Happy Birthday, Dear...
Jerry, Graham and Winston
Happy Birthday to You.
If you happen to see these RG Staffers around,
give them expensive gifts. Especially Graham.
STUDENT SURVIVAL KIT
MAY 8TH - JUNE 8TH
AVAILABLE AT ALL RG LOCATIONS
WHILE SUPPLIES LAST.
MUST PRESENT YOUR NEW YORK
The weather is finally becoming warm.
This past month, I have officially committed to Hofstra University starting this fall where I will be studying TV production. Hofstra was not my first choice, but after visiting the campus and learning more about the school, I realized that it was so much better than I thought. I was also accepted into Boston University with a guaranteed admission to the school of communications next year. Boston was my first choice, but I changed my mind and went with Hofstra because the school offered me a large scholarship, and I could stay at home instead of paying to stay in a dorm. The commute is less than 30 minutes and I will be driving by then.
On April 27th, my friend Roxanna and I went to see the band R5 at the Gramercy Theatre. We had meet and greet tickets, which included early admission and pictures with the Band. I haven't seen them for over a year.
My senior year is almost over! I am finishing up exams and the last full day of classes is on June 12. The senior prom is on the 22nd and graduation is the 23rd. I am so excited that I am almost finished with high school.
Jeannie Ripley-Grier is the 17 year old daughter of RG owners Butch Grier & Patricia Ripley.
We did it! We made it through the long winter months. Now breathe in the sweet smell of SPRING. The sun sure does feel good!!!
And the flowers aren't the only thing blooming!
We are very excited to announce the addition of 24 NEW STUDIOS at 575 8th Avenue, (entrance at 305 West 38th Street), formerly DANY studios.
We will be renovating the 2nd and 3rd floors over the summer and plan to open in the Fall of 2017. There will be a mix of different sized studios, as well as a black box performance space!
This will be our largest expansion ever, and we hope it will enable us to further serve our vibrant community.
Here's a little sneak preview...
Yeah, we know. We've got a lot of work to do.
Follow us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and check out our upcoming newsletters for updates and photos of our progress.
RG Marketing Manager
One thing that you can count on here at Ripley-Grier is that eventually you're bound to run into Kurt Robinson. You'll recognize him by his friendly demeanor and his cool hair. Originally from the west coast, Kurt grew up in a family of performers and began gracing the stage at a very young age. And eventually, as one does, he moved to New York City where he was classically trained at the Manhattan School of Music. Since then he has applied his classical training with his love of Pop, Rock and Musical Theatre and the rest, as they say, is history.
Kurt has been a familiar face at RG since 2004, when he began creating a niche for himself, developing his own vocal technique and teaching Rock/Pop singers how to use their voices in a healthy and effective way.
One of his first professional gigs in New York was with the Broadway production of RENT. They were concerned because several of the lead performers were suffering from what they thought was a shared sickness. At the time, a few of Kurt's students were understudies in the show, and they were going on and performing very consistently and healthily. Of course the questions were: Why are our understudies singing better and more consistently than our leads? And, Who's teaching them?
One of his students recommended that they bring in Kurt as a Vocal Therapist. He came in to work with the cast and was able to determine immediately that the performers weren't sick at all. They had been straining their voices and singing ineffectively, and seven performers had developed nodes!
"Too often they wait to bring in vocal professionals until there's a problem and damage has been done. The vocal coach tends to be brought in as a last resort. And especially with young people" he says, "The demand on young singers has never been greater. The ranges just keep expanding. Everyone wants more vocal dynamics, more range, more excitement and more "reckless" singing, but nobody is really talking about how to do that." This is where Kurt comes in.
If you're ever fortunate enough to have Kurt as a teacher, you'll see that he runs his classes like a doctor's office. "I don't have like one special pill that I give to everyone. People learn in different ways, so I'm always trying to assess and change my approach based on the person that's in the room and tailor each lesson to meet their specific needs." He also stresses the importance of teaching from the students perspective! "It's a real careful balance of helping people understand their instrument and giving them the tools they need without overwhelming or intimidating them."
