Debbie recalled her early memories of Cara, adding, “She played Carnegie Hall when she was like 13. She’s a genius talent her whole life.”
“I just wanted more from her,” Allen went on. “I felt so hurt to know we lost her. I didn’t know she had been ill… We are planning a big documentary on ‘Fame’ and certainly she was going to be a part of that. But that hurt to lose her.”
Of Irene’s legacy, Debbie noted, “She’s given us so much to remember forever… She inspired millions of young people. She wasn’t just on camera, was writing music, she was creating. She had input in her life.”
In the spirit of the holidays, Allen also discussed her annual production of the “Hot Chocolate Nutcracker,” which she’s been doing for 12 years.
She shared, “It’s unique. It’s culturally diverse. It’s relevant to a whole ‘nother generation of young people. It’s got music that’s hip hop, Bollywood. It just goes to some new places.”
Debbie is motivated to keep going with the productions because of “these young people,” who “mean everything” to her.
As for what she hopes that people will take away after watching “Hot Chocolate Nutcracker,” Allen answered, “I hope people take away the joy of the arts and why we need it in our children’s lives.”
Debbie has definitely made a difference in the life of Melvin, who trained under her after he graduated college.
To buy tickets to “Hot Chocolate Nutcracker,” visit TheHotChocolateNutcracker.com!