Personnel Paris 2023

This exchange (both the conference and the festival) continues the essential conversation on the art of cabaret among performers, teachers and coaches, writers and historians, and fans.

Cette échange poursuit l’essentiel de la conversation sur l’art du cabaret entre interprètes, enseignants et entraîneurs, écrivains et historiens, et fans.

Paulus, Ava Logan, Claudia Hommel, Mylène Launay, Barbara Smith, Jean-Claude Orfali,
Jeanne Franks, Mimei Sakamoto, Benjamin Legrand, Lynne Jordan, Michèle Barbier, Anne Fromm, Stefan Kukurugya, Mark & Anne Burnell, Lou Ella Rose, Jeanie Carroll, Maryline Rollet, Isabelle Georges

Workshop teachers and principal performers

Michèle began as actress and singer (Comédie Française, Festival d’Avignon, etc) but left everything for the circus in Sweden, Germany and her own company in France. She was discovered in Sweden by the legendary Josephine Baker who engaged her as personal secretary from 1969-1971. After thirty years, Michèle returned to theater, released three song albums, published novels, historical essays, theater and poems, and produced her one-woman-shows evoking the circus world and more recently her upbringing in Algeria. She has created events, often televised, such as the Gala de la Presse and Kréatika, the Festival of Authors-Composers-Performers. She was vice-president of the Alliance Francophone, taking her to many countries, most notably Japan. www.michele-barbier.comhe Alliance Francophone for which she has performed and traveled to many countries, including Japan.

Michèle, a commencé sa carrière comme actrice, chanteuse et auteur (Comédie Française, Festival d’Avignon, etc). Mais elle a tout quitté pour vivre dans le monde du cirque pendant trente ans, voyageant en Scandinavie, en Allemagne, puis dirigeant sa propre compagnie en France. En Suède, elle est découverte par la légendaire Joséphine Baker qui l’engage comme secrétaire personnelle de 1968 à 1971. Revenant au théâtre, à l’écriture et à la chanson, elle a sorti quatre albums, publié douze livres (romans, essais historiques, pièces de théâtre et poèmes) et produit et joué dans cinq pièces de théâtre, dont un one-woman-show inspiré du monde du cirque. Son dernier livre, Josephine Baker, les dernières années – La renaissance d’une étoile est paru aux Editions Riveneuve au début de l’année 2022. Originaire d’Algérie, elle a publié plusieurs ouvrages sur son pays natal . N’ayant jamais oublié la Guerre d’Algérie, elle présente en mars 2022 une nouvelle pièce de théâtre et publie un nouveau livre, consacrés à cette période qui l’a beaucoup marquée.
Elle a produit des événements télévisés, tels que le Gala de la Presse et Kréatika, le Festival des auteurs-compositeurs-interprètes. Elle est vice-présidente de l’Alliance Francophone pour laquelle elle s’est produite et a voyagé dans de nombreux pays, dont le Japon.

MicheleBarbier with microphone

Anne has performed for WDCB Jazz Salon, Jazz at the Logan, Chicago Humanities Festival, Mabel Mercer Foundation Cabaret Convention, Metropolis, and the Auditorium Theatre. Along with her husband pianist/vocalist Mark Burnell, she has toured in Paris and Amsterdam, and has sung the national anthem for the Cubs, White Sox, Arlington International Race Track, and the Special Olympics. Recordings:Summer Days and Dreamy Nights,Blues in the Night, Serious, Little Things We Do Together. Shows include: Cry Me a River: the Music of Julie London with Mark Burnell, and guitarist Henry Johnson, The Brill Building Songwriters, Tales of Our Travels, Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves.

Pianist and singer, Mark trained vocalists for ten years at Carnegie Mellon University, where he received his M.F.A. He has worked with Dave Frishberg, Connie Francis, Ward Swingle, Howie Mandel, Laura San Giocomo, Richie Cole, Rob Marshall, Blair Underwood, and Seth Myers. Mark’s overseas tours have taken him to Bern, Zurich, Paris, Freiburg, Geneva, Panama, and Amsterdam. The Chicago Sun-Times hailed his work as “silky smooth and highly polished”, and Cabaret Hotline praised him as “one of the most talented pianists and arrangers I’ve seen.” Mark was twice a Master Instructor at the International Cabaret Conference at Yale University, and he has also taught at Northwestern and Roosevelt Universities. In Chicago, he can be heard at the Tortoise Supper Club, City Winery, Davenport’s, and the Signature Room. Discography: Summer Days & Dreamy Nights, Blues in the Night (with Anne Burnell), Christmas Piano, Cooler by the Lake.

Jeanie reveled in the experience of participating in the St Louis Cabaret Conference twice. She worked for Club Mediterranée for several years, traveling and singing in France. She studied French in Aix-en-Provence and lived and worked in Paris for several years, singing at Jazz Clubs in Montparnasse and at The Hollywood Savoy next to La Bourse. Jeanie hails from Sedona, Arizona, and now lives in Las Vegas. She has fun collaborating in shows and gigs including the Sentimental Journey Big Band, a combo called “The Classics”, and is the director of Red Rockappella, a Sweet Adelines barbershop small chorus.

