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Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
  • Uptown Girls will give you ‘Something to Believe In’ at Smyrna Opera House

  • For those of you who have a habit of becoming lost in the imagery of a song, do yourself a favor before attending The Uptown Girls’ concert Friday night. Buy a Costco-sized case of breadcrumbs to get your Hansel and Gretel on, because they’re going to take you far away on a Broadway-styled journey that you’re sure to get lost on.


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  • For those of you who have a habit of becoming lost in the imagery of a song, do yourself a favor before attending The Uptown Girls’ concert Friday night. Buy a Costco-sized case of breadcrumbs to get your Hansel and Gretel on, because they’re going to take you far away on a Broadway-styled journey that you’re sure to get lost on.
    Their Broadway-styled concert, titled “Something to Believe In,” will be held at the Smyrna Opera House.
    Girl power
    The Uptown Girls — a four-piece all-girl choir based in Manhattan, N.Y. — will lure audiences to a  landscape shaped by tunes inspired by whimsical witches in “Defying Gravity” from “Wicked”; a mad scientist medley from “Jekyll & Hyde”; a motley crew aboard a cruise ship during the early 1900s with "Friendship" from “Anything Goes” and much more. In addition, the theatrical tunes also share a common thread: inspiration. 
    For Smyrna native Amanda Hudson Schulze, 30, it’s an exciting time and she’s looking forward to returning home for “Something to Believe in.” Schulze now lives in New Jersey.
    “We all love to sing Broadway music,” Schulze said.
    The show’s title is the namesake of a piece by Schulze and fellow Uptown singer Lisa Gwasda’s favorite composer Frank Wildhorn. And to sweeten the pot, the singer of “Something to Believe In” is one of the pair’s favorite singers: Linda Eder. The foursome will cap the night off with the tune.
    “I discovered Linda late in high school, before going off to college,” recalled Gwasda, 31, of New York. “After hearing her voice I decided to follow the path of becoming a singer.”
    More than music
    Gwasda, who founded The Uptown Girls in 2011, has a habit of engaging crowds with more than just music.
    “I like to entertain and talk to the audience,” Gwasda said. “I have a pretty powerful voice and hopefully that aides me in my communication.”
    Curious about the sort of topics she discusses in concert?
    “Everything from why I’d be singing a song and where I got the idea of the song from,” she said. “I share with them some insight of what’s going through my mind.”
    Lose yourself
    On stage, an out-of-body experience occurs with The Uptown Girls because the music and lyrics are so captivating.
    “If you look back after a performance, you’re really lost in the moment as if you were in a bubble,” Gwasda said. “You’re sort of immersed in the piece or work and almost not exposed to anything beyond the music and lyrics, and the feeling beyond that moment.”
    And while Gwasda said Saturday will be “a night of uplifting music,” it might not keep her from showing a contradictory emotion she’s not foreign to. 
    Page 2 of 2 - “Sometimes I lose my self to the point where I’m the verge of tears.”
     

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