Beth Co-Hosts a Weekly Show “I AM U Radio” which is at the Core of a New Concept in Transformation Education Called the ‘I AM Group University’
Celebrating a dynamic 37 years of marriage marked by passion, entrepreneurial courage and magical musical collaborations, Beth Donnelly
Through their multi-faceted company Jeremiah Productions (www.
Since the release of their critically-acclaimed debut album That’s Amore a few years ago, Beth and Doug – who enjoy a busy slate of local performances every musical season – have performed various times in Europe, making a return visit to Italy, headlining shows in France and last year regaling Ireland for the first time. When they decided to record their new album My Heart Is For You, they knew exactly where to look for pieces that would perfectly complement the heartfelt title track they penned with their adult son Jeremiah.
Rather than start with a specific concept, they chose popular and well known operatic and classical pieces that they heard during their European travels – Italian songs (“O Mio Babbino Caro,” “’A Vucchella”), French tunes (“
While Beth and Doug recorded That’s Amore with The Sinfonia Concertante Orchestra, they and their main engineer Brian Rose opted this time for a more intimate approach, letting their vocals soar over basic instruments like guitar, piano, drums, bass, and mandolin…with Rose complimenting the core sound with orchestrations. Many of the titles may be unfamiliar to the average listener, but most of the melodies are well known through their use in television, film, commercials and crossover recordings.
“We weren’t aiming for any specific genre,” Beth says, “we simply wanted to do an album featuring some of our favorite classical tunes that people would recognize. The ones we chose for That’s Amore were wonderful, just slightly more virtuosic. We wanted to include songs on My Heart Is For You that would fit into the classical crossover genre and that would complement the original tune we wrote for each other.”
The track “My Heart Is For You” began with Beth singing the one Italian phrase that’s included in the song that she couldn’t get out of her mind. “It was crying out for music,” she says, “so we wrote the melody with that phrase first, which inspired the cadence of the piece and gave us the melody. We later set English words to it. Doug and I work together on all of the projects that encompass our careers. It’s quite a wonderful experience, but we wonder sometimes what it would be like if we were separated and not able to be together. What would that feel like? That’s what the song is about.”
As Doug and Beth sweetly sing these sentiments to each other on the recording, fans and students in Oregon are more than grateful for their extreme togetherness over the years. During the upcoming musical season in Portland, they will be performing twice at Tabor Space, a premiere community gathering spot.
On September 28, they will perform their high energy eclectic show“Gershwin, Gospel and Groove” featuring their 18-voice local concert choir The Glory Singers, for which Beth is principal soloist and Doug is the conductor. When the couple performs their concert dedicated mostly to the music of My Heart Is For You at the same venue November 15, they will be celebrating the release of their album with a multi-media presentation featuring projected images of the places and moments that inspired the songs (photography by David Papazian).
On the educational side, as Doug and Beth continue their thriving teaching practice (teaching everything from classical to musical theatre, pop and jazz), they recently created a new “vodcast” on their website called “5 Minute Master Class – for Singers & Speakers.” They invite visitors to their site to participate with questions that they will answer about life, singing, speaking, self-realization and other topics.
As part of Portland’s music season, Beth and Doug will once again be hosting in their expansive home studio a live workshop and master class called “Singing From Your Heartspace.” Explaining the curriculum, Beth says, “These workshops we started five years ago are an offshoot of our 20 years of teaching. We invite speakers to attend as well, because what we teach applies to anyone who wants to learn to communicate better. We found that in a group interactive setting, we could help students dismiss their stage fright, discover strategies to embrace their heartspace, and ultimately put themselves directly in the moment when they sing. In the masterclass that follows, the participants use our suggestions to create a more powerful and moving performance.”
Beth has extended her educational activities to a unique weekly blog talk radio show, “I AM U Radio” (www.blogtalkradio.com/
“I am always explaining transformational thought when I teach my students,” Beth says, “because most of the time people are dealing with some form of fear related to whether they’re good enough to sing, or hit a high note… or whatever. I like to inspire people to tell a better story than they came in with, and these discussions are a natural offshoot of that.”
Beth, Doug and Dagny are also three of the six partners in a powerful new educational business called the I AM Group University, which they feel will revolutionize the way people get their information about transformation. Tackling courses that include the Law of Attraction, and other mind, body and spirit transformational study, this on-line University will have a bookstore as well as classes, private coaching and online workshops.
“I know it seems like Doug and I are very stretched out in these endeavors, but we have so much fun performing and working with and nurturing people, and truly feel our purpose is to be uplifters of the human spirit,” says Beth.
Doug adds, “The closing track of our album My Heart Is For You is called “The Dream” and it features music by Brian Rose and lyrics by me and Beth that talk about transformation, so everything really connects beautifully for us. On future albums, we plan to write and record more original songs that touch on universal themes. It’s so gratifying to be able to share our gifts with people, and in turn we feel that the love and appreciation we receive from our fans and students are a great gift as well.”