Jeanie Carroll

Making comic music became an obsession for Clovis at age 11. He studied at the School of Fine Arts in Le Mans. Upon arriving in Paris, he joined the jam sessions at the Slow Club, where he met Claude Luter, who became his clarinet teacher. He has performed at jazz rooms (La Huchette, Le Petit Journal) and toured with Haricots Rouges and Europe 1. Moustache engaged him at Cintra, Bilboquet and Meridien. His excessive musicopathy pushed him to invent new instruments. He has performed on his invented instruments at the Avignon Festival, Bobino, the Auditorium St-Germain-des-Près and many more. Radio France commissioned him to compose theme music for a ten-part series on bats. He composes for television and performs on a host of programs. His latest new musical-burlesque show Musicopathy, acute crisis or serious illness? comes in a children’s version for ages 7 to 77.

Singer-actor Anne Fromm trained at the Stage school of music, dance and drama in Hamburg. Since 1998, she has lived in France, exploring polyphony, world singing, sacred singing and also body practices such as shiatsu, inspired by the teachings of Frank Kane, vibration and Georgian. She has studied Jean-Luc Bosc (theater, improvisation), Arnaud Didierjean (North Indian dhrupad singing) as well as Borys Cholevka (world singing, sacred singing).
Since her arrival in Lyon, she has been teaching vocal technique, interpretation and the therapeutic aspect of singing. She loves to share the pleasure of singing, to set up artistic projects, to coach and stage all kinds of vocal groups and artists.

Chanteuse et comédienne, j’ai été formée à la ‘Stage school of music, dance and drama’ à Hambourg. Ensuite j’ai eu le plaisir de jouer, chanter et danser dans de nombreuses productions de comédies musicales en Allemagne. Depuis 24 ans en France, je parcours d’autres sentiers comme la polyphonie, les chants du monde, le chant sacré et aussi des pratiques corporelles comme le shiatsu. Je continue à suivre les enseignements de personnes qui me sont très chères comme Frank Kane (travail sur la vibration et le chant géorgien), Jean-Luc Bosc (théâtre, improvisation), Arnaud Didierjean (chant dhrupad de l’Inde du Nord) ainsi que Borys Cholevka (chant du monde, chant sacré) qui nous a malheureusement quitté en 2017.
Depuis mon arrivée à Lyon, j’enseigne la technique vocale, l’interprétation et aussi tout l’aspect thérapeutique à travers le chant. J’aime partager le plaisir de chanter, monter des projets artistiques, mettre en scène, coacher des groupes vocaux et artistes de tout horizon.

A radiant and reassuring presence, a voice that reaches for the stars, a powerful zest for life through song and dance, a passion for new horizons, projects and encounters… Isabelle Georges unifies all of the aforementioned with a smile! On stage, as a performer, and creator of her own shows, we witness her inspiring cultural and artistic heritage in a joyful combination of musical theater, French songs, classical, jazz and Yiddish music.
This melting pot of music and language reflects her free- spirited, ever-curious nature, finely honed from childhood. The environment in which Isabelle grew up was both musical and music loving. It was profoundly humanistic, open and full of promises that, after many years in hospital, ignited inside her an energy that she would never lose. Musical theater allowed her not only to forge her own path alongside the dramatic soprano legacy from her mother but also to rediscover her body with dance and begin to arm herself for the stage in Jean-Paul Lucetʼs production of Barnum. Isabelle attended the Cours Florent and her idols include Judy Garland (the subject of her first show in 2005), Liza Minnelli, Barbra Streisand, Jacques Brel.

Formé au conservatoire de Rueil à Paris et au Berklee College of Music aux Etats-Unis, Henri GRAVIER fait ses débuts avec Hervé Legrand : enregistrements, concerts, comédie musicale “A la folie Prévert”. Avec Benjamin Legrand  il se produit en quartet de jazz dans les clubs parisiens. Il accompagne plusieurs chanteurs pour lesquels il va écrire de nombreuses musiques et chansons originales. Son travail d’écriture est sollicité par réalisateurs sur France télévision. Il est également l‘auteur d’ouvrages pédagogiques et de recueils pour piano.Il arrange et enregistre pour un label français, crée plusieurs ensembles de jazz dont “Blue 7” (style “Swing années 50”), « 8.3 » un quintet pour le répertoire contemporain et “jazzolic système” un quartet de jazz avec chanteuse basé sur des chansons des années 1980. Accompagne l’humoriste imitateur William Klank depuis longtemps ainsi que Pascal Chevalier pour qui il compose des  chansons. Arrangeur et partitionneur pour Diamant Records, Alpha Blondy, Michel Berger. Pratique la guitare et l’harmonica pour ses propres réalisations.

Trained at the Conservatoire de Rueil in Paris and the Berklee College of Music in the USA, Henri GRAVIER made his debut with Hervé Legrand: recordings, concerts, musical comedy “A la folie Prévert”. With Benjamin Legrand, he performs in a jazz quartet in Parisian clubs. Over the years, he has accompanied many singers for whom he writes numerous original songs and scores. He is also the author of pedagogical works and piano collections. He arranges and records for labels in France, and has created several jazz ensembles, including “Blue 7” (50s swing style), “8.3” a quintet for contemporary repertoire, and “jazzolic système” a jazz quartet with singer based on songs from the 1980s. Long-time accompanist to comedian and impersonator William Klank, as well as Pascal Chevalier. Arranger and score writer for Diamant Records, Alpha Blondy, Michel Berger. Plays guitar and harmonica for his own productions.

