Closer To Broadway 

Eliot and I are pleased to announce that Hazel, the Broadway Bound musical we are involved  in, is having a stage reading at Molloy College, Rockville Centre, Long Island, January 27th and 28th, 8PM.  

We are very excited to see some of the script rewrites and changes in stage settings. This is going to be great. Hazel is wonderful and congrats to the entire staff.

Join us. 

Hazel Tov 

Our baby is being born tonight. Eliot bought me flowers and poured himself a drink. We are so proud of the entire Hazel team. We will see you Monday in Chicago. Hazel Tov !!!!!!


Ron Abel and Chuck Steffan, the creators

‘Hazel,’ a musical made for a maid, hopes to sweep families off their feet – Chicago Tribune Click here for story.

Zaha Hadid

Photo by Eliot Hess

Miami mourns the loss of Zaha Hadid, one of the most brilliant architects in the world. Eliot took this photo as the sun set tonight near her latest Miami project, 1000 Museum. Click here for Miami Herald story.

Hazel, A Musical Maid In America 

It’s not often that you get to see the makings of a Broadway Show. I thought I would share this video of Hazel, a musical maid in America, because it shows the humble beginnings of what could possibly be a Tony award winner. Eliot and I are involved in the musical. The video is an interview with the creators. The show is based on the character from the Saturday Evening Post comic strip, and the 1960’s TV comedy series starring Shirley Booth. 

Hazel is debuting out-of-town at the The Drury Lane Theatre in Oakbrook, IL. on April 6, 2016. Next stop Broadway. 

The New York Times mentioned Hazel yesterday in an article that talked about how Chicago is becoming a sophisticated show-going town before Broadway. See it here. 

Our good friends Ron Abel, composer and musical arranger and Chuck Steffan, lyricist, are the original creators of the show. Actress Klea Blackhurst is Hazel. The story was written by Lissa Levin and Joshua Bergasse, well known for his work on NBC’s SMASH, will direct and choreograph. He also was the recipient of a 2015 Tony nomination for Best Choreography for his Broadway debut in ON THE TOWN.

This video could be the start of something big. 



Hazel Is Going To Chicago

This is the musical we are involved in. We were sworn to secrecy until the media announced that Hazel, the musical, will  open next March 31th at the Drury Lane Theater in Oakbrook, IL. Both Chicago newspapers ran the story today. Official opening is April 6th. We are thrilled for our friends Chuck Steffan, Ron Abel, Klea Blackhurst, and Lissa Levin. All this would not have been possible without the help of Lucie Arnaz Luckinbill. 


The Final Hazel Workshop 

It’s been a long time since I was personally involved in a theatrical production. I forgot what an emotional experience it can be. When I saw the camaraderie amongst the cast of Hazel, I knew these actors desperately wanted to work together for the Broadway production. It’s going to happen. 

Klea Blackhurst center, her sister and Peter Key, son of the creator of Hazel, Ted Key.

The Hazel workshop was directed by Lucie Arnaz and her husband, Larry Luckinbill. He had the role of Sgt. Kreppel.

 Lots of hugs and kisses at the end. 

Actress Michele Lee, showed up because she worked with so many in the cast.   

  Book writer Lissa Levin, her husband Dan Guntzelman and Eliot 

The Making Of A Broadway Show 

Eliot and I have been behind closed doors for the last two days with all of the folks involved in bringing Hazel to Broadway. Hazel is a musical about a fictional live-in maid named Hazel Burke and her employers, the Baxters. The TV series, of the same name, aired from September 28, 1961, to April 11, 1966. The TV show itself was based on the popular single-panel comic strip by cartoonist Ted Key, which appeared in the Saturday Evening Post.


Klea Blackhurst portrays Hazel. Klea is a Broadway actress and singer

 Shirley Booth was Hazel on TV.

Our friends, Ron Abel and Chuck Steffan, licensed the rights to Hazel from the Key family. Ron is the musical composer and arranger and Chuck is the lyricist.  Eliot with Ron and Chuck.

The book was written by Lissa Levin and the show was directed by Lucie Arnaz. Chet Walker was the choreographer.

We were told that we absolutely couldn’t take pictures during the workshop, so this is what I could sneak in.    

   Lucie Arnaz announcing the workshop       Adrienne Arsht sat right in front of me. She is an American philanthropist and business leader. She is widely recognized for her $30 million contribution to the City of Miami’s Performing Arts Center, now known as the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts.   One of four audiences.    


The insiders debriefed after two workshops. Hazel received standing ovations. Everyone was very encouraged. Fundraising starts and the marketing begins. 

I’m Taking A Commercial Break

I promise that I will return to what’s new in the world of technology tomorrow. I know that I have focused my attention on many of my Moroccan experiences and other recent activities.

I want to divert from the world of technology one more time so I can congratulate my good friends, Chuck Steffan and Ron Abel, on their upcoming Broadway Show, Hazel, a musical maid in America. We went to their reading today which received a roaring standing ovation from the Broadway community.

I think the reason that most people truly enjoyed the musical so much was because it took place in much simpler times. There was no internet, no cell calls, no apps, and no mobile devices to clutter our brains. It was a time when children used their imagination during playtime and mommies were just starting to understand the role of a wife who also wanted to be a working woman. It was magical to watch that period in life reappear.

There is no question in my mind that the Broadway audience is going to go wild for the star of the show, Klea Blackhurst. She has appeared in a number of Broadway shows, but the role of Hazel was made with her in mind. She will enthrall audiences year after year.

Ron wrote the music, Chuck wrote the lyrics, Lissa Levin, wrote the book, and Lucie Arnaz directed the reading. Lucie is in Pippin at the current time as well.

It takes a long time to bring a show to Broadway but count on me for house seats for when
Hazel does.

Chuck, Lucie and Ron