Boys & Girls Club to host dueling pianos at civic center

Boys & Girls Club to host dueling pianos at civic center

A fun-filled evening is in store Saturday at the Civic Center as two Las Vegas performers will bring their pianos to town and challenge each other on a “song-off.”

The event, known as “dueling pianos,” will feature songs spanning the decades as the two pianists go back and forth, singing Billy Joel’s “Piano Man,” Elton John’s “Rocket Man,” contemporary hits and beyond, with sheer showmanship, wit and absurdity.

Dueling PianosOriginating 65 years ago, the dueling pianos concept started at Pat O’Brien’s Club in New Orleans. Mixing piano, voice, improvisation and comedy, “dueling pianos” creates a unique party atmosphere with adult humor and goofy renditions of classic feel-good songs such as “Sweet Caroline” and “Daydream Believer.”

“It is a high-quality show,” Lewistown Boys and Girls Club Resource Development Representative  LaVonne Limpus said. “Plus, there are a lot of people in the community that do a lot for youth but really there is a need to step out and be an adult. This is a good opportunity for that.”

Van Walraven, a Vegas dueling piano performer, will re-introduce Lewistown to the concept and will bring Lark Knowles, his contemporary. Van Walraven often performs with his wife, Cristina, but she will not be present on this tour.

Originally from Texas, Walraven started playing professionally while in college and became part of the Top 40 band O-la-la in Portland, Ore. But it was in 1991, when Walraven checked out a dueling pianos performance, that he knew his direction in life. Walraven and Knowles have performed together for 15 years across the United States.

According to Lewistown Boys and Girls Club Executive Director Abby Franks, the Walravens are excited to return to Central Montana since their first time two years ago. “This show is back by popular demand,” Franks said. “It is something you don’t have in Lewistown everyday. It is fun and a lot of people are looking forward to it. The event, Limpus said, is a fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club, which is in need of an extra

“We have a major gap that we need to meet by the end of the year,” Limpus said. “Some of the grants we have relied on have been cut in third. With these last couple of events this year we are really trying to bridge the gap.”

The husband-and-wife dynamic duo will perform from 8 p.m. until 11 p.m. at the Civic Center and will take requests throughout the night. Sponsors include Super 8 of Lewistown, Smart’s Abbey Carpet, Lewistown Rental, A Few of My Favorite Things, Dash-Inn, Angelina’s Beauty Spot, Snowy Mountain Motors and Main Connection Travel. Tickets for the show are available at Don’s Store, First Bank of Montana and a Few of My Favorite Things.

By Charlie Denison, News-Argus Staff Writer
Published in the Lewistown News-Argus, October 9, 2013

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    Lewistown, Montana

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