Montmartroise, guide touristique et chanteuse, Anne-Sophie Guerrier a créé les visites guidées de Montmartre en chansons, un circuit sur les pas de célèbres chanteurs qui ont vécu à Montmartre : Piaf, Aznavour, Brel, Dalida… En compagnie de l’accordéoniste Yann Cotty, une adaptation des visites de Montmartre en chansons au théâtre a été jouée au Théâtre du Nord-Ouest et sera en janvier à l’affiche du Théâtre Montmartre Galabru.

Anne-Sophie représentera l’Île-de-France dans un programme sur les chants régionaux , diffusé à l’automne sur France 3. Anne-Sophie est accréditée Musiciens du Métro et Artiste de rue à Montmartre. Lors de la Fête de la musique 2022, une vidéo de son concert a réuni plus de 3,8 millions de vues sur les réseaux sociaux. Anne-Sophie sera la tête d’affiche d’un concert début 2024 avec l’Orchestre Harmonique de Clermont-Ferrand.

Diplômée d’un Master à l’IÉSEG School of management, Anne-Sophie a également suivi les Cours Florent en Comédie Musicale. Elle se perfectionne aujourd’hui auprès du Maître de chant Éric Tavelli.

A Montmartre native, tour guide and singer, Anne-Sophie Guerrier has created the guided tours of Montmartre en chansons, a tour in the footsteps of famous singers who have lived in Montmartre: Piaf, Aznavour, Brel, Dalida: Piaf, Aznavour, Brel, Dalida… In the company of accordionist Yann Cotty, a theatrical adaptation of Les visites de Montmartre en chansons was performed at the Théâtre du Nord-Ouest, and will be presented in January at the Théâtre Montmartre Galabru.

Anne-Sophie will represent the Île-de-France region in a program on regional songs, broadcast this autumn on France 3. Anne-Sophie is an accredited Musiciens du Métro and street artist in Montmartre. During the Fête de la Musique 2022, a video of her concert garnered over 3.8 million views on social networks. Anne-Sophie will headline a concert in early 2024 with the Orchestre Harmonique de Clermont-Ferrand.

With a Master’s degree from the IÉSEG School of management, Anne-Sophie also studied Musical Comedy at the Cours Florent. She is currently perfecting her skills with singing master Éric Tavelli.


David has been fascinated by this wonderful, magical beast called the “voice” for over 25 years. This has led to a lifelong journey studying and discovering innovative ways to unleash the creative power in performers. He has taught both privately and at the collegiate level in Cleveland, Ann Arbor, Chicago, and Milwaukee.
On faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee David teaches singers in Musical Theater, Pop, Jazz, Opera : Vocal Pedagogy, Singing In Popular Styles, Diction, Song Literature, and several other courses. In Fall 2023, he will join the faculty of Carthage College for the Masters’ Program in Musical Theater Pedagogy. Previous schools include The Theater Conservatory at Roosevelt University, Old Town School of Folk Music, Hiram College, and Lake Forest College.
As a singer, he has regularly performed with the cabaret group Opera Inter Alia holding a torch for the American Songbook and French jazz, Chicago Folks Operetta, Da Corneto Opera Company, Sinfonietta Bel Canto, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Chorus. He holds a DMA from the University of Michigan, is a certified Master Teacher of the Estill Voice Model and a graduate of Sheri Sanders’ Rock the Audition Teacher Training. He is currently completing training in emotional performance pedagogy through EmoVerity.

Born in Paris, raised in Detroit, and seasoned in New York City, Claudia moved to Chicago to hone her skills. Actor-singer, teacher, cabaret promoter, her recordings and concerts of Paris/Paree, Paris in the Jazz Age, Romance Language: French Songs for Lovers, and the two Jazz Fauré Project albums are a reflection of her Paris-centric repertoire.
In 1997 she initiated Chicago Cabaret Professionals. For ten years, she has been on the faculty in the Community Music Division of DePaul University School of Music teaching SongShop, a class in song interpretation. Executive director of Working In Concert, Claudia directs the Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion, co-cordinates Chicago Cabaret Week, and produces SongShop workshops and concerts.

Elisabeth is the author of the Teacher’s Vocal Power Method Toolkit for CCM and the Singer’s Vocal Power Method Toolkit for CCM. She is recognized by National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) as a pioneer in the field of teaching Contemporary Commercial Music (CCM) and featured featured in the NATS publication, So You Want to Sing Contemporary Commercial Music, as well as Training Contemporary Commercial Singers, published by Compton.
Elisabeth is a graduate of the Julliard School with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in voice and founder of the Vocal Power Academy in Los Angeles. She has presented Vocal Power Method Workshops for National Voice Teachers Conferences in eleven countries and has certified Vocal Power Trainers throughout the US, France, Italy and Brazil.
Clients include Paige O’Hara, the voice of Belle in the film, Beauty and the Beast, Lionel Richie, The Police, Priscilla Presley and was the warm-up coach for Sting at the Grammys. She has had clients on Broadway, National tours, American Idol, ten winners on Star Search and was a vocal coach on America’s Got Talent. Her Cabaret act, Op’ra to Pop’ra was performed in New York and Los Angeles clubs and was touted by Los Angeles Music Connection Magazine as “a talent to be reckoned with.” Elisabeth has performed leads in 25 musicals and operas. She won the national title, “Ms Senior America, 2012.”

