Band Appeal Review

Saturday 6th October 2018 saw the Junction Theatre open its doors for Band Appeal, a concert to raise funds and awareness for the OPA( Oesophageal Patients Association), and The Fiona Wade (Priya Sharma of Emmerdale) Appeal.

The organizer of the event put together a variety show the likes of which has not been seen on our TV screens for quite some time, very reminiscent of Sunday Night at the London Palladium. Although the concert featured six acts, the unique way in which it was presented gained audience appeal almost immediately. The female impersonator, Mr. Chris Field, doubled as the compere, which meant he had more than enough time to change into the costumes needed to enhance the effect of the character he was portraying. Taking to the stage as Dame Edna Everage to open with, he introduced act 2, local duo, The Alcatraz Swim Team, whose acoustic renditions – in their own unique style – of modern day classics by The Killers, The Stereophonics, and many more, gained them a heartwarming appreciation from a satisfied crowd.

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The next celebrity to grace the stage was that famous sixties Liverpool legend, Cilla Black. Following a number of well-worded sentences, act 3 came in the form of Daniel Defoe, a seasoned professional who gave his audience memories from the musicals with songs including Love Changes Everything and This Is The Moment, amongst others.

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Celebrity lady number three was the incomparable Diana Ross: Field's attention to detail with stunning wigs and glamorous costumes meant he not only had the spectators on his side from the word go, but the other performers as well.

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The final act before the interval was a local – and very well known – all round entertainer and comedian cum magician, William Knight, whose performance utilized a number of rather nervous audience members, but like any seasoned professional, he made it all look very easy and, contrary to popular belief, no one was actually hurt!

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Following the break, Chris Field introduced us to his final leading lady of the night, English actress and music hall star, Dame Gracie Fields.

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Following brief segments of songs he then slipped into the irrepressible Hilda Baker, and followed with Arthur Lucan's stage character, Old Mother Riley, before announcing the only female member of the line-up, Jessica Sharp: a talented vocalist who also organizes her own charity fundraiser, Picnic in the Park, as well as entertaining with the Goole Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society. Jess opened up with the energetic Walking On Sunshine before moving on to more powerful numbers such as Natural Woman.

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There was no introduction for the final act because the impact was made through the theatre descending into pitch darkness. The speakers reverberated with a drumbeat, and the sounds of clapping and cheering. The lights returned and the guitars signalled the start of the song. By that time, Ray Clark was already in the middle of the stage (quite how, we're not sure) ready for his opening number, a Fortunes classic, Here Comes My Baby. A spirited rendition of Sixties standards followed, ending with a Dave Edmunds seventies rock classic, I Knew The Bride. Ray's performance included detailed information about the OPA and the Fiona Wade Appeal, ending with a huge thank you to the sponsors, all of which were advertised in the evening's program.

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Everyone then returned to the stage for a collective and bouncy acoustic rendition of The Travelling Wilbury's classic, The End of the Line: a fitting end to an excellent evening's entertainment.

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The total figure raised and paid to the charity was £1089.38.

Program Sponsors:

Glews Garage

Elite Office Furniture

KSP Tooling

Clan Shots Photography

Abacus Accountancy

Steve Walker Motor Engineer


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Ray Clark 2018