The VPP Summer Festival at Victoria Playhouse Petrolia has been attracting patrons from as far away as Austria this summer. Attendance levels were at record highs throughout the recent run of Love Letters which starred Michael Learned and Ralph Waite, 2 award-winning, veteran television actors best known for their portrayals of Olivia and John Walton Sr. in the long running television hit series “The Waltons”. Both Ms. Learned and Mr. Waite expressed their appreciation for the thousands of fans who came to Petrolia to see the show.
The next and final instalment in the hit summer series previews on Wednesday, September 5th and opens Friday, September 8th at 8:00 p.m. It is “The Songs of Sinatra” featuring the “Sinatra Seven”, seven gorgeous young men with beautiful voices, perfect to deliver the iconic crooner’s greatest hits.
The show was conceived by David Rogers, VPP Co-Artistic Director and is being directed by Rogers and VPP Music Director Mark Payne. Rehearsals are in full swing and the show promises to be a wonderful night of entertainment. Ticket sales for the first two weeks of the run were strong enough that the show has been extended to September 23.
Patrons will recognize Graham Parkhurst from his role as Judas in Godspell at VPP in early June. Michael Vanhevel joins the cast and will be recognized by local patrons from his recent show “Come Fly with Me” at the Imperial Theatre in Sarnia. Michael is from Grand Bend and has many fans across Lambton County and beyond. Chris Zonneville is also well-known locally and has performed in several Starbright productions.
The other talented members of this ensemble, Kevin Forestell, George Krissa, Adam Proulx and Chris Sams are young Canadian entertainers hailing from Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and points in between. There is no doubt this new “Group of Seven” will entertain and enthrall as they present some of the best loved songs from the songbook of the legendary Mr. Frank Sinatra.
“The Songs of Sinatra” runs from September 8th through the 23rd with both matinee and evening performances. For tickets, call the VPP Box Office at 519-882-0221 or visit www.thevpp.ca to buy online.]
Photo (courtesy VPP staff): Foreground: Michael Vanhevel, Chris Zonneville, Adam Proulx, Graham Parkhurst; back row: Kevin Forestell, Chris Sams, George Krissa