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Bemelmans Bar in The Carlyle announces spring season
(Published: March 31, 2016)


The Carlyle, a Rosewood Hotel, is pleased to welcome Jim Caruso & Billy Stritch, The Brandon McCune Trio,and Tony DeSare and to Bemelmans Bar for Sunday night residencies throughout the spring 2016 season. Featuring top artists from the worlds of jazz, cabaret and Broadway alongside special unannounced guests, Sunday nights at Bemelmans Bar have become a favorite spot for a wide range of performing musicians across the city. Additionally, the classic watering hole has drawn crowds consisting of socialites, politicians, movie stars and moguls for
more than five decades. More information on acts performing this winter can be found below.

Jim Caruso & Billy Stritch's upcoming performances will build upon their recent run of shows in the intimate, storied New York City lounge, favorites not only of music fans and critics, but also of fellow artists. The duo recently added dozens of songs made famous by Frank Sinatra to their repertoire, thanks to their current national tour of The Sinatra Century. Their shows provide a place where some of the city's foremost entertainers go to commune with their own-and sometimes sit-in for a song or two-on their nights off. To be sure, Caruso and Stritch are exceptional musicians in their own right. In a recent New York Observer review, Rex Reed described their Bemelmans show as "a nimble, nonstop, musical show-business bonanza with as much rhythm and class as the feet of Fred Astaire."

But part of the fun is experiencing Caruso and Stritch's impromptu collaborations with the showbiz heavy-hitters who turn up; recent guest appearances at Bemelmans have included Liza Minnelli, Michael Feinstein, Bono, Marilyn Maye, Tony Danza, Jane Monheit and Linda Lavin. In addition to performing extensively on their own, Caruso and Stritch-who are best friends-gained national exposure together as the host and musical director of the wildly popular, recurring open mic event Cast Party. Stephen Holden, in The New York Times, called a Cast Party event in the Lincoln Center American Songbook series "a welcoming oasis of traditional show business bonhomie"-a description that perfectly captures the spirit of the duo's Bemelmans residency. The pair will be at Bemelmans on April 17, April 24, May 1, May 15, May 22, May 29, June 5, June 12, June 19, and June 26.

Revered pianist/singer Brandon McCune will be joined by bassist and musical director Chris Berger and bebop jazz guitarist extraordinaire Ron Affif. Over the course of his career, Brandon has worked with acclaimed artists including Abbey Lincoln, Terence Blanchard and Nneena Freelon. Chris Berger, a beloved Bemelmans staple, spent a year touring the world with legendary trumpeter Maynard Ferguson and has worked and/or recorded with jazz luminaries Herb Ellis, Linda Eder and Jeff "Tain" Watts. Guitarist Ron Affif has gained a reputation for his unique personal approach to jazz. Affif's style is reminiscent of icons Wes Montgomery and George Benson. Benson once described Affif as his "favorite type of guitar player, one that plays with fire." The Brandon McCune Trio will perform on April 3 and May 8 at Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle.

Tony DeSare, originator of the Sunday Night Bemelmans series, was recently named a "Rising Star" male vocalist in Downtown magazine's Critics' Poll. DeSare has lived up to the distinction by winning critical and popular acclaim for his performances throughout North America and abroad. DeSare has three top ten Billboard Jazz albums under his belt and has been featured on the CBS Early Show, NPR and the Today Show. Notwithstanding his critically acclaimed turns as a singer/pianist, Tony DeSare is also an accomplished award-winning composer. Tony has written the theme song for the motion picture, My Date With Drew, along with several broadcast commercials. "He is two parts Sinatra to one part Billy Joel, meshed seamlessly.... A Sinatra acolyte in his early 30s who sings Prince as well as Johnny Mercer," raved Stephen Holden of The New York Times. Tony DeSare will perform on April 10 at Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle.

Bemelmans Bar is located in The Carlyle, A Rosewood Hotel (35 East 76th Street @ Madison Avenue). Bar seating is $15 per person and table seating is $25 per person. Reservations not accepted; tables available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

About Bemelmans Bar

A favorite neighborhood bar of Upper East Siders and visitors alike, Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle is a special hideaway where artist and author
Ludwig Bemelmans' whimsical drawings come to life. Best remembered for his
beloved Madeline series of classic children's books, Bemelmans was
commissioned in 1947 to paint the large-scale murals to depict all four
seasons in famed Central Park. Featuring the only surviving Bemelmans'
commission open to the public, the bar combines wit and coziness in unique
New York style.

Restored in 2002 by designer Thierry Despont, the bar
maintains its Art Deco legacy with chocolate-brown leather banquettes, nickel-trimmed black glass tabletops, a dramatic black granite bar and a 
24-karat gold leaf-covered ceiling. Open year round with live music every
evening, regular performers include favorites such as Chris Gillespie, Earl Rose, Loston Harris, David Budway, Jim Caruso and Billy Stritch. Named
in honor of the legendary artist, Bemelmans is a classic New York watering
hole that has drawn socialites, politicians, movie stars and moguls for
more than five decades.

More Information: http://www.rosewoodhotels.com/en/the-carlyle-new-york/dining/bemelmans-bar

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