In 1971, the songwriting team of Brickman and Newburg composed a song for a musical starring Gene Wilder based on a children’s book written by Roald Dahl. The song, “Pure Imagination”, written by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse, and sung by the title character in “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”, went on to become a classic that will always bring up images of a childhood fantasy world of Oompa Loompas and Everlasting Gobstoppers. It was a mainstay for Newley when he performed live as well as on his compilation albums. It is now also the inspiration for the new jewelry collection created by the talented singer and jewelry designer, Shana Farr, whose own rendition of Newley’s song, as well as “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, today at the historic Player’s Club in Gramercy Park, caused goosebumps as her voice filled the rooms of that 19th century building.
A classically trained singer, Farr has an impressive resume under her belt, including an homage to Julie Andrews that she performed at Feinstein’s, “Whistling Away The Dark”, a debut at the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, where she performed the role of Princess Margaret in “The Student Prince” and an upcoming performance this March 15th at The Metropolitan Room in the Flatiron district. Cabaret and musical theater are Farr’s forte, and she has racked up stellar reviews for her performances across the nation, so the Gramercy Park landmark Player’s Club was the ideal spot for the debut of her new line of sterling silver and gemstone jewelry. Founded by the Shakespearean actor, Edwin Booth (yes, THAT Booth’s brother) in 1888, The Player’s is today a members only social club and paean to all things theatrical.
Farr spent six years at the luxury jewelry house Harry Winston, eventually becoming the Global Director of Merchandise. The company is responsible for most of the ice that shimmers on the ears, throats, and wrists of A-list actresses on the red carpet each Oscar season, so Farr was immersed in the stratosphere of high end jewelry design during her tenure there. But one night she was at home and decided to order in Chinese food, which also coincided with Farr’s mulling finally branching out on her own to establish a jewelry line that would represent her philosophy of imagination, inspiration, and harmony and a supper club show she titled “Pure Imagination”. The fortune cookie she opened that night spoke of “doors opening”, which she took as a sign that her inspiration was guiding her in the right direction.
The signature piece of Farr’s “Pure Imagination” collection is a delicate sterling silver fortune cookie that opens to reveal a message that is either personally composed or chosen from one of the song lyrics provided. The collections are each whimsically named, like “Bouquet”, which features Farr’s elegant Chrysanthemum design of spinning flowers, the rings of which stack perfectly on the finger. The lockets, rings, pendants and bracelets are delicate and intricate, with unique designs that seem to take on the inner spirit of the wearer. In that sense, Farr has captured the essence of her signature tune and the lyrics that beckon one “to take a look and you’ll see into your imagination”.
All jewelry can be purchased at Shana Farr’s e-commerce site: www.shanafarrdesigns.com