Grand Ole Opry Tribute Night a success in Glencoe Station
The Glencoe Station Hall has seen many fine performers grace its stage over the years but perhaps never as fine as last weekend over three nights as many of the county’s finest paid a wonderful tribute to the music of The Grand Ole Opry.
The cast of The Grand Ole Opry Tribute Night show
The organization for this show has been coming together for months now and all that work paid off in spades for the performers and the audience alike.
Organized, directed and produced by Lynn Chisholm, the show consisted of nearly forty or so members who took part either on stage or behind the scenes.
It was a glorious evening for country music fans who came from far and wide to hear some of The Opry’s greatest all-time hits.
The era of the show was expanded from the 1940’s through to the 1990’s and the audience appeared to enjoy very much the wide range of musical material that was offered.
Even Santa Claus made an appearance and he too was surprised to see so many people in Glencoe Station.
The House Band kept the show steady and on track throughout the evening. The band consisted of talented local musicians such as John Burke on acoustic guitar, Isabel MacEachern on back up and harmony vocals, Garett Beaton on drums, John R. Fontaine on electric guitar, Cecil MacQuarrie on bass, Kevin Levesconte on keyboards and fiddle, Ambrose Livingston on banjo, Keith MacNeil on mandolin and Wayne Quinn who came in from Sydney to lend some authentic Nashville steel guitar to the mix.
In addition to backing all the performers several band members also took on individual performers.
John Burke of Inverness opened the show with a strong rendition of Johnny Cash’s Big River which set the bar high for the remainder of the evening.
Ambrose Livingston played Grampa Jones. Other band members who also played the country legends included John R. Fontaine as George Jones, Kevin Levesconte as Floyd Cramer and Keith MacNeil as Clint Black.
The show also featured Carol Morris as Minnie Pearl who traded plenty of comic relief with fellow Port Hooder and program host Cecil MacDonald who played the role of Vince Gill.
There were so many highlights throughout the evening.
Andrea Currie was the spitting image of Crystal Gayle singing Don’t It Make Your Brown Eyes Blue.
Rory MacEachern shone as the outlaw Waylon Jennings playing I Don’t Think Hank Done it This Way.
Relative newcomer Nancy MacDougall of Port Hawkesbury showed that she has a great future on the stage as she played Patsy Cline performing Walkin’ After Midnight.
Hugh John Beaton did a great interpretation of John Allan Cameron, kilt and all, covering Banks of Sicily.
Ronelda Aylward was Emmylou Harris and sang Mama Never Did Say So To Daddy.
Margaree’s yodeling cowboy Bud Fraser was very convincing as Wilf Carter.
Archie Moran had the audience in stitches performing May The Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose in his role as Little Jimmy Dickens.
Bertha MacLean did an awesome job vocally playing Kitty Wells in her rendition of It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels.
Another highlight of the evening was the appearance of Edgar Cormier, Gerard Walker and Sandy Gillis (a.k.a. Boys in The Hood). They had plenty of fun in the role of The Soggy Bottom Boys singing the huge motion picture hit, Man of Constant Sorrow.
Hugh MacDonald of Mabou played Gordon Lightfoot and performed his signature hit Early Morning Rain.
Blaise Moran was Stonewall Jackson performing A Wound Time Can’t Erase and
Sandy Gillis was very believable in his impression of John Denver doing Grandma’s Feather Bed.
Darlene Ellis was Alison Krauss (In The Sweet Delta Dawn).
Jamie Fontaine did a great job as Conway Twitty on Hello Darlin’.
Dunks MacDonald did Hank Williams proud with Your Cheatin’ Heart.
Kelly MacDonald was Patti Loveless while Lynn Chisholm did a wonderful job playing Loretta Lynn singing Coal Miner’s Daughter before adding a duet number with Jamie Fontaine.
Fontaine was a busy man throughout the evening as well with sound and lighting duties.
The entire cast came to the stage for the finale of the gospel classic, Will The Circle Be Unbroken.
Friday night’s opening saw a very appreciative audience which rewarded the performers with a lengthy standing ovation.
Behind the scenes there was Iain Gillies (stage hand), Gena Deagle (costume hand), Isabel MacEachern (hair and makeup), Rose MacInnis (sewing), Cyril Chisholm (set design), Kinnon Leadbetter and Stephen MacMillan (assistant set design), Rachelle Beaton (programs) Theresa Moran (photographer) and Wade Alyward (videography).
If you missed the opportunity to get tickets this time around for the three sold out performances do not fret as there will be another opportunity to see the show in the summer of 2013.
The cast and crew presented Chisholm with flowers in appreciation for all her work. Chisholm noted that after expenses all proceeds from the show will be going to The Canadian Cancer Society.
“What a great group of people we had that came together for this. I just hope you enjoyed the show as much as we enjoyed putting it together and we hope you will enjoy the pub night to follow as much as you enjoyed the show,” Chisholm concluded prior to the intermission between the show and the pub night.
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