The Pass

When Giving Up Is Not An Option

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“Denise Marsa is one of a kind. She’s a force of nature, a life-affirming singer, an overwhelmingly positive presence. Fuelled by her passion, she walks on stage with total confidence. Completely at ease in the spotlight, she delivers The Pass, her own story put in music.”
“The songs featured in the show are all Marsa’s, and they are more evocative than provocative. The evening proved educational as well as inspirational for this reviewer.”

“What was the spark to put together the vignettes and songs in The Pass that relate to your life as a singer and songwriter?”


Themes: Artistic Survival, Empowerment, Equality, Self-Acceptance, Self-Expression, Tenacity

THE PASS is an honest and intimate look at the ups and downs of a musician working in the music business through four decades. Unwilling to compromise her ideals and vision of success, singer-songwriter Denise Marsa tells her story through 18 vignettes with her original music intertwined. Travel with Denise as she starts her career towards the end of the 70’s through the highly volatile and emotional 80’s continuing on through the start of the tech driven 90’s into the 21st century.  From her start in her West Village studio apartment dating from 1810, to London to West Hollywood and back again, Denise shares her stories. Meet Denise the explorer, innovator, a woman drenched in tenacity; unwilling to play the game by anyone else’s rules but her own. Running time: 90 minutes with a 10 minute intermission.

“THE PASS is an honest and intimate look at the ups and downs of a musician working in the music business through four decades.”

Unwilling to compromise her ideals and vision of success, singer-songwriter Denise Marsa tells her story through 18 vignettes with her original music intertwined. Travel with Denise as she starts her career towards the end of the 70’s through the highly volatile and emotional 80’s continuing on through the start of the tech driven 90’s into the 21st century.  From her start in her West Village studio apartment dating from 1810, to London to West Hollywood and back again, Denise shares her stories. Meet Denise the explorer, innovator, a woman drenched in tenacity; unwilling to play the game by anyone else’s rules but her own. Running time: 90 minutes with a 10 minute intermission.

Editor’s Pick: This Week London 

“Her spoken anecdotes of her life in and out of show business are told with wit and honesty. Refreshingly (and rarely!) that honesty has charm and delicacy, whether she’s making you laugh or cry. ‘The Pass’ is one woman’s reflection of a life in the music business, told through her wonderful music with humour and wisdom. It makes a bloody good evening. Go see it!” – Jessica Sully, Indie Journalist/Author

“You were absolutely superb!” – Jessica Martin, London
“It was such a great show, I loved every minute of it! Denise’s story was very inspiring and heartwarming.” – Livia Papp, London
(5/5) “Authentic and inspiring. Thank you for your courage to share your powerful story.” – Plamena Todorova, London, Audience Club

What drew Marsa to music in the first place? “I was always musical,” she says. “My brother got a drum set for Christmas one year and I just started playing it. Same with the piano. I had both the instinct and the inclination. And my mother really pushed me. I think she had been overshadowed by her siblings growing up, so she put her energy into me. I was singing, taking acting classes and I landed my first professional gig in musical theater at age eight.” – West View News interview, Michael D. Minichiello

“Denise Marsa is one of my all-time favorite singer-songwriters. I first came across her over 20-years ago while living in West Hollywood, shortly before she released “Self”. Her music has stood the test of time well. Her album now resides on my MP3 player, and remains in regular rotation, being amongst the most frequently played. With the event of “The Pass”, I can now say she is also one of my favorite storytellers. Humorous and heartbreaking, the show reveals how she was physically, emotionally, and creatively choked — and how she overcame such suppression on all fronts, to live, love, create and sing in her own way and on her own terms. Like “Self” before it, “The Pass” is truly a trump. Bravo, Ms Marsa!” – Nicole Powers, Freelance Journalist, Suicide Girls

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