Seventy years have passed since the end of the Second World War, and in commemoration, Sally Evans and Molly Boyd once again bring their tribute to the music of that era.
For the audience, Songs of the War Years is a sentimental musical journey through the era of the war but for Sally Evans it’s a dream come true.
While sitting in a coffee shop with a good friend 10 years ago, Evans shared her dream of performing a tribute to the men and women who lived through those years. She grew up in East Kelowna surrounded by that music and the memories of her childhood time spent around the piano with her family are precious.
Evans already knew the words to almost every song, and with her experience working with seniors in recreation for many years it was a dream that, with a little encouragement, could very possibly come true. Her friend, Diana, believed strongly in her vision and Evans began looking for a piano player extraordinaire.
And that is when Molly Boyd came in to the picture.
“Well-known in her hometown of Vernon, Molly was and is the perfect musician for the show,” said Evans. “She not only plays by ear she also knows an amazing number of songs plus she has the energy and a genuine commitment to seniors to match mine.”
The two musicians make a great pair on stage and off.
It has been 10 years since Evans and Boyd began their journey of entertaining together. They have performed the War Songs show as well as two other shows to more than 12,000 people at more than 90 gigs throughout the Okanagan and the Kootenays.
“Our enthusiasm hasn’t waned a bit,” said Evans. “We both love the music and being on stage and really enjoy the reactions of and interacting with the audience.
“We love to bring the audience together as one through laughter, song and, sometimes, tears.”
The format of Songs of the War Years has changed three times over the past 10 years but both musicians as well as audience members polled agree not to change it too much. There are songs and stories that just cannot be left out.
“We decided years ago that these songs should be heard every year around Remembrance Day as we must not forget the sacrifices that were made by so many during World War Two.
“With so many of our veterans passing on, we encourage the families of veterans to see the show. The memories are priceless and singing along is definitely encouraged. Younger people will be amazed at how many of the lyrics they know and the show gives an education and insight into wartime. Audience members of all ages comment on how they love the music, the energy and camaraderie.”
The 10th annual Songs of the War Years show is Nov. 6 at the Schubert Centre. Doors open at 1 p.m. and showtime is 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets are $8 and are on sale now at Schubert Centre and at the door if available.