Dennis Spears and the Wolverines Jazz Trio present a concert tribute to Nat King Cole:
“(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons”
Legends series artistic director Dennis Spears takes center stage at the Capri Theater 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17, offering a warm musical tribute to Nat King Cole in (I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons.
The Wolverines Jazz Trio joins Dennis for this second pair of concerts in our sixth year of Legends. With Rick Carlson at the piano, Keith Boyles bass and Jendeen Forberg on drums, these concerts will feature Nat King Cole’s more romantic ballads.
Tickets for Legends concerts are $25 ($20 for groups of 10 or more) and can be ordered online at thecapritheater.org, or by calling OvationTix at 866-811-4111. Two-concert season tickets are still available and are just $40 – a savings of $10 off single ticket prices.
“We’re going to wrap up in bows some of Nat’s most popular renderings,” Dennis says. “Concertgoers will be treated to warm classics such as: Answer Me, Orange Colored Sky, Unforgettable and Too Young. Nothing is more perfect and fitting for a cold Valentine’s sweet treat!”
As a child Dennis says it was Nat King Cole’s The Christmas Song that first caught his attention, and he has been a fan of the musical legend ever since. “Nat stands prominently among the great musicians who have profoundly influenced my own personal styling as a singer,” he says. “I have always admired his clear diction, timbre and smooth delivery. This concert is not about me ‘playing the role’ as Nat, but rather giving my interpretation of Nat’s music based on these influences.”
In 2011 Dennis won an Ivey award for acting for portraying Nat King Cole in I Wish You Love at the Penumbra Theatre. This show was also presented during the summer of 2011 at Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and Hartford Stage in Connecticut.
Since 2007 Dennis has served as an artistic associate with the Capri Theater/Plymouth Christian Youth Center (PCYC owns and operates the Capri Theater), and has served as artistic director of the Legends series since its inception in 2007.
Dennis released his first solo recording, “I Hear It” in 1995, followed by his release of “Why Try to Change Me Now” in 2004. This past February he released his newest recording “Down on Broadway: Live at the Capri.” He won the Best Jazz Male Vocalist category with the Minnesota Jazz Music Academy and featured vocalist on the Academy Awards winning documentary, Changing Our Minds.
He appeared in original musical productions – Always and Forever, 2-Gether and Living Beauty at the Illusion Theater. At Mixed Blood Theatre, he had roles in Birth of the Boom and Two Queens, One Castle. Dennis performed his tribute to Nat King Cole at two solo concerts at Orchestra Hall. He also performed in Hey City’s Smokey Joe’s Café. He has been a featured performer in Penumbra’s The Amen Corner, Two Trains Running, Get Ready, Black Nativity, Blue and The Piano Lesson. In 2011 Dennis performed in Regina Taylor’s Crowns at Indiana Repertory Theatre and Syracuse Stage.
The final pair of concerts for the 2012-2013 Legends season take place 7 p.m. Saturday, April 20, and 3 p.m. Sunday, April 21. “We’re excited to have Thomasina Petrus present Etta … Tell Mama!,” Dennis says. “Etta pulled no punches in her live performances. Her very frank and blatant delivery of her more suggestive song offerings often left her audiences blushing! Thomasina definitely has the total package needed to capture the very essence of hot and sassy Etta James.”
Single tickets for Legends are $25 ($20 for groups of 10 or more) and can be ordered online at thecapritheater.org,or by calling OvationTix at 866-811-4111.