SInging, Songwriting, live performance
Stephanie Renée considers music to be her first language. Her stints as front woman for various bands has drawn from a mix of influences in rock, soul, and jazz. But it is her foray into dance/house music that first sent her international, as the resident vocalist for opening of The Clinic dance club in Singapore. Stephanie has been most prolific in the house music genre as a collaborator with production company Steal Vybe, which has led to hit singles with additional producers and remixers like Marlon D, Joey Negro, Opolopo, Quentin Harris, Ezel and Frankie Feliciano.
Today, Stephanie has her sights set on rocking stages in South Africa, the UAE, Brazil and the UK, where her music has generated considerable buzz among club goers.
Acting, Dancing & singing - at the same damn time
After graduating from Penn, Stephanie sought to deepen her connection to the local Philadelphia arts scene by auditioning for the acclaimed productions of New Freedom Theatre, founded by the legendary John Allen. She secured roles in Black Nativity and the cabaret production Over 40, which went on to a successful 3-month stint at the Billie Holiday Theatre in Brooklyn NY.
Back in Philadelphia, she realized a childhood dream by joining the ensemble of SchoolHouse Rock Live with Society Hill Playhouse. Then, a vocalist friend encouraged her to audition for one of the adult roles available in the Rainbow Connection Festival at the Prince Music Theatre, under the direction of the late Ricardo Martin. Stephanie then became part of the active ensemble for the venue’s MainStage productions, performing in four more shows over the next three years, and serving as Choral Director for a subsequent season of the Rainbow Connection Festival.
As time and opportunity permit, Stephanie hopes to compose and produce an a cappella musical that’s been swirling in her spirit for years.
Voiceovers, on-air, podcaster
After joining the staff at Beach Advertising, Stephanie first began writing commercials for the agency’s client base and demoing the material during presentations. Soon, clients came to request Stephanie to record their spots for broadcast, which has grown to a portfolio of more than 400 ads, PSAs, narrations and training modules for businesses throughout the MidAtlantic and Northeast US. Stephanie now shares her skills with students in voiceover workshops she has conducted with Baker Sound Studios and Scribe Video Center.
After the unexpected passing of one of their on-air personalities, Stephanie was hired by WURD Radio (96.1 FM/900AM Philadelphia) as a host and eventually Program Director. During her time with the station, Stephanie became known as their in-house arts expert and developed a WURD Backstage video series interviewing influential cultural figures, including pianist Jason Moran, dancer/choreographer tWitch, and film visionary Ava DuVernay.
At the encouragement of her good friend J. Michael Harrison of WRTI-FM, in 2003 Stephanie launched Soul Sanctuary Radio on WQHS in the spirit of her nonprofit arts foundation. She turned the live show into a podcast in 2005, which has been syndicated on several internet radio stations and has run successfully ever since. To date, the podcast has reached just over 4.5M downloads.
Poetry, essays & blogs
In the world of creative writing, poetry was Stephanie’s first love, as a tool to get gold stars and a spot on her mother’s classroom bulletin board. After winning several school writing competitions, Stephanie turned her focus towards spoken word and writing poetry that was meant to be shared aloud with audiences. Her success led her to become the “Queen Bee” of Creator’s Child Productions, where she managed the early careers of nine other Philadelphia-based spoken word artists, developed a compilation album titled MOZAIK, and produced several theatrical productions based on her client’s lyrical abilities.
While on staff at WURD Radio, Stephanie began blogging about subjects explored on her show “The MOJO” and other current events. This practice led her to freelance writing for AARP’s SISTERS e-newsletter and frequent essay contributions to Medium.com. She is also well-versed in corporate communications, writing press releases and media alerts for some of the many events she produces and hosts.