Avenue Q's D'Abruzzo Makes Solo Cabaret Debut May 23

News   Avenue Q's D'Abruzzo Makes Solo Cabaret Debut May 23 Stephanie D'Abruzzo, the Tony-nominated star of Avenue Q, will cross Eighth Avenue to make her solo cabaret debut May 23 at Birdland.
Stephanie D'Abruzzo
Stephanie D'Abruzzo Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Part of Jim Caruso's "New Season," D'Abruzzo will present her program at 7 PM. Alan Muraoka directs the evening, which will feature musical director Michael Patrick Walker on keyboards, Michael Croiter on percussion and Jim Donica on bass. Cabaretgoers can expect to hear tunes by Cy Coleman, Burt Bacharach, Neil Sedaka, Phoebe Kreutz, Gary Adler and Michael Patrick Walker.

In a recent interview, D'Abruzzo spoke to Playbill.com about her upcoming solo cabaret debut. "I knew instantly I wanted Alan Muraoka to direct it," the actress said. "I've known Alan for years through 'Sesame Street,' but I also know the great job he did [directing] Ann Harada's Ars Nova show and Johnny [Tartaglia]'s Joe's Pub show. I know what a good eye he has as a director, so I definitely wanted to use him. And the one thing Ann Harada had told me is 'Alan will work you and with you.' And that's great — that's what you want, you want someone who's going to get the best out of you."

D'Abruzzo also said, "I don't like giving away any of the titles because I think it reveals too much, but there are some great surprises — there are some great originals. Michael Patrick Walker is writing me an original song just for the evening, so it will be premiered that night. I am going to do Gary Adler's 'If I Weren't Married.' Alan agreed no night would be complete without doing that. I'm doing a Phoebe Kreutz song that I don't think any of the other [Avenue Q] cast has performed, and then there are things that are kind of obscure or [songs that have] not been sung in this venue. I really wanted the night to be different."

Stephanie D'Abruzzo is currently making her Broadway debut in Avenue Q at the Golden Theatre. She received a Tony nomination and a Theatre World Award for her work in the Broadway production and a Drama Desk nomination for her work in the Off-Broadway mounting of Q. She has also been seen on stage in the City Center Encores! production of Carnival, the all-star Chess concert, the Encores! 10th Anniversary Bash and the recent Stephen Sondheim celebration, Children and Art. D'Abruzzo has spent several seasons on "Sesame Street" and the kids show "Oobi" and will soon be seen in VH-1's "I Love the 70s Part II" and "I Love the 80s 3-D."

Birdland is located in Manhattan at 315 West 44th Street, between Eighth and Ninth Avenues. There is a $25 cover charge and a $10 food/drink minimum; call (212) 581-3080 for reservations or visit www.instantseats.com/birdland.