For intimate theatre, nightclub, private soirées and large-ensemble musical evenings, Claudia partners with some of Chicago's finest singers, pianists, accordionists, jazz combos and chamber ensembles to bring you a magical evening of theatre and song.



Vocal Canvas Concerts: illustrated concerts made to order

Hear a piece of artwork and see the song! Vocal Canvas Concerts bring together songs and projected images in live performance. A cello stirs the wind over Monet's garden, a Fauré and Beatles musical mash-up makes blackbirds soar out of their painterly frames, a musically-underscored poem glimpses inside the portrait of a woman.
We complement with songs the works of a museum exhibit. We collaborate with artists' guilds and studios to create new works. Or we can develop a show around a single theme, artist or period: "Dreams", "Life at Home", "Travel Abroad", "Paris Noir", "The Color Green"— the possibilities are endless.

Women of Paris: the great ladies of song
An homage to the 20th century women who brought Paris to the rest of the world with their songs, among them: Yvette Guilbert, Paulette Darty,Mistinguett, Josephine Baker, Bricktop, Lucienne Boyer, Juliette Gréco, Edith Piaf. Created with pianist/music director Bob Moreen. Performed in one-act or two. including Madame Arthur, Fascination, Mon homme, J'ai deux amours, Chanson des vieux amants, Parlez-moi d'amour, Padam padam. The ensemble can include piano, accordion and bass.

Paris in the Jazz Age
In this musical revue, Bob Moreen and Claudia Hommel celebrate the history of jazz in Paris from cakewalk to swing. ragtime, the Charleston, Josephine Baker, Ada "Bricktop" Smith, Mistinguett, Maurice Chevalier, Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Darius Milhaud, Francis Poulenc, Claude Debussy, Kurt Weill, and the "crazy years" between the two World Wars.. Devised originally for piano and 2 voices, we love to have local jazzers sit in.

Romance Language: French songs for lovers
Claudia Hommel brings together an exquisite ensemble of her favorite players to flirt, caress, love, lose, remember, and celebrate. So light a candle, pop a champagne cork, and nestle close to your amour.
Including Sous le ciel de Paris (Under Paris Skies), Moulin Rouge, Mon manège à moi, Mon amant de Saint Jean, Padam...padam, April in Paris, Cerisier Rose et Pommier Blanc (Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White) and Que reste-t-il de nos amours (I Wish You Love).
Enjoy Romance Language video excerpts at the Media menu.

Picasso and Matisse Go to the Music Hall
An illustrated cabaret concert, our repertoire can relate to many art exhibits of 19th and 20th century France. This example was commissioned by the Frick Art Museum of Pittsburgh to accompany French paintings on tour from the Kelingrove Galleries, Glasgow, and each song accompanied a projected image from the exhibit.

Souvenirs of Paris, 1950
The most widely-performed of Claudia's cabaret theatre programs, Souvenirs of Paris, 1950 introduces Marcelle, a Parisian cabaret owner who recounts through song and spoken word the events of her life in France during and after World War II. The cabaret features songs made famous by Edith Piaf, Juliette Gréco and Yves Montand and songs celebrating the Paree of American composers Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Vernon Duke. For piano and 2 voices.

That's What Makes Paris, Paree
is a romp for young audiences. Get ready to dance to Sur le pont d' Avignon, In the Park in Paree, Dans le jardin d'amour and Je suis swing!

A Workingperson's Cabaret
We tip our hat to Studs Terkel, whose interviews with workers opened our eyes to the nature of work and workers, on the job and off. (Studs tipped his hat to Claudia when he interviewed her in 1997 and waxed nostalgic about Paris and its songs.)

French Impressions
A rendez-vous for soprano and pianist draws on art songs of Fauré, Chabrier, Satie, Ibert, Christopher Berg's homage to Poulenc, and beyond.

Claudia is ready to customize shows to fit your theme. Recent show titles include "April in Paris", "Paris in the Spring", and "Postcards from a Trip Abroad" (to which we added songs in Spanish, Portuguese, German and Italian).

Four of Chicago's favorite cabaret singers bring their vast repertoires together to enchant new audiences with the best of the American and European songbooks. Debonair singer-pianist Bob Moreen, coquette Claudia Hommel, encyclopedic tenor John Eskola, sultry singer-pianist Elizabeth Doyle, purring KT McCammond as our "swing" with parody-master George Howe. With years of stagecraft and a sure way with an audience, Espresso is charming, disarming, witty, cosmopolitan and Chicago-style down-to-earth.

The Jazz Fauré Project
Claudia is joined by singer Sean Harris and jazz combo in this cabaret confection where French Impressionism meets American Jazz. A sure delight for pop, chamber music and jazz aficionados. Hear what happens when the 19th century mélodies of Gabriel Fauré start to "swing". Imagine jazz in Monet's garden and dancing at Renoir's picnic. Pianist and arranger Bobby Schiff and some of Chicago's finest sidemen reanimate the hit tunes, including Mai, Lydia, Nocturne, Les roses d'Ispahan, Ici-bas, Au bord de l'eau, Adieu, Après un rêve, Mandoline,and Spleen.

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Moulin Rouge Live!
with Tina Mangos' can-can dancers is a great crowd pleaser. From wedding to corporate event, wherever there's a dance floor we are ready to kick up our heels.

The Travel Abroad Trio is our newest project and brings Claudia together with singer Sean Harris (her partner on the Jazz Fauré Project) and singer-pianist-composer Elizabeth Doyle of Espresso. Take advantage of the trio's flair for languages and styles—French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, and even Chinese; Neapolitans, spirituals, pop songs, swing and jazz, opera arias, art songs and original songs. First commissioned by Imagine Foundation of Jacksonville, Illinois, the trio offers a residency for libraries, elementary schools, high schools, retirement centers; master classes for college students and adults, and in particular an encounter with visually-impaired youth for whom Sean (blind since youth) serves as inspiration.