Performers Aaron Hastelow and Michelle Bouey come back to P.E.I. to stage a show with their friends on Dec. 28
Aaron Hastelow and Michelle Bouey are teaming up to host Without You — A Homecoming Cabaret at The Guild on Dec. 28. SUBMITTED PHOTO
Aaron Hastelow and Michelle Bouey want to show their appreciation to Prince Edward Islanders.
That’s because these talented performers have received great support from their teachers and directors over the years.
“Growing up, singing with Le Ragazze and performing with the Island Dance Academy inspired us. The fact that we were able to do both on P.E.I. is incredible,” says Bouey, who is teaming up with Hastelow to host Without You — A Homecoming Cabaret at The Guild in Charlottetown on Dec. 28 at 7:30 p.m.
Now living in Toronto, the childhood friends also want to do something for their family and friends and others who have followed and supported them over the years.
That’s because, ever since they graduated from the musical theatre program at Sheridan College, their careers have taken off and they’ve been extremely busy.
This past year, Bouey appeared in Over the Rainbow, the CBC-TV show dedicated to casting the Andrew Lloyd Webber/Mirvish production of the Wizard of Oz and, more recently, took part in the workshop for Marathon of Hope, a new musical by John Connolly and Jim Betts. Likewise, after a successful season with the Charlottetown Festival, Hastelow moved to Toronto and began rehearsals with the Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, where he is returning this spring for a second season.
“Basically, we really wanted to come back to P.E.I. and share what we’ve learned over the last four years and what we’ve worked on professionally since college,” says Hastelow, who is excited about their holiday production.
So is Bouey.
“While we wanted to do something together we also wanted to include our friends,” says the soprano, adding Saturday’s guest list includes Tessa Mossey, Brittany Banks, Natalie Sullivan, Nathan Keoughan, Mark Sampson, Kyla Cook, Haley Doherty, Cameron Francis and Jessica Gallant.
“Our friends are really a huge part of why we’ve come this far and how we’ve grown. That’s because we’ve all performed together and learned from each other growing up. Also, like us, they’ve all gone on to pursue a career in the arts,” says Bouey.
That night the performers will be backed up by a four-piece band, led by Noah MacDougall and featuring Andrew Murray, Alex Keoughan and Thayne Campbell.
In addition, Tina Bouey will join the pair with her violin and Jon Matthews will appear on guitar for an acoustic set.
“The program will range from classical to Beatles songs to Fleetwood Mac. At one point, there will be 20 of us on stage,” says Hastelow.
As a treat, he and Bouey, who were cast as lovers Roger and Mimi in Sheridan College’s production of Rent, will sing selections from the musical, including Seasons of Love, One Song Glory and Without You.
“This is a way to bring back a bit of what we do to our home province,” says Hastelow.
As well, each song will come with a story.
“Most were chosen because they tie into our personal life. So we’ll share them as well,” says Bouey, who will perform Over the Rainbow.
“After singing it quite a few times, I know it extremely well. But, this time I’m really excited to sing it with my own take on it.”
Sally Cole is a features writer with The Guardian. She welcomes comments about her column as well as suggestions for future columns from readers. She may be reached at email@example.com or by phone at 629-6000, ext. 6054.