The whole week was kind of busy and joyful. Friday night I was invited by André Salzano, owner of a beautiful catering hall in NJ called the Hamilton Manor, to go to a dinner Party where Vinny Pastore of the Sopranos was performing. I was there with JJ and my dear friends and fans Lynn and Angelo Avino, here on the picture, and her beautiful parents, Bob and Gayle. A great night of fun with great friends. The place is very beautiful and elegant and we are right now talking about having me perform my show at this location soon.
Sonny Grosso introduced Phil to me a few years ago when I was cast for a role in the musical that Phil and Sonny are working on, the “Be My Love”, about the life story of Mario Lanza. Meeting Phil was like a dream coming true for me. Phil has worked with Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra, Sting, Tony Bennett, Luciano Pavarotti, Madonna, Liza Minelli, Paul Simon, Ray Charles, Bono, Burt Bacharach, Aretha Franklyn, Rod Steward, Stevie Wonder and the list goes on and on. He has produced so many great records that are part of the greatest songs of the last century. I will never forget the first time I had to sing for him. I felt so nervous and insecure. I had to sing “Caruso” a song that Phil had just recorded with Luciano Pavarotti, at his “Pavarotti & Friends”. I will never forget the grace and the humbleness that Phil had when he came to me after my performance telling me that I had moved him with my voice. Can you believe it?? Phil Ramone saying that??
Since that day Phil has become a friend and even if he has the gift of making you feel very comfortable in his presence, since he’s the most sweet and down to heart man in the world, knowing who he is and what he has done, makes me feel nervous always!! But I sang for him a song and it was a moment I won’t forget!!
Also my musical director Etienne Stadwijk was there, since he’s too a big admirer of Phil Ramone.
Among the many great people there were also two wonderful parents, Phil and Andrea Marella. Two of their 4 beautiful kids, Dana (16) and Andrew (10) are suffering of Niemann-Pick Type C disease (NPC), which is a genetic metabolic disorder in which harmful quantities of cholesterol and other fatty substances accumulate in the cells of the body such as the spleen, liver, lungs, bone marrow and, most dramatically, the brain. Since time is short, as there is no proven treatment or cure for this cruel childhood disease, they organize every year a benefit. This year’s Concert of the Dana's Angels Research Trust will presents "The King of Motown" Smokey Robinson, Live at the Palace Theatre 61 Atlantic St., Stamford, CT Friday, May 14, 2010. I will be there to support this cause and if you would like to help check this link www.DanasAngels.org for more info.