Stefan is a versatile performer and vocalist as a solo artist or with a band. He hails from Detroit. He has a diverse repertoire including Jazz, Pop, blues, R&B to Motown, and Classical, not to mention Funk, ethnic music (Ladino, Latino salsa and folkloric, Arabic, Jewish, French, Albanian, Igbo, Yiddish, Polish, Black Gospel) straight improvisation, New Age & songwriting. He has toured as a pianist and Musical Director for different national acts.
He plays acoustic piano, Hammond B3 style, synthesizers, guitar, percussion, harmonica, and drum kit as needed. He has created custom sound design and programming for the Detroit Symphony. Back in the late 70s he accompanied Temptations singer David Ruffin on the road for a year. His jingles have been performed on TV and radio, and he has produced children’s music with clients such as Sesame Street and The Learning Channel.
As a bandleader, Stefan instinctively knows how to work the crowd and keep the party going! “Let’s Build International Goodwill and Inclusion through Music.”

Chicago.  In a city brimming with classic blues and jazz divas, Lynne Jordan stands apart.  Not only do her soaring vocals dip effortlessly into blues, jazz, funk, rock and even country but her bawdy personality wins over any crowd.  Her talent so dazzled the Second City that the late Chicago film critic Roger Ebert declared her his “favorite diva.”  Backed by her sizzling band The Shivers, Jordan quickly developed into a Chicago institution, playing jazz and blues clubs, swanky lounges, and even the charity circuit throughout the country. She brought her special brand of storytelling, raw humor, and performance to New York, DC, and Atlanta with her sold-out show, “A Musical Tribute To Nina Simone.”

She has honed her storytelling skills with every song, in every concert and event, and created a one-woman show “A Great Big Diva” that includes her wonderful stories and music. Lynne is a 3Arts Make a Wave Artist, and recipient of the African American Arts Alliance of Chicago: Outstanding Achievement in Music – Rhythm & Blues award in 2017-2018, and the Raue Center for the Performing Arts “diva in residence” in 2021-22.

She is a founding member of the Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion back in 2016. Due to reasons of health, she is unable to join us in Paris 2023. We wish her a full recovery.

Mylène is a French actor, dancer, street and cabaret singer. She trained in classical dance, modern-jazz, tap, flamenco (at AID), Argentine  tango (in Buenos Aires) and musical comedy (AICOM). She co-hosts a weekly street ball at rue Mouffetard with accordionist Christian Bassoul. Mylène wrote her first musical, In Vitro, in 2015. She and Claudia Hommel organized the first Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion exchange in France in 2017. She continues to coordinate and recruit for CPCx in France.

Benjamin Legrand fonde son premier trio de jazz en 1986.
Il rejoint ensuite le big band de son père Michel Legrand avec lequel il fait de nombreux concerts à travers le monde et plusieurs albums. Parallèlement il fait de nombreuses tournées au Japon et à travers l Europe. Sa passion pour la musique brésilienne l’amène à enregistrer un album avec le grand guitariste et compositeur brésilien Baden Powell.
Il enregistre également les grands auteurs et compositeur français tels Léo Ferré, Claude Nougaro où Charles Trenet.
En hommage à son père il entreprend une tournée où il raconte en chansons quarante années de collaboration avec lui. Il est accompagné de son pianiste Henri Gravier avec lequel il travaille depuis plus de trente ans. Celui ci a fait ses études à la Berklee School of Music à Boston.

Benjamin Legrand founded his first jazz trio in 1986. He joined his father Michel Legrand’s big band, with whom he toured the world and released several albums. His passion for Brazilian music led him to record an album with Brazilian guitarist and composer Baden Powell. He also recorded the great French songwriters such as Léo Ferré, Claude Nougaro or Charles Trenet. As a tribute to his father, he recounts forty years of collaboration with him in song. He is accompanied by pianist Henri Gravier with whom he has worked for over thirty years. He studied at the Berklee School of Music in Boston.

Ava is an award-winning singer-actor from Washington, D.C. Dr. Logan is a veterinarian by day and a jazz singer at night. She is a classically-trained jazz recording artist and has performed jazz, pop, and rhythm and blues nationally and internationally, in jazz clubs, festivals, hotels and more with duos to 18-piece big bands. She has portrayed her idols Ella Fitzgerald and Nancy Wilson in professional theater performances in Chicago. Her first major CD, So Many Stars, produced by guitarist Henry Johnson, was met with critical acclaim.

