Marty Steele is ready to share the love around the Osborne Bay Pub Sunday in a Valentine’s Day tribute. (Photo submitted)

Love will be in the air at Crofton during a Valentine’s Day tribute to Broadway

Show tunes and anecdotes highlight Sunday’s Pat’s House of Jazz performance

A Valentine’s Tribute to Broadway is heading to Pat’s House of Jazz at the Osborne Bay Pub in Crofton on Sunday, Feb. 11.

The show, which garnered great reviews at a sold-out Roxy Theatre on Gabriola Island, was put together by Gabriola’s Roger Christie and Nanaimo’s versatile keyboardist Marty Steele.

Expect your favourite songs from The Wizard of Oz, Show Boat, Phantom of the Opera, Guys & Dolls, Oklahoma, My Fair Lady, Fiddler on the Roof and more — sprinkled with humourous tales of Christie’s life as a young boy soprano in Winnipeg.

Christie will regale you with anecdotes about life growing up with his “madcap, eccentric folks” and his escapes into song and real Broadway shows —until his voice suddenly changed during an NBC audition.

“Think Woody Allen’s Radio Days,” said Steele, a talented musical leader/arranger and keyboardist, who will be joined by Larry Miller on woodwinds. “Together we can create a full orchestral sound.”

Christie is an impresario and former restaurant owner of the Raspberry Café on Gabriola Island, which for years was the only jazz venue there, said Steele.

“For years he hired jazz-style entertainers to keep that music going on the island, sometimes at great risk financially.”

Since meeting Christie three years ago, the two have collaborated on several shows.

Vancouver vocalist Jenny Morgan rounds out the group as Christie’s duet partner.

Steele says their aim is to honour Broadway musicals that contributed so much to the jazz tradition.

“Many of the songs in the jazz musicians’ Real Book started as Broadway musical numbers that were adapted by jazz musicians in their off hour.

“Our approach will be to play the music respecting the original intention of the composer and lyricist on some songs and play some of my own arrangements adapted from the Real Book, just as Nelson Riddle did for Frank Sinatra on old Cole Porter tunes.

“We will also do a few jazz instrumental versions where Larry and I can improvise. This is a full variety show,” he added.

Table reservations are recommended for this show. Call (250) 324-2245. Tables are held until 1:30 p.m.

The show is part of the weekly jazz series at the pub, 1534 Joan Ave. in Crofton, Sundays at 2 p.m., presented by the Chemainus Valley Cultural Arts Society.

Admission is $15. For information, phone 250-324-2245 or visit

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