Audra McDonald, Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill….Outstanding!

7 Jul

20140707-223518-81318247.jpgThere is a certain love that I have for Billie Holliday!

I was introduced to her very young, when I was merely 7 years old! I having a protective mother did not allow me to wander too far from our home in Queens! “Don’t you go outside that gate! “, she would say!

And more often than not, I would have to stay in the house! My refuge was our basement, where my dear Uncle Alvin kept his jazz records! 78s they were (I still have them) and our old RCA console record player!

I would listen to Oscar Brown Jr., “Signifying Monkey”, Charlie Parker, Sarah Vaughn and others! One day, he reached in the last sleeve of the folder which held the records and said “When you listen this woman, make sure you listen carefully…for every word is sung with meaning!”

I will never forget when I’d placed the record on the carousel and listened! That’s when I fell in love with Billie Holliday! To this day, it has not ever been a month that goes by, that I don’t listen to her singing! There’s always a song to fit the mood I’m in or always one to be humbled by!

So when I heard that on Broadway, Audra McDonald would appear as thee Billie Holliday, I was very interested and suggested to my dear friend that we should somehow make plans to see it soon!

As the tickets were purchased, the next few days the Tony Awards were televised and Audra McDonald won for her role for Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill! Best Performing Actress in a Leading a Role!! And as you now know, she made history! Six time Tony Award Winning Actress! But I purposely did not see any of her televised performances.

So upon that great news, made me even more want to see her playing Ms. Billie Holliday! Let me say that I really had no clue on what to expect! For I purposely did not read any reviews! I know the story of Billie Holliday, know her style of singing and even her breathing patterns. I know Billie!

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So upon arriving at the Circle In The Square theatre, the set was just as if you were in a nightclub; which was Emerson’s Bar & Grill. The band was there, a 3 piece band (drummer, pianist and bass).

The lights dimmed and there she was …..Audra McDonald; looking like Billie Holliday! Then she stepped on staged and began to sing!

Her voice was EXACTLY like Billie Holliday! I was absolutely floored! She was no longer Audra MCDonald! It was like permission was being granted by the late Billie Holliday to do her life story; a reincarnation so to speak!

 

There I was being taken back to a time period which I could never have imagined! It felt like I’d stepped into Emerson’s Bar & Grill, no one could see me…but I was there! It’s 1959 in South Philly! The writer, Lanie Robertson adaptation had it dead on!

The favorites were sung , “God Bless the Child”, “Strange Fruit”, ” T ain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do” and classics like “Somebody’s On My Mind” and “Easy Livin”.

Billie Holliday (Audra) spoke of her tremulous life; from childhood to the present time where the drug addiction was sadly taken over her life. For the life she was living, was slowly fading away!

Audra McDonald was outstanding and I couldn’t be happier; for she did an excellent, excellent portrayal of Lady Day! I was not disappointed at all!

What a perfect match, six-time Tony Awarding winner actress and the world’s greatest jazz singer…..in one room! You couldn’t get any better than that! Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill has been extended to September 21, so it’s still time!

 

On March 27, 1948, Holiday played Carnegie Hall to a sold-out crowd. There were 2,700 tickets sold in advance, a record at the time for the venue. Her popularity was unusual because she didn’t have a current hit record. Her last hit was “Lover Man” in 1945, her last on the record charts. Holiday sang 32 songs at the Carnegie concert by her count, including Cole Porter’s “Night and Day” and her 30s hit, “Strange Fruit”. During the show, someone sent Holiday a box of gardenias. “My old trademark,” Holiday said. “I took them out of box and fastened them smack to the side of my head without even looking twice.” There was a hatpin in the gardenias and Holiday, unknowingly, stuck it into the side of her head. “I didn’t feel anything until the blood started rushing down in my eyes and ears,” she said. After the third curtain call, she passed out. April 7, 1915 – July 17, 1959)

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Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & DesignLetia :)

Happy 4th of July!

4 Jul

Wishing you and your families a wonderful 4th of July! Enjoy! Have fun!

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Letia :)

Ke$ha for V Americana Magazine 2012 issue

Tammy! Melissa McCarthy! Get Ready..Summer Fun!

28 Jun

 

TAMMY

We are just so impatient when it comes to having fun in the summer! We want to take in all of the days! So we plan and plan! So in your plans, please take one day to go see Tammy! In theaters on July 2nd!

I’d had the opportunity to see it through a screenplay ally and I’d laughed so hard, I got a little scared of hyperventilating over the popcorn going down the wrong way!

I’d recovered! But not from the movie!

This movie lets you know what “having a bad day” really is!

Melissa McCarthy…hilarious! Susan Sarandon….hilarious! With surprises of actors we love to see!

TAMMY…Declare YOUR Independence!

 

 

See http://www.tammymovie.com for tickets and locations!

Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & DesignLetia :)

Directed by Ben Falcone, written by both Ben Falcone and Melissa McCarthy!

Happy Father’s Day! “I’m A Daddy” Inspired by Pharell’s “I’m Happy!”

