Lawrence Welk knew what American television audiences wanted and delivered just that over the 27 years his show ran from 1955 to 1982. Harkening back to “those good old days,” the theme for this year’s Lake Oswego High School Windjammer Variety Show is “Call Me Old Fashioned.” Here’s why Welk himself would love to be in the audience.
- TOP QUALITY VOCALISTS. Windjammers is an auditioned elite choir that features the best that Lake Oswego High School choir director Cole Blume has to offer. Students go through a selective process where they must prove their skill in not only singing but reading music and learning songs quickly. “That’s important,” Blume explains, “because Windjammers do three to four dozen pieces a year—about four times more than any of the other choirs sing.”
- SCHMALTZ. Welk was known for his wholesome brand of entertainment and classic sound. “This year we are really going for something that looks that way, sounds that way, but also feels that way to people,” explains Blume. So expect to see good singing, snappy dancing, elegant costumes, a live band, an accordion player, and yes, bubble machines.
- RIGOROUS REHEARSAL SCHEDULE. Welk was known to demand commitment from his performers. Windjammer members have been working on the Variety Show since September when they first started brainstorming song choices. Five weeks of rehearsals lead up to opening night.
- BIG BAND SOUND. For the past three years Lake Oswego’s Jazz Band has performed with Windjammers in the Variety Show. One of the criteria for song choice selection is published band accompaniment.
- VARIETY. In addition to the Windjammers, the Jazz Band, a girls’ and boys’ barbershop quartet, seven solos, and dancing, forty elementary students will perform onstage during the “Old Time Rock n Roll” number. They participated in a day camp put on by the Windjammers earlier in the year and this is their 5 minutes of fame.
- CLASSIC PLAY LIST. Some of the hits featured include: “Feeling Good” (released in 1965 but updated by artists like Michael Bublé), “I Won’t Dance” (a Frank Sinatra hit), and the Judy Garland/Barbra Streisand duet, “Happy Days Are Here Again/C’mon Get Happy.”
Show dates and times are Thursday, February 28, Friday, March 1 (includes the Windjammer Camp Kids), Saturday, March 2, at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $10/General Admission, $8/children, seniors and students. Lake Oswego High School Auditorium, 2501 Country Club Road.