"THE CONNCERT" is a musical performance featuring over 25 amazing, talented, and regional vocalists, accompanied by a 16-piece orchestra, singing familiar tunes from Broadway, Jazz, Rock, Pop, Big Band and more!
Broadway Live Donates $30,000 to the local YMCA
Broadway Live Donates $30,000 to the local YMCA
Broadway Live Productions donated $30,000 to the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center in Putnam, CT on April 19, 2018. The donation was a result of “Broadway Live…The Conncert” an event that was held on April 7th and 8th, 2018 at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy in Woodstock, CT. The two performances featured local and regional vocalists backed by an orchestra with music arranged especially for the event.
The audiences were delighted by the level of talent and musicianship featured at the event, which also received glowing reviews by local opinion writer for the Villager Newspapers, Nancy Weiss. Basketball Hall of Fame Coach Jim Calhoun appeared with his wife Pat at the Saturday evening event addressing the crowd as the YMCA’s Capital Campaign Chairpersons. Both Coach Calhoun and his wife applauded the event and audience members for supporting the performance and the YMCA. Coach Calhoun stated on Saturday evening, “I couldn’t be happier or prouder of all of you because you’re here tonight to hear great music and support the Y. The great thing tonight is that we are all on offense to help others. You’ve done a great job, and don’t stop believing and most importantly don’t stop enjoying tonight.”
Executive Director of the YMCA Amanda Kelly stated, “The Board and staff of the Hale YMCA would like to extend our sincere gratitude to all the sponsors and partners of The Conncert. Your generosity will help us continue the work of bringing wellness and youth development programs to our community.”
The “Broadway Live…The Conncert” event marks the 18th year that Broadway Live Productions has produced live shows to benefit local and national non-profit 501 (c) (3) organizations like the American Cancer Society, Habitat for Humanity, Doctor’s Without Borders, The Bradley Playhouse, Day Kimball Hospital, Day Kimball Deary Fund, QVCC Foundation, HealthQuest, The Arc, Daily Bread, TEEG, Eastern Connecticut Performing Arts Association and many more. With this production, Broadway Live has now topped $750,000 in gross ticket revenues and corporate sponsorships generated with all net proceeds benefiting non-profit organizations.
The Conncert was directed by Keri Danner and led by Mistress and Masters of Ceremony; Amanda Kelly, Marc Cerrone and Ronald Coderre. The performers included Andre Bessette, Donna Bessette, Yvie Bessette, Jonathan Carpentier, Hannah Chubbuck, Tim Deary, Mackenzie Deary, Val Hauptman, James Doran Kellaway, Molly Kellaway, Donna LaHaie, Adam Landry, Paul Lucenti, Patrick McCarthy, Alex Mercier, Carl Mercier, Colleen Mercier, Elena Mercier, Lily Mercier, David T. Panteleakos, Brenda Pontbriand, Sophia Pontbriand, Rachel Pontbriand, Mike Silvia, Beth Silvia, Izaiah Silvia, Elizabeth Silvia, Jacob Silvia, Simon Silvia, Ted Reynolds and Brooke Zahansky.
“We are so proud of our performers, musicians, directors and technical team for putting up an amazing show for the Hale YMCA," stated Broadway Live creator David T. Panteleakos. “It turned out to exceed our expectations in performance and we could not be more thankful to our amazing performers for sharing their time and talents for such a worthy cause.”
Tim & Mackenzie Deary Press Release
Deary’s Aim to Retake the Stage with “The Prayer”
Brother and sister, Tim and Mackenzie Deary, are heading back to the stage on April 7th and 8th for a reprisal of Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion’s famous duet, “The Prayer” in Broadway Live’s upcoming show, ‘The Conncert’.
Having performed in numerous Broadway Live musical productions over the past 18 years, Tim and Mackenzie are no strangers to the stage. Most recently Tim performed in “Broadway Live … 2015” where he sang “Run Freedom Run” amongst other hits. As a French Teacher at Pomfret School in Pomfret, Connecticut, he continues to use the stage as an outlet to express his love of culture, life and expression.
Mackenzie Deary recently completed her Master’s degree in Public Policy at the University College London. She has been involved in musical theater since her debut as Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol at the young age of 5. She is delighted at the opportunity to be back performing with some of the area’s most talented performers.
“It is an honor to once again be performing “The Prayer” alongside my brother, Tim, because the song has such a deeply profound significance to the our entire Deary family,” stated Mackenzie. “It’s truly a beautiful song that gives me chills each time I hear it.”
