Melanie Rice grew up in Hammonton, NJ. A small town girl with big dreams, Melanie began her musical journey at a young age joining the school band where she became proficient on saxophone and trombone. At fourteen, her musical aspirations evolved into singing with local bands. With an instrumental background, an innate talent for improvisational scatting and an admiration for such legends as Ella Fitzgerald and Barbara Streisand, she grew into the shoes of a contemporary/jazz vocalist with grace and ease. In addition to performing live, she continued her studies, earning a B.A. in music from Rowan College and the University of Delaware.
Poised for success, Melanie soon after conquered the lounges of several Atlantic City casinos including Harrah’s, Tropicana, Caesars, Trump Plaza and Trump Marina. Traveling west, she lit up the stages of Las Vegas’ Golden Nugget, and Bally’s. Over the years she continued to polish her act, garnering accolades and respect from her peers, her fans and the local media.
Graduating to the showrooms, she sang back up for Grover Washington, Jr., Joe Piscapo and James Darren. She also opened for headliners Smokey Robinson, Joan Rivers, David Brenner and Shecky Green.Atlantic City Magazine dubbed Melanie Rice “…one of the city’s hottest talents…on her way to the top…” Readers agreed, nominating her “Opening Act of The Year” in the magazine’s readers’ poll.
In 1995, Melanie expanded her musical horizons once more, opening her own entertainment agency, Melanie Rice Entertainment, Inc. Utilizing musical experience, business savvy and unsurpassed customer service, she provides casino, corporate and social clients with entertainment ranging from string ensembles to high energy dance bands to fully staged production shows & headline entertainers. In addition, she is the conductor and lead singer of “MRO” (The Melanie Rice Orchestra), one of the tri-states most popular dance bands. She also performs as a cabaret artist as well as with a traditional jazz ensemble.
When not performing, Melanie can often be found on the golf course. A gifted athlete, she won the touted ‘N.J. State Girls Golf Championship.’ She was also runner up in the ‘South Jersey Women’s Amateur Championship.’ She regularly participates in charity golf tournaments, enjoying the camaraderie of her fellow players and the united gesture of giving. A committed member of the community, Melanie serves on the board of directors for the South Jersey Aids Alliance and the Greater Atlantic City GLBT Alliance. She is also an active fundraiser for SJAA, The Alzheimer’s Association and The Hansen House Organization. A respected voice in the community, each year Melanie co-produces with Bob Fowler and Nina Soifer, a charity concert at Harrah’s Atlantic City called “Street Life—A Musical Collaboration to benefit Hansen House”. She is also the co-producer of the Annual Miss’d America Pageant at Historic Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.
In 2009, Melanie expanded her business ventures into the area of talent management, a totally natural transition for someone with Melanie’s years of experience & expertise on stage and off. She is currently mentoring and developing some brilliant young talent poised to step up to the “next level” in recording, theatre and film.
Melanie’s CD release of ‘He Loves, She Loves’, is a musical collaboration with longtime friend and Grammy nominated pianist George Mesterhazy. “The beauty of this CD is not so much in the finished product as it is in the artistic journey we took in creating it,” says Melanie. A sensual elixir for the heart, ‘He Loves, She Loves’, features jazz standards, Broadway classics and pop ballads performed with elegant simplicity and heartfelt expression. This inspiring and intimate recording is available through several major internet sites including iTunes, Amazon.com and CDbaby.com. ‘He Loves, She Loves’ can also be purchased by visiting www.melanierice.com.