Denise Bassen grew up in a large extended family in a Tudor house in Flushing, Queens.
Her mother, Georgette, was a beautiful, precociously accomplished soprano, who inherited the family business, Michel Cosmetics Inc., unexpectedly at the age of 18.
Tragically, Georgette died of breast cancer at the age of 42. Her 1936 Steinway grand has recently been rebuilt for a new generation in 2003.
Denise graduated from the Mannes College of Music, thanks to a full scholarship grant from the Helena Rubinstein Foundation to complete her senior year.
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