Returning for the 12th straight year to a sold out venue, the Baby Boomer Reunion Concert will be rocking the Centene Center on Friday and Saturday night.
With the theme “Love is in the Air,” the iconic rock and roll show directed by Dr. Kevin White will be highlighting songs from 1955 to 1984 with the word “love” in the title.
“For a song to make the final cut, it must be from those years and it has to have cracked the top 40,” White said. “And only love can be in the title.”
According to White, this was not a simple task. When he first began his research, 637 songs with the word “love” came up on his first search.
“I knew quite a few of them, but I had to sit through all of them, especially the one-hit wonders,” White said. “We try and make the show fun and get a variety of music spanning all the decades. After the second cut, we were down to 250 songs.”
Part of the success of the show is not only in the songs or the themes chosen, but the local entertainers who participate in this summer tradition. As in years past, 50 homegrown musicians and singers will participate.
“When we first started the concert series, a person had to affiliated with Mineral Area College Music Department,” Alan Berry, one of the original performers in the show, said. “Kevin expanded that to musicians and singer who grew up in the area, and I think people are impressed with the local talent.”
With a key member leaving the show during the previous year, White only had 49 members. He needed a one more person, and as luck would have it, the key person had been sitting in the audience for last 11 years.
“I brought in vocalist Alayna Grace Berry,” White said. “I needed a young voice to sing a particular song, and she is really impressive.”
This won’t be the first time on the stage during a Baby Boomers concert for the Farmington High School sophomore.
“It’s a really big privilege and a great opportunity,” the younger Berry said. “I actually got to sing one line in my mother’s song when I was 11 years.”
When directing the yearly production, White tries to pick as many styles as possible. Some of his entertainers have played professionally, some at their church, while others sang with their high school choir.
“I get to be an all-star manager,” White said. “I try and pick the best musician – they move on and off the stage – so I have the best musicians for every song.”
For many of the singers, the show is mostly about the musicians and how wonderful they perform.
“It’s really about the band,” Marilyn Berry said. “They reproduce every tract perfectly.”
White believes the success of the show has to be contributed to the family-like environment felt by everyone involved with the performance. During the rehearsal the director sees the support everyone has for each other.
“It’s like a little family reunion,” White said. “Everyone mingles and the listen to each other. They hang around because they don’t know when they will need to go on stage next.”
Friday and Saturday night performance begins at 7 p.m. at the Centene Center. Tickets for both shows have sold out.