Performing Arts Center Announces Summer Series
Three outstanding concerts are headlining the Kent State Tuscarawas Performing Arts Center’s Summer Series. Motown stars The Four Tops kick off the series on June 13, followed by Larry Gatlin on July 18 and Michael Stanley & the Resonators on August 29. All three concerts begin at 7:30 p.m.
The Four Tops’ first Motown hit, “Baby I Need Your Loving” in 1964, made them stars and their sixties track record on the label is indispensable to any retrospective of the decade. Their songs, soulful and bittersweet, were across-the-board successes. “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch),” a no. 1 R&B and Pop smash in 1965, is one of Motown’s longest-running chart toppers; it was quickly followed by a longtime favorite, “It’s The Same Old Song” (no. 2 R&B/no. 5 pop). Their commercial peak was highlighted by a romantic trilogy: the no. 1 “Reach Out I’ll Be There,” “Standing In The Shadows Of Love” (no. 2 R&B/no. 6 pop) and “Bernadette” (no. 3 R&B/no. 4 pop). Other Tops hits from the decade included “Ask The Lonely,” “Shake Me, Wake Me (When It’s Over),” “Something About You,” “You Keep Running Away,” “7-Rooms Of Gloom” and their covers of “Walk Away Renee” and “If I Were A Carpenter.”
County legend Larry Gatlin is performing a solo show, Will the Real Larry Gatlin Please Sit Down! He will perform his hits with an acoustic guitar and share memorable stories from his life and career.
Gatlin rose to fame as Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers. The close family harmonies of Larry, Rudy and Steve Gatlin gave the trio a signature sound that led to country classics like “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer To You).” The brothers won a GRAMMY Award for their 1976 breakthrough hit, “Broken Lady,” and reached #1 with “I Just Wish You Were Someone I Love” two years later. Along with five career nominations for the ACM Vocal Group, the Gatlin Brothers picked up three 1979 trophies – Single of the Year (“All The Gold In California”), Album of the Year (Straight Ahead) and Male Vocalist of the Year for Larry. To date, the brothers hold 36 Top 40 Hits to their credit.
Michael Stanley of the rock band Michael Stanley & the Resonators has had a music career spanning more than 40 years. He played with the bands Silk, Michael Stanley Band, the Ghost Poets and Michael Stanley & the Resonators. His hits include “He Can’t Love You” and “In the Heartland” which made the Top 40 Billboard. After the Michael Stanley Band broke up in 1986, Stanley began performing with his latest band, the Resonators. Their setlist includes old favorites and clever covers interspersed with fresh originals. Stanley’s most recent albums include Shadowland, The Hang, The Ride and The Job.
“Michael Stanley is the hometown rock and roll guy who made it big,” said Mike Morelli, general manager of the Performing Arts Center. “As we began programming for the Summer series and our 2015-16 season, we utilized an online survey and various focus groups. Based upon those results, we decided to include Michael Stanley & the Resonators because he was in great demand. He is very popular in Ohio.”
In addition to his music career, Stanley is the afternoon drive disc jockey for Cleveland radio station WNCX. He was the co-host of PM Magazine on Cleveland television’s WJW from 1987 to 1990.
The range of ticket prices for the shows are: The Four Tops $33 to $50; Will the Real Larry Gatlin Please Sit Down! $27 to $42; and Michael Stanley and the Resonators $29 to $36. Tickets for all three shows go on sale May 13 at 9 a.m. Pre-sales for Performing Arts Center members begin May 11. Tickets can be purchased at the Performing Arts Center box office, online at www.kent.edu/tusc/pac or by calling 330-308-6400. The box office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free parking is available for all shows. The Summer Series and the 2015-16 season are sponsored by Michael Taylor Insurance & Financial, the local Allstate Agency.