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February 2017

Stars of Auburn’s Immaculate Heart of Mary community will shine on Saturday, February 18th at 7 PM as the parish presents a fun-filled night of music and laughter to raise money for its pipe organ project.

A parade of talented performers from the Sacred Heart-St. Philip cluster will grace the stage at CABARET NIGHT, hosted by guest entertainer and local favorite Louis Philippe in a show he says is “reminiscent of the old days when parish halls were the center of social and family life and talents shows and variety shows were held regularly.”

The emcee and singer will present an array of his own trademark songs in the program which will also feature a wide variety of individuals and groups who have all stepped up to show their support for the Sister Elizabeth Platt Pipe Organ Fund for Sacred Heart Church.

Featured acts include:  The Noddin Boys (Lee and Bruce), Alana Gagnon, Chicks With Sticks Steel Drummers (Jill Longstaff, Deanna Kersey, Diana Mawhinney and Josh Caron), Ben Daigneault, Emma Daigneault, Foothills Jazz Trio (Jim Perkins, Siiri Stinson and Dan Perkins), Shelley Harris and Rita Gagnon, Mark Vaillancourt, Ernie Gagne, Lorraine Cote and Pam Vaillancourt, Tony Lajudice, George Harris and Julie Chasse, and Neil Marchessault.

Carol DeRoy has been spear-heading the creation and development of the pipe organ effort and is also Production Coordinator for CABARET NIGHT, responsible for lining up the talent and working with the Committee to transform an ordinary parish hall into a live Cabaret setting with glitz and pizzaz.

The experience of working with so many musicians and singers (many professional) willing and eager to perform gratis for this cause has been a high note for DeRoy.  “The reception and excitement this event has stirred up in our community is truly amazing,” she said, noting “there is a demand for this type of entertainment, for an enjoyable and inexpensive evening filled with music, laughter and camaraderie.”

One person who is also excited about the event is Sacred Heart’s Music Director Pam Vaillancourt who began her journey in Music Ministry with the Children’s Choir in second grade.  With her years of experience in music and theater, onstage and backstage, she has been instrumental in developing the singing congregation.

“Music is very important and helps elevates one’s thoughts,” says Vaillancourt.  “I love how everyone gets involved and participates in the Mass, and I love hearing everyone singing along with the choir.”

In addition to singing in CABARET NIGHT along with her mother Lorraine Cote, Vaillancourt will wear the Stage Manager’s hat, tending to the needs and easing the nerves of the performers. “Hopefully this will be the first of a series of events that will showcase the incredible talents we have in the Lewiston/Auburn area.”

The Sister Elizabeth Platt Pipe Organ Fund for Sacred Heart Church was established in 2015 to highlight the richness and significance of the church’s liturgical celebrations through sacred music and inspire active participation within the community.  At age 85, Sister Elizabeth Platt, C.O.C., currently serves as Pastoral Associate, and has dedicated 30 years of service to Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in religious education and the RCIA Program.  A period of her life she often speaks about with great fondness is her years of ministry teaching children to sing the parts of the Mass.  She also worked with the Boys’ Choir in Boston before coming to Maine.

All proceeds from CABARET NIGHT will go to the Sr. Elizabeth Platt Pipe Organ Fund for the purpose of refurbishing and installing a used 1954 Casavant Opus 2277 Pipe Organ which, through a donation to the parish, was acquired from the Sisters of Notre Dame in Toledo, Ohio, after their chapel closed.

In addition to helping defray expenses for the purchase, relocation, and installation of the new instrument as well as on-going maintenance and improvements, the fund will provide education and training programs to parish organists, choirs and cantors, as well as subsidized organ lessons for deserving and talented young people.  David E. Wallace & Co. LLC of Gorham has been selected for the design work which is expected to be completed soon, DeRoy reported.

“There’s a noticeably inspiring energy at the Immaculate Heart of Mary parish,” Philippe noted.  “Having been involved with Music Ministry for over 40 years, I know how important good music is to the Liturgy and I know that music can be filled with His anointing. So when a church invests in its music program, it opens the door for the Spirit to work,” the singer added.

Tickets are $12/adults and $6/students.  FMI, contact the IHM office at 782-8096.



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