John Howe Showcase
Stage Two Productions opened the session with a well-rehearsed song and dance routine to the old sixties classic ‘Da Doo Ron Ron’ They were well turned out and really looked the part. This high energy team are ideal for holiday parks.
Introduced as a comedy magician, there is no doubt that Matt Redmond is an accomplished magician, but he fails to understand that the art of stand-up comedy lies in the delivery and timing. I would suggest that Matt cuts down on the gags and concentrates more on the visual side of his act.
Male duo Avenue 39 comprising of keyboards and guitar struck a rapport with the audience from the moment that they took to the stage. Playing well known numbers from the sixties and seventies these two likeable lads will find themselves at home performing at any function.
Introduced onto the stage to collect the winner’s trophy for ‘The John Howe open golf tournament’ was Marc Layton who then went on to provide the audience with a most enjoyable impromptu performance, beginning with a couple of sing-a-long rock and roll numbers and rounding off with a superb rendition of the Pavarotti classic ‘Nessun Dorma’
A four piece band consisting of guitar, bass and drums with an energetic well-presented female vocalist fronting them. The Decades opened with the Beatles ‘I saw her standing there’ followed by a medley of Stevie Wonder hits, before performing a couple of up to date numbers, showed their versatility.
Daniel Ferret wowed the audience with well-presented ballads. Finishing with the ever popular ‘Wind beneath my wings.’
‘I need a hero’ was the number the powerful voice of Amy Goater opened with. It’s always a pleasure to witness a vocalist with a personality to match the voice, and Amy’s personality is as powerful and pleasing to the audience as her singing.
If you are looking for eye-candy with a voice to match then Brighton based Farrah Joy is the girl for you. Her set was versatile from Dusty Springfield to Chaka Khan.
Graham Mart looked the part as he performed some of the classics from the great Dean Martin finishing with the well-known Neil Diamond number ‘Sweet Caroline.’ Followed by ‘Hello again.’
It was really refreshing to see young 24 year old Tamara Tracey performing numbers such as Connie Francis ‘Stupid Cupid’ that had the entire audience singing along. A real crowd pleases is Whitney Houston’s ‘I will always love you.’ Tamara’s rendition was strong enough to please the audience.
The toughest act to perform on a showcase is stand-up comedy. Dean Keating made easy work of the task, and by the time he finished was getting sizeable laughs. A young fresh southern based comic, with a magical career to look forward too.
Winner of the Blackpool command male vocalist of the year award 2015 Michael C Langton showed why he is the worthy winner of the title. Personally I could listen to this polished vocalist all evening and would recommend him for any venue.
The red polka dot dress that Samantha Maybee wore was a real eye catcher. When I was a Redcoat in the late seventies Alan Ridgeway my entertainments manager would say “If you look like you’re enjoying your performance the audience will enjoy it.” Samantha looked liked she was having a ball and so did the audience. A first class performance from this extremely likeable personality vocalist.
A faultless performance from northern based Joseph O’Brien delighted the audience. For me the number that stands out from every other song I have heard at the John Howe showcase was Joseph’s swing version of an old blues classic ‘I wonder who’s loving you?’ If this outstanding vocalist has not got a full diary, then there is no justice.
Eliza Joy informed us that she is now in her seventh year of performing on the cabaret circuit showed her versatility opening with a show number ‘Rain on my parade.’ Followed by a country number and finishing with a classic crowd pleaser ‘You don’t have to say you love me.’ Her appearance was impeccable, here’s to the next seven years.
Bringing the show to a close came Boy/Girl duo Christopher James and Joanne Arrowsmith as Feeling Good.
Barry Lucas from Lucas management said his favourite acts of the session were Michael C Langton and Joseph O’Brien.