Check out this video footage of my August 13th Concert at 54 Below! I’m Saycon Sengbloh and I love to entertain, be it acting or singing please enjoy these clips. Scroll down for list of full band and singers below:
I’m Here [From the Color Purple]
Mama’s House / I Can’t Stand the Rain
Lead Vocals- Saycon Sengbloh
Piano- Andre “Chez” Lewis, Vocals- Stephanie Fischer, Vocals- Christin Amena
Drums- Alex Durant, Bass- Marcus Reddick, Guitar- David Rosenthal
I am at a loss for words, in this same year that I have lost my beloved physical grandmother, Miss Susie May Jackson, I just heard on the news that “Madiba”, my spiritual grandfather, Nelson Rolilahla Mandela. The news was not a complete shock due to his waning health but it is deeply saddening. A great deal of my life as a teenager was spent learning about Nelson Mandela, and having not known any grandfather, paternally or maternally, I secretly carried him in my heart as the grandfather I never knew. His passion and political career and life has served as an inspiration to me and countless others over the years. The true example of passion and unrelenting commitment, In fact, me and my cohorts had an obsessive focus on South Africa as kids studying Apartheid and Nelson Mandela and studying the great changes that took place in that country from the 70’s- late 80’s. As a theatre student and member of the Freddie Hendricks’ Youth Ensemble of Atlanta,also known as Y.E.A. I can still hear the voice of Michael “Sahr” Ngaujah yelling Amandla! Long before we starred together in Broadway’s Fela!, we, and many others, portrayed the young South African students who struggled in their fight against Apartheid in some of the earliest productions of “Soweto! Soweto! A Township Is Calling!” with Y.E.A.
Saycon Sengbloh and cast of Freddie Hendricks’s Youth Ensemble “Soweto! Soweto! A Township is Calling”
As a child of a Liberian father I saw very few African stars on television, but I saw Nelson Mandela walk from prison after 27 years of captivity, a star indeed. Every year just around the time for school Turner Broadcast the mini-series, Shaka Zulu about a great South African warrior king who reigned tall above tyranny from his own people and from foreigners alike. Mandela was a great warrior king and first black president of that nation. Next to my own Liberia, the South African story has fascinated me to no end! Seeing and learning about Nelson and Winnie Mandela helped with my own appreciation and pride in my African heritage, as children can be cruel I was often isolated by my name. My African pride was seeded more deeply as I watched in 1990 as apartheid was abolished much like the ending of segregation had occurred so many years before in the United States. It is with great pride that I honor the life of Madiba! Nelson Mandela!!! #Amandla
I had a ball in Los Angeles joining the wonderful touring cast of Fela reprising my role as Sandra Iszadore. Who knew I’d be bringing in the 2012 New Year right there in LA. Hopefully more of sunny LA will be in my future! It was a jam packed 2 weeks. One week of rehearsals and one week of performances, interviews, meetings, and kicking it in between! One of the interviews I did was for YoungHollywood.com the interview featured, Nandi Bhebhe, Jill Vallery, and myself talking and dancing with the host, Lesley Robbins. http://www.younghollywood.com/videos/lifestyle/lifestyle-events/dancing-with-the-cast-of-fela.html
I’m not sure how we found the time to squeeze this in after rehearsal and before the show that night, but we made it work LOL. It was amazing and a blessing to return to the show if only for a week! I will be sure to let you all know if I roll through the “shrine” on the tour again. The Ahmanson theater was huge and the sound was great, I was digging LA! While in LA I had so many great friends and family come through including Stu James, Lesly Donald, Marcus Mitchell, Shaun Earl, Lisa Thomas, Adisa Anderson, and the lovely Sakara Anderson, along with their sons, girlfriends, and family as well! Not to mention the talented Scott Nevins and friend, who seemed to have had a ball. I also met soul singer Ndambi who attended with her manager Monica Young. Sandra Izsadore also came with all sorts of celebrities. Check out the younghollywood interview by clicking the link below or click to download my track #2 Sorrow, Tears, and Blood recording:
Nneka in New York! the Nigerian & German songbird is here in the U.S. to promote her new album. I saw her across the room in a Whole foods store while have a tea with my friend Maia (aka Soulluvlai) often at a loss for words I couldn’t remember her name for the life of me but of course who can forget that face! A classic beauty without a shred of makeup. Boldly, and nosily, I approached her to ask if she was a Nigerian singer she said yes though I’m pretty sure she and her friend thought I was full of sh*t, LOL anyway we began to chat. I told her about my visit to Nigeria last spring. Nneka said she was in town to promote her new album and I was happy to tell her we shared a publicist when we were in Nigeria, Miss Bobby Taylor who did some amazing work during our time there. Nneka was kind and I was random, anyway, well done Nneka let’s do a duet one day let’s unite for Liberia and Nigeria ya digg?. Check out this video of Nneka making of her new album. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=pVKyP56PXLY
PS.-Shoutout to my Nigerian brothers and sisters struggling to pay for gasoline with oil prices surging. peace,
Hey I’m rocking the Fela hoodie to keep warm lol and next month for good reason! For folks in LA who heard the Fela soundtrack and want to see me on the tour here’s a treat. Come check me out guys! I’ll be in Fela in LA for 1 week only then heading back to New York to begin Hurt Village rehearsal! Hope to see you in LA at the Ahmanson Theater Click here for ticket info!
