Molly Ringwald is getting back to her roots. Ringwald started performing with her pianist father’s jazz band when she was three. Molly Ringwald, star of Pretty in Pink and The Breakfast Club and other eighties movies, some of them deservedly cult favorites, is back to singing again and touring the country with her world class jazz trio. On October 8th, Molly will be gracing the stage at the Gerold Opera House in Weyauwega.
“I had quite the musical repertoire,” she recalls with a laugh. “It was pretty much traditional jazz, but there was some Bessie Smith and Helen Kane, the original Betty Boop.”
Talk with Ringwald for even a short amount of time and it’s clear her grasp of jazz and its history comes from a lifelong study of the form and the great singers who inspired her, including Smith, Ella Fitzgerald, Blossom Dearie and Susannah McCorkle.
“Blossom Dearie was the only one I got to see live,” Ringwald said. “Susannah’s recordings have really influenced me. I think she was really special in her gifts of interpretation and how much humanity she brought to the songs.”
However, the time wasn’t right until now. Paul Mazursky cast the then 13-year old in “Tempest,” and for the next few decades, her public focus was on acting, as she starred in such films as “Fresh Horses,” “Betsy’s Wedding,” “King Lear,” “The Pick-Up Artist,” and, of course, her trio of films with John Hughes, “Sixteen Candles,” “The Breakfast Club” and “Pretty In Pink.”
“Once I started to act I felt like I had to make that decision,” she said. “Plus, during the ‘80s, I didn’t think there was a place for the music that I was interested in, there was no Madeline Peyroux, Diana Krall, Norah Jones…I didn’t feel like anybody was going to listen to the kind of music that I wanted to sing. I thought, I’ll just keep singing with my dad and focus on my acting.”
Famed director John Hughes was often at the rudder of the ‘Brat Pack’ films, and he and Molly worked together well, according to some of her stories about the career she triumphed in. She still acts. Her focus now, though, is her life as a jazz singer. She’s cut a CD, ‘Except Sometimes.’
Kathy Fehl, of the Weyauwega Arts Organization, was listening to the radio in her car when the song, ‘I Get Along Without You Very Well’ …except sometimes…came on the radio. Kathy was struck by the singer and then surprised to learn that it was, in fact, Molly Ringwald.
One thing led to another, and now Molly Ringwald and her three piece band will be appearing at the Gerold Opera House on October 8th.
The Gerold Opera House, home to the Weyauwega Arts Organization (Wega Arts, as it’s usually referred to), was built in 1915. It has really great acoustics, and hearing a singer there is a treat…seating up to two hundred and fifty, or three twenty-five with the balcony, the cabaret arrangement makes an intimate house even more so. The Gerold also has a full bar and features Central Waters beer on tap.
After the concert Molly will sign CDs. ‘Except Sometimes,’ included the three musicians she will have with her at the Gerold Opera House: Peter Smith on piano, Clayton Cameron on drums, and Trevor Ware on bass. Each of these are world class jazz musicians.
Ian Teal is Executive Director of Wega Arts.
“We’re thrilled to bring this great cabaret talent to Weyauwega,” Teal said. “We’re about to be celebrating our tenth year here. We’re here to develop original material in theater, film and music, and to bring entertainment to the community. Bringing Molly Ringwald, actress and singer, here is a wonderful step in our story.”
Wega Art’s most recent project is the film ‘Heroes Rising.’ Seventeen kids learning camera, sound, shot design, make up as well as acting took part (very hands on) in the making of the film, a narrative short in which kids morph into super heroes to combat the heroin epidemic. Wega Arts also produced a documentary with kids (‘Getting to the Bottom of Lake Weyauwega’), three new musicals, twenty new one act plays, and this November will see their sixth annual Weyauwega International Film Festival.
Wega Arts owns and operates the Gerold Opera House, and has done and continues to do extensive restoration.
Other concerts at the Gerold have included Annie Hughes of Waupaca (recently at Carnegie Hall with the Cole Porter 125th Birthday celebration), and William Severin Thompson with the Swingtime Big Band. On December 17th, 2016, Steve March Torme will be performing.
Tickets for the Molly Ringwald event can be found on the Wega Arts website, wegaarts.org. The Gerold Opera House is at 136 East Main Street in Weyauwega. The house will open at 7 p.m., and the show will start at 8 p.m. Seating is reserved!
Get your tickets soon to see and hear the charismatic and gifted MOLLY RINGWALD!
Contact Wega Arts by email: email@example.com, phone: 920-867-4888.