Jennifer Blades at Don’t Tell Mama

June 19, 2010

It was thrilling to be at Don’t Tell Mama last night for Jennifer Blades’s NY cabaret debut.  She presented her show, My Funny Valentine, with a lot of great material ruminating on the theme of love.

Jennifer looked stunning — all Titian tresses, flowing over a black lace top, heirloom silver and jet necklace, and palazzo pants.  And of course she sounded even better.  She particularly scored with an achingly lovely Blue Fool and a charming exuberant version of Noel Coward’s Nina.

Having seen the first incarnation of the show at An Die Musik, I have to congratulate Team Blades for all the work that they’ve done on the project.  Rick Jensen did his usually stunning job as music director, not only accompanying her but also providing seamless underscoring and transitions between numbers.  And Lina Koutrakos’s direction really helped bring structure to the material and brought out the best in Blades. 

And I mean the following in the nicest way — you would never know that she was an opera singer slumming in cabaret.  Much more Eileen Farrell than Elly Ameling !

Here’s her song list:

  • Hurray for Love
  • That’s Him
  • My Romance
  • You Should Have Told Me
  • Shakespeare Lied
  • Blue Fool
  • The Boy From…
  • Losing My Mind
  • Echoes of My Life
  • Time Heals Everything
  • Murder He Says
  • Not While I’m Around / Sleepy Man
  • I Get a Kick Out of You / I’ve Got You Under My Skin
  • Nina
  • Fable
  • My Funny Valentine

Jennifer Blades makes her NY debut !!!

June 16, 2010

Jennifer Blades in “My Funny Valentine”

June 18, 2010 & June 19, 2010, 7:30pm

Rick Jensen, Music Director / Lina Koutrakos, Director

$20.00 cover charge/ 2 drink minimum per person

Don’t Tell Mama — Tickets & Info

Lina Koutrakos / Rick Jensen Workshop Concert

March 29, 2010

OK, we spent the workshop today putting the final show together.  Lina and Rick shared the process they use to assemble a show, demonstrating it on the one for the class.  Then it was the nitty-gritty of actually doing it all.  Particular congratulations to Daryl Anderson, ToniRae Brotons, Emily Everson, and Jennifer Blades who at 12:30 were informed that they were doing duets and had them ready by the 6:00pm show under the brilliant guidance of the teaching team.

For anyone interested, here’s a link to the recording I made of the concert.  (Unfortunately we were seated in front of the cafe area, so you also get the hum of the kitchen equipment.)

Here’s what people sang:

  • Hooray for Love — Jennifer Blades
  • Come In From the Rain / Why Did I Choose You ? — ToniRae Brotons / Darryl Anderson
  • I Never Say Anything / My Superman– Chris Cochrane
  • I’ll Get Up Tomorrow Morning — Christy Trapp
  • All of My Life — Darryl Anderson
  • Baby, You Can sleep While I Drive — Marianne Glass Miller
  • When I Fall In Love — Elcindor Johnson
  • It’s a Jungle Out There — Emily Everson
  • Do Right Woman, Do Right Man — Jean McMahon
  • Sleepy Man — Emily Everson & Jennifer Blades
  • Yard Sale — Michael Miyazaki
  • How Did We Come To This ? — Christy Frye
  • On the Other Side of the Tracks — ToniRae Brotons
  • Bye Bye Blackbird — Company

Jennifer Blades — Re-scheduled due to snow

December 24, 2009

Desire, Despair, Deceit, and Delight – A Holiday Cabaret

Jennifer Blades, vocals, Eileen Cornett, piano

The Cabaret at Germano’s (300 High Street, Baltimore, MD 21202, 410-752-4515)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

7:30 pm (Doors open at 6:00 for pre-show dining)

$10 cover

Reservations recommended

“Always engaging.” – Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun

Just in time for the holidays, dynamic cabaret performer Jennifer Blades returns with a new show entitled, Desire, Despair, Deceit, and Delight – A Holiday Cabaret. Together with Eileen Cornett at the piano, the duo celebrates all aspects of the holidays: from the desire for that one perfect gift to the despair and deceit of loss, and ultimately, the delight of getting exactly what your heart desires. >From classics such as Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas to the hilariously satirical Surabaya Santa, along with gems from the Great American Songbook, this show will certainly lift your spirits and put you in the mood for the holidays.

