Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required


"Call Me Adam" chats with...



Entries in Don Rebic (2)


Suzanne Carrico and Joi Danielle Price: Great Expectations Interview

Photo Credit: Heather SullivanSuzanne Carrico made her Metropolitan Room debut in 2007 & won a 2008 MAC Award for her show "The Art of the Cahn, Music from the Sammy Cahn Songbook," with Musical Director Tedd Firth & directed by Mary Cleere Haran. In 2009 the trio followed it up with her critically acclaimed show, "The Friendliest Thing." 2010 brought her great reviews for her debut CD, "What Christmas Time Means to Me," done with Musical Director Don Rebic & the Don Rebic Quartet. In addition to her busy performance schedule, Suzanne added the role of director to her resume with two cabaret shows in 2011, including the debut of Joi Danielle Price in "Unfiltered." 2012 will bring Suzanne & her husband, performer Booth Daniels GREAT EXPECTATIONS for a baby girl in the fall. For more on Suzanne be sure to visit!

Joi Danielle Price has appeared on Broadway & the National Tour of "Mamma Mia!" in several roles, as well as in the National Tour of "Ragtime," where she understudied the role of "Sarah." In the past year, she performed her cabaret debut, "Unfiltered," to critical reviews. Appearing in many NYC venues, she recently performed in "Broadway Meows," a benefit concert for the Humane Society of New York. A mother of one lovely daughter, she & her husband are looking forward to adding a baby boy to the family.

Now Suzanne and Joi are teaming up once again, this time as performers together, for their new cabaret show "Great Expectations." After Suzanne and Joi found themeselves in the family way, they decided to spend their Summer with "Great Expectations," a musical journey through 9 months of waiting. "Great Expectations" will play The Metropolitan Room in NYC on Sunday, July 29 at 7pm, August 5 at 4pm, and August 12 at 7pm! Click here for tickets!

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer?

Suzanne: It would have to be my dad – he's a musician & his love of music, all kinds of music, but especially the great singers of the Great American Songbook, Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Sammy Davis Jr. has had the longest lasting effect upon me. I don’t know if I'd still be plugging away at Cabaret if I hadn't worked with Mary Cleere Haran – she was an amazing inspiration & mentor.

Joi: When I was young, I lived a life surrounded by music. No one in my family was a professional musician, but there was always music playing and both of my parents sang in the church choir. I started playing violin at age four and orchestral music was my world, until I discovered musical theatre in my high school drama program. I was exposed for the first time to artists like Patti Lupone, LaChanze, and Bernadette Peters and I was entranced. Like my parents before me, a teacher and a judge, I never considered music as a career - at first. My freshman year of college, I immediately felt something was missing in my life. The kinds of academic subjects I was studying didn't include my passion. Only after meeting with the faculty of the University of Michigan's School of Music, did I realize that I could make this a career.

2. Who haven't you worked with that you would like to?

Suzanne: So many people! I love Kim Smith & would sing back up for him at the drop of a hat. I had high hopes of doing something with Jonathan Whitton & maybe someday we'll still make that happen. I love Molly Pope & think we'd have a blast belting our faces off in some show about dames…I've always wanted to sing with Rob Langader…Tony DeSare…Billy Stritch. Too many piano players & musicians to name. I suppose if I had to pick one person it would be Michael Feinstein – I know I'd learn so much & he is probably the only person who knows as much about this kind of music as Mary Cleere did.

Joi: I love the process of working with composers and lyricist on their original music. I have had the privilege of doing this in readings and workshops of new musicals when they were not yet in production and cherished the experiences. Along those same lines, I'd love to work directly with the songwriting teams of Scott Burkell & Paul Loesel, Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherety, Michael Kooman & Christopher Dimond. I've sung their music and would love to work with them.

3. You worked together for the first time on "Unfiltered," in 2011, where Suzanne directed Joi. How did this come to be? What was the best part about working together on "Unfiltered"?

Suzanne: We actually worked together for the first time when we were in elementary school in local productions of The Nutcracker. We grew up together in Flint, Michigan, but were never close. It wasn't until we were adults that we became friends. Joi came & saw my shows in NYC & I saw her in Mamma Mia…one day Joi called & asked me to direct her. I was thrilled – she's so talented. We spent a lot of time at Lincoln Center Library (my home away from home) and a lot of time talking… and there we were! For me besides getting to spend a lot of time with a friend, the best part was working on music & a program that I would never get to sing. Joi did a lot of contemporary & autobiographical material that I really enjoyed working with. She even swears on stage!

Joi: I'll never forget a meeting I had with Suzanne when I was in 11th grade. She was passing the torch as current Thespian Society president on to the next one, me. When I finally got to see Suzanne perform "The Friendliest Thing," I knew she once again had experience I could learn from. She had tapped into a genre that I wanted to be involved with. Though some of my friends from the Broadway world had occasionally done a cabaret or some kind of evening of songs now and then, those evenings didn't have the cohesiveness and style that Suzanne has crafted by really understanding that art of cabaret. I knew if I wanted to do this right, I would need her input. As we started to build the show, we were simultaneously building a friendship, which made the experience so much more enjoyable!