Claire Mével est musicienne multi-instrumentiste, accompagnatrice et arrangeuse. Après une formation classique en piano et en accordéon à l’ENM de Villeurbanne, et un diplôme de Musicien Intervenant, c’est l’expérience active de la scène, des projets et des rencontres qui construisent son langage musical. Elle navigue à travers les musiques traditionnelles, les projets classiques, les musiques actuelles, le cabaret, la chanson et la poésie, en collaboration avec des chanteurs, comédiens, metteurs en scène ou circassien.

Claire Mével is a multi-instrumentalist, accompanist and arranger. After classical training in piano and accordion at the ENM in Villeurbanne, and a diploma as Collaborative Musician, it is the active experience of the stage, projects and encounters that have shaped her musical language. She navigates through traditional music, classical projects, contemporary music, cabaret, chanson and poetry, in collaboration with singers, actors, directors and circus artists.

Pianist Jean-Claude is an organizer of the Cabaret Connexion and serves as pianist in master classes and concerts. He has participated in many international events and piano concerts. Jean-Claude comes from a family of musicians. For many years he has played regularly in Paris at venues such as Le George V, le Plaza-Athénée et le Bristol. He appears frequently at the oldest Parisian artistic cabaret, Au Lapin Agile. He accompanied Claudia Hommel’s master class at the École Professionnel de Comédie Musicale in 2016 and joined Elizabeth Doyle as pianist for Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion in Paris (2017) and Chicago (2018). He returned to Chicago to perform with Christine Steyer, taking their concert Sweet Spot between Our Worlds to Montréal (2019). He performs as a solo pianist, as part of small jazz groups and also leads Parisian Big Band “BB15”. He has composed and performed for film.

JeanClaudeOrfali headshot

Comic, singer, presenter and judge on BBC 1’s All Together Now, Paul L. Martin is the foremost teacher and facilitator of cabaret in the U.K. He has worked for over 20 years in drama schools, acting centers and with individual clients. He offers courses on the tenets and principles of cabaret. He has been a tireless champion of the London cabaret scene for over 25 years. He returns to the Connexion conference to teach again.

Martin Pénet est un journaliste et historien né à Paris le 17 mars 1968, spécialisé dans la chanson d’expression française des XIXᵉ et XXᵉ siècles. Producteur sur France Musique et France Culture, Martin a publié de nombreux articles et ouvrages de référence sur la chanson, dirigé de nombreuses rééditions patrimoniales en CD.

Martin Pénet, journalist and historian born in Paris in March 1968, specializes in French chanson of the XIXᵉ and XXᵉ centuries. A producer for France Musique, Martin has published numerous articles and reference works on chanson, and directed numerous legacy reissues on CD.

Howard Pfeifer has worked extensively as a pianist, composer, arranger and musical director with 40 years in the fields of television commercials, feature films, variety shows, TV series and record albums in Los Angeles and Chicago. Howard has worked with Patti LaBelle, Take 6, Aretha Franklin, Johnny Cash, Vonda Shepard, Sheryl Crow, Jim Brickman, B.B. King, Marie Osmond, and Buster Poindexter. He has written and performed for television series and variety shows include the animated Goode Family, The Chipmunks (over 200 songs for their records, films and 1980’s TV series and the singing voice of Alvin for approximately 150 episodes), The Lennon Sisters Christmas Special, Fame, The Pink Panther and CBS Television Christmas Classics starring Marie Osmond.
Howard has worked as composer, music director and pianist on commercials for clients such as Budweiser, Miller Lite, Coor’s, Burger King, McDonald’s, Chevrolet, Toyota, Mazda, Cadillac, Coca Cola, Pepsi, Gatorade, Sears, Kellogg’s, Reebok, Nike, Adidas, etc.
As a composer for musical theater, his Beach Wars was presented at the 2006 Stages festival.  Freddy The Flat-Faced Schoolbus, a children’s theater piece was performed at Theater Building Chicago. The Sun Queen remains in development.
He has served as keyboardist and pianist for major Broadway touring shows including Hamilton, Beautiful, A Chorus Line, West Side Story, Sound of Music, and Billy Elliot.
In recent years, he has been involved with Chicago’s cabaret community where he mentors career singers. He has helped develop cabaret shows for the Boomer Babes (Pam Peterson and Jan Slavin) and served as principal pianist for SongShop Live.

Joyeuse et mélancolique, mêlant la douceur de la balade, l’énergie du jazz et la sensualité de la bossa-nova, Maryline nous embarque avec enthousiasme — en français, en anglais et en brésilien — dans son univers touchant et sensible. Elle se produit régulièrement en duo, trio, quartet, solo, sur les scènes des cafés, restaurants, clubs jazz, théâtres et aussi dans le métro parisien. Le répertoire chanson, jazz, bossa nova — principalement de reprises — est teinté d’humour et de poésie. Elle a participé à la première Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion à Paris en 2017.

Joyful and melancholy, mixing the sweetness of the ballad, the energy of jazz and the sensuality of bossa nova, Maryline brings us along enthusiastically—in French, English and Brazilian Portuguese—in her touching and sensitive universe. She regularly performs in duet, trio, quartet, solo, at cafes, restaurants, jazz clubs, theaters and also in the Paris metro. Her repertoire of standards is tinged with humor and poetry. She participated in the first Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion in Paris in 2017 and in Chicago in 2018.

