by Stephen Dafoe
Alberta beef, the music of the Beatles, and local beers are on the menu for the first of the Champion Regional Series events. The evening out takes place Apr. 9 at the Morinville Rendez-Vous Centre.
Musician Paul Smith said they chose music of the Beatles for the first show because of their near-universal appeal.
“We chose the Beatles because they’re an iconic band that are really fun to play their music and really fun to listen to their music,” Smith said. “We want to create a date night atmosphere for the people of Morinville. This music just naturally fits that. You can dance to it. You can sit back and watch if you want a more kind of theatre presentation. It really fits so many tastes for music.”
But Smith is quick to point out the upcoming show is not a Beatles impersonation show. You won’t see four musicians in bowl cuts and 1960s clothes. Rather, it is a group of regional musicians putting their own spin on the music.
“You’re going to see local musicians playing music you’re going to recognize and have fun with, but it’s going to the local musician’s style on it.”
To that end, Smith says Ed Bulger will take on a more note-by-note rendition of Beatles classics, Allan Pangburn plays the more bluesy tunes, and Smith takes on the more rock and roll numbers.
“We get to put a bit of our own flavour onto the great flavour that we all love,” Smith said.
But putting a regional twist on Beatles music is not the only flavour planned for the event. Chef Doug Adsit from the Green Bean is planning an English buffet ahead of the show featuring Alberta beef, Yorkshire pudding, chicken and all the trimmings. The main component, and keeping with Champion’s philosophy, Adsit will be sourcing fresh regional ingredients.
“Regional ingredients are very important because we are supporting our local farmers, and we are supporting everything local,” Adsit said. We go back to taste. We can taste the freshness. We want to taste the earthiness in the food.”
But though the fare will be decidedly British, Adsit said not to expect the stereotypical blandness of British food. “Everything is going to taste wonderful,” he said. “We’re going to take the UK and turn it upside down.”
Tickets for the event are $50 per person, including buffet and show. The licensed event takes place Apr. 9 with cocktails at 6 p.m., dinner and 7 p.m. and live show at 8 p.m. Tickets are on sale at the Green Bean.