Saycon Sengbloh and Omotola Jalade at the Nigerian Reunion in Florida
Its been a busy few weeks we attended the annual Nigerian Reunion in Orlando, Florida. There I performed Upside Down from Grammy award nominated Original Cast Album of Fela and I also sang a new version of Sorrow, Tears, and Blood (Bamboosounds.net). My highschool friend and singer extraordinaire Clinton Harris stopped by! Between performances there was fun in the sun, crazy onstage antics, and lots of questions from the Nigerian youth about the Fela Broadway production. All I can say is see for yourself what a moving piece it is, as it continues to tour the U.S. The highlight of the evening was meeting Omotola Jalade!
Copy/paste the link right below to purchase “Upside Down” or other songs from the Fela! soundtrack on Itunes! http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/fela-original-broadway-cast/id374267023
Fela! is nominated for Best Musical Album! It took a while to find our section on the Grammy Website but hey all the way down I found section 80! Not sure if our category is televised but I plan to enjoy the show either way!I’m thrilled!
80. Best Musical Show Album
American Idiot (Featuring Green Day)Billie Joe Armstrong, producer (Green Day, composers; Billie Joe Armstrong, lyricist) (Original Broadway Cast With John Gallagher, Jr., Michael Esper & Others) [Reprise].
A Little Night Music Tommy Krasker, producer (Stephen Sondheim, composer; Stephen Sondheim, lyricist) (2009 Broadway Revival Cast With Catherine Zeta-Jones, Angela Lansbury & Others) [Nonesuch – PS Classics].
Promises, Promises David Caddick & David Lai, producers (Burt Bacharach, composer; Hal David, lyricist) (New Broadway Cast With Sean Hayes, Kristin Chenoweth & Others) [Masterworks Broadway].
Sondheim On Sondheim Philip Chaffin & Tommy Krasker, producers (Stephen Sondheim, composer; Stephen Sondheim, lyricist) (Original Broadway Cast With Barbara Cook , Vanessa Williams, Tom Wopat & Others) [PS Classics].
Click below to visit the official Grammy Site! http://www.grammy.com/
The Fela! Broadway experience found me in some of the most exciting situations, one of my favorites being the Tony Awards! We were nominated for 11 Tony awards! My mentor Freddie Hendricks, and my friends David Kote and Shilla Benning all found their way to NYC for the ceremony! I received well wishes from everyone and took lots of pictures in my dress by designer Edwing D’eangelo! Both my beau, Danny and I were dressed up and had a wonderful time!
I’m jumping for joy for what happened this year! One of my favorite singers in the world Patty Labelle joined the cast of Fela and there I was singing with Miss. Labelle every night! Everyone asks what was it like to work with Patty Labelle? She was a pleasure to work with! My favorite thing was seeing what shoes she’d wear to the theater everynight. I also made friends with her hair stylist and longtime friend Miss Norma. Norma is responsible for all those famous “Hair-doos” Patty is known for! I hope to keep in touch with Patty and her crew!