ABOYNE – The Gallery Concert Series held its first event of 2023 on Jan. 22 at the Wellington County Museum.
An audience of about 80 was entertained as Brad Halls sat at the keyboard of the splendid grand piano and led the audience through a musical tour of the career of Bing Crosby.
Beginning before Bing Crosby’s first hit, Halls followed the singer and actor’s career through his recordings and movies of the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s, ending with his last #1 hit in 1956, True Love from the movie High Society.
As well as sophisticated renderings of the tunes, Halls’ performance used the songs associated with Bing Crosby as a platform for a short history of American popular music.
His commentary provided context, clearly illustrating the changing musical styles and social attitudes reflected in the songs and movies.
The audience was thoroughly engaged with the performance and it was clear that the majority of the attendees were familiar with the melodies, despite the songs having been written and recorded before they were born. This was evident from the under-the-breath humming heard from all sides of the auditorium.
Brad Halls is a retired lawyer, now living back in his hometown of Fergus.
He has always led an active “double life,” as lawyer by day and pianist, singer, actor, arranger and composer by night.
He is host and performer of “Mid-Day Music at Melville,” a weekly series of one-hour concerts on Wednesdays from noon to 1pm every week.
These free-admission performances feature Brad on piano playing songs from the “American Songbook.”
The next Gallery Concert takes place on Feb. 12 at 2pm at the Wellington County Museum when the Cantabile Strings will play Instrumental Songs of Love. Tickets are $10 at the door.
Submitted by Susan Thorning
Special to the Advertiser