LIHUE — Randy Leonard and Kauai Voices ain’t fooling around.
Their upcoming concerts will be great music. We ain’t kidding, either.
Expect nothing less from a show that’s called, “Ain’t that Great Muusic!”
“It’s a light fun show with great music,” said Leonard, artistic director of the group.
The auditioned choir of more than 30 voices will treat audiences to songs of ragtime, spirituals, musicals, pop, jazz, rock/blues, swing, and choral classics. Concerts are 7:30 p.m. June 17 and 18 and 3 p.m. June 19 at St. Michael’s and All Angels Episcopal Church.
Each song will have a common theme: The entire show is comprised of music using the word “ain’t” — and we ain’t kidding about that!”
“There’s the word ain’t in them somewhere,” Leonard said.
Only one song doesn’t have the word ain’t in it, and that’s from the musical, “Ain’t Mishaving.”
“Music is collected from multiple genres to create a show that ain’t soon to be forgotten,” says a press release
Leonard said each season has a different theme. Past themes include “Simply the Best,” “Made in the USA,” and “The Music of Life.”
This year, while doing some research, Leonard was struck by how many songs had the word ain’t in the lyrics or in the title. One, for stance, is “That Ain’t Right,” a song made famous by Nat King Cole.
“There’s great music, fantastic music, with the word ain’t in it,” Leonard said. “
I said, ‘Let’s make a whole show of it.’”
And a show it will be, with a variety of styles and music, with solos, duets and small group performances, along, of course, with the entire choir.
It promises to be a fast, high-energy show, with songs like “The Joint is Jumpin.’” There’s singing, along with a bit of acting, drama and comedy.
Michelle Blake, a Kauai Voices member, performs the song, “Older Ladies,” with a group of what she referred to as “divine women,” in reference to a line in the song, “Older Ladies are divine.”
It’s a piece of comedy about growing older that’s sure to inspire smiles and laughs.
“If that’s the reason that you don’t love me, then maybe that’s not love,” so goes the song.
While they have good times, those in Kauai Voices take this seriously. Rehearsals for the two-hour, 20-song show that includes intermission began in March.
“When they step on their stage, they’re going to know it cold,” Leonard said.
Blake doesn’t mind the hours to be ready, as she loves to sing, like all the Kauai Voices folks.
“It’s one of the best things you an do for yourself,” she said.
Leonard said each season also usually brings in some new talent as more people try out and others need to take time off.
“So it revolves a bit,” he said.
Kauai Voices is popular. It used to put on two shows each season, but because they sold out, they added a third last season. And they have a third this season, too. “The main thing is, it’s a great, upbeat show,” Leonard said.
“If there’s one style you don’t like, wait a moment and you’re into other styles,” he said.
The big finish is to “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”
It’s more than a singing group. Members become friends, sharing what’s happening in their lives and even rehearsing together outside of the regular practices.
There is a strong camaraderie, Leonard said, which shines through for the audience to see and feel during shows.
“The choir is a group effort. It’s no one person. That’s the beauty of this thing,” he said.
‘Ain’t that Great Muusic!”
7:30 p.m. June 17 and 18 and 3 p.m. June 19
St. Michael’s and All Angels Episcopal Church
Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door.