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Interview: Christine Ebersole talks about her new album ‘After the Ball’

Tony-winning actress Christine Ebersole chatted about her new album “After the Ball,” which will be released on Friday, September 30.

Christine Ebersole
Christine Ebersole. Photo Credit: Kit Kittle
Christine Ebersole. Photo Credit: Kit Kittle

Two-time Tony Award-winning actress Christine Ebersole chatted about her new album “After the Ball,” which will be released on Friday, September 30, via Club44 Records.

It features American classics by composers and songwriters from Jerome Kern to Joni Mitchell in original arrangements by Broadway veteran Lawrence Yurman, the new recording finds Ebersole at the start of a brave new chapter, reflecting on life, love, and family now that the last of her three adopted children have flown the nest.

“After the Ball” is produced by Ebersole herself, in collaboration with Yurman. The album’s first single is “My Baby Just Cares for Me.”

On the idea for this album, Ebersole said, “The inspiration came from becoming an empty nester as I was nearing my dotage. The theme was my kids growing up and parents growing older. When the children grow up, we grow older. That’s really where the inspiration came from it.”

She noted that she enjoys all of the songs on this album because they “all resonate with the story.” “Every song has its own identity, and it is very specific in terms of the messages that each song brings,” she said.

Her album “After the Ball” is available for pre-order by clicking here. “I hope the fans get enjoyment out of this album, and I hope they have an experience listening to it,” she said.

She revealed that she will be performing at the Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts in Louisiana (near New Orleans) on October 15, and then she will be in Provincetown Art House on New Year’s Eve as part of the First Light Festival. Both of these shows will be with Billy Stritch.

A born singer and storyteller, Ebersole has made her mark on major roles in multiple genres. Best known for headlining and winning a string of top honors in such Broadway blockbusters as 42nd Street, Grey GardensCamelot, and War Paint.

She noted that War Paint was a “blast.” “It was so great working with Patti LuPone, she was amazing, and she is always keeping your game up,” she said with a sweet laugh. “There is no resting on your laurels. I really had a ball doing War Paint.”

Ebersole has also appeared in Candide at LA Opera; in concert at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center; in feature films from Amadeus to The Wolf of Wall Street; and on television including Gypsy, “Saturday Night Live,” and “Bob Hearts Abishola,” the hit sitcom in which she currently stars on CBS.

She has captivated audiences throughout her respected career in performing. Recognized with a string of honors that includes two Tony Awards, she has appeared in twenty Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, as well as gracing television series and specials, films, concerts, recordings, and opera.

It was for her “dual role of a lifetime” as Edith Beale and Little Edie Beale in Grey Gardens that Ebersole won her second Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical, as well as virtually every available Off-Broadway honor. She described her experience in Grey Gardens as “life-changing.”

Other memorable New York roles include her Tony-winning turn as Dorothy Brock in the hit revival of 42nd Street, her Tony-nominated portrayal of Elizabeth Arden opposite Patti LuPone in War Paint, her Tony- and Outer Critics Circle-nominated appearance in Dinner at Eight, her Obie-winning and Drama Desk-nominated appearance in Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads.

Her performance as Guinevere alongside Richard Harris and Richard Burton in Camelot, and her leading roles in Oklahoma!On the Twentieth Century, Steel Magnolias, The Best Man, and the revival of Noël Coward’s Blithe Spirit.

In 2018, she made her operatic debut under James Conlon’s leadership as the Old Lady in Francesca Zambello’s production of Candide at LA Opera.

Recently starring as Lucille Dolittle, a role based on Lucille Ball, in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Oscar-nominated Licorice Pizza, Ebersole has appeared in numerous feature films.

Her previous film credits include The Wolf of Wall StreetAmadeusBlack SheepDead AgainFolks!Ghost DadMy Girl 2Richie RichTootsieTrue Crime, and The Big Wedding, which features her account of her original song “Gently Down the Stream.

Since launching her TV career alongside Eddie Murphy as a regular cast member of “Saturday Night Live,” Ebersole has also accrued a long list of television credits.

Presently, she is starring in Chuck Lorre’s hit CBS sitcom “Bob Hearts Abishola,” she recently portrayed Estelle Schneider in the award-winning Netflix series “The Kominsky Method,” and has appeared on “American Horror Story,” “Blue Bloods,” “Madam Secretary,” “Murphy Brown,” “Pose,” “Search Party,” “The Colbert Report,” “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” “Will & Grace” and Gypsy, in which she played Tessie Tura to Bette Midler’s Mama Rose.

On being an actress and performer in the digital age, Ebersole said, “It just feels really big. Doesn’t it? Like a big universe.”

For young and aspiring artists and performers, she said, “You just need to keep at it. Perseverance is the key to longevity.”

On the title of the current chapter of her life, Ebersole said, “Everything is Coming up Roses.”

When asked what superpower she would have, if she were given the chance, she responded, “I think if you have the Lord in your heart, you have a superpower.” “For me, having family and friends is key,” she said.

Ebersole defined the word success simply as “family.” “Family is success for me,” she admitted.

To learn more about Christine Ebersole, check out her official website.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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