Showbiz Nation LIVE! MICHAEL FEINSTEIN discusses The Sinatra Legacy
The greatest showman of our generation, Michael Feinstein returns to Showbiz Nation LIVE to discuss Frank Sinatra on his Centennial.
Michael Feinstein, the multi-Platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy nominated entertainer is a premier interpreter of American standards. His 200-plus shows a year have included performances at Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera House, Hollywood Bowl, the White House and Buckingham Palace.
Michael has received national recognition for his commitment to America’s popular song and preserving its legacy. In 2007, he founded the Great American Songbook Foundation, dedicated to the art form and preserving it through educational programs, Master Classes, and the annual High School Songbook Academy, a summer program open to students from across the country. Michael serves on the Library of Congress’ National Recording Preservation Board, an organization dedicated to safeguarding America’s musical heritage.
Michael earned his fifth Grammy nomination for 2009’s The Sinatra Project which he followed with The Sinatra Project, Volume II: The Good Life in 2011. His Emmy nominated TV special, “Michael Feinstein – The Sinatra Legacy,” was taped live at the Palladium in Carmel, Indiana.
The PBS series “Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook”received the ASCAP Deems-Taylor Television Broadcast Award. His PBS special “Michael Feinstein at The Rainbow Room” aired on New Year’s Eve 2014. On his nationally syndicated radio program “Song Travels,” Michael interviews and performs alongside music luminaries, including Bette Midler, Neil Sedaka, Liza Minnelli, David Hyde Pierce, and more.
Michael is Artistic Director of the Palladium Center for the Performing Arts, a $170 million, three-theatre venue in Carmel, Indiana, which opened in 2011. The theater is home to live programming and a museum for his rare memorabilia and manuscripts. Since 1999, he has served as Artistic Director in collaboration with ASCAP for Carnegie Hall’s “Standard Time with Michael Feinstein.” In 2010, he became the director of the Jazz and Popular Song Series at New York’s Jazz at Lincoln Center.
Michael was named Principal Pops Conductor for the Pasadena Pops in 2012 and made his conducting debut to critical acclaim. Under his leadership, the Pasadena Pops has become the nation’s premier presenter of the Great American Songbook in the orchestral arena. In 2014, the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts announced the launch of “Michael Feinstein Conducts the Kravis Center Pops Orchestra” which sold out.
In 2003, Michael received a Grammy nomination for Michael Feinstein with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, his first recording with a symphony orchestra. The year before, The Michael Feinstein Anthology was released, two CDs spanning 1987-1996. In 2005, Michael recorded Hopeless Romantics, a songbook of Harry Warren classics recorded with jazz pianist George Shearing. The previous year, he toured with songwriting icon Jimmy Webb based on their album Only One Life – The Songs of Jimmy Webb. He released The Power of Two (2009) collaborating with “Glee” and “30 Rock” star Cheyenne Jackson, and Cheek to Cheek (2011), recorded withBroadway legend Barbara Cook. We Dreamed These Days (2011) featured the Carmel Symphony Orchestra. In 2013, Michael released Change Of Heart: The Songs of Andre Previn in collaboration with composer-conductor-pianist Andre Previn. A Michael Feinstein Christmas (2014) put his signature stylings on holiday standards.
His nightclub, Feinstein’s at Loews Regency, presented pop and jazz stars from 1999-2012. The club closed in December 2012 for a complete renovation of the Regency Hotel. Michael opened Feinstein’s at the Nikko Hotel in San Francisco’s in 2013; Feinstein’s on Broadway opened in 2015; and there are plans for a nightclub in London.
His many other talents include scoring original music for Get Bruce and performing on the television series “Caroline in the City,” “Melrose Place,” “Coach,” “Cybil,” “7th Heaven” and “Devious Maids.” His 2012 best-sellerThe Gershwins and Me, is combined with a CD of Gershwin standards. Michael designed a new piano for Steinway called “The First Ladies,” inspired by the White House piano and signed by several former First Ladies. It was first played to commemorate the Ronald Regan centennial on February 6, 2011.
Michael started playing piano by ear as a 5-year-old in Columbus, Ohio. After high school, he worked in local piano bars and moved to Los Angeles when he was 20. The widow of concert pianist-actor Oscar Levant introduced him to Ira Gershwin in 1977 and Michael became Gershwin’s assistant for six years. He earned access to unpublished Gershwin songs, many of which he has since performed and recorded.
Gershwin’s influence provided a base upon which Michael evolved into a captivating performer, composer and arranger of his own original music. He also has become an unparalleled interpreter of music legends such as Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Johnny Mercer, Duke Ellington and Harry Warren.
Through his live performances, recordings, film and television appearances, and his songwriting (in collaboration with Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Lindy Robbins, Bob Merrill and Amanda Green), Michael Feinstein is an all-star force in American music.