About Me

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
A long-time Toronto-area Actor and Singer, Jeff Madden is now focusing on Teaching acting and singing in the GTA. Jeff starred as "Frankie Valli" in both the Toronto and Australian productions of JERSEY BOYS, winning the DORA award for outstanding performance in a musical by a male actor. Jeff is busy back at school, getting his MEd at U of T's OISE.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Follow Up

I must apologize for the lengthy four-week delay between posts. It seems that being a full-time Frankie Valli and a full-time Daddy Madden is leaving me plum tuckered out. (And from the deep South, apparently). I just don’t feel like writing very often when I’m that drained. You understand, right?

It’s not that there isn’t a lot to talk about - far from it – I could probably write three or four posts a week with all the things that are happening around JERSEY BOYS TORONTO and in my life. But, it’s just as well for you not to be inundated with the mostly trivial travails of my life.

So, here we go – The Follow Up.

1. Singing the National Anthems at the Raptors Game was pretty cool, if a bit underwhelming. As you all probably know by now, we weren’t aired on TV, which kinda defeated the whole purpose of it. However, you can now check us out at this link: ANTHEMS. Let me know what you think. I think we sounded pretty freakin' good.

2. I have decided not to Twitter-ize my life. I mean really, who has the time (or desire) to run to the computer every time they have a thought to share with a bunch of other technophiles vacantly staring at their computers when they should be doing something more productive. (Um, everyone on the planet, apparently.) Well, I don't; not now anyway. I will however, occasionally write a 'Tweet' or two on behalf of Dancap. So for those of you who are trying to ‘follow’ me – sorry. ‘Follow’ Dancap instead for all the latest on Jersey Boys. TWITTER. Or better yet, just read my blog.

3. Tis the season for Fundraisers. I will be performing at two fundraisers on behalf of two theatre companies that I believe in and respect very much. On April 20th, at the Bathurst Street Theatre in Toronto, I will be singing two songs at "Acting Up Stage"’s evening of Paul Simon music, called “The Sound Of Silence”. They specialize in contemporary musical theatre, and they like to do fundraisers where musical theatre artists sing new arrangements of Pop-Rock songs. Right up my alley. I’ll be among an awesome line-up of 10 theatre talents including Thom Allison, Blythe Wilson, and Michael Therriault. For more info and to buy tickets, check out their website at Acting Up Stage.

The other fundraiser is the following Monday April 27th at Georgian College Theatre in Barrie, called “The Stars Come Out”, on behalf of "Theatre By The Bay". They are a fantastic outdoor Shakespearian summer theatre festival run by a great friend of mine called Larissa Mair. Lots of top talent will be there including fiddler Ashley MacIssac and performers from most of the ‘Big Shows’ in Toronto. I’m going up to the event with a few of the Jersey Boys, and we’re singing a medley of “Jersey-esque” hits. I’ll probably also sing something from my CD, TAKING THE WHEEL, too. Should be a lot of fun. For more info and to buy tickets, check out their website at Theatre By The Bay.

4. And lastly, remember when I mentioned I was doing that radio interview where I had to pick my Top 5 Favorite Musical Theatre Songs? I wanted to thank those of you who added your own fav’s. Some awesome songs, to be sure, and some surprises too. Which is exactly what I tried to do with my personal list.

So, here’s my Top 12… You’ll have to check out the Radio program (date TBA) in April to learn which are the Top 5. In reverse-chronological order (he he), they are:

(song title – show it was from – composers)
The Beauty Is - The Light In The Piazza - Adam Guettel
Popular - Wicked - Stephen Schwartz
Moving Too Fast - The Last Five Years - Jason Robert Brown
What Is It About Her? - Wild Party - Andrew Lippa
Your Daddy's Son - Ragtime - Ahrens and Flaherty
La Vie Boheme - Rent - Jonathan Larson
How Glory Goes - Floyd Collins - Adam Guettel
The Riddle Song - Floyd Collins - Adam Guettel
Stars And The Moon - Songs For A New World - Jason Robert Brown
Bring Him Home - Les Miserables - Schonberg and Boublil
If Ever I Would Leave You – Camelot – Learner and Loewe
Maria – West Side Story – Bernstein and Sondheim

As always, I encourage your comments about these or any other topics. Just click on "Comments" below, type in your comment and your name (or do so anonymously) and hit publish. It's that easy. And, it's more fun for everybody.

Monday, March 2, 2009



Last week I met Toronto Raptor Jason Kapono after he saw JERSEY BOYS. This Sunday at 12noon EST, I’ll be seeing him again, this time on his turf.

I’ll be singing the National Anthems with seven of my favorite Jersey Boys at the Toronto Raptors basketball game! This is totally cool. As many of you know, I'm a huge sports fan, and so I’ve heard countless anthems sung at sporting events both live and on TV. Strangely, I always had a feeling - I just knew - that one day I’d be the one singing them.

And, now I will. We’ll be singing live in front of 20,000 fans 'a capella', higher than hell, with tight harmonies, as arranged by our Music Director Ron Melrose to sound like the Four Seasons. We have a rehearsal coming up this week to learn it.

Here’s the best part: The game – and the anthems! - will be televised live nationally on CBC (to maybe a quarter of a million people), this Sunday March 8. Check your local listings. If the broadcast starts at 12 noon EST, you’ll hear us live. If it starts at 12:30pm, you’ll hopefully hear us ‘taped’ very early on. Set your alarms, west-coasters!

Watch it!
Can’t watch it? Record it!
VCR still flashing 12:00? Get a digital PVR!
Don't know what a PVR is? Wait until it goes up on YouTube.
Please tell me you've heard of YouTube...

Do you Twitter? I might be doing a little Twitter-ing myself, on behalf of JERSEY BOYS. We’re having some talks this week to see how this might benefit selling the show. They think it might be interesting to let people know what’s going on in my/Frankie Valli’s daily life.

Should be cool. Hey, these new social networking sites are taking off, just look at Facebook. Actually, don't. You'll never have free time again.

Anyone read the National Post? Yours truly may very well be a guest columnist. Well, sort of.

In their Arts and Life section they have a feature called My Diary. Each week, they hook up with an artist who writes five short daily diaries to let the readers learn what it’s actually like to live the life of an artist. Since I have this blog, and am basically doing it anyway, it seems like a nice fit.

I’m really excited about this project. I believe the diaries will run in the Post starting April 27. I’ll keep you posted, as we get closer to the date.

Another interesting publicity outing I’ll be doing this week is a radio interview with Mark Andrew Lawrence for his weekend show, Front Row Centre on 103.9 Proud FM. Mark had been a big supporter of mine over the years and has featured songs from my CD "TAKING THE WHEEL" several times on his show.

This time, he’s going to interview the Toronto cast’s Four Seasons and get our Five Favorite Show Tunes. Should be fun and interesting. I'll let you know when the program will air.

I’ve been trying all week to pick my favorite five, but it’s actually been very difficult. I gave up on my ‘short’ list when it got to 20. I started again, and got it to 12 before getting stuck again. They are all so meaningful to me in different ways. The interview is tomorrow, so I better figure it our soon. I'll post them as soon as I'll figure it out.

1. Will you watch the Raptor's on Sunday?
2. So seriously, have you heard of Twitter? Are you signed up? Would you be interested in getting updates on a regular basis?
3. What are some of your favorite Show Tunes? Comment below!