Sunday, June 22, 2008

Blown Away!

Blown Away!

My husband Greg and I went to three concerts this weekend. Yep, three. The great thing about these concerts is they were all in Fayette County and all were fantastic! Two showcased local talent, the third was a Kenny Rogers concert at the Fred in Peachtree City.

What an eclectic musical weekend we had!

First we heard the Southern Nights Chorale perform at the First Baptist Church in Peachtree City Friday night. Southern Nights is a precision a cappella men’s select chorus. It was formed in 2004 by J. D. Holmes. The group has performed at the Governor’s mansion, sung the National Anthem to kick off a Braves game at the Atlanta stadium, and sung at numerous church and civic events.

We were treated to favorite tunes to include Danny Boy, Ave Maria, You’ll Never Walk Alone, Georgia On My Mind and When the Saints Go Marchin’ In. Darlene Simpson Ware impressed the crowd when she sang Summertime and Don’t Rain on My Parade. Simpson Ware has sung in an assortment of productions with the Atlanta Opera Company’s Chorus and sung with Robert Goulet in South Pacific at the Fox.

Two fun songs brought laughter. Steve Morris took the Song “Little Ol’ Lady” and re-wrote the lyrics. The “new” song, Little Ol’ Lady from Peachtree City included a “little ol’ lady” in a “golf cart” zipping back and forth across the front of the pews! The Manly Men Extravaganza also had the audience laughing as the guys cut up with each other, showing off their “manliness”.

On Saturday we say two concerts that couldn’t have been more different! We went from one end of the musical spectrum to the other.

At 5 p.m. we were sitting in the pews of the Fayetteville First United Methodist Church. Titled “An Evening of Vocal Artistry Concert Directed by Rick Massengale” we weren’t entirely sure what to expect. We had both heard Rick playing piano and singing in “Those Two Guys” duo and the “Rick Massengale Quintet” so we were expecting something along those lines. Were we ever wrong! Mr. Massengale is an extremely talented tenor AND baritone.

We were awed by the phenomenal talents of the six artists who shared the stage. If we closed our eyes it would be easy to think we were on Broadway! The repertoire ranged from well-known popular tunes to those that possibly only opera buffs would recognize. Kim Bowers-Rheay, Brent Davis, Joan Aycock, Frank Green, Bill Killmeier and Rick Massengale chose their favorite songs for the event.

After shaking hands and talking with the artists for a few minutes, we zipped down to Peachtree City to see Kenny Rogers. We’ve both seen Rogers a number of times and he always has a good concert. However, I’d have to say that this may have been one of his best. His two twin four-year old sons and wife joined him on stage at one point. The two boys were obviously used to being on stage as they sang a song for the ooohing audience. Later Rogers called two fans up on stage and presented them with a framed arrangement of his platinum records. The pair had been to well over a thousand of his concerts!

If I’m ever treated to a Rogers concert again, I’m going to make sure my husband and I sit front and center stage. Rogers picked one lucky gentleman from the front and tossed money at him for every hit song he recognized. Of course, the guy recognized a lot of tunes!

The weekend of music was fantastic. It also highlighted how much hidden talent we have in Fayette County. I can’t help but wonder how many people I talk to each day have talents unknown to me.

- Janet McGregor Dunn
Fayette Front Page

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