More About Julia...in her own words
I have been blessed to spend my entire life singing and performing. I sang my first solo in 1st grade when I was only 6, and can’t remember ever being so excited to do anything else. It was then, I knew what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I love singing, and am so thankful God gave me this gift.
I grew up in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida where I went to Children’s theatre, dance lessons, modeling classes, and sang in the school and church choirs. I performed all over the city in talent contests, festivals, fairs, plays, and all sorts of other shows.
I was in my first national commercial when I was 8 yrs. old. It was a Kool- Aid commercial, and I don’t remember much except I broke out in a rash from the costume I was wearing, I was very itchy and could not stand still. The director was not thrilled. My next experience was a national radio spot with the NY Yankees for Frito- Lay. They had spring training in Ft. Lauderdale and Lou Pinella was my Dad in the commercial and several of the other players came down to be on air which was a lot of fun.
My family moved to Memphis, Tennessee for me to attend high school. I graduated from Germantown High School which has won numerous awards for its amazing Theatre Department. And may I say, it really was the best. I was Nannette in No, No Nanette, Rosa Bud in The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Patty in You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown, and the Baker's Wife in Into The Woods.
My first professional theatre work was at Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre in Winchester, VA. right after I graduated from H.S. I went on to Wagner College on Staten Island in New York to further study musical theatre. I worked at Hershey Park in Pennsylvania my first year out of college, then went on to perform at Opryland in Nashville. I auditioned for Tokyo Disneyland and performed there in the fall of ’93 and ended up staying in Japan for almost 5 years.
My time in Japan was probably my biggest growth period as far as my career and personal experiences. It was incredible there and that’s where I first recorded in a studio. Wow! What a thrill. I loved being in the studio. I sang on over 20 cd’s while I was in Japan- from jungle, techno, rap, reggae, classical to movie soundtracks. You name it, I sang it. I even got to record my own album- cover songs, of course. I toured with 2 of the most popular artists- Anri & trf all over the country and got to experience a taste of stardom. I even had my own band called "Odo" which means 'the king's way' and was signed with a record label there. We made some pretty incredible music- you can hear some of the clips on my site.
I realized after being in Japan for so many years that I might be missing out on a lot in my own country and missed my family. I knew it was time to come home.
My next adventure was actually a lifelong dream. When I was younger, I had said I wanted to sing duets with 3 of my favorite singers who are Kenny Loggins, Peabo Bryson, and Lee Greenwood. And the latter actually came true. Lee was doing a show in East Tennessee Portrait of America and I auditioned for him and was cast as a featured singer. It meant one of my dreams coming true and being closer to my family, which was so important to me. The show was fantastic. Singing 'God Bless the U.S.A.' night after night never once got tiring. I also got to travel with Lee to perform for our country's military several times which was an honor.
Next, I thought it was my turn to try New York City. What an experience! I do believe it’s true what they say…”If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere…” It is a tough city, but I was very blessed while living there and kept work as a singer. I worked for different music production companies singing for private parties and conventionsand I modeled for promotional trade shows. My big break came when I was hired to sing the Maybelline jingle- you know… “Maybe she’s born with it- maybe it’s Maybelline” and had a contract to record for 2 years. That’s my big claim to fame.
I also sang back up for a new artist from Sony records named Rhona Bennett (now withEn Vogue) who was produced by Rodney Jerkins. We traveled literally around the entire world twice. That was thrilling for me. We went from Los Angeles to Paris, Amsterdam, Germany, Italy, all over Europe, onto Australia and then to Japan. Ah… to be back in Japan- it was nice to visit again, but just to visit. We did some showcases back in NYC, and I was next booked to do a show in Vegas.
Then, sadly enough, September 11, 2001 shocked the world. I was actually flying from NYC to Vegas to start my next performing contract that sad day.
I ended up driving home to be with my family and was called to be a part of the newest ship in Royal Caribbean's fleet, ‘The Adventure of the Seas’. I flew to Turku, Finland where the ship was being built and we rehearsed for two weeks and then set sail across the Atlantic back to NYC. What a pleasure that was. I actually met my husband in all of this! The whole ship experience was like a paid vacation - we had a wonderful time. My contract was finished and it was time for my next big dream… Vegas.
I was cast to be ‘Marilyn’ in The Main Event - a Frank Sinatra tribute produced by Jeff Kutash at the Venetian Showroom in Las Vegas. Six months later, I moved to London, England to marry my real dream come true... Patrick- What bliss!
After getting married, we moved to Idaho Falls, Idaho where my husband was transferred for his job. Well, it was finally my turn to give back to the community. There were so many talented youth, but not a lot of opportunities for them- I created a not for profit (501c3) children's theatre- The Foundation for Performing Arts. What an amazing experience and learning opportunity. We produced shows such as Annie, Peter Pan, Aladdin, Babes In Toyland, The Sound of Music and much more. We had small singing groups who performed around town at different events, taught acting, singing and even brought in casting agents and managers to give seminars and workshops.
During all of these exciting times- we were blessed with a baby boy named Jack in December of '06- what a gift he is.
Soon after, we moved to Coastal Georgia where I stayed busy at work writing and directing shows for the community. Each summer, I would hold an intense 2 week musical theatre camp where I directed over 70 young people in a full stage production. I also directed one of the local private schools in their productions of Godspell and Annie.
In June 2010, we were thrilled to welcome our 2nd son, Danny. He is such a joy and his big brother, Jack is so proud.
Our latest move was to Nashville, Tennessee- you can't beat MUSIC CITY for the opportunity to work with incredibly talented people! I was so excited to work once again with some Opryland alumni and tour for several weeks with a wonderful cast and crew of unbelievable talent in American Big Band:Home for the Holidays.
In June 2014, we welcomed our exciting surprise, Spencer! Our 3rd (and final) boy! He has completed our family and we couldn't be happier!
I was blessed in the fall of 2015 to have the chance to perform onstage with my two oldest boys in a famous Tennessee folklore about the Bell Witch in Adams, TN called Spirit. How amazing to play their mother in this exciting tale- looking forward to more time on stage with these talented boys!
Along with writing and directing my own shows and working with young people, I directed a talent showcase at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles. Plus, I continue to sing and record as often as possible. I love working with young talent who are excited to learn about where the industry can possibly take them and coach them to success.