board member
Larry Fuller and board member Lawrence Merritt
WSS alum the late great George Marcy
Best Cincinnati buddies, Harvey and Lee Roy Reams
Harvey accepting his 2010 DO40 Legacy Award
He’s still here, as are Marge Champion, Louise Quick, Marge Beddow, Tony Stevens, Janice Herbert, Johnny Nola, Gene Gavin, Skip Randall and more dancing feet, with their legacies now catalogued and stored at the Jerome Robbins Dance Division of the New York Public Library. Can’t stress enough how important an organization like Dancers over 40 is – and will (hopefully!) continue to be with the support from the dance and theater community and friends of the arts joining DO40 through membership or donation to keep our community together. Here are a few photos from DO40 events with Harvey, from 2007 on. Always with that twinkle in his eye…
Dancing in the stars with stars Nicole Barth
and Valerie Harper
Harvey and DO40 Prez John Sefakis
at DO40's Women of Fosse
Harvey Moderating the
Gwen Verdon Event
DO40 member Lori Tan Chinn and Harvey
With DO40 peeps John Sefakis, Nicole Barth and Bert Michaels
Dance greats Lee Roy Reams, Tony Stevens
and Harvey Evans
DO40’s The Women of Fosse's
Marge Beddow and Harvey
DO40's Peter Gennaro event with Liza Gennaro, DO40 Advisory board members
Carol Lawrence and Chita Rivera and moderator Harvey Evans
DO40's Men of Fosse with Johnny Nola, Louise Quick and Harvey
THE VIDEOS OF THE TRIBUTE COMING NEXT WEEK!
A LEGACY AWARDS TO WARM EVERYONE’S HEART!
Host Richard Skipper, Tony Waag, Mary McCatty, DO40 prez John Sefakis, Mercedes Elllington, Sue Samuels and Susan Sigrist at the honorees table
DO40 began the Legacy Awards thirteen years ago to honor our own – our members’ contribution to dance and to DO40. We chose all women the first year; all men the second and then threw in a celeb honoree and a few honorary ones; and sadly, two posthumous awards as well. But now it has evolved into a delicious diversity of dance and social circles, a place for jazz and tap to meet, Broadway and Ballet, modern and ballroom all in the mix. We found friends crossed over their respective disciplines, and new bonds were forged. Lots of applause and some tears of joy. Happiness and a proud sense of being a dancer – and being with the people you love. And that’s what DO40 is all about. We are so proud to be able to bring together all these wonderful people and celebrate the diversity that is dance and the human spirit. (Well, that was a bit more lofty than we expected, but deep down it’s true.)
DO40 prez John Sefakis with 2021 Legacy Honorees Susan Sigrist, Tony Waag, Sue Samuels, Mary McCatty and Mercedes Ellington
Monday night we honored Mercedes Ellington, Mary McCatty, Sue Samuels, Susan Sigrist and Tony Waag. Host Richard Skipper enchanted the audience (with lies that the speakers could talk as long as they wanted!) and introduced performers Kizha Carr Adams and Brian Alejandro Scott as well. Almost 90 people attended the holiday dinner, an astonishing number considering the pandemic circumstances. Then again, we are all of the boosted vax age range, and of course, everyone in the room was checked and ID’d. The LIPS staff was as gracious and swift as always, our perennial coat check czar Cha Cha Lopez worked his magic, our blue-haired Carlos Acosta came to facilitate that internet-y iSquare youngster stuff needed to take charge cards and stalwarts Sharon Wendrow, Patrick McCarthy, Leni Anders and Sasha Spielvogel were all there to jump in when needed.
The room right before dinner
So many members and new friends were in attendance that it’s hard to recount them all – producer Ed Gaynes and wife Pam, Patti Mariano, Virginia Seidel, Lawrence Merritt, Lori Tan Chinn, Martha Warschau, Felicia Velasco D’Amico and husband, Maria Stevens, Karin Baker and husband Greg, Robert Sacheli up from DC, Karyn Tomczak, Lawrence Leritz, the “Phil Black kids” Thomas Adams, Leslie Riddle, and Alan Onickel, and the fabulously dressed and always sensational Darlene Larson, a Ziegfeld girl to the core, in a purple sequined dress and white faux fur!
Mercedes Ellington, niece Alix, Lawrence Leritz, Michael Stever and Tony Waag
A photo gallery of Legacy Award pics will be up soon on our website, and video of the event will be posted on our member-only page of the website before Christmas – one of the great perks of being a card-carrying, dues-paying DO40 member!
Speaker Lori Tan Chinn, Susan Sigrist and friends
Thank you all for your continued support to DO40. We have already broken our membership record for both 2019 and 2020, and it’s only December (our membership season ends in June)! Up next, a virtual DO40 membership meeting in February and announcement of our big events for 2022! We can’t believe it’s going to be 2022! We will celebrate 30 years as an organization in 2024!!! Hopefully, the next generation(s), who were so well represented at the Legacy Awards, will step up to the dance plate to continue and promote our History, our Legacy and our Lives.
YOU HAD TO BE THERE!
Panel #1, L to R: Joy Serio Dunbar, Carole Monferdini, Gloria Hodes, Julie Hafner, Memrie Innerarity,
Debra Zalkind, Tom Cashin, Becky Ann Baker, Kevin Winkler, Niki Harris, Jill Cook, Karen Akers,
Dorothy Kiara, Nancy McGraw
DO40’S CELEBRATION OF TOMMY TUNE
DO40 MEMBER AND AUTHOR KEVIN WINKLER’S NEW TUNE TOME!
Words can’t describe (well, they must, if we’re to get on with this description!) what an evening it was for Dancers Over 40 and the celebration of Tommy Tune and DO40 author Kevin Winkler’s book, Everything is Choreography: The Musical Theater of Tommy Tune! Sold out! Over 120 in attendance at the Actors’ Temple Theatre in NYC. Two panels, three performances, videos, and a premiere video from ADM21 rounded out the evening – and we bested ourselves! Beat the clock and came in under 3 hours! Although we ended at 10:55pm, our long intermission was almost as satisfying as the panels. Everyone got to mingle, see old friends, meet new ones, get pictures taken, buy Kevin’s book at our DO40 “mini-table” in the reception room as well as buy our DO40 masks, baseball caps and tank tops! It was so hard getting people back in their seats! But well worth it!
Panel #2, L to R: Adrian Bailey, Niki Harris, Jill Cook, Peter von Mayrhauser,
David Jackson, Patti D'Beck, Mary McCatty, Kevin Winkler, Penny Worth, Karen Akers,
Jeff Calhoun, Wendy Waring, Steve Minning
The evening was hosted by entertainer and MC extraordinaire Richard Skipper with two panels moderated by Kevin Winkler featuring cast members and associates from all Tune's hit shows, including Tony Award-nominated director-choreographer Jeff Calhoun (The Will Rogers Follies, My One and Only), Tony Award winner Cady Huffman (The Will Rogers Follies), Emmy nominee Becky Ann Baker (The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas), Tony Award nominee Karen Akers (Nine, Grand Hotel), Jill Cook (Best Little Whorehouse, My One and Only, Hollywood/Ukraine) Adrian Bailey (My One and Only), David Jackson (Grand Hotel, My One and Only), Wendy Waring (The Will Rogers Follies), Peter Von Mayrhauser (My One and Only, The Will Rogers Follies) Debra Zalkind (The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas), Nancy McGraw (Nine), Dorothy Kiara (Nine) Tom Cashin (The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas), Joy Serio Dunbar (A Joyful Noise), Penny Worth (Grand Hotel), Carole Monferdini (The Club), Julie Hafner (Nine, The Club), Gloria Hodes (The Club), Memrie Innerarity (The Club) Mary McCatty (The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public), dance assistants extraordinaire Patti D'Beck (My One and Only, The Will Rogers Follies) and Niki Harris (Hollywood/Ukraine, Grand Hotel).
