Dragons & Mythical Beasts

A scene from the play ‘Dragons & Mythical Beasts’ is shown. It’s a special presentation as part of the St. Joseph Performing Arts Association’s 2022-23 season.

Tribute shows, cultural celebrations and the son of a music legend will make up the next season for St. Joseph Performing Arts Association.

Announcing its 2022-23 season, the group is aiming to bring in shows people have asked for for years.

“I was really aiming for shows that people keep telling me they want to see,” said Beth Sharp, executive director for PAA.

All shows will be performed at the Missouri Theater.

Tito Puente, Jr

and his Big Band

When: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 17

The son of the legendary bandleader, musician and “The Simpsons” guest voice, Tito Puente Jr. continues his father’s legacy of celebrating and performing Latin and Afro-Cuban jazz for the masses.

“Mid-September to mid-October is Hispanic Music Heritage Month ... We thought, ‘Well, why not? Why not bring somebody that has a connection to, Latin and Hispanic music?’” Sharp said. “His father, Tito Puente, is well known for his big band Mambo orchestra. So Tito Puente Jr., his son, is honoring his father’s legacy and making it into his own kind of music.”

“BritBeat: A Tribute

to The Beatles”

When: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 1

It’s been a while since PAA booked a Beatles tribute act to rock the Missouri Theater. Sharp said after she saw the multimedia presentation that BritBeat does, she knew they were the band to do it.

“They’re just gonna go through that whole span of the Beatles. And it’s a whole multimedia event because they’re going to have videos and costume changes and all kinds of things,” Sharp said.

With more than 1,000 shows performed all over the world, the group dubs itself “America’s Premier Tribute” band for The Beatles. Using video and stills, the group takes the audience from the small clubs in Liverpool to inside a “Yellow Submarine” to Abbey Road.

“Ireland with

Michael LIVE”

When: 7:30 p.m. Nov. 19

During the pandemic, PAA tried its hand at virtual performances to give people something entertaining to watch and hopefully cover some bills through online sales. It was a noble experiment that didn’t catch on.

“I have to admit St. Joe really didn’t embrace the whole virtual (concept),” Sharp said.

One of their best showings was a performance in Ireland by Emmy award-nominated singer Michael Londra.

“Those that did purchase those tickets and watched it, they thought that was probably one of the best ones of the virtual shows that we offered. And it was. It was fantastic,” Sharp said.

Bringing Londra to St. Joseph for a live performance, Sharp said she’s excited to show off what a dynamic performer he is when he takes the Missouri Theater stage, sharing stories about Ireland while singing and dancing.

“Elvis, Elvis, Elvis”

When: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 28, 2023

Elvis Presley has such a range of songs and eras that one person can’t capture it all. That is why this touring Elvis tribute has two performers playing “The King,” as one pays homage to his early days and the other does his later years.

“It should be really fun to watch them cover the span of his career,” Sharp said.

“Dragons &

Mythical Beasts”

When: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 4, 2023 A rare, special treat for PAA’s season, “Dragons & Mythical Beasts” comes from the creators of the smash-hit puppet performance “Dinosaurs World Live.” Similar to that, this performance uses puppets to turn the stage into a wonderful, magical place as the main characters try to earn a place as legends without waking the dragon.

“It’s a family show and it’s coming from London’s West End and it’s touring here in the States. We got a chance to get to jump in on that tour,” Sharp said.

“Waylon, Willie & Cash”

When: 7:30 p.m. March 11, 2023

While country music has been a request in past PAA seasons, organizers wanted to find the right act for the genre. After seeing this tribute to Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash, Sharp said she knew this was the one.

“There’s lots of tributes out there that call themselves The Highwaymen ... We feel like we found the best one because we looked at each one and, as far as I’m concerned, this was the one that sounds most like them,” she said.

“David Brighton’s

Space Oddity”

When: 7:30 p.m. April 15, 2023

David Bowie tribute artist David Brighton isn’t a normal performer paying honor to a late legend. He’s lifting up a singer with which he has a personal connection.

“He actually worked with David Bowie. He was in a commercial that they filmed in England that had both of them in it. So he’s worked with them. He looks like him. He sounds like him,” Sharp said.

The multimedia show follows Bowie as he goes from a space-aged rock idol to a polished mainstream media star.

Tickets for all shows are on sale now. They can be purchased at www.performingarts-saintjoseph.org or by calling 816-279-1225.

Andrew Gaug can be reached at andrew.gaug@newspressnow.com.

Follow him on Twitter: @NPNOWGaug

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