Photo: Ms. Barbara Sussman
Jay-Alexander touring with Bette Midler
Wednesday, December 24, 2003
JOAN E. VADEBONCOEUR
Richard Jay-Alexander is resting comfortably at his Miami home.
The former Solvay resident isn’t in a hospital, nor has he been sick. He’s just recuperating from exhaustion due to his major stint staging the first concert tour of Bette Midler in many years.
Jay-Alexander says he and the singer-actress have “become wonderful friends and artistic sparring partners.”
The tour was launched in Chicago and has since stopped in Columbus, St. Louis, Milwaukee and Minneapolis. It is so elaborate that 15 semi trucks are used to transport sets and costumes.
He’s able to be in Miami for the holidays with his parents, Dulce and Frank Fernandez, because Midler is taking a week off. But she has asked him to stay through the New Year to work on special material for that holiday and to polish the rest.
The tour lands in New York the third week of January.
It is not the initial time Jay-Alexander has directed concerts for one of America’s divas. In September, 2000, the State University College at Oswego graduate staged Barbra Streisand’s farewell concerts, which culminated at Madison Square Garden.
In addition, he’s collaborated with Broadway diva Bernadette Peters in a couple of recordings.