Nine's Shelly Burch and Annie's Martin Charnin Working on New Solo Show, One More Song

News   Nine's Shelly Burch and Annie's Martin Charnin Working on New Solo Show, One More Song Songwriter-director Martin Charnin is teaming up with Broadway's Shelly Burch, the original Claudia of Nine, for a new solo show that will play Seattle this fall as part of its development.
Shelly Burch
Shelly Burch

Burch, who sang "Unusual Way" in the 1981 production of Nine on Broadway, has been working on the solo show with Charnin for more than a year, testing it discreetly in regional venues.

"It's a one-woman entertainment that we did at Blues Alley in Washington and in Orlando at the Mad Cow, and now we're going to do it in Seattle at a club called Crepe de Paris," Charnin told Playbill.com. "Hopefully, it will end up being a one-woman theatre piece. It could go into a place like [Off-Broadway's] the Little Shubert or some place like that. It's biographical, and it's romantic and it celebrates life and love and hope. She's amazing and she's just as gifted as she was 25 years ago."

Burch was director Charnin's Star to Be in Broadway's Annie in 1980; she had the cameo moment in which an iconic wannabe arrives in "N.Y.C." with "three bucks, two bags, one me."

Flash forward more than 20 years, when Burch called Charnin to discuss a staging of Annie that she was to direct. Although the production never happened, talk about a solo show started.

Some 15 songs are heard in the new show, titled There's Always One More Song to Sing, which was called Incurably Romantic when it played Orlando in 2004. The show is co-conceived by Charnin and Burch, and Charnin directs. All the lyrics are by Charnin, with 11 songs featuring his own music, as well. Other composers represented are Charles Strouse, Keith Levenson and Colin Romoff. It's not a show of trunk music, Charnin said: "It's new stuff — a lot of new stuff."

Burch's resume includes playing Delila Buchanan on TV's "One Life to Live," appearing in the Paper Mill Playhouse (and PBS broadcast) of Show Boat, an appearance in 1978's Stop the World — I Want to Get Off with Sammy Davis Jr., and resident productions of Later Life, A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline and Charnin's new musical Robin Hood, in which she played a middle-aged Maid Marian. Visit www.shellyburch.org.

Charnin is perhaps best known as a lyricist, for Broadway's Annie (which he also directed; he also wrote lyrics for the sequel Annie Warbucks), Two by Two, I Remember Mama and The First. His Broadway career began as an actor and dancer. He was Big Deal in the original Broadway production of West Side Story.

There's Always One More Song to Sing will play Crepe de Paris in Seattle in October.