Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Midnight Matinee raises thousands

THERE was a full house when Henley Rotary Club staged its 56th annual Midnight Matinee at the Kenton Theatre on Saturday.

THERE was a full house when Henley Rotary Club staged its 56th annual Midnight Matinee at the Kenton Theatre on Saturday.

About 200 people attended the charity concert featuring Sam Brown and her People?s Ukulele Brigade.

The group, which comprised more than 40 ukulele players accompanied by a double bass player and an electric guitarist, performed upbeat cover versions of pop and rock songs dating from the Fifties to the present day.

Among the highlights were Jolene by Dolly Parton, Hotel Yorba by The White Stripes, Walk Like An Egyptian by The Bangles and The Bear Necessities from Walt Disney?s The Jungle Book soundtrack.

The show opened with a short set by band members Martyn Cooper, Mike Holland, Dan Clipston and Henley town centre manager Peter McConnell.

Performing as No Direction, they opened with (Oh Lord Won?t You Buy Me A) Mercedes-Benz by Janis Joplin and also played Tom Jones? Delilah. Singer-songwriter Megan Henwood, from Henley, then took to the stage and played half a dozen original numbers.

Before the curtain went up, there was a reception at Hotel du Vin for invited guests. Among those who attended were Henley Mayor Stefan Gawrysiak and the Mayoress Catherine Allan-Notaras.

This year?s event was raising money for the Riverside Counselling Service, which supports adults and children in Henley.

The charity, which has 14 trained counsellors, is one of the Mayor?s chosen charities for his year in office.

Organiser and Rotarian John Grout said he hoped the matinee would raise at least £4,500.

He said: ?It was an absolutely brilliant night ? one of the best shows we?ve put on. Sam Brown?s group had everyone stomping their feet and the audience were calling for an encore ? they wouldn?t let them leave the stage.?

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