“We are thrilled that Tim and Mackenzie are appearing in this benefit concert for the YMCA”, stated David T. Panteleakos, Executive Producer. “They are both very talented and gifted performers; and the fact that they are bringing “The Prayer” back to the Broadway Live stage is a real treat.”
Broadway Live’s: The Conncert, is a musical performance featuring over 30 amazingly talented regional vocalists, accompanied by a 16-piece orchestra, benefitting Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center. With regard to The YMCA’s credo based on family, health and social responsibility, The Conncert is a musical production centered around performances arranged and performed by local families and individuals.
Pontbriand Press Release
Mother and Daughters Set to Rock Broadway Live
Woodstock residents Brenda Pontbriand and her daughters, Rachel and Sophia, are set to perform at Broadway Live…“The Conncert” on April 7th and 8th at the Center for the Arts at The Woodstock Academy.The Conncert is a benefit show featuring 30 regional singers and a 16 piece orchestra performing music from Broadway, jazz, rock and roll, pop and classical genres.
Brenda is a 17-year veteran of the Broadway Live stage, dating back to her first performance at Broadway Live…2001. The Pontbriands are one of six family groups slated to sing at the event along with many individual performers. Brenda and Sophia will be singing “Proud Mary,” a rock and roll classic made famous by Tina Turner. Rachel will be singing the song her mother performed 17 years ago at Broadway Live…2001: “Aquarius” from the Broadway musical “Hair”.
“I am so beside myself and thrilled to be singing with my girls,” stated Brenda. “It really comes full circle; Sophia was in a baby carrier and Rachael was running up and down the aisles when I first performed at Broadway Live…2001.” Rachel added, “Seeing my Mom up on the Broadway Live stage growing up, I always wanted to be up there. I am now going to have the chance to be on stage with my Mom and sister, accomplishing one of my life's goals.”
Broadway Live Executive Producer James Doran Kellaway first learned of Brenda’s talents through the glowing praise he always heard from other stage veterans. “I started working with Broadway Live just 7 years ago, and I was immediately impressed by the number of talented vocalists on this team who would point to Brenda as one of their favorite voices. Her talented reputation precedes her. She delivers. Her daughters deliver. You’ll definitely want to be in the theater for these numbers.”
Brenda is an Advertising Executive for The Villager Newspapers, Rachel is a junior at Eastern Connecticut State University studying English, and Sophia is a junior at The Woodstock Academy, and a leading member of their singing group, “Ladies First.” Tickets now available at www.theconncert.com or at The Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center in Putnam, CT.
Silvia Press Release
The Band that YMCAs Together, Plays Together
Grow Your Own Band. It’s good advice. It’s also the name of one of the acts performing at The Conncert, Broadway Live’s latest production benefiting The Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center. The members of this troupe are the Silvia family, and they are delighted to be joining the efforts of this fundraising endeavor taking place at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy on April 7th and 8th. Tickets can be purchased online at WWW.THECONNCERT.COM for $20 each, with all net proceeds going towards our local Y.
You’ll see “family” as a theme woven throughout this celebration. It is something important to the beneficiary (the YMCA) and it is something important to the benefactors (sponsors and performers). The Silvia family exemplifies the excitement for both. This ensemble features Mike and Beth Silvia on vocals, banjo, and parenthood. Ranging between ages 18 and 28, daughter Elizabeth and sons Izaiah, Jacob, and Simon play multiple instruments including guitar, bass, drums, and piano.
As a collective group they work around a wide array of musical genres, and they do this with a variety of different family arrangements. When they play together as a six-piece ensemble, they really find their groove. Their set list for the upcoming show includes: Elizabeth remixing a Britney Spears song for guitar, Beth’s rendition of “Find Your Grail” from the Broadway smash Spamalot, and a full-family, full-orchestra jam covering “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars. The last number described as their “take-down-the-house” song.
James Doran Kellaway, Executive Producer for The Conncert, said he first learned of the Silvia family talents when he and Beth worked together on a production of Spamalot. He remarks: “I heard Beth’s powerful vocals before, and she showcased classic talent. I just had no idea that musical skill is shared as strongly as love in her family.”
