Recent Articles in "South Florida's Entertainment News and Views", reprinted with thanks, below;
Katie King Reigns Supreme at Coral Springs Concert
by Phyllis Green - Theatre Columnist
I had a fantastic experience last Sunday; went to see crowd favorite, singer Katie King, and it was a crowning moment, fit for a king!
At the magnificent Coral Springs Center for the Arts, the stage was filled with some seventy or more musicians, neatly sectioned and arched in the customary concert setting appropriate for the warm welcome of the Maestro conducting his Sy Sugar Pops Symphony Orchestra. At 93 years young, Mr. Sugar has conducted this type of entertainment since his retirement from the music business in 1979. But do you ever really retire from a business that provides such joy and a feeling of self? Indeed, the love of this craft is so evident in the posture of the many former music teachers, name and military band musicians both classical and popular, all joining Mr. Sugar in providing seasonal concerts for the enjoyment of thousands of music lovers. Their devotion to this craft is exemplified in their on-stage discipline and focus, underscoring the fact that the music keeps them young.
After a rousing overture of Zampa by F. Herold, the opening medley glided through selections from George Gershwin, Jerome Kern, John Lennon, Harold Arlen, and a rhythmic Stephen Foster, all implemented by the wonderful Jazz Trombone Ensemble conducted by arranger and performer T. Atkinson. Featuring lead lyrical trombone player Art Sares and composed of eight trombone artists with backgrounds stemming from the finest conservatories, music schools, philharmonics, symphonies, and the biggest show business and society orchestras in the world, all were gleaming, glossing, and caressing the notes to the delight of the appreciative audience—a perfect prelude to the introduction by Master of Ceremonies, the warm and affable Jordan Childs as he proudly presented the talented songstress Miss Katie King.
The exquisite Ms. King burst upon the stage to the exciting rhythms and sounds arranged by Sid Engel of Phoenix, LA, and Las Vegas, and led by assistant Conductor, Peter Fuchs. Beautifully dressed in bronze and black shimmering St. John, this auburn haired beauty rocked the house with an exhilarating “Before the Parade” and beamingly segued to Kander and Ebb's “All That Jazz” and “Razzle Dazzle,” the two safe-havens from Chicago.
Possessed of the most melodious yet agile vocal ability, she made these songs a study on vocal prowess, rather than the little song and dance routines they've come to be. King reigned supreme as she took the audience “across the pond” to her English heritage where she paid tribute to her countrywoman Shirley Bassey, making the signature “This is My Life” her own personal drama with rich flourishes and delicate finesse. To close this set, she marched the great big band to “Alexander's Ragtime Band,” and an impeccable West Side Story leaving everyone wanting more! With the orchestral rendition of Richard Rogers' ever-so-popular “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue” rounding out the first act, the lobby was a buzz about this rich concert and the gorgeous singer, Katie King.
At the onset of the second act came back-to-back treats of Leroy Anderson's “Belle of the Ball,” with Sy Sugar conducting, and a medley of Tommy Dorsey favorites performed by the incredible Jazz Trombone Ensemble. The guest star vocalist, Katie King, re-appeared as a vision in a smoky black glittering chiffon ball gown complimenting her statuesque persona, and getting right back to business with a tribute to the legendary Judy Garland. This magnificent set was highlighted by a stirring rendition of “Jerusalem of Gold,” followed by the introspective “I Am What I Am” and “My Way.”
It is with heartfelt respect and admiration that makes it so pleasurable to watch Katie King as she soars to the heights in her music as well as her career. The music has been in her since childhood, from the top of her voluminous red (ish) hair to her Stuart Weitzman shoes, to that gyrating left hand pulsing the beat of her songs. The beat goes on and on and on and on. There isn't any song she doesn't know and any note she doesn't sing. With handsome husband and manager, Frank Santoro, a prince of a man, Katie has all the attributes and talent to go the distance, and we are the lucky ones to be part of King's Court!
There is still time to see this wonderful concert at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts on January 23 and 30. For tickets, call the box office at 954-344-5990.
News article about Katie and the March 25th 2004 Coral Springs event:
On March 25, 2004 at 8pm, Jordan Childs Entertainment will present international superstar Katie King for one performance only at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts. Sid Engel, formerly Danny-Thomas' conductor, will lead his 17-piece orchestra as they, along with Katie, bring a night of unforgettable music to South Florida. Comedy star Dick Lord will open the show.
Katie King originally hails from Chesterfield in the UK and has been wowing audiences and critics world-wide, with her unique vocal style and range. She professionally honed her art growing up in the big bands, per-forming Broadway, jazz and standards, and also Top 40s/pop. Her mother's musical influence was imparted to Katie at a very early age-in fact on her mother's knee; no lullabies for Katie, rather jigs and reels from her mother's native Ireland. She knew where the beat was very early on. The radio constantly being played in her home was an opening of her ears and mind. Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, amongst many other fantastic singers, formulated her appreciation for music.
So this begs the question, from where did Katie get the big voice? How about the church choir under the beady eyes of the nuns? In fact, Katie feels that the reason she got through school was because of the school choir. All she wanted to do was sing. She was the soloist for three years in the City of Derby School Choir, quite an achievement at the age of 11.
Katie's mother had ideas of her little girl growing up to be an opera singer, however Katie had her own thoughts on that subject. Her mom gave Katie the money to take singing lessons with the church choir master, and that money found its way to pay the door entrance to the local jazz club, where the under-age Katie discovered her true musical love.
Ms. King moved to London, where there was great opportunity to hear world-class jazz. The very first audition she tried out for was as a principal in a cruise ship show, and she landed the job, out of 100 girls, and with no previous professional experience. This job started her on the path that she has been following ever since. Since undertaking her musical path in life, Katie has had the pleasure of working with many well-known stars, namely Julio Iglesias, Diana Ross, Dionne Warwick. Katie has performed countless times on TV and radio, and has made personal performances for many of the Royal families of Europe and other countries around the world.
Katie has also worked in many different genres of the entertainment world, here in the United States. Her credits range from television commercials, convention and stage revues, Broadway musicals, and she has performed her one-woman show in many of the major cities in the U.S. including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh,. Chicago, and Atlanta. Katie has performed many times in the Catskill Mountains and has appeared at all the majorvenues in the state of Florida. She also has worked extensively on several cruise ship lines in Europe,. including Holland America, Cunard, Royal Viking Lines, cruising to the Baltic, North and Mediterranean Seas, and also the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans'.
Ms. King possesses a rich voice of remarkable range and dynamics, not just a wispy balladeer, because when she is ready, Katie comes straight at you with both barrels blazing. She knows how to dig deep and grab the true meaning of a lyric,-with a powerful emotional delivery. The music Katie loves to perform crosses many musical borders, with a combination of `20s through the `SOs, Dixieland, the music of Broadway, Big Band and, contemporary standards. When you see and hear Katie, you will truly know why music is her home.