1 Jun
Happy Father's Day

Happy Father’s Day

 

Happy Father’s Day will be soon here in a week or so and how wonderful this video made me feel to honor men – who are Fathers!

Pharell’s “I’m Happy” was the music which inspired dj LV to write the lyrics and do just that!

There are great Dads, father nurturers and you’re not my Dad- but you step in just like a Dad out there!

dj LV wanted to share this video:

“PLEASE SHARE WITH EVERYONE YOU KNOW…
Out of ALL the things I’ve done in my career (which is a lot)…this has been the most meaningful…Dads deserve more credit than they get. This was my way of saluting all the Good Dads out there. I’m dj LV, and I approve these Dads…Cool Dads Rock”

To all Dads…have a wonderful Happy Father’s Day!

Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & DesignLetia :)

YouTube video by iknowdjlv, writer, producer and DJ.  Original song “I’m Happy” written and owned by the artist and producer Pharell.

Bronzer, the Summer Must! @Forever21

26 May

Hello everyone! I’ve received many emails questioning the bronzer I’d used from a Instagram photo I’d posted while away on my mental break in Cancun, Mexico!

The one which I’d practically fell in love with was Forever21’s Love & Beauty All Over bronzer!

Picked it up by chance and I’m so, so glad I did!

Absolutely beautiful at the beach! I’d even put it on my collarbone and hint on my shoulders; when dining out!

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Forever21 Love & Beauty ALL OVER Bronzer

The best way to build up bronzer is to start below the cheekbone, closer towards the ear and lightly diffuse it outwards toward the cheek to blur out edges.

Then, sweep the brush to hit the high planes of the face (check, forehead, and chin) using a figure-3 sweeping motion.

Do the same on the other side and then finish down the nose!

Bronzer…..It’s wonderful for all skin tones.  A must get item for the upcoming summer fun; you’ll be hooked!!!!

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Letia Mitchell wearing Love & Beauty ALL OVER Bronzer @ Forever21

Oh!  Don’t forget to use your sunblock first; then apply!

Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design

Letia  :)

 

 ALL Over Bronzer can be found at http://www.Forever21.com, under the Beauty section.  Photo by Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design LLC.  Love & Beauty ALL Over Bronzer photo, by Forever21. 

Kips Bay Decorator Show House 2014 – Mansion on Madison

25 May

photo 3 (8)It’s less than one week left to see this year’s pick for the Kips Bay Decorator House 2014, and I made it!   I’d chose a Thursday evening to attend, it was rainy and quite humid – but the anticipation was well worth it!  I attend every year, to get ideas and see the designer’s amazing work!  All for a beautiful cause, the Kips Bay children!   Here are some pictures of the rooms.  For a full listing of all the designers, please click: DESIGNERS.  If you in NYC, there’s still time – it closes on May 29th.

The place this year is the Villard Mansion on 51st Madison Ave!

The Villard Mansion was constructed in 1884, designed by the architecture firm McKim, Mead & White three years after they started their company. The houses were commissioned by Henry Villard, then president of the Northern Pacific Railway, shortly before his railroad empire began to crumble. Ownership of the building changed through many hands throughout the century.

In 1968, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the complex a historical landmark. Restoration and construction for a new hotel complex was proposed by real estate developer Harry B. Helmsley who constructed the 51-story New York Palace Hotel tower directly behind the original building. The project was designed by architects Emery Roth & Sons and Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer in 1977 and completed in 1980.

The original building was restored in 2003 and office space was furnished for city preservation group The Municipal Art Society, as part of an agreement to save the building from demolition.

vMad

Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design Letia :)

More information, please go to http://www.kipsbaydecoratorshowhouse.org.

Each year, celebrated interior designers transform a luxury Manhattan home into an elegant exhibition of fine furnishings, art and technology.

This all began in 1973 when several dedicated supporters of the Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club launched the Kips Bay Decorator Show House to raise critical funds for much needed after school and enrichment programs for New York City children. Over the course of four decades, this project has grown into a must-see event for thousands of design enthusiasts and is renowned for sparking interior design trends throughout the world.

My Recent Best Moment, What’s Yours?

25 Apr

Letia Mitchell

 

It’s sharing time!

I’d recently had the opportunity to be challenged about how I truly feel!

Do you ignore or just say…..here we go? And say it!

It’s was a commitment that I had to agree to accept both outcomes, the one you want and the one you definitely don’t want!

 

Putting understanding on the forefront that YOU are NOT in control, say it and just be still and await the outcome!

Instead of worrying about what it will be or not be, I’d figured out this is the perfect time for me! That I’m able to ask myself the hard questions and be totally fine with ME!

I’d ended up laughing! Everything has a divine order and what’s for me … You know the saying!

I said “Wow, what a wonderful moment….you are not perfect…but you’re just right! You can be honest with yourself and be proud of it!”

All smiles since then! :)

If you would like to share your best moment, that Ahhhhh Ha moment….please comment!

Letia 

 

 

Photo by Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design ®

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