This is the second time I have attended this incredible charity spectacle pulled together by the immensely talented and magnificently caring Big Ian from the York band HUGE. The event has been running for quite a few years now, although not during Covid, pretty much like everything else. The show is a proper old-school music revue with many artists taking vocal and instrumental duties throughout the evening and all giving their time for free in aid of some fantastic charities. Some of those benefiting are St. Leonard’s Hospice, Dementia Projects In York, and Bereaved Children’s Support in York among others.
The ensemble cast included a huge (at least 30 players) band led by George Hall with the whole evening being hosted warmly and skilfully by Big Ian. Given the news that had just hit he kicked it all off with a minute of silence for Queen Elizabeth on her passing. Singers and musicians performing on the night were Jess Steel, Heather Findlay, Beth McCarthy, Graham Hodge, Daniel Lucas (a.k.a Boss Caine), The Y Street Band, Gary Stewart, Simon Snaize, Annie Donaghy, Kieran O’Malley, Las Vegas Ken, musicians from York Music Forum and the Singing for All Choir led by Jessa Liversidge.
There were some great moments and particular highlights for me were; Big Ian leading the band through Queen’s “The Show Must Go On” at the start. Dan Lucas, backed by a great band, taking a walk through Dire Straits’ hit “Walk Of Life”. Heather Findlay sang a very strong rendition of the Kate Bush classic, “Babooshka”. Graham Hodge was supported beautifully by Kieran O’Malley on a sublime take on “Always On My Mind”. Simon Snaize preformed a rousing “Maggie May”. Gary Stewart’s 250 Ways To Leave Your Lover” was bloody good. The performance of the Bill Wither’s classic “Lean On Me” by George Hall left me emotionally drained, but in a good way. The night closed with a full on audience sing along for the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive” followed by a thumping version of “Chain Reaction”. The latter is not one of my favourite songs, but Jess Steel poured her heart and soul into it and no one in the audience could resist sing and dancing along, including me! A fantastic show for some great causes, truly a night to remember!
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