Wednesday, December 29, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Break a leg to Eric and the cast and crew of "My Way"


Tonight, for three nights only...

Eric is directing and Gina DeLuca is performing in "My Way", a tribute to Frank Sinatra at The GraceArts Live Theatre in Lake Havasu.  This show featuring over 40 songs to celebrate the music and mystique that was Frank Sinatra. Cast features professional artists Gina DeLuca,  Scott Drier and local performers Jason Fallis and Lauren Blain.

Where: GraceArts Live Theatre, 2146 McCulloch Blvd, Lake Havasu

When: Fri-Sat, Dec 31-Jan 1 (7:30 p.m. AZ); Sun, Jan 2 (2 p.m. AZ)

Cost: $35 plus tax. Seats are reserved. Advanced tickets at box office at the theatre, M-F (3-6 p.m. AZ) and one hour before show time

Info: Call 928-505-ARTS (2787)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

And the CD reviews are coming in..."To all who love Broadway, Andrew Lloyd Webber, or just enjoy music, RUN to and get your own copy of his debut CD... it won't disappoint!

From Katherine:

I went straight to my apartment to pick up my Eric Kunze CD before I went to work and I LOVE IT! I've been listening to the album since this morning as I'm working.  It still gives me the same goosebumps as when I first heard his voice in Houston playing Chris in Miss Saigon. I'm so thrilled that "Why God, Why" is in his album because it's one of my favorite songs he performed.  And I love all of his songs in this album especially the ones I've never heard him perform before like "Fathers and Sons" and "Finishing the Hat". I can't stop smiling whenever he hits those high notes in the songs. It's so clear and crisp and beautifully that it melts my heart. Thank you Maggi and especially ERIC KUNZE! I'm going to listen to the album every day until he makes another album **wink wink**

From Donna:

I've been waiting for years for this moment. To actually hold a Eric Kunze CD in my hands.  To stroke it, and lovingly  and carefully open the case.  I got chills when the music started. And to hear Eric  start singing the first bars of "Any Dream will Do". It was wonderful. It made me happy. The song selections are great. He chose, my favorite songs from his stage shows. They 're all on this CD. And he sang them perfectly. I'm High Fying. And I adore this mix of songs.   And, I love the new song.  "Fathers and Sons". That's such a beautiful song.   And  Gethsemane  was again so wonderfully  sung.  I especially enjoyed "Love Changes Everything" I've heard Michael Ball sing this song many times. Eric sings it  beautifully.  He touched my heart and soul. I've listened to this CD at least 4 times through now. And will cherish it. I do hope it's just the first one. And more CD's to come. Thank you Eric and Maggie for making this  wonderful moment happen. Christmas 2010 belongs to Eric Kunze.
Thank you Maggie
Yours truly DonnaFournier

From Jeannine:
Ok, I tore open my CD and threw it into the CD player and JUST finished listening to it 3x through, and all I can say ---WOW!!! Beautiful, and awesome are also 2 adjectives I would use, but actually, I think, there are no words that will describe the music on this CD.. Thanks, Eric for listening to the chorus of people who jumped up and down, requesting this CD..I'm in awe about how one beautiful person, inside and out, can have such a beautiful voice and do such wonderful things with the arrangements! To all ... who love Broadway, Andrew Lloyd Webber, or just enjoy music, RUN to and get your own copy of his debut CD... it won't disappoint!

From Theresa:
 Maggi....I got the CD today, and please tell Eric I LOVE IT!!!!  Love Changes Everything is sooo beautiful.  I saw Aspects of Love years ago, and have Michael Ball's recording.  I love the CD sooo much. I am ordering a 2nd.  I want to send a copy to my dear friend Vera Goulet, wife of the late, wonderful, Robert Goulet.  Thanks so much for doing this, and please send holiday blessings to Eric. 


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Eric Kunze CD Debuts

Finally, you can order your Eric Kunze Cds!  They are$17.99 each, which includes shipping in the continental U.S. (Alaska, Hawaii, Canada and international slightly higher.)  We have included a Paypal button in the right hand column. Upon receiving your order, the Cds will be sent out via first class mail. According to the post office, it should take 4-5 days to get to you. 

