I remember today’s Amsterdam Birthday Celebrant from when she was just a little girl and she used to perform in the child and chorus parts of some of her well-known Dad’s summer shows. She was cute as a button and you could tell she was Bert DeRose’s daughter because even back then she had great stage presence.
As she got older, her stage roles grew in depth and complexity and the quality of her performances grew with them. In addition to having a talented father as her personal acting coach, Michele’s mom Barbara was a musician and music instructor who instilled a love of music in her daughter. It was her parents training and guidance that helped her master the lead female roles in musicals like Mary Poppins, Gypsy, and Oliver during her four years at Amsterdam High School.
Those parental influences and stage experiences helped her realize at a young age that she wanted to participate in performing arts for the rest of her life. After graduating from SUNY Albany she’s been able to fulfill that goal. She met her husband, Brian MacShane, in college. His parents owned an oceanfront resort in the Virgin Islands. They helped Brian and Michele open a restaurant in Schenectady after they graduated from college and named it after her. They raised two children, a daughter Tanya and a son Justin. The family spent a lot of time helping the elder MacShanes operate the resort in the Virgin Islands, so in between running her own business, raising two children and lots of traveling back and forth to the resort, Michele was able to keep her hand in acting via regional theater, off Broadway productions and various television appearances. Then in 2015, she was cast in the role of school teacher Anna Rose, in a new television Western called “Big Sky…”
(These two other former Amsterdam residents were also born on July 19)
My complete birthday post for Michele MacShane will appear in the new second edition of A Year’s Worth of Amsterdam, NY Birthdays, which will be available before the 2016 Holiday season. I also distribute an Amsterdam, NY Birthday Blog Monthly Newsletter that includes the full birthday posts for three of the twenty-to-thirty people whose birthdays I recognize each month. Each newsletter also includes an Amsterdam Birthday Quiz that will test your knowledge and memory of people and events in your hometown.
The monthly newsletter is free. If you’d like to receive it, just make sure your name and e-mail address are included on this list.