Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal presents television and Broadway star Ilene Graff in First You Dream tonight, August 26.
Perhaps best known to television audiences as Marsha Owens on the long running ABC hit TV series Mr. Belvedere, as well as her current, recurring guest starring role on the CW Television Network series Hart of Dixie, Ms. Graff's concert combines a perfect selection of melodies from Broadway and the Great American Songbook with exciting vocals beautifully enhanced by the unique arrangements of husband and musical director Ben Lanzarone. Ilene and Ben will be joined on stage by their special guest, their daughter Broadway musical theatre performer (Women on the Verge, Chicago) Nikka Graff Lanzarone.
Also a Grammy nominated recording artist, Ilene Graff made her professional debut on Broadway in Promises Promises. The Neil Simon, Burt Bacharach/Hal David hit, in which she began as understudy for the leading lady while singing backup vocals from the orchestra pit, ultimately led to performing the co-starring role of "Fran Kubelik" on Broadway numerous times before starring in the show's National Tour. Though Ms. Graff went on to play "Sandy" for two years in the Broadway production of Grease, her biggest Broadway triumph was creating the role of "Cleo" in the Cy Coleman/Michael Stewart musical comedy hit I Love My Wife, directed by Tony Award winner Gene Saks. Other theatre credits include: Charley's Aunt with Charles Grodin, Cabaret as "Sally Bowles," Annie Get Your Gun as "Annie Oakley," and Over Here directed by Mr. Belvedere himself, Christopher Hewett. She has also starred as "Mama Rose" in a Los Angeles revival of Gypsy. In addition to playing the role of former baseball star and commentator Bob Uecker's wife on Mr. Belvedere for five years, Ms. Graff starred in two other series, several pilots, and guest starred on many episodic TV shows, movies of the week and mini-series. She had the distinct pleasure of co-starring in the ABC/Disney Movie-of-the-Week, South Pacific with Academy Award nominee and Tony Award winner Glenn Close and Grammy Award winner Harry Connick, Jr. Ms. Graff and her husband Ben Lanzarone met while working in the Broadway production of Grease for which Mr. Lanzarone played the piano and conducted the band. He continues to serve as her Musical Director, as well as arranger, co-producer and accompanist. Their 2003 Grammy-nominated CD, Baby's Broadway Lullabies is a collection of beautiful music for baby's "sleepy time." www.ilenegraff.com
Located in the heart of North Hollywood's trendy NoHo Arts District and featuring a cutting edge interior design, Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal is the epitome of present meets past (circa. 1926). On a culinary level, The Federal's creativity in California cuisine keeps patrons more than delighted in multiple dining areas; each of which are highlighted by their own, individual and ingratiating bars, thus adding buzz to what has already become one of the hottest go-to- entertainment-destinations in all of Los Angeles.
As guests arrive at Sterling's Upstairsby staircase or elevator, they are greeted by the club's Maître D's and escorted to their tables which accommodate approximately 100 guests. The club's cool sense of chic is further enhanced by state-of-the-art lighting, sound, and video technology; a proscenium stage and an adjacent outdoor patio overlooking the NoHo surroundings.