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Ann Hampton Callaway

Ann Hampton Callaway

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Chicago, Illinois, USA Profession: singer, songwriter, pianist, actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A highly regarded cabaret mainstay who made her Broadway debut in 1999 with "Swing!", statuesque brunette songstress Ann Hampton Callaway made the most of her three octave range without slipping into vocal theatrics or showiness. Sweetly husky-voiced, with an appreciation for standards that didn't deter her from performing original material, the talented jazz singer had a career marked equally by struggle and amazing good fortune. On her third day in New York, a 21-year-old Callaway landed her first job, making the most of her wedding singer background while in the audience at a piano bar. She stepped in and brought the crowd to its feet when the pianist on duty didn't know a request, the Dan Hill 1970s popular ballad and wedding standby "Sometimes When We Touch". Two years after this, the singer-songwriter-pianist recorded her debut album on Inner City Records, but was left in the lurch when the label folded before releasing the record. The performer stuck to it, and honed her craft in New York when in 1987 she met David Susskind. The famed producer seemed to hold the promise of a career jump-start, but tragically, he died suddenly not long after making this discovery.Her debut finally did reach the...

A highly regarded cabaret mainstay who made her Broadway debut in 1999 with "Swing!", statuesque brunette songstress Ann Hampton Callaway made the most of her three octave range without slipping into vocal theatrics or showiness. Sweetly husky-voiced, with an appreciation for standards that didn't deter her from performing original material, the talented jazz singer had a career marked equally by struggle and amazing good fortune. On her third day in New York, a 21-year-old Callaway landed her first job, making the most of her wedding singer background while in the audience at a piano bar. She stepped in and brought the crowd to its feet when the pianist on duty didn't know a request, the Dan Hill 1970s popular ballad and wedding standby "Sometimes When We Touch". Two years after this, the singer-songwriter-pianist recorded her debut album on Inner City Records, but was left in the lurch when the label folded before releasing the record. The performer stuck to it, and honed her craft in New York when in 1987 she met David Susskind. The famed producer seemed to hold the promise of a career jump-start, but tragically, he died suddenly not long after making this discovery.

Her debut finally did reach the masses in 1992, and the self-titled album featured the track "I Gaze Into Your Eyes", an unprecedented collaboration merging Callaway's melody with a newly discovered Cole Porter lyrics. Possessing a warmth and charm equal to her formidable talent, Callaway became a cabaret favorite, wowing audiences with her range and engaging them with her personality. While her success remained specialized and she hadn't become a household name, the singer was present in many an American home on a weekly basis for six seasons (1993-99) as the writer and performer of "The Nanny Named Fran", the memorable theme to the CBS sitcom "The Nanny". This wasn't Callaway's first entry into television, as she had also composed the theme to ABC's short-lived late-night series "Day's End" (1989). In 1995, Callaway joined with her sister, Broadway actress and singer Liz Callaway in the original musical "Sibling Revelry". Their Rainbow Room performance of this touching and funny show was released on CD the following year, and in 1998 they took the heartwarmer to London, opening the theater season at the famed Donmar Warehouse.

Through the years, Callaway's flawless performances had won her fans, with legends the likes of Tony Bennett and Liza Minnelli taking in several of her shows. Noted perfectionist Barbra Streisand not only performed Callaway's ballad "At the Same Time" on the successful 1997 album "Higher Ground", but when the diva married James Brolin in a most anticipated wedding, she performed for her new husband and select guests "I've Dreamed of You", with lyrics specially penned by Callaway for the occasion. Although the singer-songwriter has played extensively in nightclubs and has embarked on tours including a successful international jaunt in support of her album "For Ella With Love", in 1999 she conquered a new kind of stage: Broadway. She made her debut with a Tony-nominated turn in "Swing!", a jubilant song and dance look at the newly revived musical form. New to the acting and dancing end of stage work, Callaway proved a true professional, with note-perfect execution. Some of her own original songs and arrangements were featured in the show, which also called on her to do an entire three-act scene in scat. Lucky for Callaway and "Swing!", she had been taught the improvisational chatter at a young age by her father, CBS News correspondent and jazz enthusiast John Callaway. Her triumphant debut undoubtedly ensured Callaway a long and fruitful stage career that would match the success of her cabaret and recorded endeavors.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

4.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in Chicago, Illinois
:
Was singer with a band that performed at weddings
1979:
On September 13, her third night in New York, won a job at a piano bar after bringing the house down with an impromptu performance
1981:
Recorded album for Inner City Records that went unreleased when the label folded
1989:
Wrote the theme music for the short-lived daily late-night series "Day's End" (ABC)
1991:
Landed a recording contract
:
Was the first person granted permission by Cole Porter's estate to add music to one of the songwriter's found lyrics resulting in "I Gaze Into Your Eyes"
1992:
Released her eponymous debut album, featuring her "collaboration" with Porter
1993:
Performed her original composition "The Nanny Named Fran" as the theme to the CBS sitcom "The Nanny"
1995:
Wrote and performed with sister Liz Callaway the cabaret musical "Sibling Revelry"
1997:
Wrote the song "At the Same Time", featured on Barbra Streisand's chart-topping "Higher Ground" album
1998:
With sister Liz, performed "Sibling Revelry" at London's Donmar Warehouse
1998:
Streisand performed the Callaway-penned "I've Dreamed of You" at her wedding to James Brolin and subsequently included the track on her "A Love Like Ours" release
:
Toured internationally in support of her album "To Ella With Love"
1999:
Appeared as part of PBS' "Evening at Pops" special "Swingin' at the Pops", performing with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra
:
Made Broadway debut with a Tony-nominated featured role in "Swing!"
2000:
Took her tribute to Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Ella Fitzgerald on the road, playing in Philadelphia with Peter Nero and the Philadelphia Pops
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Notes

Ann Hampton Callaway on what the Broadway starring role in "Swing!" represents to her: [An] opportunity to serve the music, an opportunity to love people. Singing is communication on a sublime level. I'm a vessel. I'm a channel--if I can just stay out of the way. That's my prayer: 'Please let me be your instrument.'" --quoted in the ^New York Post, January 6, 2000.

"When I moved to New York in my twenties, I was five feet ten and had a very strong personality, so people thought of me as a Rosalind Russell type. I didn't really have any outlet to express who I am theatrically except cabaret. But now that I'm as old as my stage persona, I hope people will feel there's so much more I can do and grow into, given the chance." --Callaway quoted to Time Out New York, December 2-9, 1999.

Family close complete family listing

father:
John Callaway. Reporter, TV host. Was a CBS News correspondent and hosted "Chicago Tonight".
mother:
Shirley Callaway. Vocal coach.
sister:
Liz Callaway. Singer, actor. Born on April 13, 1961 acted on Broadway in "Cats"; has performed with sister in cabaret musical "Sibling Revelry"; married to actor-director Dan Foster.

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