Schenectady

Chubby Checker and the Rock n Roll/Doo Wop Spectacular coming to Proctors in Schenectady

The Doo Wop Project is co-headlining Saturday night's show at Proctors. (photo provided)
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The Doo Wop Project is co-headlining Saturday night's show at Proctors. (photo provided)

SCHENECTADY – Proctors will transform back into the ’60s this Saturday as the Rock n Roll/Doo Wop Spectacular takes the stage. The four-act show aims to transport audience members back to the era of early rock and roll and blues.

Headlining the Spectacular is rock and roll singer Chubby Checker, who popularized the dance The Twist in 1960 following the release of his cover song, “The Twist.” It will be Checker’s first time on the Proctors stage.

“I want everybody to be there to see what we do,” said Checker. “Whenever Chubby gets the chance to be Chubby, it’s the best thing in the world.”

Checker, who went to the top of the Billboard 100 twice with “The Twist,” maintains that the ’60s were not an era, but rather an “event” that has persisted through the decades to today.

“The dances are still going on and Chubby is bringing all of that to Schenectady,” said Checker. “That’s what they’re coming to see on Saturday night — they’re coming to see something that started in 1960 and they’re coming to see it right now, and it hasn’t changed.”

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Co-headling the show is the Doo Wop Project, a five-man group that revamps modern songs into doo-wop classics. The quintet is made up of Broadway stars Dominic Nolfi, Charl Brown, Dwayne Cooper, Russell Fischer, John Michael Dias and Sonny Paladino, who have worked in shows like “Jersey Boys,” “Motown: The Musical” and “Pippin.”

According to Nolfi, the group’s goal is to bring the doo-wop sound, which originated from jazz and the blues to younger generations.

“I want the new generation to learn about this music, to sing this music because it’s an American tradition. It really is unique to our country,” Nolfi said.

He also noted that, while the typical audience of the Doo Wop Project skews toward older folks, he still often sees younger people attending and enjoying the shows.

“We see three generations of people at our show, and when I see a family of five — you know, mom, dad, grandma, grandma, and the kids — I’m like, ‘ah, we did our job.’”

The Rock n Roll/Doo Wop Spectacular will also feature the doo-wop group The Duprees, and Trish Anderson, a blues singer and New York State Blues Hall of Inductee. The packed lineup is also another point of excitement for Nolfi.

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“We’ve actually never shared the bill with other acts,” said Nolfi. “Usually it’s just our act doing a 90-minute show, so it’s going to be really fun to see.”

As the groups ramp up for Saturday, Checker promises that it will be a performance that people will not want to miss.

“ ‘What’s the most exciting place you’ve ever been?’ — if you ask me that on Saturday, I’ll say, ‘right here, in Schenectady,’ ” said Checker. “We’re gonna thrill ‘em.”

The Rock n Roll/Doo Wop Spectacular will be at Proctors this Saturday at 7 p.m. For more information visit proctors.org.

Categories: Entertainment, Life and Arts, Life and Arts, Schenectady

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