Straight off a sold-out run as Mary Poppins, talented Andrea Roberts is lending her voice to a benefit Community Christmas Concert on Sunday, Dec. 18.
“I think, at this time of year especially, it’s nice to have an opportunity for people to go, sit and forget about what’s happening in the world today and think about the joy of Christmas,” says the singer and actor, who, more than anything, loves being on the stage.
Roberts will share the Shuswap Theatre stage with other talented performers, including award-winning singer-songwriter Jesse Mast, Blu and Kelly Hopkins, rising star Ruby Bruce and the Shuswap Youth Choir.
Former Observer photographer and storyteller James Murray will MC the concert and share some of his heartwarming, down-home tales.
The benefit will be an all-Christmas affair with some old favourites and new tunes too.
“We decided the concert would be a true community event that would feature Christmas songs, stories and music and involve and benefit the community,” says concert organizer Kelly Hopkins, who sprung into action as Roberts had just won the title role in Mary Poppins and was busy with rehearsals.
“When the Salmon Arm Folk Music Society offered to donate festival passes to a silent auction, other local businesses jumped in to help,” says a grateful Hopkins. “We are all really looking forward to this special community event created by, with and for this incredible community we live in.”
As well as performing solo, Roberts will sing the Huron Carol with Blu and Kelly, a rendition of Oh Holy Night in French and English, and will direct the members of her youth choir.
“I am looking forward to singing with Blu and Kelly and their usual gorgeous harmonies,” adds Roberts, of the carol written around 1602 by Jesuit missionary Jean de Brébeuf.
The audience will be invited to participate in a good old-fashioned singalong.
Proceeds from the 90-minute concert that will be held at 1 p.m. Sunday will go to the S.A.F.E. Society’s women’s shelter.
Tickets at $15 are available at Acorn Music.
Roberts says the concert resonates with the same message as Mary Poppins – the importance of being present in the moment and finding the joy in life, no matter what your circumstance.