CURTAIN CALL! L to R: Fred Barton, Gloria Hodes, Carole Monderdini, Memrie Innerarity, Julie Hafner,
Jill Cook, Jeff Calhoun, Wendy Waring, Joy Serio Dunbar, Richard Skipper, Kevin Winkler,
Debra Zalkind, DO40 Prez John Sefakis; Front Stage L to R: Mary McCatty, Steve Minning,
Tari Kelly, David Jackson, Dorothy Kiara, Karen Akers, Penny Worth, Niki Harris,
Peter von Mayrhauser, Patti D'Beck, Nancy McGraw; Center kneeling, Adrian Bailey
Special performances included a number by original cast members Julie Hafner, Gloria Hodes, Memrie Innerarity and Carole Monferdini of The Club, Tune's directorial debut, Dorothy Kiara singing from Nine, special guest Tari Kelly singing from The Will Rogers Follies and a video premiere presentation by the American Dance Machine for the 21st Century of the classic "Our Favorite Son" from The Will Rogers Follies. Musical direction for the evening was provided by composer-lyricist-conductor Fred Barton.
The Club Cast, L to R: Julie Hafner, Gloria Hodes, Carole Monferdini, Memrie Innerarity
In the audience, podcaster wiz Charles Kirsch and Remy Holzer Kirsch, Playbill’s Harry Haun, Laurence Leritz resplendent in black sequins, Sue Samuels, the flying Mariano sisters, Patti and JoAnn, Susan Lowrance and Barbara Bernardo in from LA, Stephanie Eley in from Philadelphia, AGVA Executive Vice Presdent Chris Johnson, Scott Raneri, Margaret Schuette, Gwen Sarnoff, producer Ken Bloom, Daphne Foreman, Ellen Fluhr, Susan Sigrist and Kristine Nevins. And that’s just the tip of the ole iceberg!
Dorothy Kiara singing from NINE
Special thanks to all who made this evening possible, especially Kevin Winkler, Richard Skipper, Fred Barton, all the panelists, our DO40 board of directors and all the volunteers who helped get us back on our feet after TWO YEARS WITHOUT A LIVE EVENT! Thanks to Leni Anders, Sasha Spielvogel, Sharon Wendrow, Karyn Tomczak, Mary Lilygren, Bobby Hedglin-Taylor, Patrick McCarthy, SM Maarten Cornelis, audio manager Trevor Trotto videographer Manny Santiago and photographer Jeff Eason.
Tari Kelly singing from The Will Rogers Follies
DO40 can’t produce these shows without you, the audience, our members, our DO40 Facebook fans and Friends of DO40 (you don’t have to be a professional dancer or “over 40” to join!). Our DO40 PHOTO GALLERY OF OVER 70 PHOTOS by photographer Jeff Eason will be posted shortly, all captioned - of the many, many people not only on stage, but also in the audience, some of whom came from all over the US – and Virgin Islands – to BE THERE! As we said, you had to…!!
Before the show in the Green Room, L to R: Debra Zalkind, Tom Cashin, Becky Ann Baker,
Steve Minning, Joy Serio Dunbar, Mary McCatty, Cady Huffman, Peter von Mayrhauser,
Richard Skipper, David Jackson, Penny Worth, Jeff Calhoun, Patti D'Beck, Karen Akers,
Wendy Waring, Niki Harris, Tari Kelly, Carole Monferdini, Julie Hafner, Gloria Hodes,
Memrie Innerarity, Kevin Winkler
More to come IN JUST THREE WEEKS – at our DO40 Holiday Dinner and Legacy Awards! Tickets are already on sale on telecharge for Monday, December 6th, 6 – 9pm at LIPS Restaurant, 227 East 56th Street, NYC. We are honoring Mercedes Ellington, Mary McCatty, Sue Samuels, Susan Sigrist and Tony Waag. Tickets are $55.00; DO40 members’ price is $40.00 with discount code/membership card. Members call the telecharge number 212-947-8844 or go online to www.telechargeoffers.com. Non-members call telecharge at 212-239-6200 or go to www.telecharge.com. NOTE: The Actors Temple Theatre Box Office is only open an hour before their performances on Tuesday, 6 – 7pm, Wednesday, 6:30 – 7:30pm, Thursday, 6 – 7pm and Saturday, 1 – 2pm. Phone number 212-246-8140. Come with friends and meet new ones, rekindle old friendships and just have a great dinner and celebration of our History, our Legacy and our Lives!
THE JOY OF IT ALL…SUNDAY, OCTOBER 3RD, 2021
L to R: Scott Raneri, Lawrence Leritz, Karyn Tomczak, Ellen Fluhr, Eileen Casey, Mary McCatty, John Sefakis, Penny Worth, Patrick McCarthy, Sasha Spielvogel and Nancy Dalton Flowers
An absolutely gorgeous day to have a flea market on Sunday, October 3rd – and an absolutely stunning turnout of Dancers Over 40 members who raised an astonishing – yes, we have to say astonishing (!!!) $7,754.00 for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Never before have we raised so much money with very few high ticket items – and with pandemic issues still facing our country. It was Playbills for $1.00 each, and a huge selection of incredibly (yes, incredibly) precious and valuable gems over 70 years old, including Oklahoma, Pal Joey, South Pacific, Can-Can – binders full of them donated by DO40 member Leni Anders. A huge thanks to Peter Pileski for donating memorabilia from Bob Avian, Joe Ahumada for all of his wonderful – and diverse – merchandise, including our one big sale of a the day, a Bette Midler show jacket for $500.00! Our always fun and busy Sutton Foster (did not wear these) Clothes (!!) rack and bin brought in a lot of the young crowd to peruse our SIX, yes, SIX tables we put together this year. We also shared a half-table with a new non-profit LGBTQIA+ Star Trek organization, To Proudly Go, headed by Executive Director Michael Agnew, who brought in $780.00 on their first foray into the fundraising biz!
L to R Back: Scott Raneri, Sasha Spielvogel, Mary McCatty, Michon Peacock, Center: John Sefakis, Lawrence Leritz, Karyn Tomczak, Nancy Dalton Flowers, Eileen Casey Front: Greg Kayne and Karin Baker Kayne
None of this would have happened if not for all of our members who volunteered their services Sunday – from the movers and schleppers, Bobby Heglin-Taylor, Scott Raneri, Fernando Carillo and Rajul Bhalani, car volunteers Karyn Tomczak and Francis Roach, the jazziest “kids” staffing the tables, especially Karin Baker and hubby Greg Kayne, right hand man and DO40 board member Patrick McCarthy and our other board members Sasha Spielvogel, Sharon Wendrow, Nancy Dalton Flowers, Lawrence Leritz and Eileen Casey. Also on hand to sell and mingle with the crowd to share stories – and merch: Sandy Nance, Tom McRoberts, Ellen Fluhr, Virginia Seidel (our favorite environmentalist!), the flying Mariano sisters, Patti and JoAnn, upcoming DO40 Legacy Award honorees Susan Sigrist and Mary McCatty, former Legacy honorees Penny Worth and Michon Peacock, our youngest member Charles Kirsch (14 now!), DO40 sippy cup king Ken Bloom, Broadway Bares volunteers Ray Sheen and Annette Maysonet and super iPad charge card queen Melanie! What started out as a quiet and tasteful 3 table, 1 rolling rack booth ended up a 6 table, 2 rolling rack little engine that could! Never in our wildest dreams did we ever think we could bring in almost $12,000.00. Our biggest year, 2019 (the last live event) brought in over $5,500.00, which for us was a huge record haul! We were stunned when we saw the charge card receipts for the day, no less the bundles of dollar bills bulging for all of our pockets!
