Cole Porter tribute headed to DHS stage

Published 5:55 pm Friday, September 6, 2013

Shelton State’s Jazz Combo in partnership with Prentice Concert Chorale and friends present HOT ‘N COLE, Thursday, Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. at Demopolis High School in Demopolis. The music review concert is a tribute to the composer of the cleverest, funniest and most romantic songs ever written for the stage or silver screen, Cole Porter.

The Shelton State Jazz Combo and Prentice Concert Chorale concert is presented with guest vocalists, members of Shelton Singers and narrator, Steven Burch. Technical services for the evening’s production will be provided by students of Demopolis High School’s drama program, Tiger Drama Guild. Through instrumental, choral and solo music audience members will hear some of the best known standards of the first half of the 20th century in the program.

Unlike many of his contemporaries, Porter wrote both the music and lyrics for his songs. He brought such a unique style that his compositions became known as a genre of themselves as he continued to write from the 1920s to the 1950s. His hits that have now become part of America’s Songbook, were recorded by the greatest voices and performers of his time: Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Ella Fitzgerald and Judy Garland.

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Porter’s hits featured in the program include “You’re the Top,” “Let’s Do It,” “Begin the Beguine,” “Every Time We Say Goodbye,” “Anything Goes” and “Blow, Gabriel, Blow.” All of the evening’s solos and small group numbers were arranged by Daniel Western.

Daniel Western is Director of the Shelton State Jazz and Instrumental program. Mr. Western has toured nationally and internationally as an arranger and saxophone soloist with The Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards, with notable performances including the White House and multiple appearances on the nationally broadcasted Tom Joyner Morning Show. Western is active as the Director, composer/arranger, and baritone saxophonist for the jazz septet, The Birmingham Seven. Leslie Poss, is celebrating her eleventh anniversary as Musical Director of both Prentice Concert Chorale and Theatre Tuscaloosa. The 2013 Druid Arts Award, Theatre Artist recipient, has prepared choruses for Dave Brubeck, for the Alabama Symphony and Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestras, and for the 2011 world premier performance of composer Adolphus Hailstorks’ Dream. Child, Hope.

The evening’s narrator, providing personal and production highlights, is Steven Burch- director, of Tuscaloosa’s Shakespeare production group, Rude Mechanicals. Additionally, Steven Burch is Associate Professor of Theatre History at the University of Alabama.

Hot ‘n Cole Concert is sponsored by the Two Rivers Arts Council and Demopolis High School’s drama program, Tiger Arts Guild. The Two Rivers Arts Council was formed in the 1970’s to encourage and stimulate the practice and appreciation of the arts among the people living in Demopolis and Marengo County. The Council thrives to bring quality arts exhibits and performances to the community it serves and to assist and encourage local efforts which enable the community to create and make their own arts. The Tiger Arts Guild’s Fall 2013 production Treasure Island is a new take on the famous story by Robert Louis Stevenson. Directed by Jody Tartt, Treasure Island will run Nov 1st-3rd. Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. at Demopolis High School.

All seats are general admission. The price of admission is Pay What You Can. A donation of $10 per adult and $5 per student is suggested, however, any amount given will be accepted for admission.