You do not need a Paypal account to use Paypal.  You can use your credit card without signing up.  If that is a problem, you can pay by check.  Email Maggi for the address   However, we won't be able to ship until the check is received by us.

The CD is a retrospective of Eric's musical career to date.  A sneak peek at some of the songs included are: 
Gethsemane, from Jesus Christ Superstar (Andrew Lloyd Webber)
Maria, from West Side Story (Leonard Bernstein)
High Flying Adored, from Evita (Andrew Lloyd Webber)
Empty Chairs at Empty Tables, from Les Miserables (Claude-Michel Schonberg)
Close Every Door, from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Andrew Lloyd Webber)
Finishing the Hat, from Sunday in the Park with George, (Stephen Sondheim)
Why, God, Why, from Miss Saigon (Claude-Michel Schonberg)
.......and a few surprises you may not have yet heard Eric sing before!

Special thanks to Skywriter Music for the gorgeous orchestrations and to Tifany at Gourmet Invitations for the Cd's graphic design!

Here is a sample of Eric singing "Gethsemane" from his two year national tour in Jesus Christ Superstar:

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

CD Countdown: Questions and Answers

All of your questions and Eric's answers have been moved to a special page, where they were included in our previous Q & A session.  See the right hand column, "Questions and Answers from Eric".

I am trying to streamline the site.  As you can see, there are also now separate pages for reviews and for fan comments.  Clicking on the link will take you to that page and there is a link on those pages to return you to the fansite as well.  Have suggestions?  Let me know.  I'd be more than happy to hear them. 

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Brindlebeast Party in Wethersfield, Connecticut

After a week of rehearsals in anticipation of the readings in March, the writer and producer of Brindlebeast, Anita and her husband Roland hosted a small intimate gathering at their home in Wethersfield, Conn.  It is a lovely, historic town and their home was built in the 1700's.  They are only the third owners.  It was a cozy, warm evening, with delicious food, wonderful conversation, candles, fire in the fireplace and a professional pianist to provide musical ambiance.  We were able to hear more about the story and development of Brindlebeast from dream to reality.  It is a wonderful cast.  Each and every person involved is special and the group works together harmoniously.  Here is a photo album which includes photos of the party and of the area. Click on the photos to link to a large screen slideshow.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Brindlebeast Update

From Eric:  Thank you all for sticking through the transitions of Brindlebeast as we find our way through this project. This will be the first of many changes and transformations - which is very common in this business, particularly with a new work. Please keep your faith! We are all working very hard to make sure that nothing goes unexamined or critiqued, and that we will put our best foot forward when we are ready for the public to view the piece. Of course, you all will be the FIRST to know!

The readings originally scheduled for March, 2011 have been postponed until later in the year.  Stay tuned for updates.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fanclub Dinner

A lovely time was had by all at our fanclub dinner at the Chase Hotel on Saturday, July 17th before the second to last performance of "Damn Yankees".  Some of had met before and some were new.  Two were from the St. Louis area and others came in from other states: New Jersey, Michigan, Minnesota and Iowa.  Everyone agreed their trips were worth it!  Not only were we blessed with Eric's company, but then we got to watch him in this old-fashioned romp.  What a treat!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Maggi's Review of "Damn Yankees"

Amidst cicadas chirping, ambulances whizzing by and airplanes buzzing overhead and despite the 95 degree heat and humidity, the cast of "Damn Yankees" presents an energetic, enthusiastic production at the 11,000 seat Muny amphitheather in St. Louis.  After viewing the 1958 movie, I wasn't sure I'd like the stage version, even though they are very similar.  But Director Paul Blake imbues the production with so much energy and color it hardly seems like the same story.  Blessed with a talented and professional cast, whose singing and dancing is top notch, the show is Broadway caliber.
Eric told me it would "make me smile" and it did, long after I left the theater.  Unlike other shows I've seen Eric in, i.e. Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita and Miss Saigon, this definitely is a feel-good romp.  Yet the type casting is still there:  Joe Boyd is a good, honest man, unwilling to cheat on his wife with the vamp Lola.  Eric is cast in these "hero" roles because he himself is a good man and it shines through him like a beacon, even in a huge venue like the Muny. 