The CROWDS at our DO40 tables!
Great to see friends like producer Ed Gaynes and his wife Pamela (we’re still trying for a November date at the Actors Temple which he runs, for our Kevin Winkler/Tommy Tune book event), BC/EFA top honchos Tom Viola and Danny Whitman, Flea Market producer Valerie Lau Kee Lai,-John Soroka, Thomas Adams, Joyce Nolen, Fosse Verdon rep Brian Cummings, writer Michael Musto and many, many new friends of DO40 – who hopefully will now join as card-carrying, dues-paying members! This event would not have been possible if not for the hard work and dedication of DO40 board member Patrick McCarthy and members Bobby Heglin-Taylor and Karyn Tomczak.
DO40 prez John Sefakis with BC/EFA Executive Director Tom Viola
Merch and selling are important, but what you CAN’T buy is the camaraderie, the bonding, the story-telling and just the plain ole Our History, Our Legacy, Our Lives – on full display and to share with the public, who happily joined with us on our journey Sunday. We were all vaxxed and masked behind the tables, boldly going maskless only when strolling down West 44th and 45th street where many other humans had to trek – to the Marriott Marquis rest rooms on West 45th Street! After all, we ARE Dancers OVER 40!!!
A fatootsed Virginia Seidel at the end of a LONG day!
A GREAT KICK-OFF TO OUR DO40 2021 – 2022 SEASON!
THE 2ND ANNUAL NATIONAL ZOOM MEMBERSHIP MEETING
Held Monday, September 20th, 7-9pm
DO40 president John Sefakis with the DO40 crew!
What a great kick off to our 2021 – 2022 DO40 season! Our second annual NATIONAL DO40 membership meeting, held Monday, September 20th 7 – 9pm on that Zoom thing! It was author night with members Ken Bloom, Leslie Kerr and Kevin Winkler discussing their upcoming tomes on David Merrick shows, Donald O’Connor and Tommy Tune. Author John Gilvey had internet issues in PA and could not get on to discuss his two volume Gwen Verdon bio in the works.
We had trivia questions from the authors and winners of the new DO40 tank tops were Thomas McRoberts and Kevin Winkler! Many members reminisced amongst themselves, waay back to the NY World’s Fair of 1964 – and beyond! Anthony Marciona was younger than our current wiz kid Charles Kirsch (of Backstage Babble podcast fame) when he made his Broadway debut in the 60’s! So nice to see members back where they belong, like Aja Kane, Laura Danette, Gail Benedict, and our Pop! Six! Squish gang from the original CHICAGO, Cheryl Clark, Michon Peacock and Candy Brown. DO40 prez John Sefakis went over this season’s events with hopeful “live” events in the near future. Our next outing, the BC/EFA Flea Market on October 3rd, 10 – 6pm in Shubert Alley needs LOTS of volunteers, the day of the event and the week before, sorting playbills, pricing, and eventually schlepping all our goods down to the flea market! A LOT for us waaaay over 40 troupers! If you’re in NYC and specifically midtown, please email us at email@example.com to let us know you can help, “live” and in person! (All volunteers at the tables must be vaccinated and wear masks, as per BC/EFA.)
Members, listed below!!
Seen – and heard – zooming: DO40 Board members Sasha Spielvogel, Patrick McCarthy, Lawrence Leritz and Eileen Casey, as well as CHICAGO alumni Candy Brown (in CO), Michon Peacock, Cheryl Clark (in LA), Aja Kane, Laura Danette, Gail Benedict (in KY), Leni Anders, Robert Sacheli (in DC), Tom McRoberts (in VA), DO40 Legacy Awardee Mary McCatty, authors Ken Bloom, Leslie Kerr (in SC) and Kevin Winkler, AND, 14 year-old (as of today!) Charles Kirsch, Martha Warschau, Anthony Marciona (in LA), Ellen Fluhr, Sandy Nance, Karyn Tomczak and Scott Raneri, with co-host Trevor Kuprel. Almost there, author John Gilvey (with internet issues in PA!) and a bit late, Edith Holzer! Special shout out/thanks to our co-host Trevor Kuprel, who handled our pictures and video for the evening.
DO40 member and author Kevin Winkler discusses SEESAW with Tommy Tune
We will continue to provide our community a space to communicate with each other, whether it be “live,” virtual or even just our bi-annual hard copy newsletter, which everyone should receive this week! DO40 MEMBERS: If you missed the meeting, we will be posting it on our website, www.dancersover40.org next week! Remember, you must be a card-carrying, dues paying member to watch all of our events on our website. All other information, photos and stories are free to the public! So if you haven’t joined or renewed, now is a GOOD TIME to do so! Just go to our website and click on the JOIN/DONATE/RENEW button and follow the options to come on board! To paraphrase Chita in CHICAGO, “We simply cannot do it, alone!”
DO40 president John Sefakis in the new DO40 tank top!
OUR 2021 – 2022 MEMBERSHIP AND RENEWAL DRIVE
FOR OUR SEPTEMBER 1, 2021 – AUGUST 31, 2022 SEASON!
The Board of Directors of Dancers Over 40 hope you all are well and safe. These have been extremely trying times, but we are heartened by the continued support, membership, donations – and participation in all of our virtual events over the past year. Please go to www.dancersover40.org and click on the JOIN/RENEW/DONATE button to become a CARD-CARRYING, DUES PAYING MEMBER of DO40! We simply cannot maintain all of our activities without your support!
Our events have been uplifting and brought together our national – and international members – in a way we could never have envisioned, but so many of you here on Facebook are not members. And you need not be a dancer – or over 40 to join and enjoy the perks of membership (we added “…and Friends” to our title five years ago!)!
As we begin our 2021 – 2022 membership renewal efforts, we will be dancing that fine line between virtual and “live” events. We understand that this pandemic continues to affect everyone, and repercussions from COVID-19 are not just medical. Our members are the most vulnerable population in this pandemic. For many, self-isolation is a way of life, and by keeping virtual, adding “live” events and continuing to videotape them for all to see is what we are here for, and what our mission statement demands: to bring together our mature artists AND to pay it forward to the next generation. Here’s our plan for the Fall!
OUR ZOOM NATIONWIDE MEMBERS-ONLY MEMBERSHIP MEETING Monday, September 20, 2021 (instructions/invitations will be sent out in August). We will be discussing how to move forward and announce all of our upcoming events as they come together and test your TRIVIA potential!
THE BROADWAY CARES/EFA FLEA MARKET, OCTOBER 3, 10 – 7pm!
As of this writing, the “live” event is a “go” in Shubert Alley! We have already received TONS of Playbills, librettos, ballet shoes and of course, always filling that SUTTON FOSTER did not wear these CLOTHES box! We are still on the lookout for posters, show jackets, memorabilia and opening night tchotchkes!
THE 13TH ANNUAL LEGACY AWARDS – LIVE – AT LIPS RESTAURANT, Monday, December 6th, 6 – 9pm! We ARE planning on returning to the fabulous LIPS restaurant in December to honor the following DO40 members: Mercedes Ellington, Mary McCatty, Sue Samuels, Susan Sigrist and Tony Waag! An extremely diverse and talented group of mature artists!
TRIVIA, TRIVIA – AND MORE TRIVIA!!! Thanks to podcasters and DO40 members Charles Kirsch and Robert W. Schneider, we will be back in the Broadway/Dance/Music contest game virtually throughout the season!
MERCH! WE HAVE MERCH! Thanks to our donors/members, we now have DO40 masks, baseball caps – and tank tops! LIMITED QUANTITIES! We will model them all at our DO40 membership meeting! Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and prices.