MarylineRollet headshot

Mimei English

Mimei Francais

Unfortunately, due to reasons of health, Mimei is unable to join us in person this year. We wish her a full recovery.

Barb is the winner of the 2018 Skokie Idol Contest. She has sung in shows at Davenport’s, Epiphany, Drew’s on Halsted, Rosa’s Lounge, Chief O’Neill’s, Borelli’s and the Cliff Dwellers Club. She sings jazz, blues, folk musicand cabaret. Barb started her career as a folk singer: playing guitar and singing at coffee houses and in hootenannies. She is an active volunteer organizer of the Cabaret Connexion and serves as Vice President of Working In Concert.

Barb Smith

Originaire du Valais (Suisse), Frantz Wouilloz-Boutrois étudie la musique en Italie près de Venise et dans le sud de la France. Diplômé d’art lyrique, il perfectionne sa technique vocale auprès du chanteur Jean Lumière à Paris. De 1975 à 1985, il se spécialise dans les rôles de jeunes premiers dans les opérettes classiques viennoises, lopéziennes et françaises. Avec plus de 130 rôles à son actif, il participe à la création du Théâtre d’Opérette de Cannes et fonde la Saison Gardoise (2000), devenue ensuite Saison Grand Sud. La France, l’Italie, l’Espagne, la Belgique, le Luxembourg, l’Ukraine, la Pologne et le Canada l’accueillent dans des productions francophones et alémaniques. Membre de la SACEM, il a composé plus d’une vingtaine d’opérettes, de poèmes lyriques et de partitions destinées à la variété. Frantz W. Boutrois a également mis en scène plus d’une cinquantaine d’ouvrage d’opérette. En 2006, en Suisse, il est le chef d’orchestre des festivités du centenaire de la ligne de chemin de fer internationale Martigny-Chamonix, créant une comédie musicale estivale et une série de concerts et d’expositions, sans oublier un “son et lumière” dans les Gorges du Trient. Il dirige les “Semaines viennoises” dans l’Oberland bernois. Il enseigne l’art du chant et traite les troubles fonctionnels chez les enfants et les adultes (diplômé des dysfonctionnements vocaux en ORL). Il met au point la méthode et concept : Stimme und Wohlbefinden / Voix et Bien Être. Frantz W. Boutrois est l’auteur de plusieurs livres et a créé la Fondation EDITRAUM au cœur des Alpes. Au cours des trois dernières années, il a publié 7 ouvrages sur l’histoire du cabaret et de la Belle Epoque, publiés chez l’Harmattan dans la collection « Cabaret » qu’il dynamise auprès du grand public européen.

Originally from Valais (Switzerland), Frantz Wouilloz – BOUTROIS studied music in Italy near Venice and in the south of France. With a diploma in lyric art, he honed his vocal technique with the singer Jean Lumière in Paris. From 1975-1985 he specialized in young leads in Viennese, Lopézian, and classical French operettas. With over 130 roles to his credit, he participated in the creation of the “Théâtre d’Opérette de Cannes”, and founded the “Saison Gardoise” (2000), later known as “Saison Grand Sud”. France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg, Ukraine, Poland and Canada welcome him in French-speaking as well as German-speaking productions. A member of the SACEM, he composed more than twenty operettas, lyric poems and scores for variety shows. Frantz W. Boutrois has also directed over fifty operetta works. In 2006, in Switzerland, he was the conductor for the 100th anniversary festivities of the Martigny-Chamonix international railway line, creating a summer-long musical comedy and a series of concerts and exhibitions, not to mention a “son et lumière” in the Trient Gorge. He directs the “Viennese Weeks” in the Bernese Oberland. He has been teaching the art of singing and treating functional disorders in children and adults (ENT diploma in vocal dysfunctions). He developed the method and concept: Stimme und Wohlbefinden / Voix et Bien Être. Frantz W. Boutrois is the author of several books and founded the EDITRAUM Foundation in the heart of the Alps. Over the past three years, he has published 7 books on the history of cabaret and the Belle Epoque, published by l’Harmattan in the “Cabaret” collection, which he is promoting to a wider European audience.

Conference participants

Susan Arjmand has performed with other singers throughout Chicago in cabaret, musical theater and opera. She has performed with several Chicago-area opera companies and is a founding member of Opera Inter Alia, a group of professional singers who offer a Sunday series in Chicago restaurants. When not singing opera or cabaret, Susan is a physician and medical educator.

A native of Chicago, Sue relocated to metro Detroit in 1999 after living in Montreal and Las Vegas. She has performed in community theater productions in all four cities. As a child, she learned the complete scores of Broadway musicals by singing to the cast recordings. A regular participant in karaoke venues, Sue has also entertained at assisted living venues, with show tunes, country, pop/contemporary, and French language songs. A natural performer, Sue loves to connect with her audience. She participates in Claudia Hommel’s SongShop, joined the Singers Jazz Workshop in Paris in 2015 and has attended all of the Cabaret Connexion conferences thus far.

