Shelly Watson has taken every artistic opportunity offered in New York City to become her own brand of entertainment excellence.
As an opera singer she’s an award winning, B.M and M.M Juilliard graduate, a Metropolitan Opera outreach Artist and world premiere music collaborator specializing in improvisation. This year she directed and stage/costume/set designed the premiere of David Cheskys’ opera La Farranucci at the Playhouse Theater in Brooklyn.
As a comedian, she’s made the world laugh. She’s headlined and been featured at Caroline’s Comedy Club, Comedy Cellar, N.Y Comedy Club, Gotham, Magnet Theater, Dangerfield’s, UCB and Stand Up New York and was voted one of Z100s’ Funniest Females. This led to a nationally syndicated radio segment
“Hip Hopera” (her operatic arrangements of rap songs) that ran 13 seasons. Her spectacular Hip Hopera opening on the MTV 2001 VMA’s with Jaime Foxx has been voted one of the top 10 best moments in the VMA’s every year since its debut.
Hailed by The New York Times as an “especially impressive fine pianist,” Richard Dowling appears regularly across the United States and throughout the world in orchestral performances, solo recitals and chamber music collaborations. He has been acclaimed by audiences for his elegant and charismatic style of pianism which earns him frequent return engagements. He has received reviews that praise him as a “master of creating beautiful sounds with impeccable control of colors and textures,” as “a musician with something to say, the skill to say it and the magnetic power to make you want to listen” and for giving “a superb recital that left the audience craving for more at the end.” Works of Chopin, Gershwin, American ragtime and French Impressionism figure prominently in his repertoire.
On April 1, 2017, the exact centennial date of Scott Joplin’s death in New York City, Richard Dowling became the first pianist in history to perform publicly the complete cycle of the composer’s piano works (in a pair of sold-out recitals in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall).
Richard Dowling celebrated the 1998 centennial of the birth of George Gershwin by performing his complete solo and orchestral works for piano. In 2001, he released Sweet and Low-Down, a Klavier Records CD containing virtually all of the solo piano works by Gershwin.
In commemoration of the centennial of the death of Scott Joplin, Rivermont Records issued a three-CD set of the complete solo piano works of the legendary American ragtime composer; the Grammy-nominated set comprises 54 rags, waltzes and marches.
In addition to his regular concert performances, Richard Dowling is frequently heard as a member of the artist roster of The Piatigorsky Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing live classical music to audiences across America. Since 1994, he has performed well over 1000 recitals under its auspices.
Richard Dowling makes his home in New York City.
Zuill Bailey, widely considered one of the premiere cellists in the world, is a Grammy Award winning, internationally renowned soloist, recitalist, Artistic Director and teacher. His rare combination of celebrated artistry, technical wizardry and engaging personality has secured his place as one of the most sought after and active cellists today.
Renowned recording artist Zuill Bailey has produced more than 30 chart topping titles. Mr. Bailey won a Best Solo Performance Grammy Award in 2017, for his Live Recording of “Tales of Hemingway,” by composer Michael Daugherty. The award winning CD, recorded with the Nashville Symphony, Giancarlo Guerrero, conductor, also won the “Triple Crown,” with Grammys for best composition, “Tales of Hemingway,” and Best Compendium. His celebrated “Bach Cello Suites”, Britten Cello Symphony/Sonata CD with pianist Natasha Paremski, Haydn Cello Concertos CD and recently released Schumann/Brahms Concertos immediately soared to the Number One spot on the Classical Billboard Charts.
Mr. Bailey received his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from the Peabody Conservatory and the Juilliard School. His primary teachers include Loran Stephenson, Stephen Kates and Joel Krosnick. Mr. Bailey performs on the “rosette” 1693 Matteo Gofriller Cello, formerly owned by Mischa Schneider of the Budapest String Quartet.
In addition to his extensive solo touring engagements, he is the Artistic Director of El Paso Pro-Musica (Texas), the Sitka Summer Music Festival/Series and Cello Seminar, (Alaska), Juneau Jazz & Classics, (Alaska), the Northwest Bach Festival (Washington), Classical Inside Out Series- Mesa Arts Center(Arizona) and is Director of the Center for Arts Entrepreneurship and Professor of Cello at the University of Texas at El Paso.