Eric first appears onstage when he is transformed from the old to the young Joe.  His incredulity at his transformation is amusing and believable.  Eric builds his characterization slowly from naivite in his first encounter with Applegate to the smart and savvy real estate broker that he is at the end, outwitting his Faustian deal with the devil.  His tenderness with his wife (strongly portrayed by Linda Mugleston) is achingly touching.  It's fun to watch him squirm as he politely rebuffs the advances of Lola (a hilarious Angie L. Schworer). 

It takes a strong stage presence to hold his own against the more flashy role of Applegate (Lewis Stadlin) but Eric is a good foil for him when they are both on the stage.  Eric had good preparation for that when he starred in this show on Broadway in the 90's with Jerry Lewis.  It's a treat to see Eric participate in Bob Fosse's jazzy, stylized dance numbers, complete with bowler hats and chairs.  Is there nothing he can't do?   He looks wonderful, ladies. The costumes really suit his look and as a reviewer friend wrote to me recently, "You pick him out of a line-up of ballplayers VERY EASILY". 

I saw the show four nights in a row and each night was flawless.  Too bad these productions only run for a week.  What a waste!  I would travel to Broadway to see it again.

For photos of our trip to St. Louis and more of the fans and Eric see

Monday, July 12, 2010

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Eric Kunze and Gina DeLuca performing at the Vista Conservancy Benefit on May 30, 2010

Eric singing "Why, God" from Miss Saigon:

Eric singing "Any Dream Will Do" from Joseph, with Gina DeLuca and the Calvary Chapel choir:

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Vista Jamboree Music Festival, May 30th

Eric Kunze and Gina DeLuca, guest soloists at the Vista Jamboree Music Festival at the Moonlight Amphitheater, May 30th

Monday, May 31, 2010

May 22nd Celebration at the Detroit Symphony

I received more photos from fans at the DSO gathering. Check out the Facebook pages on Eric as well for video of the event!


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Maggi's Report on "Music of the Night" with Eric Kunze and Betsy Wolfe

The evening started out with a delightful surprise visit from Eric at our fanclub dinner in the elegant Paradise Cafe at Orchestra Hall.  Twenty-three of us were gathered for a pre-theater meal and seven more were to join us at the concert.  Our entourage included fans who had traveled from Boston, New Jersey and Houston to catch this performance, as well as many of my family and friends who had heard me talk about Eric, but some of them had never seen him in action.  They were not disappointed! 

It just happened to be Eric's birthday that day and we had a cake for him and a surprise birthday present: a portrait of him in his role as "The Man" in "Whistle Down the Wind". The visit was short, but sweet, as Eric had to get to his dressing room to change into his tux and warm up. Luckily, we were able to see him afterward as well.

This was Eric's birthday gift:  A portrait from Whistle Down the Wind, done by French artist Ludovic Legros.

(If anyone is interested in their own portrait of Eric, or of another subject of your choice, contact Maggi for the email address of Ludovic Legros)

The concert was a tribute to Erich Kunzel, who passed away last year and who was supposed to direct on this night.  Eric and Betsy sang the following selections, most of which were in the first act:
I Don't Know How to Love Him (Betsy) (Jesus Christ Superstar)
Close Every Door (Eric) (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat)
Don't Cry for Me Argentina (Betsy) (Evita)
All I Ask of You (Eric and Betsy) (Phantom of the Opera)
Music of the Night (Eric) (Phantom of the Opera)
God Bless America finale

Eric looked very dapper in his Hugo Boss tux and black bowtie.  Betsy had a different breathtakingly beautiful gown for each number.  They both sang their songs straight into the audience's hearts and upon completion of each number there were loud shouts of acclaim and thunderous applause.  After Eric's "Music of the Night", and halfway into the next orchestral selection, the elderly lady next to me piped up in a loud voice, "That guy can really SING!!"  Haha, I agree!  When he sings that high note on "Let your soul take you where you want to BE" it just took our breath away.  What I liked best was the dramatic way he delivered the songs.  It wasn't just music, it transported you to a different time and place.  That is a direct quote from a friend of mine.  Another girlfriend called me the next morning and sang "I don't know how to love him..." into the phone.  Everyone who meets Eric is bewitched and enchanted.  As an added bonus, we had a lovely time visiting afterward in the Green Room. 

