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Billie Holiday

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NEWS
March 17, 1999 | by Erin Einhorn, Daily News Staff Writer
A block apart on Cecil B. Moore Avenue lie two sites that developers have wanted to turn into centers of entertainment. Slated to receive city and federal subsidies, both are part of a vision to return the avenue to its former glory as a center for commerce, jazz and blues. The larger project, at Broad Street and Cecil B. Moore, is a glitzy, $58 million complex called Jump Street USA. Its developers hope to break ground in the fall. The smaller project, meanwhile, at 15th Street and Cecil B. Moore, is mired in controversy and has triggered a federal investigation.
NEWS
March 30, 2015 | By John Timpane, Inquirer Staff Writer
One hundred years ago, on April 7, 1915, one of the 20th century's greatest singers was born in Philadelphia. The name on the birth certificate was Elinore Harris, born in Philadelphia General Hospital on Curie Boulevard in West Philadelphia, a tax-supported municipal hospital that ministered mostly to indigent patients. She became known to the world as Billie Holiday, a transcendent singer with a tragic American life. Fans of jazz - of music, period - will observe her centenary worldwide.
NEWS
October 7, 1988 | By Nels Nelson, Daily News Jazz Columnist
In one of life's interesting but imponderable little coincidences, pianist Harold McKinney witnessed his first and only live performance by Billie Holiday a scant five months before her death in 1959 - about the same time frame specified by Lanie Robertson for his play "Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill," in which McKinney has been congenially typecast as Holiday's accompanist. McKinney saw her in Atlanta, where Louis Smith's group, of which he was a member, was the opening act for the great jazz singer (the play, currently at the People's Light and Theatre Co. in Malvern, places her in a funky South Philadelphia cabaret)
NEWS
February 25, 1991 | By Gloria Campisi, Daily News Staff Writer
Joe Bush, a retired postal worker who carried on a lifelong love affair with Billie Holiday and her music, died Thursday after a battle with cancer. He was 59 and lived in South Philadelphia, where he was raised. Bush met Holiday at the house of a neighbor who was a friend of the famed singer when he was just 6 or 8 years old, said Hilda Guy, a first cousin of Bush. "Billie Holiday leaned over and kissed him on the cheek, and he never forgot her. "He was in love with Billie Holiday.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 22, 1995 | By Jack Lloyd, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Nate Davenport loves the big-band sound. "Always have," he said. "I loved it as a kid. I even watched Lawrence Welk on TV. Honest, I really did. I sometimes think I was born in the wrong era. " Kathy Roberts cut her musical teeth on R&B. "I've often been compared to Phyllis Hyman," she said. "I toured with Billy Paul for more than two years, doing duets with him and singing background. I also did some background work for Stevie Wonder when I was on the West Coast. " It was Davenport's idea to produce a tribute to Billie Holiday, and Roberts was his choice to handle the Holiday role.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 3, 1993 | By Douglas J. Keating, INQUIRER THEATER CRITIC
The Billie Holiday in the highly entertaining show Billie Holiday: The Lady Behind the Gardenia at Freedom Theatre is not the same Billie Holiday who performed at the Wilma Theater until last month. Yes, I know, Billie Holiday has been dead 34 years, so she wasn't really on either stage. But while watching the performances of Millicent Sparks in Freedom's Gardenia and Miche Braden, who starred in Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill at the Wilma, it is difficult not to think of them as incarnations of the famous jazz singer.