The total experience of an evening at the Cabaret at Germano’s – a wonderful performance in an intimate space by great entertainers, fine food, the most attentive wait staff in town, in the heart of Baltimore’s own Little Italy, a vibrant urban neighborhood – is a unique reflection of what is best about Baltimore.

Two great acts at Germano’s this week

June 8, 2009

Mark your calendars, two very different powerhouse performers appear at Germano’s Trattoria in Baltimore this week:

Jennifer Blades and James Harp in “Life, Love & Laughter”

Jun 11, 2009 at 7:30 pm

Join Baltimore music-scene favorites Jennifer Blades and James Harp as they weave stories of life, love and laughter with songs from Kurt Weill’s Americana. From the ever-popular September Song and Speak Low to lesser known beauties such as O, Heart of Love and Is It Him or Is It Me, this intimate evening of song promises to bring a tear to your eye and put a smile on your face.

The Incomparable Charisma Wooten in “Eclectic Songs: I Love to Sing”

Jun 12, 2009 at 7:30 pm

Whether the music is classical, jazz, American show tunes, spirituals, gospel or folk music, this vocalist entertains you with drama and comedy. “…her voice has a warm earthy sound with a slight raspiness of a blues singer (some might classify as contralto); but she can reach the clear soprano spinto clarity… this voice invites you into the story, as if she is telling you a secret…” Hamil Harris, The Washington Post. “…Charisma’s performances are considered ‘edu-tainment’ … you will be compelled to think”. Philip E. Pannell, The Washington Informer.

Eclectic Songs: I Love to Sing! includes songs from Cole Porter, Thomas “Fats” Waller, Billy Holiday, Ira and George Gershwin, Ted Koehler and Harold Arlen, Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein to Hal David and Burt Bacharach; just to name a few.

Keeping up with the busy Jennifer Blades

April 20, 2009

A Piano and a Microphone: What More Do I Need? 
Songs of (mostly) Sondheim 
Featuring the Peabody Cabaret Class 
Cabaret artist Jennifer Blades is joined by students of the inaugural Cabaret Class at the Peabody Institute in a show filled with (mostly) songs of the great Stephen Sondheim. Featuring vocalists Stephanie Miller, Britt Olsen-Ecker, Sarah Mahon, James Parks, Lizz Dow, Lindsay Thompson, Laura Reaper, Elizabeth Cooper, Maggie Finnegan, Jeff Williams, Jennifer Hamilton, and Marisa del Campo with pianist Yoohee Shin. 
Thursday, April 23, 7:30 pm (Doors open at 6 pm) 
Cabaret at Germano’s 
$10 cover/$15 minimum food and drink 
Wednesday, May 6, 7:30 pm 
An die Musik 
$12 general admission/$5 students 
Life, Love & Laughter 
Jennifer Blades, vocals 
James Harp, piano 
Join Baltimore music scene favorites Jennifer Blades and James Harp as they weave stories of life, love and laughter with songs from Kurt Weill’s Americana. From the ever-popular September Song and Speak Low to lesser known beauties such as O, Heart of Love and Is It Him or Is It Me, this intimate evening of song promises to bring a tear to your eye and put a smile on your face. 
Thursday, June 11, 7:30 pm (Doors open at 6 pm) 
Cabaret at Germano’s 
$10 cover/$15 minimum food and drink 

Jennifer Blades at Germano’s

October 27, 2008

The ever-wonderful Jennifer Blades is performing her show, My Funny Valentine, at Germano’s in Baltimore next week.  Details follow:

Cabaret at Germano’s
My Funny Valentine



A cabaret tale of looking for love in all the wrong places, finding love, losing love, confusing love, finding love again but doubting that it is really love, and finally falling in love.

Songs by Arlen, Rodgers & Hart, Sondheim, and Gershwin as well as some lesser known gems by Elmer Bernstein, Alec Wilder and several others.

Whether looking to avoid counting the raindrops or to spend an intimate evening with your own funny valentine, this evening of humor and song is for you.



