Devyn Rush promises a fun night for the whole family at the Rrazz Room in New Hope

Executive Director of PhillyGayCalendar

Devyn Rush was born and raised in New Hope. Although still a young woman, she has been on stage in several musicals, been on American Idol, performed in cabaret shows, been a spokesperson for a national cause, and is a yoga instructor. I caught up with her one recent morning to talk about her life, work, and her homecoming to Bucks County.

Ralph Malachowski: "I hope it isn't too early for you. I am calling at 11:00 am New Hope time, and I understand that you now live in California. My next question is when did you first enjoy performing? Was it first for family and relatives, or in school?

Devyn Rush: "I am a morning person, so it's perfectly okay to phone me at 11:00 am your time. As for your question when did I first enjoy performing, I would have to say that I really can't remember when I didn't enjoy performing around the house. I was lucky to have parents who valued my point of view even as a child, so I felt really comfortable talking to them at an early age. This led to me feeling comfortable expressing myself. My parents were both musical. My mom is a voice teacher in New Hope. She used to sing in a wedding band. My dad is a chiropractor now, but when he was younger he used to be a musician. As a matter of fact, he had a singing telegram company. There were always musicians around, and I always felt happy to join in. the only part I found odd as a child was when people applauded. It made me feel really awkward!"

RM: "Now that's something one rarely hears about applause. Many performers love the applause. Something you said struck me, so I need to question you further about it. Your father owned and operated a singing telegram company? I thought that business ended years ago. Did he have many clients? Then how did he become a chiropractor? The two fields don't seem all that connected. I'm fascinated with the connection and would like to know more."

DR: "He did have a business delivering singing telegrams. I'm not kidding. He was really busy, too, like all the time. He even delivered a singing telegram once to Mick Jagger. While he was in that business, my dad had an accident lifting a typewriter and hurt his back. They said that he needed back surgery. Instead, my dad decided to try non-surgical means to find a cure, and that's when he discovered that chiropractic methods helped him. He felt better without surgery. It made him a believer, and that's why at age 37 he went to study the field."

RM: "I understand that you are an advocate of yoga. Do we see the same pattern here, a case of ‘like father, like daughter?' Both musicians, yet interested in science?"

DR: "I now feel that my dad and I are very similar in that regard. We had jam sessions, then talked about anatomy. Yes, indeed, both my dad and I are on the same wavelength there. I am a certified yoga instructor. I believe that yoga is a positive outlet for everyone. It can be a great force for helping people."

RM: "Since we are discussing helping our fellow men and women, could you say something about your being a spokesperson for an anti-bullying campaign?"

DR: "Oh, sure. The organization is called ‘Hey U.G.L.Y. (Unique.Gifted.Lovable.You.).' The ‘Hey' part is part of the name. Also, the words are separated by periods. The opposite of love is fear, and those who feel they must bully others may be afraid of giving and receiving love. I and others associated with this organization are invited to speak in schools where there may have been problems in the past. Middle school is often the time when most bullying issues arise, since the teen years are especially volatile times in a person's life. Kids are coming to grips with life. So we are there to talk, answer questions, and be a presence for the students."

RM: "Speaking of young people and the awkward teen years, how young were you when you first performed onstage? Was it when you created the role in ‘Spring Awakening' when you were only 15?"

DR: "Oh, no! I first appeared onstage at age 4 in ‘the Sound of Music.' My mom would make auditions a game, so we didn't have the stress associated with not being chosen for a role. My mom would say, ‘Well, we tried. Next!' Both my parents were great in that regard when they said to me whenever it becomes something I disliked, it was over. At age 8 I was actively auditioning for parts and I liked it. At age 16, I had the good fortune to appear at the Atlantic Theatre Company in ‘Spring Awakening.' I was involved for two years with the show, beginning at age 15. I never had the opportunity to go to Broadway. I don't feel angry that someone else did have that chance. It was just meant to be, just like my appearance on American Idol years later was meant to be."

RM: "Would you like to talk about your ‘American Idol' experience? It must have been stressful as well as joyful. Were you afraid that it might be the beginning of a great career or the highlight of a career that wouldn't go any farther?"

DR: "Wow! I'll say I had a lot of emotions about the whole process. From beginning to end, it was … how many months? I think I began the process in August. I then had to appear for a few more times before filming in December, I think. The show aired in January. All the while, I was sworn to secrecy, so no one knew, and no one could talk about it. No one knew when I would be eliminated. I have to add that it was a phenomenal opportunity and a great privilege to be on the show. I approached it as a great learning experience, no matter what happened."

RM: "Was that when you began studying yoga, to alleviate the stress? Is that why you moved to California?"

DR: "New York City is my favorite place in the world. I love it. But, I found I needed to move to California. I've been here now for a year-and-a-half. I moved here to be in my own comfort zone. Being true to myself is a theme I've had for my life, and that is why I moved. I felt I needed the new experience. While I've been here I've met the greatest group of friends who have both passion and purpose. I've been lucky to have avoided the stereotypical fake people. While I've been here, I've created a few projects for the future. I am a jazz singer with a trio and a quartet here. Jazz is my number one favorite musical genre. My show at the Rrazz Room will have a few characters I've created. I call them my musical alter egos. I also have a video project in the works, but I can't give you too many details about that right now."

RM: "Speaking of your show at the Rrazz Room on Sunday, March 22, what will it be like?"

DR: "My show will be a fun night. I asked my friend, comedian Joe Tex, to help me co-write it. It has really come together well. The show will be so much fun, appropriate for the whole family. Appearing in New Hope will be my homecoming, since I grew up there. I'll see old friends again. I'm really looking forward to it. I hope people will come and have a good time."

Devyn Rush will appear at the Rrazz Room in New Hope, PA, on Sunday, March 22, at 7 pm. Visit their website for tickets, For more information about "Hey U.G.L.Y. (Unique.Gifted.Lovable.You.)," visit


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