NEWS
August 10, 1991 | By Douglas J. Keating, Inquirer Staff Writer
Stephen Stahl is getting good mileage out of Lady Day, his one-woman show about the jazz singer Billie Holiday. Stahl's first version of the piece was created a decade ago for a theater company he ran in Philadelphia for a couple of seasons. A rewritten version became a small-theater hit in London and Paris a few years later. That show played the Theater of Living Arts on South Street for several weeks in 1987, then went on to run for several months in San Francisco. Lady Day is now being performed, with Stahl as director, at the Cabaret Theater at Odette's in New Hope in a revival demonstrating that the success of the piece, like that of any one-person show, depends on who performs it. Four years ago at the TLA, Holiday was portrayed by Ann Duquesnay, whose singing and acting evoked Holiday's presence and style strongly enough to make the show a satisfying entertainment.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 1, 2003 | By Douglas J. Keating INQUIRER THEATER CRITIC
Emerson's Bar and Grill has long since passed into history, but over the last two decades the modest (seedy might be a better word) jazz venue at 15th and Bainbridge Streets surely has been visited by many more people than it ever hosted when it was in business. Not Emerson's exactly, but many, many stage designers' conception of it as the set for the musical play Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill. Since Philadelphia native Lanie Robertson wrote it in 1984, the piece, which evokes an appearance by the legendary singer Billie Holiday at Emerson's in 1959, has become a staple of American regional theater.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 4, 1992 | By Douglas J. Keating, INQUIRER THEATER CRITIC
So compelling is Miche Braden's performance as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill, it's tempting to say that the singer has returned to the former South Philadelphia nightspot instead of the Wilma Theater. So I'll succumb to temptation and just say it. One who has been dead 33 years doesn't, of course, come back to entertain the living, but Braden's evocation of Holiday is so intensely realized that the audience truly believes she is Holiday, and in the theater, believing makes it so. Holiday, as playwright Lanie Robertson sets it out, is not returning under the best of circumstances.
NEWS
July 27, 2014 | By Tirdad Derakhshani, Inquirer Staff Writer
McDonald on depression Audra McDonald , 44, who plays Billie Holiday in the Broadway show Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill , says she has some insight into the troubled Holiday's psyche, having suffered from depression. She even made a suicide attempt "while I was at Juilliard," McDonald told ABC News' Peter Travers . "I tried to slit my wrist. " The actor said Juilliard's "incredibly supportive" attitude and mental-health facilities helped. The arts school encouraged her to work her way to health by joining the national tour of The Secret Garden .   Possibly maybe engaged Royal in-law babe Pippa Middleton is "on the brink of getting engaged," to bf of two years stockbroker Nico Jackson , Unnamed Royal Insider tells Life & Style Weekly.
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ENTERTAINMENT
October 28, 2015 | By Dan DeLuca, Inquirer Music Critic
At a star-studded gala presented by the Philadelphia Music Alliance, the Roots topped the bill Monday night at the Fillmore Philadelphia as the hip-hop and Tonight Show band led a slate of seven acts inducted into the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame. Other inductees were "Disco Inferno" hit-makers the Trammps, Annie star Andrea McArdle, DJ Harvey Holiday, 1980s rock band Cinderella, Asleep at the Wheel leader Ray Benson, and the late Billie Holiday. Also on hand were Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon, who was expected, and soul-funk singer D'Angelo, who was a surprise.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
There is much to celebrate when the Philadelphia Music Alliance (PMA) holds its first evening gala in 20-plus years for the Walk of Fame induction ceremony, cohosted with the Avenue of the Arts. All will take place Monday at the brand-new Fillmore Philadelphia in Fishtown. "I was part of the original board spearheaded by Larry Magid, whose drive and vision created the PMA," says cochair Alan J. Rubens, a Time Life executive. Rubens got involved with the PMA again in 2013 to continue that vision, and cochair Mia Tinari thought up the idea of a gala to start that process.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 22, 2015 | BY CHUCK DARROW, Daily News Staff Writer darrowc@phillynews.com, 215-313-3134
On an arctic day in the winter of 1986, a group of local music-scene mahoffs welcomed representatives of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to Philly with the intention of persuading them to put the hall here. Inexplicably, Cleveland ultimately got the nod (some insiders blamed then-Mayor Wilson Goode's lack of enthusiasm for the project). But there was a positive by-product of that ill-fated, long-ago visit: the Philadelphia Music Alliance. For almost 30 years, the nonprofit PMA has been the guardian and promoter of Philadelphia's illustrious and influential history as a music capital.