We want to stay connected to our mature dance community and friends. This organization is the only lifeline for many of our senior dancers.
It will be very difficult for us to keep afloat without your financial support. We must keep up the good fight for our community and everyone who support us. We need you now to help continue Our History, Our Legacy, Our Lives…
Capish? Hope so!
Here’s our DO40 poster-man, Rob Schneider, modeling our new DO40 baseball cap! Available to members for $15.00 and non-members for $20.00, plus $4.80 shipping! Email us at email@example.com payment options, iSquare, PayPal or check!
DO40 president John Sefakis, in a mirror selfie of our new DO40 tank tops – great for taking a dance or yoga class! Sizes S, M, L, XL (gender neutral!) Available to members for $20.00 and non-members for $25.00, plus 4.80 shipping. (The logo really is not backwards!) Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for payment options, iSquare, PayPal or check!
And if the baseball cap and tanks aren’t enough, we have a limited supply of DO40 masks left for purchase! Available to members for $10.00 and non-members for $15.00 plus $3.80 shipping! Email us at email@example.com for payment options, ISquare, PayPal or check!
DO40 KICKED OFF IT’S 2021 – 2022
MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL OUTREACH WITH
A VIRTUAL BOFFO BROADWAY TRIVIA CONTEST
JULY 20TH – STILL AVAILABLE TO VIEW ONLINE!
Our youngest DO40 member, Charles Kirsch, host of theater podcast Backstage Babble and Dancers Over 40 joined forces Tuesday night to present a virtual dance, theater and music TRIVIA CONTEST to kick off DO40’S 2021-2022 membership renewal season, which begins in August.
The event happened live on Tuesday, July 20th, at 7 PM EDT. Click on this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ylz0UbfPo6E or the Dancers Over 40 Facebook page (facebook.com/dancersover40) to watch now – and FOREVER!
There were questions and stories from Broadway legend Lee Roy Reams (42nd Street, Applause), hot off helping to reopen Feinstein’s/54 Below (we could have used a 7-second time delay for some of Lee Roy’s stories!), two-time Tony nominee Brad Oscar (The Producers, Something Rotten), Forbidden Broadway’s Gerard Alessandrini and DO40 board member Lawrence Leritz (Fiddler on the Roof, Fonteyn and Nureyev on Broadway). Also joining in the game, dance song impresario Michael Lavine, holder of the largest collection of sheet music in the world!
The answerers/contestants were Rob W. Schneider, host of the hit podcast Behind the Curtain and founder of J2 Spotlight Musical Theater Company, Richard Norton, author of the definitive Chronology of American Musical Theater, long-time DO40 member Tony Sheldon, star of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert and Amelie, and composer Billy Recce, whose album Little Black Book recently climbed to #11 on the Billboard charts. And the winner of the evening – and recipient of the best prize ever – a DO40 baseball cap – was Rob W Schneider!
Watching can’t-miss nights of fun like this is part of the benefit of belonging to DO40 —so many first-hand stories that might have been lost to history and were instead forever preserved as we donate all our videotaped events to the Jerome Robbins Collection at the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts. This is also part of the mission of theater podcast Backstage Babble, which has documented theater history straight from the mouths of legends Chita Rivera, Karen Morrow, Christine Andreas, Joel Grey, Ed Asner, and more (almost all of whom have also participated in events for DO40). Those interviews and many more are all available on Charles Kirsch’s podcast, https://www.cbroadwaypodcast.podbean.com/
And now it begins – our annual membership and renewal drive! Please visit www.dancersover40.org/ and click on the JOIN/RENEW/DONATE button, or send a check to Dancers over 40, Inc, P.O. Box 2103, NY, NY 10101. Membership rates have not changed since we began in 1994!!! $45.00 for NY/NJ/CT members and $35.00 for all others. Your membership gets you not only our newsletter and eblasts, but access to our member-only video pages of our website, where you can view all of our previous panels, performances and social events.
A SPECTACULAR STAR-STUDDED DO40 SPELLING EVENT!
DO40 president John Sefakis with the Spellers and Spell-ees!
(pictured L to R top to bottom: Charles Kirsch, Kevin Winkler, Candy Brown, George Dansker, Jamie DeRoy, Brad Oscar, Bari Biern, Ken Bloom, Michael Lavine, Lawrence Leritz, Barry Kleinbort)
It was the Sharks vs. the Jets! The Hatfields vs. the McCoys! The Dancers vs. the Civilians! And (drum roll…) the Civilians won – the first DO40 Broadway Spelling Bee fundraiser! Impresarios and DO40 members Ken Bloom and Charles Kirsch produced and hosted this fun, entertaining – and educational - evening, where you not only got to know HOW to spell dance and theater legends’ names, but heard stories right from the “horse’s mouth” ABOUT them and their craft (and some juicy APPLAUSE…”info!”). The event is still up on youtube for free viewing at YouTube, at this link and the Dancers over 40 Facebook page.
DO40 president John Sefakis with DO40 Advisory Board member and
Director/Choreographer Jerry Mitchell
Special guests who provided the names to spell included DO40 Advisory Board member and director/choreographer Jerry Mitchell (HAIRSPRAY, LEGALLY BLONDE, KINKY BOOTS), Jim Brochu (ZERO HOUR, BRIGADOON), Jason Graae (STARDUST, PATENT LEATHER SHOES), PR maven extraordinaire Josh Ellis, actor/writer Charles Busch (TALE OF THE ALLERGIST’S WIFE), Penny Fuller (APPLAUSE, CABARET), Mary Testa (XANADU, 42ND STREET, OKLAHOMA), Lee Wilkof (LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, ASSASSINS)) Karen Morrow (A JOYFUL NOISE) , Steven Brinberg (SIMPLY BARBRA), Ted Chapin (Rogers and Hammerstein Organization president) and DO40 members Cheryl Clark (PIPPIN, CHICAGO, A CHORUS LINE), James Dybas (PACIFIC OVERTURES, DO I HEAR A WALTZ?) and Ron Young (MY ONE AND ONLY, MAME, A CHORUS LINE).
Actress Mary Testa
And in this corner, the Spellers: The Dancers were represented by DO40 board member Lawrence Leritz (NUREYEV & FONTEYN ON BROADWAY, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF), DO40 members Candy Brown (LIZA WITH A Z, PIPPIN CHICAGO, GRIND), Kevin Winkler (CATS), Bari Biern (CAPITOL STEP) and Brad Oscar (THE PRODUCERS). The Civilians were musical director Michael Lavine, songwriter/director Barry Kleinbort, producer/performer Jamie DeRoy, historian George Dansker and DO40 president John Sefakis.
A heartwarming thanks to all who contributed their time and effort to this spectacular evening of spelling!
And remember, it’s never too late to join Dancers over 40 as a card-carrying, dues-paying member – or donate to our Patron Wall! Just go to www.dancersover40.org and click on theJOIN/RENEW/DONATE BUTTON! No spell check required!
DO40 member Cheryl Clark
Actress Penny Fuller
Actor Jason Graae
Actor/Playwright Charles Busch
Dancers over 40 presents …
Our April 18, 2021 Membership Meeting
productive and prolific authors and entrepreneurs!
FDO40 prez John Sefakis with the DO40 Entrepreneurs!
Sunday’s April DO40 Zoom membership meeting was awash in entertainers who “got a gimmick” to sustain their creative juices! From authors, to dance teachers, Pilates instructors and organizers, podcasters and producers! We featured DO40 member Kevin Winkler and his new autobiography of Tommy Tune, coming out the end of 2021, along with DO40 member and Tommy Tune understudy Ron Young, who wrote his own biography, The Only Boy Who Danced, back in 2011. Also on hand, producer, author, raconteur and DO40 member Ken Bloom, whose new book on Eubie Blake: Rags, Riches and Race, is now out! Ken explained that out of Eubie Blake’s Shuffle Along (100 years ago!) came the concept for “chorus dancers!” We still keep learning a thing or three every time DO40 meets!!! Also, Ken is penning a David Merrick biography, so he’ll be looking for an assist from all of our DM Dancers!