Over the years Kurt has shared his expertise with many students and industry professionals. He is also keeping the "family of performers" tradition alive and expanding his reach. He and his wife, Feli (who is also a very talented voice teacher) will join together this summer for an
8-week Master Workshop
Singing In The Mix
(Starts May 22nd), a group class that meets twice a week at Ripley-Grier. Students will learn "step by step" tools and techniques for maintaining a healthy and effective singing voice, and have the opportunity to perform every Friday.
He also teaches
F.V. Tune Ups
($25 per class),
a Drop-in Group Class that meets Wed. and Fri. 2-3pm
at RG), perfect for busy professional vocalists who just want to drop-in, vocalize, get some tips and have a little fun. And if that's not enough for you, he's also preparing to release 2 albums called
Pre & Post, which includes vocal warm-ups and warm-downs that people can access on their phone. Cool huh?
"Ripley-Grier has been an amazing environment for me because even from the very beginning they treated me like a professional and like family. They've been good to me throughout my career and make me feel like they're glad that I come to teach here. That's not something that's easy to find in New York."
Well, we think he's pretty awesome too, and we're proud to have him as part of the RIpley-Grier family.
To learn more about Kurt, Feli and their upcoming classes, visit their websites:
Finally Spring!! Hope you all had a wonderful Mother's Day.
Thursday 5/18 was beautiful; Butch and I went golfing. We went to a golf course restored from the damage of Superstorm Sandy.
I haven't played much this year but am a natural athlete and it comes back quickly. We try to play together on Thursdays.
He plays one other day weekly. It is a good supplemental fitness activity. We do a lot of walking and working on our skills during the game. Spring is the best fitness season!
Sunday we celebrated Mother's Day with our son Shayne and Grandkids (Ethan, Jackson, and Griffin) and our daughter, Jeannie. My Daughter-in-law, Heather, took her daughter, Brooklyn, on a surprise flight to Tulsa to celebrate Heather's mom's birthday and Mother's Day. What a great weekend it was!
Being a working mother has been the most challenging job I have every had. Butch and I tried for years to have a child of our own (Shayne is my stepson). We met in our mid-30's and got a late start on family building. First we were broke and by the time we were able to afford a child I was in my 40s and the odds for conceiving were low. We tried all the conception procedures, but to no avail. We decided to adopt. We began our search in China, but they were only allowing toddler's to be adopted by people our age. We wanted a newborn and we wanted a girl. After searching and contacting birth mothers for years, we had no results. We were about to give up. I was very dejected. But, on Saturday September 18, 1999 our lawyer called us at 7am and said there is a woman in Albany who has a daughter for you. She just gave birth and her original adoptive parents had backed out at the last minute. So at the age of 53, I became a mother. Whew! What a joy! We rushed up to Albany Medical Center and there she was, less than 24 hours old, our Jeannie. The next morning we took her home. 18 years later she will start college. She will have a wonderful life, surrounded by family, friends and loved ones.
On May 8th I taught my Feng Shui class for the Long Beach Continuing Education Program. I worked with students on three objectives, Creating wealth, finding and improving relationships, and improving health. I am looking forward to using my Feng Shui skills in designing our new location at 575 8th Avenue. See you there!
Better and Better, Patricia
Patricia Ripley is the Founder and CEO of Ripley-Grier Studios and a certified Feng Shui consultant.
is a class geared toward active older adults. Classes are small, 58 minutes long, with music. Students include Michael Apted, Bob Audy, Betty Buckley, Candice Bergen, Ali McGraw, Carly Simon & Butch Grier.
The price is $20 per class; 10, 20 or 30 class courses are available (one time intro class for $10).
For more info email me at
Hope to hear from you!
Patricia Ripley, Ripley-Grier Studios
Ripley-Grier is proud to team up with Retter Entertainment for this years DANCE PARADE. It Starts at 1:00pm (Broadway between 22nd & 23rd Streets) on May 20th.
The talented kids from Retter Entertainment will be dancing their way down Broadway on a really cool (RG sponsored) float.