NEWS
May 31, 2015 | By John Timpane, Inquirer Staff Writer
From Broadway to disco to big-hair rock, from the Philly Sound to the Great American Songbook, the just-announced 2015 class for the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame covers much musical ground. The lineup, announced by the Philadelphia Music Alliance on Thursday, also fills a long-standing absence: that of singer Billie Holiday, born in Philly and a frequent performer at the Showboat at Broad and Lombard Streets and the Earle Theatre at 11th and Market Streets. Soon, she'll be on Broad Street along with the Trammps, famous throughout the galaxy for "Disco Inferno"; Andrea McArdle, who played the title role in the original Broadway production of Annie ; the all-Philly, all-world Roots (wait, the Roots weren't there already?
NEWS
May 29, 2015
A GLAM HAIR-METAL band. The original "Annie. " The guys who lit a disco inferno. A literal giant in the music industry. These are among the seven new inductees whose names soon will be installed into the sidewalk along the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame along the Avenue of the Arts on South Broad Street. You've been waiting with bated breath, and now here they are: * We got a sneak peek with the announcement of Billie Holiday last month. She would've turned 100 years old April 7. Holiday is considered one of the best and most influential jazz singers of all time.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 9, 2015 | Inquirer Staff
Bogus Angelou quote fracas Yesterday, for Poetry Month, kind of, the U.S. Postal Service released a Maya Angelou commemorative stamp, bearing this quote: "A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song. " Angelou liked to say it. It's associated with her. And - we love it! - it's not hers! It belongs to poet Joan Walsh Anglund , now 89: It's in her 1967 book A Cup of Sun . Stunned silence. Flailing attempts at explanation! Just a reeking mess.
NEWS
March 30, 2015 | By John Timpane, Inquirer Staff Writer
One hundred years ago, on April 7, 1915, one of the 20th century's greatest singers was born in Philadelphia. The name on the birth certificate was Elinore Harris, born in Philadelphia General Hospital on Curie Boulevard in West Philadelphia, a tax-supported municipal hospital that ministered mostly to indigent patients. She became known to the world as Billie Holiday, a transcendent singer with a tragic American life. Fans of jazz - of music, period - will observe her centenary worldwide.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 2015 | By Howard Gensler
ONE MORE THING Tattle loves about Taylor Swift : She seems to have 48 hours in her day. Between the music and the fashion and the star-studded vacationing and birthday partying, the talk shows, impromptu performances and parties for fans, Swift seems to find more time to meet with small children than perhaps any celebrity out there. Sure, other celebs do good deeds, but Swift sets the bar high. She's like a one-woman Make-a-Wish Foundation. The latest day she brightened was that of 4-year-old cancer patient Jalene Salinas , of San Antonio.
NEWS
September 12, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Billie Holiday was born in Philadelphia. Nina Simone lived here. Melody Gardot keeps an address here, as does Rhenda Fearrington, Peggy King, Shamika Byrd, Suzanne Cloud, Rachelle Ferrell, and Dyana Jean. So a summit of Philly jazz divas makes divine sense. And that is what Homer Jackson and Aaron Graves have done with DivaNation - a series of conversations, workshops, and live showcases on Friday and Saturday at Drexel University's Mandell Theater. Name a local jazz chanteuse and Jackson has an epithet of praise for her. Barbara Montgomery "owns the stage.
NEWS
July 27, 2014 | By Tirdad Derakhshani, Inquirer Staff Writer
McDonald on depression Audra McDonald , 44, who plays Billie Holiday in the Broadway show Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill , says she has some insight into the troubled Holiday's psyche, having suffered from depression. She even made a suicide attempt "while I was at Juilliard," McDonald told ABC News' Peter Travers . "I tried to slit my wrist. " The actor said Juilliard's "incredibly supportive" attitude and mental-health facilities helped. The arts school encouraged her to work her way to health by joining the national tour of The Secret Garden .   Possibly maybe engaged Royal in-law babe Pippa Middleton is "on the brink of getting engaged," to bf of two years stockbroker Nico Jackson , Unnamed Royal Insider tells Life & Style Weekly.
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