4. This time around, you will be performing together. What made you want do this dynamic?

Suzanne: I think we'll work together a lot over the years on different projects & in different ways – we work well together. But this show – we're doing purely for fun!

Joi: We are two different kinds of performers, but there is something I find amazing about that fact that we came from the same place and had similar upbringings. I think it will translate into something that's interesting and engaging on stage.

5. What are you looking forward to most about your new cabaret show "Great Expectations"?

Suzanne: Just waddling up there will be a big deal – we both will obviously be taking some time off this fall, it's nice to have a last hurrah on our terms before we have screaming infants dictating the terms to us…

Joi: During my last pregnancy, I was performing in "Mamma Mia" (in the role of "Ali") until I was five and a half months along. It sounds silly, but I wanted to give this second unborn child the experience of being on stage before birth! Pregnancy happens all over the world all of the time, but it remains a mystery to those who haven't done it, and those who are doing it feel better when they know others are also having a similar experience. I just can't wait to share everything that I'm feeling about these nine months in my favorite way - music.

6. You both were pregnant at the same time. What was it like to share that experience together? Do you feel your performance style has changed since motherhood?

Suzanne: Joi has been through this before & has the most amazing daughter – so I have been relying on her advice & know how big time! There are adjustments that have to be made for pregnancy. Certainly the phrasing, our lungs are being squished, there just isn't the amount of air we're used to working with. This also could be the only Cabaret where the singers have written in a bathroom break!

Joi: I find that it's always best to have a pregnant buddy while you're going through it! No one else understands the roller coaster like a pregnant friend. I happened to be pregnant at the same time as one of my other good friends last time, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Otherwise, you can begin to feel a little isolated.

Once my daughter was born, I had a new understanding of love and responsibility. I think that the experience has informed my work, just like every experience an artist has in life. I believe that some emotions that may have been simulated in my music before, come from a much more real place.

7. What made you want to perform "Great Expectations" at Metropolitan Room?

Suzanne: I've been performing there since it opened, it's home. Joi made her debut there & she's comfortable in the space. They have new management, we're interested to see what's changed this time around.

Joi: When I'm in the Metropolitan Room, I feel very close to the audience. If I'm going to be sharing something as personal as this new addition to our family, I want the performance to be an intimate one. I want to be able to see every pair of eyes in the room.

8. How did you decide that you wanted to have Don Rebic musical direct your show? What is he able to bring to your show that another musical director might not?

Suzanne: Don is always one of my first calls. Working with him is like driving a Rolls Royce. I also wanted a level of comfort that I wasn't going to get with anybody else. He is probably the closest thing I have to a best friend; I knew that if we needed to take a bathroom break or change key or needed shorter rehearsals or whatever – he could handle it. I have been really excited to see Joi working with him. It's fun when you can branch out & work with new musicians.

Joi: This being my first collaboration with Don, it's been fascinating to see how he works. I'm finding that we have some of the same musical instincts and it's very easy to trust him with the musical direction of this show. I'm amazed at how he can translate our abstract ideas for arrangements into into concrete music in a flash.

9. What have you learned about yourself from being performers? 

Suzanne: The truth is hard & it’s the only thing worth telling.

Joi: I can't allow others to choose my path. I have to do it myself.

10. What's the best advice you've ever received? 

Suzanne: Mary always said – just sing the lyric.

Joi: Whatever you feel when you sing, the audience will feel that, too. If you are nervous, you're just going to make the audience feel nervous for you. Conversely, if what you are feeling is pure joy, that is passed on just as easily.


11. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? 

Suzanne: My husband & our daughter.

Joi: My children as adults, so I could see what wonderful people they might become.

12. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose?

Suzanne: Being two places at once.

Joi: The power to memorize music and lyrics faster! 


Don Rebic

Don was trained as a classical pianist at Indiana University, where he studied with the internationally renowned concert pianist Abbey Simon. While at Indiana, Don became interested in jazz and was taken under the wing of jazz pedagogue David Baker. Upon graduating with a degree in piano performance, he moved to New York City, and within a year was conducting his first show on Broadway, "Jesus Christ Superstar." Since then, he has enjoyed a busy career as a conductor, pianist, and composer. Don has found success on Broadway, the national stage, and television, as an accompanist, musical director, performer and teacher, in classical music, jazz, popular music, and movie and television scoring. He has worked with such artists as Peggy Lee, Barbara Cook, Mary Cleere Harran, Karen Akers, Betty Buckley, Leslie Uggams, Chita Rivera, John Williams, Ricky Martin, and Jose Carreras.

In addition to "Jesus Christ Superstar," Don's other Broadway credits include "Dancin'" directed by Bob Fosse, "Sweet Charity" starring Debbie Allen and directed by Bob Fosse, "Little Johnny Jones" starring Donny Osmond, "Teaneck Tanzi" starring Deborah Harry and Andy Kaufman, "Anything Goes" starring Patti LuPone, and "The Mystery of Edwin Drood," among others. Don has conducted for the national companies of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" and "Kiss of the Spiderwoman," starring Chita Rivera.