Sue Berke

Dr. Susan Boldrey is honored to serve as translator/interpreter for the 2023 Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion in Paris. Susan lived in France three years.  She teaches French and Spanish, as well as English, to immigrant and refugee women.  Her online course in “Chansons Francophones” provides a creative way to learn French. Her Ph.d. in French from Northwestern University involved interviews with 30+ singers, composers and poets of Québec and analysis of Québécois songs as a cultural reflection of Québec from the 1960s to the 1980s.  She has been a translator/interpreter with the Chicago Paris Cabaret Connexion since 2018.
In addition to these roles, Susan is a French and Spanish tour guide.  She loves to present photo travelogues to cultural groups.  She has traveled to Israel, Japan, Morocco, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, Canada, Europe and Mexico.  Again, we thank you for sharing our celebration of Cabaret Music and Culture in the “City of Light.” 

Jessie Bolger (soprano vocalist) has been a passionate musician for 25 years. She studied voice/opera performance at Northwestern University in Chicago, where she had the pleasure to perform in many operatic and choral productions. Jessie has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville; and in national classical and jazz choirs. She recently launched Operapirate Productions, a podcast project that modernizes the media in which opera is created. When she’s not singing, Jessie loves to hike and pet her two cats, Bruno and Jack; she lives in Chicago with her partner Josh.
Jessie Bolger (chanteuse, soprano) est une musicienne passionnée depuis 25 ans. Elle a étudié le chant et l’opéra à la Northwestern University de Chicago, où elle a eu le plaisir de participer à de nombreuses productions lyriques et chorales. Jessie a participé à des concerts au John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts à Washington, D.C., au Grand Ole Opry à Nashville, ainsi qu’à des chorales nationales de musique classique et de jazz. Elle a récemment lancé Operapirate Productions, un projet de podcast qui modernise les médias dans lesquels l’opéra est créé. En dehors du chant, Jessie aime faire de la randonnée et câliner ses deux chats, Bruno et Jack ; elle vit à Chicago avec son compagnon Josh.

Tirzah Joy is an accomplished and passionate singer with a lifelong interest in music. She studied classical music. This led to a love for art songs and opera. She plays guitar and ukulele, and has written countless songs, releasing her first recording, Anyway, in 2021. She began exploring the realm of jazz in 2017. She arranges and sings with”The Swingin’ Sisters.”

Carolyn Broquet spent many dedicated years working in television. She started singing, as a hobby, in 2000 at Old Town School of Folk Music of Chicago. There she took classes, sang in shows and piano bars and was in two bands. Currently she sings with the trio The Swingin’ Sisters. She recently joined the Chicago Cabaret Professionals, which opened a whole new world of singing.

Angelique’s passion began with dance, evolved into singing, spread to the theater (classical repertory to one-woman shows), broke into musicals, tested itself on the street, exposed itself to the camera, then returned to classrooms to entertain kids.
Her ambition is to share a line, a note, an image, a laugh, an emotion.
“Passion drives my boat and the encounters that make it glide along.”

Ma passion a commencé avec la danse, s’est glissée dans le chant, s’est répandue au théâtre -du répertoire classique au one woman show-, a déferlé en spectacle musical, va se tester à la rue, s’expose à la caméra, ou revient sur les bancs de l’école pour amuser les plus petits…
Elle envahit et n’a de cesse et c’est riche de cet ensemble…
…que j’aimerais partager aujourd’hui avec vous…un vers, une note, une image, un rire, une émotion….
C’est la passion qui mène ma barque et les rencontres qui la font glisser sur l’eau…

Tél : 06 83 19 32 54
Mail :  [email protected]
Site :  Site Angélique Dessaint
Face Book :  Face Book Angélique Dessaint

Jeanne Franks is a jazz vocalist and long-time on-air radio host at WDCB 90.9 FM, Chicagoland’s premier jazz station. She performs for corporate and private events. A Chicago native, she started piano lessons at age five after hearing jazz her father’s trio rehearsing in the living room and asking for a piano so she too could play! Jeanne played flute in school bands and later studied piano and voice at Elmhurst College and Benedictine University. For two decades, she was a soprano and soloist in the Wooten Choral Ensemble singing hymns, spirituals, traditional and contemporary gospel music. A graduate of Knox College, she earned an MBA from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. Jeanne fills in the spaces between singing and her radio show as a self-employed marketing, business development and interior design professional in the architecture and construction industry.

Deborah has loved everything French since living in Paris as a college student at the Sorbonne. A linguist by profession and teacher, Deborah loves traveling the world singing and using her French and Spanish skills. Deborah has been a featured performer in Chicago Cabaret Professionals’ Strut Your Stuff . She has also performed in the Merry Measures Holiday Show. Other vocal performances include Cabaret Connexion Concerts at the LakeHouse. In addition to her solo appearances, Deborah loves connecting with others in ensembles and choirs. In 2018, she was honored to sing at Carnegie Hall as part of an international choir performing Handel’s Messiah. She has participated in all the CPCx conferences to date.