The Silvia family’s excitement for this benefit concert comes from genuine appreciation for the YMCA organization. In addition to their four children listed above, Mike and Beth have three adopted children. Although everybody is much older and mature now, they can recall times when various YMCAs in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut provided hubs of activity for a growing group. Beth remembers it warmly. “We used to go 3 times a week,” she said. “With 7 kids there’s not a lot you can always do as a family. The kids could swim, we would use the open gym, grab a meal together—we could do things all together, or we could do separate activities comfortably. I’m thrilled to be doing this event for the Y because we raised our family there. The YMCA is family.”
LaHaie and Reynolds Press Release
LaHaie and Reynolds Back to the Broadway Live Stage
Donna LaHaie and Ted Reynolds are slated to return to the Broadway Live stage on April 7th and 8th, 2018 at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy in Woodstock, Connecticut for a special benefit show called “The Conncert”.
Mrs. LaHaie hales from Putnam, CT and Mr. Reynolds who resides in Thompson, CT first appeared together in a Broadway Live production in 2000 and are slated to reprise their rendition of the classic musical piece “Time To Say Goodbye” as performed by artists Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman. The last time they appeared together for this classic duet was before a sell-out crowd at the HYDE Cultural Center in 2003 for “Broadway Live…Encore”. The pair has been performing for many years together and individually for related Broadway Live events and other worthwhile causes.
Mr. Reynolds also just completed his new CD entitled “A Father & Son’s First Christmas.” Mrs. LaHaie’s last appearance was in 2015 at The Bradley Playhouse in Putnam, Connecticut for “Broadway Live…2015” which was the production company’s anniversary and 15th year celebration show.
“We are so thrilled that Donna and Ted are once again together on the big stage for The Conncert," stated Executive Producer David T. Panteleakos. “Both Donna and Ted are incredibly talented vocalists and they have been so generous with their time and talents for Broadway Live events and for so many other worthy causes. Their rendition of ‘Time to Say Goodbye’ and the other songs they are slated to perform will undoubtedly be powerful and most memorable.”
YMCA Benefit Around the Corner
YMCA Benefit Around the Corner
Tickets are selling fast for The Conncert. On April 7 and 8 at the Woodstock Academy, The Conncert will bring local musicians and singers to the stage. The performances will not only showcase the talented music scene in the Quiet Corner, but raise money for the Hale YMCA.
Organized by Broadway Live Productions (which helps raise money for local charities and beneficiaries), The Conncert will also feature a live 16 piece orchestra that will accompany each act. Featuring Broadway, classical, jazz, big band, rock and pop, the variety of talent is something the Quiet Corner has never seen before.
"This is a great outlet for local musicians," said Master of Ceremony Marc Cerrone. "Everybody pretty much has a day job. These are folks that are in our community. Doctors, lawyers, store keepers ... But they also have this talent that is great to showcase periodically. It's something that gets overlooked often. These folks are among us, working regular jobs, but they've got this talent that often doesn't get recognized. It gives them an opportunity to showcase their talent for a good cause."
Because of his involvement with the YMCA, Broadway Live Productions approached Cerrone to be the Master of Ceremony. He is also involved with the Bradley Playhouse and is no stranger to performing- or the high level of talent whom have already begun rehearsing.
"I think the audience will be very entertained," said Cerrone. "It's very rare to see a concert like this. We have Bradley and The Complex, but it's rare that there's a showcase like this. We have 30 performers involved. It's phenomenal. To see this kind of show locally ... It doesn't come around every day. It's a unique opportunity to see a live performance of amazing caliber right in our own backyard."
And it's also for a good cause. It's raising money for the Hale YMCA, "an organization we've all grown to love" in the past two years."
The YMCA is trying to improve the building, the service and programs. According to Cerrone, they are also hoping to have recreational fields for outdoor use in nicer weather. All of those things, he continued, costs money that the YMCA just doesn't have the funds for right now.
"People have grown to realize just how hard it was to be without an organization like this, Cerrone said. "Especially this time of year. It's difficult for families to find ways to stay active in the winter months, when the weather is just so cold. The YMCA has offered people a place to go and be active and interact with other people. Now that we have it, the membership is well beyond what we expected. We need to expand what we can offer for growing membership and to provide services people in the community desire."
Tickets are available through the YMCA's homepage or at www.theconncert.com.
Article appears courtesy of The Villager Newspaper and Olivia Richman, News Staff Writer
“DIVAS Live” Standout Returns to Northeast Connecticut
“DIVAS Live” Standout Returns to Northeast Connecticut
“DIVAS Live” entertainer Valerie Hauptman is set to return to Northeast Connecticut to appear at the upcoming Broadway Live…“The Conncert” on April 7th and 8th at the Center for the Arts at The Woodstock Academy. “The Conncert” is a musical featuring 30 regional singers and a 16 piece orchestra.