DO40 member Ron Young with his autobiography, The Only Boy Who Danced
Zooming with us along with Winkler, Young and Bloom (sounds like a questionable Broadway producing team, don’t you think?) and DO40 prez John Sefakis, DO40 members included Leslie Burgin, Joyce Nolen, Martha Warschau, Steph Marie, Leni Anders, John Bate, DO40 board members Sasha Spielvogel, Eileen Casey and Lawrence Leritz, Joy Serio Dunbar, Francine Storey, Judith Wong, Tom McRoberts as well as Pilates instructor Ellen Fluhr, educator and performer Robert Sacheli, organizer Karyn Tomczak and podcast perfectionist Charles Kirsch!
There was a Question and Answer after the presentations and DO40 prez John Sefakis announced the May 17th Spelling Bee fundraiser for DO40 by Ken Bloom (with an assist by Charles Kirsch) and another Trivia Evening (a big hit last month!) in July to kick off our 2021 – 2022 (can you believe it?!?!) DO40 season!
DO40 member and Fosse AND Tommy Tune author Kevin Winkler
We ended the evening with the 4-minute clip of DO40 members inserted in the 75th Birthday event for Liza Minnelli last month! We zoomed at home and the producers edited our zooming brilliantly!
DO40 was also featured on the podcast Behind the Curtain, hosted by Kevin David Thomas and Rob Schneider – now BOTH card-carrying, dues-paying members! Thanks for the plug! DO40 is getting noticed! Everywhere! And we’re happy to announce we passed our 2019 – 2020 membership goal already, and it’s not June yet (the end of our season)!! Thanks to all who joined, renewed and donated to keep DO40 afloat during this awful pandemic and trying times. We’ve asked for suggestions on how we, as an organization, can help to fight the ongoing racism and violent attacks in NYC and across the nation. Be vigilant. Thoughtful. And always resilient!
DO40 members John Sefakis, Ron Young, Joy Serio Dunbar, Lawrence Leritz watch as author Kevin Winkler shares a Tommy Tune/SEESAW photo.
TRIVIA NIGHT WITH DO40 AND BACKSTAGE
BABBLE MARCH 20TH
Host Charles Kirsch with DO40 member Carolyn Kirsch, Todd Buonopane, DO40 member
Kevin Winkler, Lee Roy Reams, Michael Colby, Michael Lavine, DO40 prez John Sefakis,
Ken Kantor and Kevin David Thomas
(not shown, DO40 advisory board member Lawrence Leritz
A great night of fun and dancer-y trivia questions brought to you by DO40 and Backstage Babbles' Charles Kirsch. Over 1,000 people watched and were engaged in the Streamyard event (you could watch in your pajamas - this wasn't Zoom!! LOLOL) – and you can STILL watch it on our FB and Youtube channels! Questioners included DO40 members and friends Carolyn Kirsch (ACL, Chicago, Company and oodles more), Lawrence Leritz (NYCB and Fiddler), Lee Roy Reams (EVERYTHING), Ken Kantor (Phantom) and Michael Lavine (sheet music expert), with contestants DO40 member (and Trivia evening WINNER!) Kevin Winkler (Cats) and Todd Buonopane (30 Rock), Kevin David Thomas (Les Miz) and composer/author Michael Colby. Lots of talk in the chat room with DO40 members Sasha Spielvogel, Eileen Casey, Tony Sheldon (in Australia!) Robert Reader and more! These are so much fun and great learning experiences! Also, Charles has the best rehearsals for the shows! Two, matter of fact! And That's Showbiz, Kids!
DO40 prez John Sefakis with the Trivia Night Gang
A SURPRISE DO40 MEMBER ZOOM MEETING FOR
LIZA MINNELLI’S 75TH BIRTHDAY!
A black tie event! for Liza Minnelli’s 75th Birthday Soiree, aired online starting March 12th!
DO40 was honored to have our members featured in Liza Minnelli’s 75th birthday event Friday night (to be repeated Saturday and Sunday March 13 and 14th on www.stellar.com), in the performer section, alongside greats like DO40 Advisory Board member Chita Rivera, Ben Vereen, Shirley MacLaine, Joel Grey, Michele Lee, Joan Collins (!!!!), Barbara Streisand, Bernadette Peters, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Lily Tomlin, Kristen Chenowith, Whoopi Goldberg, the Verdon/Fosse Legacy and many, many more performers and friends of Liza. This was about family, Liza’s theatrical family, and included artists from all areas of our community.
Featured in our segment, Ed Gaynes (Best Foot Forward), Phyllis Wallach (Flora the Red Menace), Carol Estey (The Act) Candy Brown (Liza with a Z and Chicago) Michon Peacock and Cheryl Clark (Chicago), Kathryn Doby (Cabaret, Pippin, Chicago), Francis J. Roach and Nancy Dalton (Luigi’s Dance Studio), Eileen Casey (Happy Birthday, Hollywood), Lawrence Leritz (Rosie O’Donnell Show), Karyn Tomczak (Sondheim: A Celebration at Carnegie Hall) and our youngest member, Charles Kirsch, whose GRANDPARENTS saw Liza with a Z and The Act! A few members could not make it: Mercedes Ellington, Mary Zahn, Richard Korthaze, Judith Jones, Penny Worth…and again, many, many more! And we had additional members Richard Skipper, Martha Warshau, Miriam Bernabei, Judy Wong, Jan Augustine, Patrick McCarthy, Ken Bloom, Francine Storey, Stephanie Stabile, Skip Shultz and Barbara Bernardo – not all pictured – zooming is hard to photograph! (We tried to video our segment – only got half! Producer Matt Berman promised us a pristine high quality clip once the weekend is over!)
Thanks to producer Daniel Nardicio for contacting us about this through DO40 president John Sefakis, as well as producers Sam Benedict and Matt Berman, who edited our Zoom birthday greeting to Liza we streamed last week. Liza was friend and confidant to all of us – from chorus to union backstage and the “stars” she worked with. Also happy to see fans who only knew Liza peripherally, but whom she regularly encouraged to continue their artistic careers. Could go on for paragraphs of other attendees, like Jason Alexander, Mario Cantone, Coco Peru, Kathy Najimy, Harry Connick, Jr., Lea DeLaria, Michael Feinstein, Billy Stritch, Julie Halston, Melissa Manchester, Andrea Martin, Parker Posey, Jim Caruso, John Stamos, Ute Lemper and again, many, many more! Our History, Our Legacy, Our Lives!
VALENTINES DAY DO40 MEMBERSHIP MEETING:
A HEARTFELT REUNION OF DANCERS FROM ALL DISCIPLINES
Page One of our Zoom Meeting: Leni Anders, DO40 president John Sefakis, Teak Lewis (out of frame!), Carolyn Kirsch, Charles Kirsch, Karyn Tomczak, Joanna Rush, Sasha Spielvogel, Robert Reader, Ken Bloom, Lawrence Leritz,
Tom McRoberts, Steph Marie, Robert Sacheli, Sharon Wendrow, Michon Peacock, Gail Benedict, Felicia
Velasco D’Amico, Penny Worth and Patrick McCarthy
What we thought would be a lively, and short Valentines Day membership meeting evolved into a 2 ½ hour lovefest and reunion, six degrees – and sometimes only one degree of separation members never knew existed! The Star of the Evening? Everyone! We went “around the room” and asked the simple question, “Why?” Some stories were familiar, some not, some funny, some deep and heartfelt. Didn’t matter what discipline – or age! We not only had a 20-something member, we had teen-something member in Backstage Babble’s Charles Kirsch! Over 30 dancers participated, some Zooming for the first time. And as always, still a few kinks to get out of the system (and nose close-ups!). We interspersed the afternoon with clips from our beloved Advisory board member Bob Avian’s Legacy Awards acceptance speech, as well as numbers by Ann Reinking, Chita Rivera and of course, Gwen Verdon.