Suzanna Griffith, known as the “Southern Belle-ter” because of her powerful belting voice, is also a classically-trained soprano born in North Carolina. She earned a B.A. in Theater from Wake Forest University. Suzanna is a member of the SAG/AFTRA, ASCAP and NATS. Suzanna studied with Elisabeth Howard, a workshop teacher at 2023 Cabaret Conference. Suzanna has played many musical theater roles including Guenevere, Adelaide, Hodel, Rosie, and Iolanthe. She has performed with various bands, from the Sunset Strip at The Whiskey, The Roxy to the Catalina Jazz Club. She is also a vocalist for a jazz and blues band with acclaimed musicians, including Chris Wilson and his fellow bandmates who have played for Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, and Bette Midler. As a philanthropist, Suzanna is the creator, producer, and headliner for special events benefiting Healing Arts Reaching Kids (HARK), a charitable organization at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles that provides music and art therapy classes to critically-ill children.
Suzanna serves as an Honorary Board Member and enjoys giving back to her charity of choice. Singer/Vocal Coach/Writer

Fernando has been a math teacher for 38 years, in Spain, Morocco, Italy, Belgium and USA. He started to take lyric singing classes in Rome and continued in Madrid and Brussels. While in Illinois as an exchange teacher at Waukegan High School, he joined the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus, Windy City Chorus, and SongShop. We are excited to encounter him again, this time in Paris!

Sophie studies with Maryline Rollet. Her goal for this conference is to exchange ideas with foreign professionals, to get their take on singing, and to improve my vocal technique.

Sophie étudie avec Maryline Rollet. Mon objectif est d’échanger avec des professionnels étrangers, d’avoir leur regard sur la chanson, d’améliorer ma technique vocale.

Cristina Marinescu joined Chicago’s cabaret and piano bar community a few years ago. However, music has always been an important part of her life. When she is not teaching Computer Science, Cristina dedicates herself to singing with joy and passion. Over the years, she has performed along some great Chicago pianists in open mics, group shows, or solo, and as a featured vocalist at several live music venues. Currently, Cristina is working on a new solo project entitled Lucky Me!

Actor, singer, dancer, Lexa Maxa started her career in solo shows, cabaret, and as a show opener singer-songwriter. In New York, she has performed at the Metropolitan Room, Triad Theatre, The Bitter End, and the Schimmel Center opening for JoJo and Jesse McCartney. In the Midwest, Lexa has been part of the Broadway World Regional Award-winning production of Disenchanted! (Nicely Theatre); on stage as Selene in the moving drama Night Blooming at Detroit Repertory Theatre, and Elvira in the award-winning Blithe Spirit at Act Two Theatre in St. Peters, MO.
In addition to choreography, film acting, commercials and print campaigns, she enjoys playing the piano, songwriting, and traveling. Her first love will always be entertaining and performing—be it plays, musicals, solo music shows, dance, or film—aiming always to communicate and inspire through creative expression what words alone cannot express.

Lou Ella Rose is the lead singer and founder of Filipino folk-fusion band, SamaSama Project.
A musical theater actress for Repertory Philippines and Tanghalang Pilipino in Manila and Theaterworks in Singapore, she dabbled in Philippine Television acting in soap operas, the Knowledge Channel, and ABS-CBN’s Wansapantaym. If you lived in Manila in the early 2000s, you’ll recognize her from the popular Selecta Sundae “Jolex” and Lucky Me Spicy Hot Mami TV commercials.
Lou is a newscaster for Chicago Philippine Reports on Cable TV throughout Chicago and writes for Via Times News Magazine on happenings, celebrity features, Filipino culture, food, and travel. By day, she is an established IT Manager for Data Analytics at BCBS-IL
As an active community leader, Lou is an alumni and President Elect of Filipino Young Leaders Program (FYLPRO). She is passionate about sharing Filipino culture in the modern world and supports all outstanding Filipinos around the globe.

Sylvie Lucienne Rudolf was born in Lyon, France and raised in Montbéliard, Franche Comte. During her youth she sang folk music with friends and accompanied herself on the guitar. After law school and medical school, she moved with her American husband to the United States, where she practiced in the emergency departments of hospitals in New Hampshire and Vermont.  Since her retirement, she has focused her time on music, recording last year a CD of French music titled “C’est Si Bon” and forming a jazz ensemble with friends.  She participates in musical venues in her community. She loves to sing French and jazz tunes.
This is her first time participating in a Cabaret Connexion Conference.

Dan Stetzel is a musical director, arranger, vocal instructor, vocal coach, and pianist. He has worked at many of the Equity theaters in Chicago, and across the United States. As a conductor, he has toured nationally; and continues to accompany many major Broadway auditions in Chicago. Dan has been affiliated with the Chicago Humanities Festival, curating and directing programs featuring Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Stephen Schwartz, John Bucchino, Craig Carnelia, Cy Coleman, Steven Lutvak, and a host of performers, lyricists, and composers. His work in the Chicago theater has been recognized by the Joseph Jefferson committee numerous times.

Lydia’s background is primarily in musical theater, although she also enjoys singing folk music, Tin Pan Alley songs and American standards, in additional to show tunes. Her favorite musical roles include Fraulein Schneider in Cabaret, Grandma Tzeitl in Fiddler on the Roof, Mr. Twimble/Wally Womper in How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying and Dot, a Goose, in Honk! This is her fifth Cabaret Connexion, so she is not a newcomer to cabaret anymore, but still a novice. Lydia also plays a major volunteer role managing design and communication tasks for Working In Concert.

CPCx 2019 Lydia Lapine Agile