Tonight, Tuesday, June 26, Tony Award nominee Brian d'Arcy James launches his New York City solo concert debut with his show "Under The Influence" at 54 Below. New York knows him from Broadway's Time Stands Still, Next to Normal, Shrek, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, The Apple Tree, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Titanic, among others; television audiences know him from NBC's "Smash" and HBO's Game Change, but now 54 Below audiences will have a chance to see him in his brand new musical offering during its inaugural month.
"This is something that I've never done on stage," says Brian d'Arcy James. "I am going to sing the pop songs I grew up with, that live inside me and that I love to sing. There will be some Steve Winwood, Billy Joel, Squeeze and Genesis. This doesn't mean that I don't acknowledge the music that is happening now. There will be an Adele cover and I will include a few I've written. I hope I can pass on the joy I feel from this music to the people that hear them. This music is where my heart is, so I am taking the liberty of singing these songs for my week at 54 Below."
"Under The Influence" is directed by Carl Forsman and features musical direction and arrangements by Dan Lipton. D'Arcy James is backed by Dan Lipton at the piano; Damien Bassman on drums; Greg Joseph on percussion; Nicholas D'Amato on bass; Erik Della Penna on guitar; Paul Vercesi - saxophone; Bob Millikan on trumpet; and Clarke Thorell and Haven Burton on vocals.
Brian d'Arcy James just completed the first season of NBC's "Smash" starring as Frank Houston opposite Debra Messing. Other TV credits include "The Big C," "Person Of Interest," "Cashmere Mafia" And "Rescue Me. " He can be seen in the upcoming films Admission starring Tina Fey and Paul Rudd and The Fitzgerald Family Christmas by Ed Burns as well as the short film Bird In A Box. Other film credits include HBO's Game Change; Friends With Kids and Ghost Town. His Broadway credits include Time Stands Still, Next To Normal, Shrek, The Apple Tree, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, Sweet Smell Of Success, Titanic, Carousel and Blood Brothers. Off Broadway credits include Port Authority, Next To Normal, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, The Pavilion, The Good Thief, The Wild Party, Ancestral Voices, Floyd Collins and Public Enemy. Brian has been nominated for two Tony Awards, five Drama Desks, three Outer Critic Circle Awards, and a Lortel Award, and is the recipient of a Drama Desk Award, an Obie, a Backstage Garland Award and L.A. Weekly Award. Brian has sung in a variety of concert venues such as Carnegie Hall, Disney Hall and the Kennedy Center along with special performances for both President Clinton at the Kennedy Center and most recently for President Obama and the First Family in the White House. As a writer/producer, Brian co-created and starred in the TV show "Shiny People," an improv based comedy about the world of corporate entertainment. He has also written a screenplay called The Monkey Movie and is currently developing a new comedy screenplay about kidney thieves. As a songwriter, Brian's popular "Michigan Christmas" served as the cornerstone of his debut album "From Christmas Eve to Christmas Morn" (featuring his other originals including the title track and "Santa Claus 's Coming Tonight"). Brian lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.
Dan Litpon (Musical Direction/Arrangements) enjoys a diverse career as a writer, arranger and performer. He has arranged music and led bands for Audra McDonald, Martha Plimpton and Judy Kuhn. Music director for Kelli O'Hara since 2007, he co-produced her 2011 album "Always." As a pianist he has played on three Grammy-nominated recordings: the John Lithgow childrens' album "The Sunny Side of the Street" and the musicals The Full Monty and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. He performed onstage in The Coast of Utopia at Lincoln Center and in The Bridge Project at BAM. With collaborator David Rossmer, he has written several musicals (Rated P… For Parenthood, The Blonde Streak) and created the comedy show Don't Quit Your Night Job. Lipton holds a degree in music composition from Northwestern University and is represented by Corinne Hayoun at CAA.