Formerly Valerie Voccio from Brooklyn, CT, Valarie has been in a multitude of local shows over the past 10 years including High School Musical and Grease, both at the Bradley Playhouse. She was a headliner in DIVAS Live in 2011 and is a 2011 graduate of Woodstock Academy where she was a member of the band, chorus, and Hill Singers. In 2011, Val was named “The Distinguished Young Woman of CT”, formerly known as “Connecticut's Junior Miss” where she won top five in the talent portion during the Nationals competition this past June in Mobile, Alabama. Throughout her college years and after, she competed in the Miss Connecticut Scholarships Organization where she was a top 5 finalist as well.
Valerie graduated from University of Saint Joseph in 2015 with her Bachelors of Science in Nursing and is a Registered Nurse on the cardiology unit at Hartford Hospital. Valerie currently lives in Colchester and stated, “I am so thrilled to be back on the stage with so many talented individuals and I am humbled to be a part of this incredible production.”
“Val is an incredible singer with one of the most powerful voices I have had the pleasure of working with,” stated David T. Panteleakos, Executive Producer. “Like so many of our amazing performers, her talents are only matched by her kindness and generosity.”
“The Conncert” or The Connecticut Concert is a special benefit performance that features music from Broadway, Jazz, Rock & Roll, and Classical music performed by 30 regional vocalists backed by a 16 piece orchestra. The dates of the show are Saturday, April 7th at 7:30pm and Sunday, April 8th at 2pm. Performances are being held at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy and tickets are $20 and now available at the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center in Putnam or on-line at www.theconncert.com
The Bessette Family Trio
The Bessette Family Trio
Andre and Donna Bessette, along with their daughter Yvie, are set to appear at the upcoming Broadway Live production of “The Conncert”, which is scheduled for Saturday, April 7th and Sunday April 8th at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy. “The Conncert” is a special musical collaboration of 30 regional and local performers backed by a 16 piece orchestra performing music from Broadway, Jazz, Rock & Roll and Classical pieces for all ages.
The Bessettes are no strangers to the stage or singing in bands for great philanthropic causes. Donna has been making music for audiences both young and old all of her life. Growing up in NY she performed a variety of roles in musical theater productions with the Port Washington Play Troupe and the Harbor Theater Company as well as in productions at Connecticut College. She also performed and recorded with the professional women's a capella group, Calamity Jane, while living in San Francisco for seven years. Locally, she has been seen in a variety of Broadway Live Productions at the Bradley Playhouse, numerous events with VOICES, and a children's performer. She is the lead female vocalist and keyboardist for the Pomfret based band, nine6teen. Donna is currently the Director of the Performing Arts Department at Rectory School.
Her husband Andre has performed in a cappella ensembles, rock groups, and numerous musicals and revues since the age of 15. His credits include the male lead in 1940's Radio Hour, the Courier in 1776, the American in Cabaret, Godspell, a host of VOICES benefit concerts, and a cameo as the "Middle-Aged Angel" in Grease at the Bradley. He is a founding member of Groovecamp Worldbeat Percussion Ensemble, the drummer and vocalist for nine6teen, and is an original member of Broadway Live’s…VOICES. By day, he is chief psychologist at DKH's Child/Adolescent Behavioral Health and clinical supervisor at TEEG; and can be found competing in triathlons and other endurance events around New England. He is also actively involved in the Griffin Hockey Program both as a player and a coach.
Their daughter Yvie is a sophomore at Woodstock Academy and has been very active in the musical and chorus programs both at Woodstock as well as Rectory School where she played “Belle” in their 2016 production of “Beauty and The Beast.” Yvie has been dancing at The Putnam Dance Center for 12 years and has received recognition and awards at dance competitions throughout New England.
“Both Donna and Andre are incredibly talented vocalists and musicians,” stated David T. Panteleakos, Executive Producer. “Over the past 18 years I have witnessed their talents and the growth of their family. It amazes me that they have maintained their established professional careers, raised three amazing children: Nathalie, Yvie and Henri; and they still find the time to perform and collaborate for philanthropic causes. We couldn’t be more proud and pleased that they are joining us for this exciting event.”