Don is the Artistic Director of the "Singers Forum," a non-profit musical oasis in New York City, providing the highest quality vocal training for New York City Residents. Their continuing mission is to engage a diverse student body of singers dedicated to the development and appreciation of the vocal arts. With a strong emphasis on vocal technique, combined with numerous performance opportunities in a safe and supportive environment, Singers Forum strives to offer a full array of private instruction and group classes for both professional and personal growth.

As a jazz performer, Don has played with some of the best in the game, including drummers Jeff Hamilton, Peter Erskine, and Carl Allen; trumpeters Randy Brecker and Warren Vache; legendary guitarist Mundel Lowe; saxophonists Jesse Davis, Lou Marini, and Vincent Haring; and flutist Hubert Laws. He has also played with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra and with the Mingus Band.

As a composer, Don has co-written scores for HBO documentaries with his partner, Emmy winner Patty Stotter; he continues to write and orchestrate with Ms. Stotter in their production company "Liquid Architecture." Don composed the music for the off-off Broadway show "Flypaper," with lyricists Cheryl Paley and Larry Pelligrini (of "Tony and Tina’s Wedding"). He has composed over 50 songs with lyricists Laura Theodore, Sara Krieger of "The New York Voices," and Carol Hall of "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas."

Don has also recently released his debut solo album "Together," which allowed Don to showcase himself as a composer and solo jazz pianist.

Don continues his interest and involvement in classical music as well. He is a member of the trio "Tremani," with the principal clarinetist and bassoonist of the Buffalo Philharmonic. He continues to compose serious contemporary music and of course to perform as a freelance musician. He has conducted the Pittsburgh, Dallas, and Syracuse Symphony Orchestras.

Don is currently touring with Leslie Uggams and Karen Akers. Catch them live:

Don Rebic and Leslie Uggams: July 31: The Capital Repertory Theatre, Albany, NY

Don Rebic and Karen Akers: September 24: The Bob Egan Cabaret, Ramada Inn, New Hope, PA

Don Rebic and Karen Akers: September 27-October 29: Oak Room, The Algonquin Hotel, New York City

1. Who or what inspired you to become a pianist, accompanist, and musical director? My father was an amateur trumpet player and he advised me to learn how to play the piano, because it was an orchestral instrument and would provide more opportunities if decided to become a professional musician.

2. What do you get from working on a Broadway show that you don't get from working on your own music or with a specific performer? The chance to work with a lot of musicians, actors, dancers, directors, choreographers, composers, orchestrators and lighting and sound designers all at the same time on one specific project.

3. What is your favorite part in the creative process of making an album and of working with a specific performer for a concert? I love the entire process, from choosing the material, to creating an arrangement/orchestration for the particular performer to recording the material in the studio and mixing all of the components to create something really special.

4. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? That’s a tough one. Tony Bennett, Streisand definitely Sting.

5. How did you get involved with the Singers Forum and what made you want to be the Artistic Director? I met Andy Anselmo our founder at a summer symposium in Fredonia, NY and kept in touch with him after the engagement was completed. Due to the untimely death of Phil Campanella, the former artistic director, I applied for the position because I thought that my experience would be an asset to Singers Forum, and I felt that I could create an artist faculty that would attract a more professional clientele.

6. What are you looking forward to most about going on the road again with Leslie Uggams? What makes you such a great team? I’ve been Leslie’s music director for over 20 years and her ability to choose material that works for her with my input as an arranger is a relationship that I treasure. We click on a level that is difficult to put into words. She is an amazing performer who brings an incredible amount of musicality and experience to everything that she does and doing this show with her in Albany with musicians, some of whom I’ve worked with before and some I haven’t met yet, will be a real kick!

7. How did you come up with the title and concept for your debut album "Together" and what excites you most about it's release? My close friend and the drummer on the album, Michael Berkowitz, came up with that title and I think it’s perfect. Mike had been urging me for years to make a mainstream jazz album and when I came up with the arrangement of Styne and Sondheim’s “Together Wherever We Go" from "Gypsy," it sort of set the tone for the whole album. I’d personally like to thank Michael and bassist David Finck for all of their help in creating an album that I feel is truly unique.

8. Favorite place to write/compose music? The house that my father built in Fredonia, NY.

9. Favorite website? Hmm, there are so many, but if I had to choose,! What a resource!

10. "Mary" or "Rhoda"? Rhoda...Of course!

11. What have you learned about yourself from your artistry? I’ve learned that if I don’t know how to orchestrate or play something right of the bat, I can learn! I am teachable.


12. What's the best advice you've ever received? A teacher of mine once told me to learn how to play in as many different styles of music as possible. From Jazz to Broadway to Classical to everything in between and that has been a tremendous asset to my career.

13. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? I’m not touching that one with an eleven-foot pole!