Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Canoe: The Musical

Westfield on Weekends (WOW) has announced the lineup for “WOW! … It’s Cabaret!”  a new musical series featuring professional cabaret artists from New York City, Boston and Western Massachusetts to be held during the coming months in the Great Room of the Westfield Senior Center, 45 Noble Street in Westfield.

The series will open with Canoe: the Musical, headlined by Mary Brown Bonacci, Bob Plasse, Michael Rheault, three area residents whose musical careers have taken them from New York to Europe.  They will be performing a scripted “cabaret musical” that traces the course of a marriage through dialogue and songs from Broadway, Hollywood and the American Songbook. Originally created by its trio of performers and produced for the Buffalo Canoe Club on Lake Erie, the show received rave reviews for  its funny, yet moving storyline and its unique use of slide projections, which provide information on the songs sung and graceful transitions from scene to scene.

Mary Brown Bonacci is adept several musical idioms from opera and classical music to jazz, pop and Broadway. A mezzo-soprano, Ms. Bonacci has appeared with companies across the United States and in Europe, including Opera Company Brooklyn, the Utah Festival Opera, the Kansas City Lyric Opera, the Hampshire Choral Society, the Arcadia Players and Opera Perigord (La Perichole). Recently she appeared with the American Pops Orchestra at the Plaza Hotel in New York and with Wynton Marsalis for the Jazz at Lincoln Center series. Ms. Bonacci is Associate Professor in applied voice, pedagogy snd opera/music theatre at Westfield State University.

Bob Plasse is known to listeners of WSKB (Westfield State University’s radio station) as the host of a Tuesday morning talk show and to area residents who know him as the former president of Westfield on Weekends, chair of Westfield Dickens Days and from his appearances with candles atop his head as “The Ghost of Christmas Present” at WOW’s Dickens Dinners.  His professional acting career includes leading roles in productions of Godspell, The Fantasticks and P.S. Your Cat is Dead;  a tour of the South in Dial M for Murder;  television commercials; soap operas (Guiding Light, One Life to Live and All My Children); and several movies, including Big, New York Stories and Goodfellas.

Composer/arranger/pianist Michael Rheault’s resume includes his Off-Broadway musical Fabulous: The Queen of Musical Comedies, which had an extended run in 2014 at the Times Square Arts Center; The Birth, a Christmas musical; the chamber musical Neurotica; and the soundtrack of the independent documentary, Names from Home. He has also provided musical direction for scores of area musicals at local colleges and theatre groups and is currently Director of Choral Activities at Bay Path University.

Ticket and Reservation Information  TICKETS HERE
Tickets for the “WOW… It’s Cabaret” series are $25 for an individual show with a series subscription package of all three shows, available for $65. Reservations may be made by calling 413- 579-5967, by visiting Westfield Creative Arts at 105 Elm Street during regular store hours. Tickets can also be purchased below.

Doors will open at 7:15. Coffee and desserts will be available for sale at intermission.

Funding for the series has been provided in part with a grant from the Westfield Cultural Council, a program of the Massachusetts Cultural Council and with the assistance of the Westfield Council on Aging.

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