ESSES PRODUCTIONS is the joint effort and end product of the longstanding creative partnership between multi-Award winning Cabaret and Theatre star SAMANTHA SAMUELS and 2-time Emmy Award-winning Producer and Writer STEVEN SHORE.

With countless “SAM” concerts, recordings, and events throughout the country - and internationally - to its credits, the pairs’ current efforts have centered in ESSES’ Home Base of the San Francisco Bay Area.

While focusing on the distinctive art of cabaret and intimate theatre, their personal and corporate goals are aimed toward keeping the theatrical arts vital, relevant, and accessible while also promoting awareness of local artists and community participation.


This year’s productions include the introduction of Sherman Clay’s STEINWAY CABARET SERIES;  concerts and events featuring LAINIE KAZAN, ROSLYN KIND, FRANC D’AMBROSIO, NICK PALANCE (“The American Andrea Bocelli”), and ALAN THICKE;  the return of the Hit Musical Revue JUDY, JUDY, JUDY:  A Cabaret Tribute to the Songs of JUDY GARLAND;  the KABARET FOR KIDS debut at San Ramon Performing Arts’ Front Row Theater;  and the Summer Concert Series for the Rossmoor Special Events Department.

          Previous presentations include HAPPY HOLIDAYS...And All That Jazz! featuring NBC's America's Got Talent!'s SHAWN RYAN;  BENEDETTO/BLESSED: A Tribute to the Life and Music of Tony Bennett with RUSS LORENSON;  Cabaret Great WESLA WHITFIELD;  the theatrical debut of the Cabaret Revue LET’S FALL IN LOVE;  the Father’s Day Benefit Gala FABULOUS FATHERS;  and The World’s Longest-Running ’Phantom’ FRANC D’AMBROSIO in his one-man shows Franc D‘Ambrosio‘s BROADWAY and Franc D’Ambrosio’s HOLLYWOOD.

ESSES Productions covers a variety of styles and formats from BROADWAY AT THE MAJESTIC - the city of Benicia’s premier New Year’s Eve Celebration, and The Diablo Light Opera production of the Tony Award-nominated Broadway Musical A GRAND NIGHT FOR SINGINGto Events benefiting local heroes and charities like AN EVENING WITH MARTY PANZER - Award-winning Songwriter & Lyricist for Barry Manilow, Kenny Rogers, Julio Iglesias benefiting Foster A Dream, and A VALENTINE TRILOGY - a series of three different weekend performances benefiting American Heart Association featuring World Figure Skating Champions TAI BABILONIA & RANDY GARDNER in An Evening With Tai & Randy RODGERS & HAMMERSTEIN ...WITH HART!, with Les Miserables’   REECE HOLLAND;  and the Lesher Center debut of the Broadway play - LOVE LETTERS, directed by Scott Denison. 
          ESSES is proud to have presented other such artists as Steve Silvers’ BEACH BLANKET BABYLON’s KENNY MAZLOW; ‘The First Couple of San Francisco Cabaret’ MEG MACKAY & BILLY PHILADELPHIA;  Award-winning Cabaret & Theatre stars CRAIG JESSUP and BARRY LLOYD;  KTVU-TV’s GIMME THE MIKE! finalist;  and KTVU Morning News Co-Anchor MARK CURTIS, to name just a few.
ESSES productions and recordings have featured some of the finest musicians in the country including celebrated singer, pianist, and multi-Shellie Award winning performer JOE BARNETT;  Award-winning songwriter, musician, and ‘Vocal Coach to the Stars’ ERIC VETRO;  Conductor/Musical Director of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musicals HAIRSPRAY and THE WEDDING SINGER, and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND JIM VUKOVICH;  renowned jazz keyboardist JOHN R. BURR;  and international entertainer/musician JOHN ERRECA.

The family variety show - KABARET FOR KIDS - remains ESSES’ trademark production.  The CD recording of the songs included in the popular live show was released this year featuring 16 year-old singer/actress SOPHIE ODA, a Danville resident who is also featured on Disney Channel’s popular series – The Suite Life of Zach & Cody.  The show has become a staple at The Lesher Center for the Arts, having enjoyed sponsorship support from WALNUT CREEK HONDA*OAKLAND ACURA;  SLEEP TRAIN MATTRESS CENTERS;  SYLVAN LEARNING CENTERS; and RED WAGON CHILDREN’S CLOTHING.  Participating benefit organizations have included FOSTER A DREAM and SPECIAL OLYMPICS.

Together with Lisa Bowman’s LITTLE BIT PRODUCTIONS, their joint production of WE’LL TAKE MANHATTAN became the hit musical revue of Lafayette’s TOWN HALL THEATRE season where its initial 4-week run broke all box office records and its unprecedented return engagement also sold out with accompanying rave reviews, culminating in six Shellie Award nominations. 
          Its success was followed with the original production of ‘S WONDERFUL, which was met with the same enthusiastic response and was re-mounted the following year at The Lesher Center for the Arts. 
          Other Events produced under the ESSES/LITTLE BIT banner with sponsorship support of WALNUT CREEK HONDA*OAKLAND ACURA include their ‘Dean Goodman CHOICE AWARD’  winning CABARET IN CONCERT Series The THANKS FOR GIVING Gala Thanksgiving Concert benefiting The Contra Costa Food Bank;  and the Contra Costa Youth Council Fundraisers The JULY 3rd FOURTH OF JULY Gala and MULTI-MEDIA MUSICALS.


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