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Concerts & Events’ Category

Sisters of Soul Review by Brian Hay

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The Sisters of Soul: Wind and Music at Kenwick Park Wednesday August 27, 2014 Maybe it was nature's way of saying summer's winding down and the great open air musical events should be taken advantage of. Who knows? Chilly temperatures didn't stop the Sisters of Soul from putting on warming show for the good sized crowd that turned out. Drummer Sue Webber and singer guitarist Fran Schweitzer along with keyboardist George Webber and singer/ guitarist George Ayers combined for an eclectic set that flowed easily from material by Norah Jones to work by Lennon and McCartney. Hedda Doyle, a regular member, came up for the last two songs and filled in a canvas showing the musical landscape their different voices cover effectively. Hedda's voice is robust and sonorous with suggestions of power to spare. She'd be perfect for impassioned and heartfelt ballads. Fran's is well suited to upbeat and playful material. Her performance ...

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It’s Festival Season in Sarnia…

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It’s Festival Season in...

Summer is indeed drawing to a close BUT there are still several great festivals to look forward to.  Then we move on to fall and winter fun.  Great thing about Sarnia... there is ALWAYS something fun going on!   - Aug 29 - ROCK IT UP 'SARNIA STYLE' @ Trinity Lounge - CLICK HERE for info - TICKETS ON SALE @ CHEEKY MONKEY ~ August 30 - FESTIVAL OF GOOD THINGS with Gord Downie & The Sadies headlining - CLICK HERE for info - Advance tickets on sale NOW @ Cheeky Monkey

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Diversion Entertainment: NEXT TO NORMAL – Review by...

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Diversion Entertainment: NEXT...

Diversion Entertainment at the Imperial Theatre: Next To Normal 0 runs August 7 - 9 & 14 - 16 Nightly at 7:30 pm Friday August 8, 2014 performance review by Brian Hay Henri Canino practically ran away with this show. More on that later. From the ground up Diversion Entertainment's production of 'Next To Normal' is a piece of music theatre that excels on all levels. The set, mostly conceived by Cian Poore, combined functionality and abstraction beautifully. Centring the staircase between two tiers provided four areas for activity. Having it run from a wide lower part to a narrow top is an idea that's so simple it can only be described as genius. The configuration formed an arrow leading the eye up and out while the exaggerated perspective that resulted enhanced the illusions of separation and distance. The device also "widened" the spaces between the four corners on both levels. Angling the outer ...

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August 1 2014 First Friday HUGE FUN

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August 1 2014 First Friday...

To say the August First Friday at Cheeky Monkey was eventful and memorable is an understatement! To kick the evening off, Chris Gormley of Toronto band Daylight For Deadeyes timed his arrival from Paddy Flaherty's perfectly.  Chris has been drumming as he walks in all the various cities they play, including his home town, to raise awareness and funds for Sick Kids Hospital.  Sarnia was no exception.  Wearing his trademark kilt and harnessed drum, Chris got here just before 7:00 pm when the  band  consisting of Mike Blackmore, Chris Molyneaux and Dan Martin was due to start inside.  Gathering a crowd of spectators who kindly donated in his can, Chris then came inside with his entourage to have some photos taken.  Instead of the normal "posed" pictures, Mike Blackmore invited Chris to play a song with the band.  What resulted was a killer jazzed up version of 'House of the Rising ...

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ArtWalk 2014 from the corner of Christina & Cromwell

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ArtWalk 2014 from the corner...

Sitting outside while selling deals at our sidewalk table during ArtWalk weekends makes me think of being at an outdoor cafe table on Paris street.  As you look around, you will see all kinds of interesting people. One of the most interesting parts of the weekend was the live music we had playing outside.  We were not intending on doing a stage of music outside the store since ArtWalk usually handles it, but thanks to the kind offer of sound man Ron Behro, he got our wheels turning.  We contacted the ArtWalk office and received permission to do an afternoon acoustic stage with Ron handling the sound with gear generously donated by John Tierney of Borderline. Not only are we happy we went ahead with the live music, but the bands, the surrounding vendors and of course crowds downtown for the 2 days were very pleased with what they heard. On Saturday, the ...

