Arts and Entertainment

‘Stout-Hearted Men’ and women perform early Broadway favorites

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Legendary songs from the first half of the 20th century fill the sanctuary of Trinity United Methodist Church on Nov. 17-18.

 

The Peninsula Singers present “Oh, Those Early Broadway Tunes” under the direction of Dewey Ehling with music by Sigmund Romberg, Rudolf Friml and Vincent Youmans.

 

“There are so many wonderful melodies and lyrics from the 1920s and ’30s that are preserved in our memories that need to be heard, so that’s what we’re doing in this concert,” said Ehling.

 

He has arranged most of the music for the choir because many of the songs are no longer available in choral part arrangements from publishers.

 

The  program includes group and solo favorites from “New Moon,” “The Student Prince,” “Blossom Time” and “The Desert Song.”

 

Two of Friml’s songs from “Firefly” — “The Donkey Serenade” and “Giannina Mia” — feature solos by tenor Trent Pomeroy.

 

Some of the featured soloists include Linda Grubb, singing “Romance” and “Lover, Come Back to Me”; and Vicki Helwick and Joel Yelland, singing the duet “Wanting You” from “The New Moon.”

 

Grubb said she’s been with the group for 10 years and loves singing under Ehling’s direction.

 

“I love the camaraderie we all have here,” she said.

 

A few other songs attendees will hear include “Tea for Two,” “More Than You Know,” and “Hallelujah,” and at one point, the audience will be asked to participate in a surprise song from popular composers.

 

Ehling said he couldn’t help but conclude a program from this period with songs by Jerome Kern and Cole Porter.

 

Jim Dries and Carol Swarbrick Dries provide accompanying narration to fill in the background on some of the humorous and meaningful events of this period in American musical history. Sandy Rawson accompanies the singers on piano.

 

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