Bank tellers and managers are volunteering as concert promoters as the Scotiabank Oak Bay branch is selling tickets to the April 18 concert Sinatra and the Count, a big band show at Oak Bay High’s Dave Dunnet Theatre. Proceeds will go to the Sno’uyutth Legacy Scholarship fund. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Sinatra and the Count return to Oak Bay

Concert to support Sno’uyutth Legacy Scholarship

Visitors to Oak Bay Avenue might notice a black-and-white lifesized cutout of Old Blue Eyes showed up this week.

You’ll have to peer into the Scotiabank branch but there he is, Frank Sinatra, cigarette dangling and all.

And when Frank is here, it means big band is coming to Oak Bay High, in the styles of Frank Sinatra and Count Basie on April 18.

The show, called Sinatra and The Count, features jazz singer Joe Coughlin with the Phil Dwyer Orchestra, an 18-piece big band. It’s the third time bringing the popular show back to the Dave Dunnet Community Theatre, presented by the Oak Bay Rotary Foundation, with proceeds going to the endowment for the Sno’uyutth Legacy Scholarship.

“It might not be normal to sell show tickets at a bank but it’s normal for us,” said branch manager Jamie Talbot. “The Scotiabank Oak Bay branch is selling tickets and a group of our employees are going to volunteer by working the night of the show.”

Sinatra and the Count is a celebration of the musical collaboration between Frank Sinatra and Count Basie Orchestra that was captured on the critically-acclaimed 1966 recording, Sinatra at the Sands, said concert promoter Joe Blake.

“The Phil Dwyer Orchestra features Dwyer, a Juno Award and Order of Canada-winning tenor sax player, and a who’s who of Canadian jazz [musicians],” Blake said.

That includes P.J. Perry of Edmonton, an alto saxophonist who is also a Juno Award and Order of Canada winner.

READ MORE: Sno’uyutth Scholarship sweetens summer for native friendship camp counsellor

READ ALSO: Coughlin croons saloon standards for Sno’uyutth Legacy at Dunnet Theatre

Dwyer put together this all-star orchestra conducted by jazz veteran Bryan Stovell to back Coughlin’s singing of Sinatra-inspired big band arrangements by Billy May, Nelson Riddle and Quincy Jones.

“It’s at the point that musicians want to play just because it’s such a good band,” Blake said.

Oak Bay Beach Hotel is also supporting the show, by hosting some of the musicians traveling in from out of town.

The Sno’uyutth Legacy Scholarship is awarded annually to a graduating Oak Bay High School Student of First Nations, Inuit or Métis descent and has now supported four students’ post-secondary education.

Tickets are available at $40 (cash only) from Scotiabank Oak Bay or through the Royal Macpherson Theatre Society Box Office and online for $43.50. For tickets and more information contact McPherson Box Office, rmts.bc.ca/events or call 250-386-6121.

READ ALSO: Coughlin has seen his share of smoky saloons

reporter@oakbaynews.com

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