Somewhere Over The Rose: Tribute to Judy Garland & Bette Midler

A tribute to the songs, styles and stories of two iconic American women. Capturing the spirit of Judy Garland and style of Bette Midler, Halenda brings a renewed existence to these legendary females. Featuring songs such as “I'm Always Chasing Rainbows,” “Wind Beneath My Wings,” and “From A Distance.”

Singer     |     Kathy Halenda
Piano      |     Jim Prosser
Sound Engineer     |     Tony Angelini

KATHY HALENDA A professional actor and singer for thirty years, Ms. Halenda has performed in over 200 productions, including eighteen national tours where her roles included Mama Rose in Gypsy, Nancy in Oliver, Mae West in Ziegfeld, Rafaela in Grand Hotel, Golde in Fiddler on the Roof and Maggie Jones in 42nd St. She has played New York City, Washington D.C., Boston, Las Vegas, New Orleans, Montreal, Atlantic City, Los Angeles, and a lot of towns in between. Her extensive regional credits include the title roles in Mame (twice), Hello Dolly (twice), Evita and Annie Get Your Gun, as well as Mae West/Jo in Dirty Blonde, Mama Rose in Gypsy (twice), Miss Mona in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (five times!), Nancy in Oliver, Miss Hannigan in Annie, and The Plant in Little Shop of Horrors. She is delighted to be back at Florida Studio Theatre, performing her one-woman show, Somewhere Over the Rose! In 2006, she was the first female “Singmaster” of the Big Apple Circus, touring the United States east coast, including Atlanta, Washington D.C., Boston and the Lincoln Center in New York City. While in New York City, she received the honor of singing “The National Anthem” at Madison Square Garden for the nationally televised New York Knicks, and she was asked to sing at Boston’s Fenway Park for the Boston Red Sox versus the NY Yankees. In 2008, she was Mama Rose on the critically acclaimed North American tour of Gypsy and starred as Mame Dennis in Mame at the Barksdale Theatre in Richmond, VA. In 2009, she played Mabel on the national tour of The Pajama Game and she was Miss Lynch in Grease in Istanbul, Turkey. In 2010, she was Martha in White Christmas at the Barksdale Theatre and emceed a fundraiser in London, England for The Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital. In 2011, she starred as Miss Mona in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and performed a one-woman cabaret, Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas, in the Charleston, WV Arts Festival. In 2012, she starred as Reno Sweeney in Anything Goes at the Riverside Center in Fredericksburg, VA and brought Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas back to its original home at Florida Studio Theatre in Sarasota, FL. Last February, she performed her Brassy Broads of Broadway back in Sarasota, FL and presented Sophie Tucker at the Naples Philharmonic. In 2013, she was in Ring of Fire in VA and starred as Miss Mona in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas in upstate New York. Last fall, she performed Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas at the historic Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia, PA. She recently starred as Mama Rose in Gypsy at the Riverside in Fredericksburg, VA and just finished playing Ouiser in Steel Magnolias there. Ms. Halenda has emceed for numerous benefits and fundraises nationwide, and has several one-woman shows under her bedazzled belt. Her one-woman tour de force, The Brassy Broads of Broadway, premiered in New York City 20 years ago at the famous Danny’s Skylight Room in Manhattan and has been presented nationwide, including at the Philharmonic Center in Naples, FL, the ArtStation in Atlanta, GA and the Mac-Haydn Theatre in upstate New York. Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas (co-written by her) was critically acclaimed in Florida, Atlanta, the Walnut St. Theatre in Philadelphia, upstate New York and in 2009 was chosen and presented at the world famous Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC and at the Arts Festival in Charleston, WV. Her latest one-woman creative adventure, Somewhere Over the Rose, has been presented at CenterStage in Richmond, VA, The Mac-Haydn Theatre in upstate NY. Ms. Halenda is critically acclaimed nationwide and is the recipient of numerous awards.

JIM PROSSER (Pianist) Over his many years at FST, Jim has most often performed in the Cabaret, where he has arranged and co-developed many shows including By Gershwin, Laughing Matters, European Cabaret, That’s Life, Again, British Invasion, Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits, Harry Who?, Too Darn Hot, Reel Music and recently Too Darn Hot, The Prima Donnettes and Let’s Twist Again: with the Wanderers. He has also served as resident composer/music director for FST’s Education department, writing numerous songs and scores for children’s shows such as Androcles and the Lion, The Princess and the Pea, and the WRITE A PLAY elementary tours. In addition, Jim plays with the FST Improv Troupe and has also performed locally with Jazz Around The Corner.

"Alive and Vibrant" - Sarasota Herald-Tribune

"Halenda is a knockout" - Reno Gazette-Journal

"A genuine powerhouse!" - L.A. Stage

"An Ethel Merman style diva" - New York Village Voice