Almost everyone spoke, with the exception of a few that we missed due to the size of the meeting, and they represented not just Broadway, but ballet, ballroom, tap, modern and jazz. In attendance: Board members Patrick McCarthy, Lawrence Leritz, Sasha Spielvogel and Sharon Wendrow as well as DO40 president John Sefakis, Michon Peacock, Gail Benedict, Leslie Burgin, Penny Worth, Robert Sacheli, Carolyn Kirsch,. Charles Kirsch (no relation!), Ken Bloom, Josh Ellis, Candy Brown, Joanna Ruth, Martha Warschau, Robert Reader, Steph Marie, Felicia Velasco D’Amico, Karyn Tomczak, Teak Lewis, Francine Storey, Leni Anders, Tom McRoberts, Sandy Nance, Cynthia Elane and Ellen Fluhr, as well as co-host Jason Alan Harris. We did have a number of members who sent their regrets, as they were having a hot Valentines date with their partners!!!
DO40 member and PR maven Josh Ellis ended the evening with a heartfelt thank you all the dancers for doing what they do. And his Zoom wallpaper was the BEST: Joe Allen’s restaurant!! He mentioned it made him “crazy with joy to go through a stage door,” not just at the beginning of his career, “but every time afterwards.” To Josh it was a “magical world… God bless you all.” Can’t top that….
Apologies to Sandy Nance, Tom McRoberts, Cynthia Elane, Mila Ilieff, Carol Roth Sullivan and Ellen Fluhr for not getting to you to speak. You’ll be first up next time – which will be… April, 2021, right before our chock-full May events! Stay tuned! Tried get photos of everyone, but the computer is not our iPhone12's friend all the time; apologies to some of the speakers who didn't get their Zoom "headshot!" It is so wonderful to have member representation from not just New York, but Kentucky, Colorado, Los Angeles, Washington, DC, Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Jersey – something our “live” yearly membership meetings in NYC could never accomplish! Looks like we’ll even Zoom our “live” events once they get up and running in the hopefully-near-fully-vaccinated future! The entire membership meeting will be on our website soon for members to view on the member-only video pages, along with photos – captured on the computer, of course, of our members who didn’t come up blurry or unflattering!
All the best to everyone on the vaccination front. Our DO40 Newsletter had NYC vaccine info and we’ll try to keep on top of that as rules change and phone numbers for appointments become more available (for our non-internet friendly members!) Right now, call 311 in NYC for an appointment or the Dept. of Health, 877-829-4692 - 24 hours a day to speak to a real person!
What they did for Love, continues….
DO40 prez John Sefakis and the DO40 Zoom gang!
A THEATER PODCAST WITH TONS OF OUR DO40
“CAST US, HIRE US” MEMBERS AT THE READY TO SHARE THEIR HISTORY,
THEIR LEGACIES AND THEIR LIVES!
The VERY "under 40" DO40 member Charles Kirsch has interviewed theater greats past and present on his podcast - singers, actors, dancers and many from our community. He asks incisive questions for such a whippersnapper! Past interviewees include Rita Gardner, Joel Grey, Charles Busch, Penny Fuller, Michael Rupert, Josh Bergasse, DO40 members and friends Eileen Casey, Mary Jane Houdina, Carolyn Kirsch, James Dybas, Ken Bloom, Josh Ellis, Anita Gillette, Lee Roy Reams and Sondra Lee. With more DO40 members to come!
And remember, go to our website, www.dancersover40.org and click on Cast Us! Hire Us! to see where YOU SHOULD BE, so that we can continue to promote our members to organizations inside and outside of our community. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to be included!
THOUSANDS WATCH THE 12TH ANNUAL
DO40 LEGACY AWARDS!
Presented by Richard Skipper Celebrates and DO40
Monday, December 14th, 8pm
Computer photo of our 2020 DO40 Legacy Honorees, Dennis Birchall, Jeri Kansas
and Francis J. Roach. Photographed by DO40 president John Sefakis.
Well, looks like there's a silver lining to all the Zoom- and Streamyard-ing things happening these days. Over 2,800! people (that’s thousands, right?) watched our 12th annual DO40 Legacy Awards online/virtual/streaming (whatever the kids are saying nowadays!), usually held at LIPS restaurant, with performances and uplifting speeches from our honorees and their friends. From adversity comes innovation - and there is something to be said for the wonderful clips we used (and have in our repertoire!) and the close ups as our honorees spoke from the heart. We have received a number of new members from the evening, and orders for our new DO40 COVID masks!
Heartbreaking, however, was the news that one of Broadway's most beloved stars died on Saturday - Fosse muse Ann Reinking. We were fortunate to work with Ann on the 40th Anniversary of Bob Fosse's DANCIN' in 2018. We published a short clip of Ann singing "Roxie" at the Therapy Bar After-party on our Facebook page. To paraphrase an old Angela Lansbury movie, " there are no dancers anymore; facsimiles, that's all, just facsimiles..." - compared to Ann – and Gwen – and Chita!
DO40 Advisory Board Member Director/Choreographer Larry Fuller,
speaking on behalf of Legacy Honoree Dennis Birchall
This year we honored DO40 members Dennis Birchall, Jeri Kansas and Francis J. Roach, dancers all, with careers that span Broadway, Radio City Music Hall and the legacy of jazz great (and DO40 member) Luigi. Speaking on behalf of our honorees were director/choreographer Larry Fuller, former Rockette Susan Arreola, and Gower Champion assistant and former DO40 board member Karin Baker (unfortunately, Christine Colby Jacques was unable to log in to our event to speak for Francis J. Roach).
Inside DO40 “Command Central,” at DO40 prez John Sefakis’ home.
The event was hosted by theater and nightclub entrepreneur and impresario Richard Skipper, and was our first FREE streamed live event on our DO40 facebook page, www.facebook.com/dancersover40 and Richard Skipper’ pages on facebook and youtube, www.facebook.comRichardSkipperCelebrates/ and www.youtube.com/c/RichardSkipperCelebrates. There was also a tribute to Marge Champion and a fantastic hosting job by the indomitable Richard Skipper. You can still WATCH the show (75 minutes) on the links above!
Host Richard Skipper (at his OWN Command Central!) and DO40 president John Sefakis.
We hope this will encourage new members, young members and new Friends of.. (not dancers) to join DO40 as card-carrying, dues-paying members. AND, an added benefit! New members will receive our DO40 COVID-19 mask for free! Regular prices are: $15.00 for non-members, $10.00 for current members (plus $3.00 shipping). Email us at email@example.com to confirm you would like to order and then pay through our website using Paypal. Sorry there was no official DO40 photographer at this event! We miss the staff at LIPS, our videographer Manny Santiago, photographer Jeff Eason and even our long-time coat check volunteer, Cha-Cha Lopez! Next year, LIPS here we come!
More photos to be posted on our website shortly. They are posted on our DO40 Facebook page now!
Don’t forget! GREAT holiday gift!!! Get them while they last!
Email us at dancersover40.org to reserve your mask(s)!
DO40 HALLOWEEN MEMBERSHIP MEETING:
WHEN “BOO!” IS A GOOD THING!
(SINCE IT’S NOT COMING FROM THE AUDIENCE!)
ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL GET TOGETHER AND DISCUSSION
OF OUR HISTORY, OUR LEGACY AND OUR LIVES.
Although not everyone was in complete costume (some more than others!), DO40’s first Halloween membership meeting was a hoot! Honors for best costume went to 2019 Legacy Honoree Candy Brown, with a “chip” on her shoulder, that being the one chorus dancer in every new show who had one! Very clever! Candy earned a free 2021 – 2020 membership! Costumes represented were ACL, Fiddler on the Roof, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Susan Stroman, 70’s disco, Luigi Jazz and a Cell Block Tango lady thrown in at the very last minute!
After honoring our dear friend and DO40 Advisory Board member Marge Champion (passing at the age of 101) with a short video from our 2008 Gower Champion event, we moved on to our main topic, Jack Cole and the huge David Merrick Flop, MATA HARI. Cast members Francine Storey and board member Eileen Casey discussed Jack, the show, David Merrick – and even rats in the alley! DO40 member Bill Reilly in Florida, also in the show, is not ZOOM-savvy, so he gave us a bunch of memories he had of the show, from colliding scenery to gun powder going off in the audience! A Jack Cole video summary also featured many of Jack’s ensemble, including Gwen Verdon, George Martin, Julie Newmar, Mitzi Gaynor and an tribute by Alvin Ailey.
Then it was on to our youngest member of Dancers over 40…and FRIENDS, 13 year-old Charles Kirsch, who has his own podcast on Apple, Spotify and more called Backstage Babble. He is interviewing DO40 members and has already spoken with Mary Jane Houdina, Eileen Casey, Anita Gillette, as well as old time members Lee Roy Reams and Sondra Lee. Check out his podcast for other interviews with Charles Busch, Rita Gardener, Josh Bergasse and Joel Grey! Thanks to our Cast Us! Hire Us! page on our DO40 website, Charles got to see the depth of our “talent!” We still need more DO40 members to be engaged and enshrined on that page, so contact DO40 and send in a photo and brief bio summary ASAP!
DO40 President John Sefakis hosted, along with ZOOM co-host Jason Alan Harris, with a surprise guest and spur of the moment performance by Stella D’oro, the Queen Mum of Vaccine for Project Achieve/The New York Blood Center and Columbia University’s HIV Vaccine Trials Network – who opened for DO40’s CHICAGO reunion at our Alvin Ailey dance concert in 2012 reuniting the 1975 Cell Block Tango Ladies: DO40 Advisory Board member Chita Rivera, DO40 Legacy Honorees Candy Brown, Cheryl Clark and Michon Peacock, as well as Candace Tovar and Joan Albright (substituting for DO40 Advisory board member Graciela Daniele and Pam Sousa).
Our next event will be held in December – our annual DO40 Legacy Awards. However, due to the pandemic, we are unsure if we can secure a venue, if even only for a small dinner to honor our three recipients, Dennis Birchall, Jeri Kansas and Francis J. Roach. We would ZOOM that event to members and friends. TBD and TBA for now!
Members who participated included JoAnn Mariano, Patti Mariano, Leni Anders, Tom McRoberts, Jane Barbara, Ken Bloom, Charles Kirsch, Joshua Ellis, Francine Storey, Kathryn Doby, Jeri Kansas, Robert Sacheli, Candy Brown, Martha Warschaw, Christine Colby Jacques, Joy Serio Dunbar, John Gilvey, DO40 Prez John Sefakis along with DO40 board members Eileen Casey, Nancy Dalton Flowers, Sasha Spielvogel and Patrick McCarthy – and with Susan Sigrist (we think) on the phone!
The DO40 Halloween Meeting will be posted on the member-only page of our website shortly for ALL of our members to view (our August 25th meeting is up and running as well)! Of course, since we ARE over 40, it took about 20 minutes for some members to get their video to work and NOT focus on their noses or apartment ceilings! Technology called, and we didn’t pick up our landline!
The Holidays are upon us! And what better a gift to your loved ones than a membership to Dancers over 40…and Friends! Remember, you don’t need to be a dancer, or over 40 to join (just ask 13 year-old new member Charles Kirsch)! Just visit www.dancersover40.org and click on the JOIN/RENEW/DONATE button (you can donate any time, of course!) – and let us know if you’d like to give a gift of community to someone you love!
OUR 2020 – 2021 MEMBERSHIP AND RENEWAL
SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 – AUGUST 31, 2021 SEASON!
Dear Dancers over 40 Members and Friends,
The Board of Directors of Dancers Over 40 hope you all are well and safe. It’s time to join/renew for the 2020 – 2021 Season. This is an unprecedented year, and an extremely difficult beginning to our membership renewal efforts. We understand that this pandemic affects everyone, and repercussions from COVID-19 are not just medical. Our members are the most vulnerable population in this pandemic. For many, self-isolation is a way of life.
Please click on our JOIN/DONATE/RENEW menu as soon as possible and do any of those three things by using Paypal or sending in a check and downloading the membership form. We have a Legacy and a History. We sincerely hope you can help us continue telling our stories as we pass the torch to the next generation. Please contact us with any ideas, leads, suggestions or references you may be able to provide to help us financially through this rough time.
WHO’S ZOOMIN’ WHO
AT DO40’S FIRST NATIONAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING!
Tuesday, August 25th, 7pm
DO40 President John Sefakis, along with ZOOM host Jason Harris,
take the helm of this huge membership meeting! Took a few pages of our desktop to see everyone!
DO40’s first ZOOM national membership meeting Tuesday night, August 25th was phenomenal! There were over 50 members from all over the US of A – CA, CO, WI, KY, KS, MD, NC, DC, MA, RI and NY (and one from the UK at our “rehearsal” meeting August 22nd!), a few technical screw ups, but hey, we're dancers over you-know-what, and this technology is new to us! We did not know what to expect! This from Patch Schwadron, of The Actors Fund who gave us a power point presentation: “The warmth of those gathered was so evident. I hope (everyone) will continue to develop appreciation of how they can stay connected virtually from wherever they may be.”
Besides The Actors Fund’s Schwadron, Actors Equity, Equity League and SAG/AFTRA spoke about benefits, pensions and COVID-19 issues (Jennifer Swiderski, Vincent Cinelli and DO40 member and SAG/AFTRA LA delegate Anthony Marciona). DO40 members and authors Kevin Winkler, John Gilvey and Ken Bloom, talked about their prospective and respective works on Bob Fosse, Gwen Verdon and Tommy Tune. Also, a trip down memory lane with Sue Samuels and JoJo's Dance Factory, (which may become a DO40 Zoom event on it’s own!) and a mini-reunion of cast members from 42nd Street featuring super cast members Lee Roy Reams, 2020 DO40 Legacy Award honoree Jeri Kansas and Cathy Jones Wolf, celebrating the 40th anniversary of their Broadway opening. We are also in talks to produce the 20th anniversary ZOOM of CONTACT and a reunion of the Broadway and movie casts of THE WIZ! All that while still figuring out how to produce our 2020 DO40 Legacy Awards (contingent on NYC COVID-19 rules and regulations).
A clip from DO40 2014 Legacy Award honoree Carolyn Kirsch’s talk at our 2007 (!!!!)
Women of Fosse event (also pictured, Jeannie Jones Snow, Dana Moore, Harvey Evans and Marge Beddow)
Besides the “live” event, we showed clips our previous panels and performances, featuring the opening Wilkkomen number from Cabaret by our members, DO40 member Carolyn Kirsch speaking on the importance of theater and dance education from our Women of Fosse event, our 42nd Street “reunion”/closing number from our David Merrick event and the Dancin’ Man number recreated by 2019 DO40 Legacy Award honoree Kathryn Doby from our 40th Anniversary of Bob Fosse’s DANCIN’ event!
