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  1. Michael Gelman and family

  2. Michael Gelman and family

  3. Actors Marc De La Concha and Rori Nogee in a scene from Vital Theatre Company's Production of Pinkalicious, The Musical.

  4. Fairway produce aisle

  5. Buddy Valastro from TLC's Cake Boss.

  6. Beard Papa cream puffs

Family portrait

The Gelmans, Upper West Side

Written by
Rory Halperin

He may not be front and center with Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa, but to fans of morning talk show Live! with Regis and Kelly, executive producer Michael Gelman is quite the familiar face. Since 1987, he's sat at the foot of the stage bantering with the show's hosts—first Regis and Kathie Lee Gifford, now Regis and Kelly—about the day's news and upcoming celebrity guests. Michael, known to most as "Gelman,"and his wife, Laurie, a contributor to the parenting website BabyCenter and a television correspondent, are raising their daughters, Jamie and Misha, on the Upper West Side.

Have the girls spent a lot of time on the Live! set?
MG Well, Jamie and Misha both came on the show when they were born. And they usually dress up in costume for our annual Halloween show. They also come to the studio when their idols are on, whether it be the Jonas Brothers or...
LG Well, it started out with the Wiggles and then graduated to the High School Musical kids, and then it turned into the Jonas Brothers. They get a kick out of being able to meet them. It's a huge perk.

It seems like the vibe on set is very child-friendly.
MG Yes, the kids got comfortable being backstage at an early age. And Kelly has a daughter the same age as Jamie.
LG Kelly's door is always open. The kids can just run in and out.
MG And when we take the show on location, everyone brings their kids. It becomes a real family affair.

Michael, you've worked with Regis for years. You even babysat his kids! What's his relationship with your daughters like?
MG Regis is funny with kids. He treats them like adults.
LG Jamie was in the studio when she was three, and Regis turned to her and said, "Hey Jamie, how are you?!"in that high-energy staccato voice [Laughs].
MG He can be intimidating, but they get his sense of humor now that they're older. They give him a hard time sometimes, too!

Do you think Jamie and Misha will end up following you into show business?
MG Jamie's very creative. She composes songs on the piano and likes to write stories and illustrate them. She recently told me she wants to be an animator for Pixar.
LG As for Misha, we don't know yet.
MG Well, she told me yesterday that she wants to be an artist. They used to want to be babysitters or yoga teachers or cheerleaders. They're getting more thoughtful about their careers.

Our favorite...

"Italian eatery Celeste (502 Amsterdam Ave between 84th and 85th Sts, 212-874-4559) has fantastic spinach salad, pizza Margherita, and pasta with shrimp and cabbage. The owner has watched the kids grow up, so when we go there we feel like family."

"We saw a few years ago at Vital Children's Theatre (2162 Broadway at 76th St; 212-579-0528, and couldn't believe there was a children's theater of its caliber so close to our apartment. We've been regulars ever since."

Says Laurie, "Michael makes a better brunch than anyone in the city. We often go as a family to Fairway (2127 Broadway between 74th and 75th Sts; 212-595-1888, to buy groceries, and then watch him whip up anything from huevos rancheros to pancakes."

"Drinking hot chocolate is a Gelman family favorite, so on cold days we love to treat ourselves to a Starbucks (go to for locations) hot cocoa with extra whip!"

"Anything on the Food Network—we've found that they have great shows for the whole family. There's drama and excitement and, most important, no violence, cursing or nudity. Cake Boss is also a favorite, because who doesn't love Buddy?"

"We're really into Sirius/XM Radio in the car. The dial fluctuates between Radio Disney and '80s on 8."

"It's impossible to walk by Beard Papa's (2167 Broadway between 76th and 77th Sts; 212-799-3770, without going in for the cream puffs. They are heaven in a pastry!"

"We've clocked many hours at River Run Playground (83rd St at Riverside Dr). It has an amazing sandbox and a fountain for hot days."

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