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June First Friday was Acoustic Buzz(ing)

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June First Friday was Acoustic...

The 3 piece band  called Acoustic Buzz made their debut on the night of the June 9, 2014 First Friday at Cheeky Monkey. The lead guitarist and singer, Kesenia Parent has performed here many times.  As a matter of fact, playing at Cheeky Monkey was one of her very first public performances.  From the start, we saw the talent she has and have enjoyed watching her develop and grow as a musician.  In fact, she is so good, she was accepted at Laurier University in their music program. Her band mate, Heather Brown is actually her cousin.  It was only recently they discovered each other musically.  Being related it is little wonder that they are able to harmonize so well.  Heather has performed at various venues like the Lawrence House "House Concerts'. Third member of the trio was Troy Draper.  His work on guitar rounded out their sound nicely giving it the fullness ...

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Theatre Sarnia’s Sound of Music – Reviewed by...

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Theatre Sarnia’s Sound...

The Sound of Music Theatre Sarnia May 2014: Directed by Richard Teskey Theatre Sarnia: The Sound of Music — Who Could Resist IT? Saturday May 3, 2014 by Brian Hay From the reaction of the near capacity crowd at the opening night of Theatre Sarnia's production of 'The Sound of Music', nobody. And who'd want to? The music Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein wrote for the book by Howard Lindsay and Russell Crouse that chronicled the story of the Trapp Family Singers is among the most infectious and enduring of the 20th Century. The story itself warms the heart. Theatre Sarnia had a tall order with this one though, and some "technical help" from theatre gremlins giving them an early halloween didn't make things any easier. More on that later … The first thing the company did that addressed the difference between their production and the film was following the book and playing the first scene ...

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Erika & Sara – The Real Deal Singing Duo

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Erika & Sara – The...

The lovely and talented singing duo of Erika and Sara made a return performance at the May 2, 2014 First Friday here at Cheeky Monkey. To say it is a joy and pleasure to host them is a big understatement.  Besides doing  a great job entertaining the audience with their renditions of popular songs ranging from Johnny Cash to Coldplay, these two young ladies have added an ever growing list of self penned songs to their playlist.  Besides writing their own music, they have added other dimensions to their performances such as more harmonies, harmonica and switching off on guitar playing. They have been performing here at Cheeky Monkey for the last several years. We have watched them develop in that time from being shy and unsure to now being comfortable and talkative with their legion of appreciative fans.   This is not to say they have no room to grow.  They ...

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INDIEFEST 2014 ANNOUNCMENTS…

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INDIEFEST 2014 ANNOUNCMENTS&...

        Indiefest announces “Battle of the Bands” series & “Youth Talent Showcase” Indiefest, the homegrown multi-date opportunity for new and emerging bands that first launched in 2013, is doing it again with a four-Saturday "Battle of the Bands" that begins May 24th with the final showdown of the winners of the three Battle of the Bands rounds on August 23. All events will take place at Sarnia's Stubborn Mule and while there is no entry for bands to compete in the "Battle," a top prize of $1,000 will go to the winning group. Indiefest will also be showcasing its second annual Youth Talent Showcase on August 23, an event that last year attracted contestants from as far as Barrie.                     The August 23rd event will begin at 2pm with the Youth Talent Showcase, followed by the final battle of the bands and ending with a performance by two popular Sarnia musical groups “Ironshirt” & “Wellabee” Other dates ...

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JOHN PILAT AT LAWRENCE HOUSE

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JOHN PILAT AT LAWRENCE HOUSE

The ticket said folk music of the 60's and 70's and the event certainly lived up to it's name. It was a trip back to the days of the Coffee House, featuring an intimate solo performance by an old soul in a young body. John Pilat, and his guitar, escorted the audience through a selection of both classic and somewhat obscure folk song by Simon and Garfunkel, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Gordon Lightfoot and others. He seemed to really grasp the essence of the songs and delivered them with a real earnest sentiment. With the exception of an original composition during the second set, the evening was a trip down memory lane for the audience. John is a very fine guitar player taking on some challenging pieces and he did not disappoint. A highlight came near the end of the night with Simon & Garfunkel's "The Boxer", a tricky piece but John was up to the task. The next ...

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