Tickets for the event are $20 and may be purchased at the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center in Putnam, CT. or on-line at www.theconncert.com
Coach Calhoun to Appear at The Conncert
Coach Calhoun to Appear at The Conncert
NCAA legendary basketball coach Jim Calhoun will be appearing at the upcoming Broadway Live’s Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center’s benefit concert with his wife Pat, called “The Conncert”. The Conncert is fast approaching on Saturday, April 7th and Sunday, April 8th at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy, formerly known as the HYDE Cultural Center in Woodstock, CT. As honorary chairpersons for the local YMCA capital campaign, Mr. and Mrs. Calhoun will be addressing the Saturday evening concert goers along with performances by over 30 local and regional performers backed by a large orchestra with arrangements by Walter Gwardyk who is an arranger of music for the Hartford Symphony and New England Jazz.
As the former head coach of the University of Connecticut men's basketball team, Coach Calhoun won three NCAA national championships in 1999, 2004 and 2011 as well as many other notable accomplishments throughout his career. With his team's 2011 NCAA title win, Calhoun became the oldest coach to win a Division I men's basketball title. He won his 800th game in 2009 and finished his career with 873 victories, ranking 12th all-time as of Feb. 2015. Calhoun is one of only six coaches in NCAA Division I history to win three or more championships and is widely considered one of the greatest coaches of all time. In 2005, he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
“We are absolutely thrilled that Coach Calhoun and his lovely wife Pat will be joining us for this amazing event,” stated David T. Panteleakos, Executive Producer. “We have been preparing for this special concert for over a year and we are ready for opening night!” Executive Director for the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center Amanda Kelly added, “Jim and Pat Calhoun are two of the most generous people I have met. Jim has a personal connection to youth development and he intentionally stands behind organizations that support that mission. By providing their names to the Capital Campaign, they were able to help launch the fundraising efforts for our wonderful new YMCA. Every time the YMCA has reached out to both Jim and Pat, they have always said “yes”. Helping us to promote “The Conncert” and raise money is just the most recent way the Calhoun’s help to strengthen our community.”
“The Conncert” or The Connecticut Concert is a special benefit performance for the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center that features music from Broadway, Jazz, Rock & Roll, and Classical music performed by 30 regional vocalists backed by an18 piece orchestra. The dates of the show are Saturday, April 7th at 7:30pm and Sunday, April 8th at 2pm. Performances are being held at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy and tickets are now available at the YMCA in Putnam or on-line at www.theconncert.com.
McCarthy to Perform at YMCA Benefit Concert
McCarthy to Perform at YMCA Benefit Concert
Pomfret Selectman and resident Patrick McCarthy is ready to take the stage for Broadway Live’s…“The Conncert” opening this Saturday, April 7th at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy in Woodstock, CT. McCarthy spends his working days as a History and English teacher at the Rectory School in Pomfret, where he coordinates the private music lesson program, as well as the community-based Music at Rectory School (MARS) program; and he also serves on the Board of Selectman for the Town of Pomfret.
McCarthy has been very active in music and in addition to his work with Broadway Live, he is a founding member of the male a cappella group, The HoneyJacks, and a member of the vocal ensemble group, Voices. Patrick is also the lead singer for the band Nine6teen, a six-piece group that performs in the area. Mr. McCarthy is slated to perform a classic Blood, Sweat and Tears medley consisting of “You Make Me Feel So Very Happy” and “Spinning Wheel”.
“The Hale YMCA has given so much to our local community and continually works to make our region a more productive and healthier place,” stated McCarthy. “I am honored to have the opportunity to give back and help this amazing organization through ‘The Conncert.’ This is a show you do not want to miss!”
Executive Producer for The Conncert James Doran Kellaway is pleased to simply have another opportunity to hear Pat McCarthy sing, as well as work with him. Kellaway remarked, “Pat is one of those classic, good-energy people you love to have on set. Funny when he wants to be, professional when he needs to be, and vocally talented the entire time. I’ve enjoyed hearing him perform at various concerts for years, and I am so appreciative that we have his distinctly rich bass tone for audiences of “The Conncert” to hear this weekend.”
“The Conncert” or, The Connecticut Concert, is a special benefit performance for the Hale YMCA Youth and Family Center that features music from Broadway, Jazz, Rock & Roll, and Classical music performed by 30 regional vocalists backed by an orchestra. The dates of the show are Saturday, April 7th at 7:30pm and Sunday, April 8th at 2pm. Performances are being held at the Center for the Arts at Woodstock Academy and tickets are now available at the YMCA in Putnam or on-line at www.theconncert.com
James Doran Kellaway
Mike and Beth Silvia
David T. Panteleakos