Riderwood welcomes Broadway, cabaret, TV, movie star Karen Akers


By the Performing Arts Council

An evening with Karen Akers, accompanied by Alex Rybeck, is set for 7:30 p.m. Friday, June 21, in the Lakeside Commons Encore Theater under auspices of the Performing Arts Council.

Karen, an award-winning singer and actor, starred in two Broadway hits, “Nine” and “Grand Hotel.”  In films, she played a nightclub chanteuse in Woody Allen’s “The Purple Rose of Cairo,” and was Jack Nicholson’s mistress in “Heartburn.” TV viewers have seen her in such shows as Cheers, Hart to Hart, and Great Performances.

For 20 years starting in 1977, Karen won many local fans when she lived in Washington and performed here—at the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian, Wolf Trap, the Arlington Players, Blues Alley, the Shoreham, and the Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts. She sang three times at the White House for Presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush.  She also sang numbers from her French repertoire live while the Washington Ballet interpreted the songs on stage for a series of dance concerts. “I loved the city and the surrounding area,” Karen said. “A wonderful place to raise our two boys.”

For the past several decades, Karen has been one of the reigning queens of cabaret, performing in every major venue in New York as well as nationally and internationally. With accompanist Alex Rybeck, her eclectic program in the Encore Theater will include selections from Broadway, the Great American Songbook, and diversions with French songs. Alex is well known to Riderwood audiences; for over a dozen years, he has brought stars he works with here to perform.

“Karen Akers has what used to be called perfect elocution. Whether singing or speaking, every syllable of every word from her lips is elegantly turned. This refined enunciation gives song lyrics an extra weight because you sense every verbal nuance.” –Stephen Holden, New York Times.   

$5.00 Tickets go on sale in all dining areas from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, June 17 and 18.

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