Friday, April 23, 2010

Seeing Eric Kunze in Joseph at CLOSBC

This is not the first time I've seen Eric portray this role, the last being with Reagle Players in Waltham, Massachusetts in 2008. To my delight and relief, this version of "Joseph" is G rated. The costuming is imaginative, colorful and modest. The one scene that could be (and often is) over the top, is where Potiphar's wife tries to seduce Joseph. Even in the film, that scene is depicted as an orgy. But director Ron Kellum is able to convey the story without making it uncomfortable to watch, which is reassuring to those planning to bring their young children to this production. Compared to the last show I saw Eric in, "Miss Saigon" in Houston, this is a piece of fluff, but it is nice to see him smiling. Eric's smile is so killer it could be used as a secret weapon. The lyrics, "I look handsome, I look smart. I'm a walking work of art" could have been written for him. On a serious note, the redemptive theme of forgiveness is presented clearly under Kellum's direction and Eric's acting ability.

The entire cast is strong, beginning with Kelli Provart, whose rich, full voice adds dimension to her role as the narrator. I kept thinking she reminded me of someone and finally I realized it was Ann Margaret, both in looks and the way her voice sounded.  Paul Ainsley does an admirable job on the dual role of Jacob/Potiphar and Robert J. Townsend, with his huge pompadour and blue suede boots brings down the house with his spot on impersonation of Elvis. I loved watching the children in the chorus, impressed that each and every one of them was in the moment and engaged all throughout the production. As a choir director, I know that is no small feat. In a lovely touch, one of the small boys even gets to sing with Eric stage front at the end of the show, when he puts the huge coat on him for a duet reprise of "Close Every Door".

I liked the blocking of "Grovel, Grovel", as each of the brothers falls down in a row in front of him, Eric steps over each prostrate body. The dancing chorus was impressive, especially the men in their "Canaan Days" number. Ty Taylor, especially, impressed with his soulful rendition of "Benjamin Calypso". According to his bio, he starting singing at the age of five in church and one could well imagine it. This show must be fun for the ensemble because of the variety of singing and dancing it offers, from French accents to rapping to belly dancing. At least it looks like fun from the perspective of the audience, which, I imagine, is the goal of the show. If that is the case, the goal was achieved, judging from the humming and smiling audience upon exiting the auditorium.

Friday, February 26, 2010

"ATribute to Andrew Lloyd Webber" at the Sunset Center

The Webber show features five well-regarded professionals in musical theater, who have all worked on Broadway but are mostly based in Southern California at present. The all-star quintet includes Norman Large,  Kevin Earley, Eric Kunze, Valerie Perri and Dale Kristien, all of whom have played numerous roles in Webber musicals, both on Broadway and elsewhere.  The five, backed by an eight-piece orchestra, will sing some of Webber's most iconic songs, including "The Music of the Night" from "Phantom of the Opera," "Memory" from "Cats," "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina," from "Evita" and "As If We Never Said Goodbye," from "Sunset Boulevard. 
Read more at:

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Eric and President Bush Sr.

The cast of "Miss Saigon" were visited backstage by President Bush, Sr. and Barbara Bush after the performance.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

"In his first solo of the evening, the audience is amazed at the talent, power and sadness in Eric Kunze’s marvelous voice as he sings the plaintive, “Why, God, Why?” His starring roles in a long string of theater favorites, such as Marius in “Les Miserables,” Tony in “Westside Story,” Che in “Evita, as well as Lt. Cable in “South Pacific,” have prepared him well for the sensitive portrayal as Chris in this heart-breaking story of a puzzling time, that is almost as difficult to understand now, as it was thirty plus years ago."
Read more at:

"But the cast keeps the story and the music grounded in a rich emotional landscape. They all have enormous knockout voices. When Kunze's Chris sings about his conflicted love or his sleepless nights, the effect is heart-wrenching."
Read more at:

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Monday, February 15, 2010

"Handsome Eric Kunze as Chris is equally as excellent as Chris. His glorious tenor voice and fine acting casts a magic spell on Kim and also on us and reminds us what great musical theatre is all about."

