Like musical Velcro, this group gathers new FRIENDS wherever it is heard! Enjoy this brand new fabulous, festive interFRIENDtionS HOliday sHOw! There are musical surprises along with heartwarming, well-known CHRISTMAS, CHANUKAH and seasonal melodies. Take a break from the busy holiday preparations to be entertained by some new FRIENDS who promise to make you smile, rejoice and remember what the holidays are all about.
When good FRIENDS connect, their experiences intertwine for life. This talented set of FRIENDS, JOANIE WINTER, JOHN ESKOLA, PATRICIA RUSK (musical director) and RONNA KAYE (stager/choreographer) have each had accomplished individual careers. Cabaret was the magnet that eventually pulled these five FRIENDS together once again. This reunion resulted in interFRIENDtionS.
In five decades of performing, Joanie Winter’s resume spans theatre, commercials, films, TV, radio, trade shows, industrials, jingles, Children’ Theatre & Cabaret. Even before graduating from Northwestern University, as a Theatre Major, she began her professional career in AEA Musical Theatre. She is most proud of understudying the lead role in the Hal Prince National Tour of EVITA, which began at Chicago’s Shubert Theatre. A sampling of favorite leading roles in productions from coast to coast are: Agnes - I DO! I DO!; Meg - DAMN YANKEES; Melissa - STATE FAIR; Sarah - GUYS & DOLLS; Laurie - OKLAHOMA; Tuptim - KING AND I; & Antonia - MAN OF LA MANCHA. She currently appears regularly with the SAG-AFTRA Sr, Radio Players (Cultural Ctr.) giving life to characters from ages 8 to 80, acting, singing and dancing. Joanie, John & Pat have performed their LET’S DUET cabaret all around Chicagoland. Happy Holidays all. Celebrate family and FRIENDS!
John Eskola is delighted to be back performing with a stellar trio of Ladies! As a cabaret performer, he recently made his New York debut at The Metropolitan Room in “A Little Touch of Coward in the Night”, a revue of Noel Coward. He has performed at Maxim’s, Drury Lane’s Water Tower Theatre, The Royal George Cabaret, The Cultural Center, and Davenport’s. He is a member of the vocal quartet Espresso,
which has played around the country. John is a founding member of Chicago CabaretProfessionals. On stage John has appeared in productions at the Shubert Theatre - National Tour of EVITA; the Goodman Theatre - THE VISIT; Candlelight Dinner Playhouse - PHANTOM; and Marriott’s Lincolnshire - SWEENEY TODD. John is a Choir Director at Assumption Church on Illinois St in Chicago where he also regularly sings masses & weddings. “superb singer” - Howard Reich (Chicago Sun Times) “voice is a prism of shining color and variety” - Carla Gordon (Cabaret Scenes Magazine)
Patricia Rusk, pianist and musical director, has performed in almost every area of the entertainment business from concert halls to theatres, cabarets, piano bars, recording studios, lots of auditions and even a few churches. She played for numerous national tours, and toured with SIDE BY SIDE BY SONDHEIM with Hermione Gingold. Chicago audiences remember her as the pianist/musical director for the long running FORBIDDEN BROADWAY in the 1980's. She received a Bachelors Degree with distinction from the Eastman School of Music and a Masters Degree from Northwestern University. She has performed twice at the Kennedy Center, in Washington, most recently with her students from the Chicago Academy For The Arts, where she is the chair emeritus of the Musical Theatre Department and currently teaches. Recently, she received the school’s Faculty Legacy Award, which included a scholarship
created in her name, and February 15th named Patricia Rusk Day in her honor by the mayor of Chicago. She is a member of Piano a la Quartette, a two piano, eight hands ensemble, and a founding member of Chicago Cabaret Professionals.
Ronna Kaye choreographed the original production of GREASE and BLACK PATENT LEATHER SHOES. She has directed and/or staged numerous musicals, industrials, trade shows, videos and film. Working with interFRIENDtionS has been a real joy.
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