Niagara Falls singer Marsha McWilson will be bringing her musical talents to Niagara Catholic High School for a festive Christmas event featuring holiday favorites and an all-classic lineup of musical impersonations.
On Saturday, McWilson will team up with veteran performer Richie Derwald for an evening of old-school Vegas style entertainment. Proceeds from the concert will benefit Niagara Catholic’s tuition assistance program.
With two sons enrolled at the school, McWilson said she knows how far a little help can go.
“This is my way of helping and contributing,” McWilson said, adding that her sons, freshman Cameron and senior Jaylan also benefit from the program. “We’re always looking for ways to pay this tuition. So I brought in my friend Richie and we’re going to do an ‘Oldies but Goodies’ Las Vegas Review to benefit Niagara Catholic.”
In addition to performing Christmas music as herself, McWilson will also be performing as several other legendary vocalists, including Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner, Gladys Knight and, of course, Etta James, the impersonation that McWilson has become known for. To add some classic male singers to the mix, Derwald will perform the the hits of Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Tom Jones and Neil Diamond.
McWilson has worn many hats in the entertainment industry, including recording artist and television actress, along with being a regular on the annual Tom Joyner Foundation Fantastic Voyage cruise. In addition to the aforementioned impersonations, she will perform the song “Memories,” by Barbara Streisand, in honor of the late Bishop Trent Walker.
The singer said she had a vision to create a certain atmosphere at the venue, the Niagara Catholic High School gym, to match the theme of the entertainment. She said the space will be converted into a old school Vegas-style dinner club. She added that audience members may be selected to be a part of the show.
“It’s going to be a dinner club set up,” McWilson said. “There’s going to be a dining area, a dance floor and a stage.”
McWilson and Derwald will perform in full costume with a live band, including McWilson’s Beautiful Music Band. They will also perform a few duets together and McWilson will sing a song with her younger son, Cameron. Niagara Falls A’Capella group Steadfast will also perform, followed by line dancing. The event will feature hors d’oeuvres, wine and a 50/50 raffle.
McWilson gave credit to the school’s administrative staff, specifically Principal Robert Cluckey, Assistant Principal Stephanie Owen and Director of Advancement & Alumni Relations Mike Volpe, for their assistance in arranging for the event to take place.
The concert will begin at 6 p.m. at Niagara Catholic High School, 520 66th St., Niagara Falls. Tickets are $20 in advance and available online at marshamcwilson.com or by calling 579-0912, or $25 at the door. Tables can be reserved for groups of eight.
IF YOU GO
• WHAT: Las Vegas Review to benefit Niagara Catholic
• WHERE: Niagara Catholic High School , 520 66th St., Niagara Falls
• WHEN: 6 p.m. Saturday
• TICKETS: $20 in advance and available online at marshamcwilson.com or by calling 579-0912, or $25 at the door.