Review from Buzz Bellmont, The Critics' Critic
Unplugged critiques of the arts, life, love and the pursuit of truth
Read more at:

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Seeing Miss Saigon at TUTS by Maggi

Intense is the word I would use to describe this incarnation of Miss Saigon.  I realized my hands were shaking as I put on my coat to leave.   Each of the cast had been  so believable I realized I was transported to another time and place.  This was a world so different from my own, but the motivations and characterizations made it feel very familiar.  Love and passion at first sight, a mother's love for her child, a wife's love for her husband were themes I could understand and I felt I had lived through all those emotions in the span of 2-1/2 hours. 

Eric and Philip Michael Baskerville (John) were in the first national tour of Miss Saigon together in the 90's and Melinda and Eric worked on the show together a few years ago.  Their history as friends and co-stars shows on stage.  There were no awkward moments. Their dialogue and songs were as seamless as a well oiled machine.  Director Bruce Lumpkin did an admirable job, especially during the difficult and frantic evacuation scene.  Joseph Anthony Foronda took the flashy role of the engineer to a new level of smarminess.  His transformation from nightclub owner to groveling peon of the new regime and back again was a joy to watch.  As Ellen, Jessica Rush strikes a perfect balance between a sympathetic understanding of Kim's plight and her fierce desire to fight for her husband's love.  I especially loved the rich tone of her voice in "Now That I've Seen Her". 

Each time I see the show (I saw it on tour in the 80's and four times at last year's Muny presentation) I pick up something new.  This may seem obvious to everyone else, but it's the first time I realized the foreshadowing of Kim's death (Melinda Chua) singing to her son Tam in her beautifully performed song "I'd Give My Life For You".  The storyline was clearer to me in this production, a testament to the cast's diction and timing.  I understood every word. 

The TUTS production is steamier, sexier and grittier than I have seen before, a brave move on director Bruce's part.  If it weren't for the sad ending, it's perfect for a Valentine's Day date!  No one in the audience seemed to complain.  All the comments I overheard on the way out were superlative.

All right, ladies, here's what you have been waiting for.   How was Eric in the show?  Better than ever!  He just keeps improving with each show.  His commitment to the part is 100% each and every show. An orchestra member who has accompanied Eric in many productions told me he is the gutsiest performer they have ever seen.  This is not an easy part to do.  He has to convey tired cynicism, giddy first love, lust, anger, frustration and grief.  This is a very physical role and I can't imagine how he will do this twice on Saturday and twice on Sunday.  He is very physically fit and looks it (thanks to Bruce who allows us more than a glimpse of that fabulous physique a couple of times in the first act).   

I can't end this review without a shout-out to the conductor Thom Culcasi and the orchestra.  As a musician, I know from experience the speed and rhythms right from the very first notes make this is a particularly difficult score to play, but they carried it off with precision.  The whole show really was perfect from start to finish.  I'm so glad I will get to see it again four more times this weekend.  Stay tuned! 

God bless and good night!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Miss Saigon review: "Eric Kunze makes a persuasively love-struck, then haunted Chris, belting his power ballads with heartfelt zeal."

Read more at:

Kunze and Chua complement each other in both on stage passion and chemistry but also in tone, vocally creating amazing harmonies throughout their duets. As the plot progresses Kunze masterfully moves Chris from carefree and smitten in love to a wiser man under the pressures of his complicated social situation.

Read more at:

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Photos of Eric and Melinda from the Houston TUTS Production of "Miss Saigon"

Enjoy a few preview photos of Eric Kunze (Chris) and Melinda Chua (Kim) from the upcoming Houston production of "Miss Saigon"!

Photos by: Bruce Bennett Photography

Monday, February 1, 2010

Miss Saigon Study Guide

TUTS (Theater Under the Stars) in Houston posted a link to a valuable resource for anyone attending or interested in "Miss Saigon":

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Eric Interview on Fox26 Morning News in Houston

Melinda Chua, who plays the role of Kim, and Eric Kunze, who plays the role of Chris, visit FOX 26 Morning News Extra to preview the touring production of "Miss Saigon."

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Eric and Gina honored on the Vista Walk of Fame

On Monday, January 18, 2010, the Vista Conservancy honored Eric Kunze and Gina DeLuca, along with nine other celebrities, who were originally from the area, in a ceremony as part of the opening of the Vista Walk of Fame!
Read more at: