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Beaver County native to perform Friday at Sewickley restaurant

Carla Bianco

Friday’s show is part of Playing for Change Day — a nonprofit organization that provides resources to musicians around the world.

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Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

Carla Bianco has starred on stages in New York and Los Angeles, and now, the Beaver County native will headline a performance Friday night in Sewickley.

The singer/songwriter will perform songs from her “All This Time” album from 9 to 11 p.m. Friday at Vivo Kitchen, 432 Beaver St., Sewickley, and also include a mix of cover songs.

Bianco has a spiritual connection to her music, she said.

“It's a way I feel close to a higher power,” said Bianco, of Moon.

“I'm using my talents and connecting with something of a higher power than me and inspires me. It feels compelling, like I have to do it.”

In the West Coast premier of the popular musical “Rent,” Bianco starred as Maureen Johnson, a lesbian performance artist and main character Mark Cohen's ex-girlfriend. She also portrayed Maureen on Broadway.

The role of Maureen was originated on Broadway by Idina Menzel.

In the West Coast cast, Bianco originally was slated to serve as understudy to the role, she said.

But on opening night, directors “called me in and said, ‘You have to go on tonight,” she said, adding she had no on-stage rehearsal time in the role.

“I basically winged it.”

Bianco later originated the role of Wendla Bergmann in “Spring Awakening” in the Off-Broadway production and then moved to Broadway in the role.

It was during this time Bianco's song “The Lover That You Are” made its way to No. 1 on Billboard's dance charts.

She returned home and aided in the creation of the Midland-based Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School.

“That gave me a chance of passing the dreams on,” Bianco said.

Through her whirlwind music career, though, Bianco said, she never fulfilled her childhood dream of recording an album.

“I had a hit song, made it to Broadway, but my dream since I was 4 was to have a record,” she said.

Her dream came true about a year ago, when her album was released.

Bianco said her purpose for singing is to inspire others.

“You want to be able to do what you love and have people who love what you're doing,” she said.

“You hope that maybe whatever you're doing that maybe it's something that will inspire others.

“When we have that faith and believe in something, beautiful things happen.”

Bobby Cherry is an associate editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-324-1408 or rcherry@tribweb.com.

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