The concert will be conducted by Dr. Melissa Arasi and Wes Stoner and presented June 1 at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. and June 2 at 3 p.m. at the Falany Performing Arts Center of Reinhardt University.
Tickets for the performances must be purchased in advance.
The Copacabana, which opened in 1940, gave many well-known stars their first great exposure and was the setting for many films, said Bea Flint, a member of the Chorale.
“It had a Brazilian décor, a Latin-themed orchestra, and a chorus line of dancers with sequined costumes and pink hair or fruited turbans,” Flint said in a release about the concert.
Some of the headliners for the club were Danny Thomas, Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole, Rosemary Clooney, Perry Como, Bette Midler and Johnny Ray, she said.
After the mid-1970s, the club moved several times, closing intermittently and featuring discotheque, hip-hop and salsa-themed programs.
The concert will feature popular songs from the Great American Songbook and catchy Latin dance rhythms including the bolero, the mamba and the samba or Brazilian bossa nova, Flint said.
“Copacabana,” written by Barry Manilow and arranged by Arasi, will open and close the program. Also heard will be “Banana Boat Song,” which became Harry Belafonte’s signature song, and “Besame Mucho,” which in 1999 was determined to be the most sung and recorded Spanish language song in the world. Also featured will be “Mack the Knife,” written by Kurt Weill with lyrics by Bertolt Brecht for the debut of “The Three Penny Opera” in Berlin in 1928.
Arasi is in her 11th year serving as a supervisor of performing arts and theater for the Cobb County School District in Marietta.
She was the choral director and Fine Arts Department chair at Walton High School for 14 years. Arasi is the conductor of the Atlanta Women’s Chorus, served four years at the Georgia Institute of Technology as Visiting Assistant Professor and conductor of the Women’s Chorus.
Choirs under her direction have performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, and in Montreal, Quebec City, Venice, Florence, Rome, Vienna and Budapest, with her women’s choir receiving second place in an international festival in Prague.
Having experience and expertise with all ages, she frequently serves as a guest clinician, conductor and judge for all levels of choral ensembles through the Southeast. Arasi has been a member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus primarily under the direction of Robert Shaw and is a member of MENC, GMEA and ACDA.
A native of Canton, Stoner is the choral director at Hillgrove High School in the Cobb County School District, where he teaches and conducts the Chamber Choir, the Select Women’s Ensemble and the Crimson Chorus.
Prior to Hillgrove, Stoner held positions teaching choral music and music theory at Kennesaw Mountain High School, Lovejoy High School and the Fine Arts Magnet at Mt. Zion High School, where he jointly served as the lead teacher of Choral Music for the Clayton County Public Schools. He also sings with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus, the ASO Chamber Chorus, and Coro Vocati, a new professional chamber choral ensemble in Atlanta.
The Cherokee Chorale is an auditioned choral group of 70 to 80 voices, encompassing a variety of ages, professions, and occupations, including a significant number of music professionals.
Limited reserve seating is available for $12 online at www.cherokechorale.org. Advance general admission tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students, and are available from any Chorale member, and at the Cherokee County Arts Center and Chamberhouse in Canton, Three Sisters in Hickory Flat, Jasper Drug in Jasper, and FoxTale Book Shoppe in Woodstock. Tickets will not be available at the door.
For information, call (678) 439-8625. The website is www.cherokeechorale.org.