We went a teensy bit long - 2 1/2 hours – as our ZOOM host, Jason Harris, allowed each of our members to take “center stage,” say hello and mention their community affiliation. It was SO long, 2019 DO40 Legacy Award honoree Candy Brown had to take her dog out for a walk, and stayed on line – looking like a bee keeper in her COVID protective gear! We thought we were getting ZOOM-bombed (yes, that’s a thing now!).
DO40 will continue its mission to promote a community of support for mature artists and pay it forward to the next generation in any way, shape or form we need it to be to get through these troubling times. Your support through membership dues and donations is crucial to our survival, however. The video of the meeting will be available on our website (for DO40 members only!) soon!
She’s STILL eager to give “notes” on this 2017 performance of
the 40th Anniversary of Bob Fosse’s DANCIN’!
(Fosse assistant and DO40 2019 Legacy Award honoree Kathryn Doby)
Attendees: Leni Anders, Gail Benedict, Barbara Bernardo, Ken Bloom, Candy Brown, Leslie Burgin, Eileen Casey, Lori Tan Chinn, Vincent Cinelli, Christine Colby, Kathryn Doby, James Dybas, Josh Ellis, Ellen Fluhr, Darlene Wendy Frank, John Gilvey, Jason Harris, Lynda Harris, Cathy Jones Wolf, David James, Jeri Kansas, Teddy Kern, Carolyn Kirsch, Lawrence Leritz, Anthony Marciona, Patrick McCarthy, Susan McCollum, Thomas McRoberts, Sandy Nance, Kristine Nevins, Diane Nicole, Michon Peacock, Lee Roy Reams, Francis J. Roach, Larry Ross, Joanna Rush, Robert Sacheli, Sue Samuels, Patch Schwadron, John Sefakis, Kathy Seng Gurland, Sasha Spielvogel, Stephanie Stabile, Mary Jane Stevens, Francine Storey, Jennifer Swiderski, Reed Waller, Martha Warschau, Sharon Wendrow, Kevin Winkler and Judy Wong.
Watching our DO40 members perform the Wilkkomen number from Cabaret in front of a the
TONY Awards performance they did back in 1968!
Page Two of our ZOOM meeting members (some hidden, some twice, for some reason!)
The 42nd Street “Gang” from our 2019 David Merrick event!
Dear Friends, Fans and Members of Dancers over 40,
We hope you are doing well and taking the precautions needed during this pandemic. Like all organizations, DO40 has been hit with tremendous losses in revenue and grant money due to COVID-19.
In order to continue to provide our members – and supporters - the benefits we do, we must use all areas of fundraising expertise that we can. We’ve identified a simple way to help DO40 at no cost to you.
Many members are already using Amazon as a main provider of an assortment of goods. Please consider clicking on www.smile.amazon.com before making your purchases on Amazon and chose Dancers over 40 as your non-profit charity. Then, just shop as you regularly do and Amazon donates a portion of the sales to DO40!
How to support DO40 on Amazon Smile, is as simple as 5, 6, 7, 8!
5. Go to www.smile.amazon.com
6. Continue to your regular Amazon account
7. Select the option for a Charity
8. Select Dancers Over 40!!
Amazon will send DO40 a percentage of your purchased items. THERE IS NO EXTRA COST.
This is a particularly difficult time for everyone, especially for our members and friends who are personally affected by COVID-19. As an organization whose mission is to create a community of support for mature dancers, choreographers and related artists, it is difficult not to operate on a social level – hard to meet and greet our peers and reminisce in person at this moment in time. As you all know, we had to cancel our Spring 2020 events, and now must revamp our Fall season and plan a Spring 2021 season while acknowledging that this pandemic knows no boundaries, no timeframe, and no compassion. While complying with NY State protocols, DO40 hopes to continue its mission and will strive for the best possible solution to meeting our organization’s goals.
We canceled our Spring 45th Reunion of the cast of the WIZ and also our upcoming Fall event, The Dancers of Jerry Herman. We will be working very hard to see if it is possible to produce our DO40 Legacy Awards this December. We have done yeoman’s work, providing so much material for the next generation and donating all that we do to the Jerome Robbins Dance Collection at the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts.
We are all in this together, as a community, and proud of all of our accomplishments throughout the years. We hope to continue as an organization as long as we can, with your help and cooperation.
Thank you for your support over the years. We know this situation seems insurmountable at times, but many of us have survived wars, plagues, epidemics – and even flop shows! Everybody RISE!
CAST US! HIRE US!
PHOTO SHOOT FOR OUR MEMBERS
AT SHETLER STUDIOS, NYC
FEBRUARY 25, 2020
Everyone who came got their 15 minutes of fame (sort of!) with DO40 member and photographer Cynthia Elane at Shetler Studios Tuesday night. Special thanks to Cynthia for donating her energy - and equipment - to not only shoot headshots for our members, but promote our Cast Us! Hire Us! project, spearheaded by DO40 board member Katharine Buffaloe Harris. More about this exciting project in the next few months! Our website has a dropdown menu with information on how we plan to assist our members and engage organizations and casting directors to, well, Cast Us! Hire Us! Thanks to board members Sasha Spielvogel, Patrick McCarthy, Katharine Buffaloe Harris and Sharon Wendrow for all their assistance!
DO40 member and photographer Cynthia Elane shooting DO40 board member Sasha Spielvogel’s head shot.
Selfie with as many of us who could fit in by the end of the evening!
L to R: Sharon Wendrow, Sasha Spielvogel, DO40 president John Sefakis, Patrick McCarthy,
photographer Cynthia Elane, Katharine Buffaloe Harris, Judith Wong and Lora Martens
The always debonair and dapper DO40 board member Patrick McCarthy
The ever-youthful Judith Wong
JOIN OUR NEW: Cast Us! Hire Us! page!
Cast Us! Hire Us !
Book Us! Book Us to Read!
Please submit your Portrait Headshot and a One Page Bio, with your professional LINKS included to
This NEW “Cast Us! Hire Us!” page is a combination of our previous
ArtsWorkplace and our Legacy Project!
KEEP CURRENT with potential Casting Directors for upcoming projects;
and SHARE YOUR ART by offering to:
Host a “Master Class
Q & A about your career
Give Student Critiques or Coachings
Participate in a Book Read about Dance at your Local Library
If you’re an Author – offer a Book Signing Event!”
OR – if you have your OWN cabaret, act or theatrical piece for Booking -
offer it through your Bio and Links!
ALL THIS in an effort to KEEP YOU ACTIVE
AND to keep you ACTIVELY GIVING BACK to our Communities!
SHARE things they won’t learn anywhere else!
At the top of your Bio please put a description about yourself
and whatever you might like to offer!
Master Class, Q&A, Student Critiques
Book my One Person Show - “Dancing the Night Away”
Currently teaching at Dance Academy East
We will be reaching out to connect our Members with Theatre programs that visit NYC! We will help reach out in your area if you are NOT located in the Tri-State area! We will help reach out to your alma maters, former dance and theatre venues that might like to “reconnect” with YOU!
Please Submit Your Pics & Bios & Links Today!
DO40 continues its ARTSLegacy series honoring all of our members. These written transcripts will also be donated to the Jerome Robbins Dance Collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center, and eventually into a compilation suitable for publishing. In this issue we present two of our younger members (!!!), Mary McCatty and Jamie Pierce. Our ARTSLegacy Biographies are an added benefit for people who do not live in the tri-state area, or who are in NYC and might not be able to participate in our panels. The questions can be answered by phone or by computer, so no need to travel or to dress up for the interview! Call the DO40 hotline at 212-330-7016 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
Background photo from the Original West Side Story cast ready to rumble!” Photo courtesy of Photofest