Broadway Comes to Port Hope

Port Hope’s South Street will become Broadway on Saturday, September 17th, as the United Church will be hosting The Best of Broadway, a concert of favourite songs from musical theatre. Four professional actor/singer/dancers will be performing at this Benefit Concert. No admission fee will be charged and everyone is invited to attend. Organizers are asking that attendees make a donation, offering what they can. “We are pleased to be hosting this concert and we look forward to having a big audience on hand to hear them. We welcome everyone,” says Rev. Kevin Moore, the minister at Port Hope United Church.

The four singers are volunteering their talents and they enjoy entertaining. However, there is another motive. One of the singers, Tess Benger, has started an organization, Canadian Green Alliance (not associated with the Green political party). Tess was concerned with what she saw in theatres that could be harmful to the environment. She and her colleagues have come up with ideas and suggestions for theatres to be more environmentally friendly, and many theatres across Canada have been implementing the plan. She now wants to share their plan with other venues such as churches and community centres. More information about the Canadian Green Alliance can be found here:

The proceeds from the concert donations will be shared between the Canadian Green Alliance and Port Hope United Church. The church’s half will be put towards upgrading their sound system, both for their Sunday morning services and for those who wish to use the church as a meeting space or concert venue.

The four singers are:

THOMAS ALDERSON – Thomas has been on stage at Port Hope’s Capitol Theatre as Tommy Djilas in The Music Man and Moody Spurgeon MacPherson in Anne of Green Gables. He was in the cast of Kinky Boots at the Royal Alexandra Theatre in Toronto, and his credits include a North American tour as Mordred in Camelot. He has performed in theatres across Canada in roles such as Mary Sunshine in Chicago, Cagelle in La Cage aux Folles, Bud Frump in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and Prince Herbert in Spamalot. Coming up next, Thomas will be Assistant Director of White Christmas at the Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake.

TESS BENGER – Congratulations are in order as Tess was recently nominated for a Dora Award for Outstanding Performance in a Featured Role for Sweeney Todd at Talk is Free Theatre. The Dora Awards are Toronto’s equivalent to Broadway’s Tony Awards. Tess was previously nominated for her role as Dot in Sunday in the Park with George at Eclipse Theatre. She has had leading roles in shows such as Anne in Anne of Green Gables at the Charlottetown Festival, Dinah in The Philadelphia Story at the Shaw Festival, Sophie in Mamma Mia at Edmonton’s Citadel Theatre, and Sally Bowles in Cabaret at London’s Grand Theatre.

LILI CONNOR – Lili is best known for her recurring role as a Jazzagal on the multi Emmy-winning hit TV series Schitt’s Creek. She has also been on other TV series such as Saving Hope and The Handmaid’s Tale. Lili starred as Mama Cass in Dream a Little Dream, The Mamas & the Papas musical at London’s Grand Theatre. She was also in Belles Soeurs, the musical adaptation of the famous Quebecois play, which was in theatres from Ontario to Prince Edward Island. Other theatre credits include The Full Monty, Legally Blonde, and Grease.

NICK SETTIMI – Nick will be familiar to Port Hope audiences for his work at the Capitol Theatre. He was Benny in Guys and Dolls, Merlin in King Arthur The Panto, Ursula the sea-witch octopus in The Little Mermaid, and Lazer Wolf in Fiddler on the Roof. He’s performed in roles such as Patsy in Spamalot, Willard in Footloose, William Barfee in 25th Annual Spelling Bee, Smee in Peter Pan, and Zeke/The Lion in The Wizard of Oz in theatres across the province.

The singers will be accompanied by the church’s music director, David Sawicki.

Who: Four Canadian musical theatre stars:  Thomas Alderson, Tess Benger, Lili Connor, & Nick Settimi

What: The Best of Broadway – a free benefit concert, please donate what you can

When: Saturday, September 17th, 7:00 p.m.

Where: Port Hope United Church, 34 South Street, Port Hope

Why: Fundraiser for Port Hope United Church and the Canadian Green Alliance


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