Entertainment

Christmas at the Clarke features musical variety

The band Horizon plays at Christmas at the Clarke on Saturday, Dec. 10. From left: Rick Noel on drums, vocalist Crystal Hicks, Johan Worst on bass, and Warren Groslan on lead guitar. - Rick Noel
The band Horizon plays at Christmas at the Clarke on Saturday, Dec. 10. From left: Rick Noel on drums, vocalist Crystal Hicks, Johan Worst on bass, and Warren Groslan on lead guitar.
— image credit: Rick Noel

The Clarke Theatre is going to be filled with wonderful songs, old and new, and Christmas favorites performed by some of the best singers and musicians the Fraser Valley has to offer, in the 12th Annual Christmas at the Clarke Benefit Concert Dec. 10.

Crystal Hicks — who has been compared to the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and Etta James — along with the band Horizon, will be at the show. In high demand all over the area, Horizon consists of five versatile and entertaining musicians all from the lower Fraser Valley.

Featuring lead guitar master Warren Grosland, the inimitable JP Worst on acoustic jazz and funky electric bass, and on drums the immovable meter man, Rick Noel. Rounding it off on keyboards and harmony vocals is the versatile and well known Asger Hansen. Playing a wide variety of musical styles, including swing, blues, rockin' soul, R&B, with some latin, country and classic old time rock&roll, people are going to love this band.

Also performing will be the Valley’s own consummate showman, Phil Aldridge, and the band 1066. Having brought great music, smiles and laughter to the event in previous years, the organizers are really excited to have them back this year as a crowd favorite.

The band has performed on TV, in theatre, and at fairs and conventions on both sides of the border entertaining people with a diverse range of musical styles, ranging from Celtic, folk, rock, jazz and blues. With their wonderful humor, light hearted style and great musical talents, 1066 will have the audience — kids of all ages — on their feet in no time.

After missing a couple of years, people will be glad to know that the fabulous band Topaz will be performing this year. Playing a little jazz, blues and classic rock like only they can, Scott Boyes, Jeff Fultz, Gerry Brown, Jerry Hlookoff and vocalist Vikki Evans, are going to dazzle the audience with the talents that have made them a favorite many times at the Merrit Mountain Music Festival.

In addition to Merrit, Topaz has played in a number of important venues, including the Cloverdale rodeo, and they leave their audiences asking for more every time.

"We are really looking forward to the show this year." says Scott Boyes. "It's a wonderful event that raises money for a great cause and we'd perform there every year if we could."

One of Mission’s own great singer/songwriters, Susan Dearing, will be performing a tune or two at the show. Well-known in the world of musical theatre, Dearing’s voice and friendly, gentle charm endear her to her audiences wherever she performs.

No Christmas show would be complete without a great choir, and the quartet, Four Real will fit that bill nicely. The four talented singers will be entertaining the audience with their musical style and energy that makes people want to join in.

Christmas at the Clarke, sponsored by Prospera Credit Union and Fraser Valley Building Supplies, goes toward helping two community organizations, the Christmas Bureau and the emergency housing operated by the Women’s Resource Society of the Fraser Valley.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and students and $10 for children. They are available in Mission at London Drugs, Rex Cox Men's Wear, Murdoch's Book Shoppe, Shoppers Drug Mart, Prospera Credit Union and Fraser Valley Building supplies. They are also available in Abbotsford at House of James and Jazz Ma Tazz. For group tickets or for more information call the Clarke Theatre at 604-820-3961.

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