Jennifer Blades, vocals
Eileen Cornett, piano



Thursday, November 6, 2008
Doors open at 6 pm//Show starts at 7:30 pm
$10 cover
$15 food or drink minimum300 High Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

Jennifer Blades at An Die Musik

February 19, 2008

Jennifer BladesI had the great pleasure to catch Jennifer Blades’s show at An Die Musik in Baltimore.

Baltimore audiences generally hear Blades singing classically where she works regularly with Opera Viventi and as a recitalist.

In her Valentine’s Day cabaret, My Funny Valentine, Blades did a terrific job of performing as a cabaret singer rather than as a slumming soprano.  She is well on her way to the territory of Eileen Farrell-dom.*

She chose a wide range of material including general standards (“I Get a Kick Out of You”), cabaret standards (“Tayor” “Meadowlark”),  and delightful discoveries (“You Should Have Told Me…”).  She has a terrific instrument, but seems equally committed to reaching her audience with the full emotional impact of a connected cabaret performance.  Although I felt she still occasionally fell into “recitalist” mode, she has come a long way since the last time I saw a cabaret outing.  (She is another performer who has gone through the Perry-Mansfield program, and the effects of working with that faculty really show.)

*OK, I have to admit it.  I love “pop” recordings of classical singers.  My all time favorite?  Elly Ameling singing “Can That Boy Foxtrot” !

Blades repeats the program this Friday, 22 February, 8pm.

Calendar: December 2007 – February 2008

December 13, 2007

December 2007 

  • Wednesday, 8:30pm – 12/12 December Divas (Signature Theater)
  • Thursday, 8:30pm – 12/13 December Divas (Signature Theater)
  • Friday, 7:00pm & 9:00pm  – 12/14 December Divas (Signature Theater)
  • Saturday, 7:00pm & 9:00pm – 12/15 December Divas (Signature Theater)
  • Saturday, 9:00pm, 12/15 — Holiday Classics (Atlas/INDIGO)
  • Friday, 9:00pm, 12/21 — Holiday Classics (Atlas/INDIGO)
  • Saturday, 8:30pm – 12/29  Doug Bowles and the Washington Conservatory Jazz Ensemble  32 Bars in One Night (Atlas/INDIGO)  

January 2008 

  • Sunday, 7:30pm — 1/13 Melissa Manchester (Barns of Wolf Trap)
  • Friday, 1/18 — Scott Bakula An Evening with Scott Bakula (Ford’s Theater)
  • Saturday, 6:30pm, 1/19 — Beverly Cosham (Reston Community Orchestra)
  • Thursday, 8:00pm, 1/24 — Faith Prince (Barns of Wolf Trap)
  • Saturday, 7:30pm, 1/26 — John Eaton (Barns of Wolf Trap)
  • Saturday, 7:30pm, 1/26 — Susan Werner (Birchmere)
  • Thursday, 8:00pm, 1/31 — Maureen McGovern (Barns of Wolf Trap) 

February 2008

  • Friday, 8:00pm, 2/1 — Primary Urges (Writer’s Center, Bethesda) 
  • Friday, 8:00pm, 2/1 — Michael Sazonov My Well Schooled Heart (Maggie’s Place / St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church)
  • Friday, 8:00pm, 2/1 — Maureen McGovern (Barns of Wolf Trap)
  • Saturday, 8:00pm, 2/2 — Cabaret Benefit (River Road Unitarian Church)
  • Sunday, 3:00pm, Primary Urges (Writer’s Center, Bethesda)
  • Saturday, 8:00pm, 2/9 — Beverly Cosham with the  McLean Symphony (Alden Theater)
  • Friday, 2/15 — Jennifer Blades My Funny Valentine (An Die Musik)
  • Saturday, 2/16 — Sally Martin (Corner Store)
  • Friday, 2/22 — Jennifer Blades My Funny Valentine (An Die Musik)
  • Saturday, 2/23 — Beverly Cosham (Atlas/INDIGO)
  • Saturday, 2/23, 7:30pm – Christine Lavin (Birchmere)
  • Thursday, 7:30pm, 2/28 — Diane Schuur (Birchemere)

And don’t forget Blake Place at the Flaming Pit!