The Pearl Company

Theatre, Gallery and Arts Centre 16 Steven Street Hamilton ON 905-524-0606

Archive for February, 2015

Shari Vandermolen & David Brideau: Saturday May 5

Shari Vandermolen & David Brideau: Saturday May 5.  Doors: 7:30pm. Show: 8:00. Tickets: $20. Shari Vandermolen is a renowned vocalist and award-winning performer in Hamilton and the ShariV& DavidBrideau_05_18Greater Toronto Area who has been entertaining audiences for 15 years with her Quartet, Trio or 5-piece band Quarter to Nine.  She is also the lead vocalist for the 10-piece jazz combo SwingLine.  On May 5th Shari brings her powerful and impressive vocal stylings back to the Pearl Company for a more intimate evening of song with jazz guitarist David Brideau, James Gannett on bass and Vince Waters on drums.  “…hear Vandermolen make jelly of your emotions with her voice and her art… one example is Stormy Weather… I barely weathered that storm intact.”  – View Magazine
David Brideau is a Canadian jazz guitarist, composer, and teacher who has been an active musician for over 15 years. A Hamilton native, and honours graduate from the Mohawk Jazz program, David has played all around the GTA with his own group, the David Brideau Trio and Quartet, as well as being prominently featured in groups with Michael Morobito, Amber-Leigh Palka, and Lauren Perreira among others. He studied under jazz greats Bob Shields, Pat Collins, Kim Ratcliffe, and Mark Ucci and is currently continuing his studies at McMaster University. David often composes his own standards, and released the sold-out EP “Addicted To You” in 2016. He is a recipient of the Dave McMurdo Music Bursary, the Antony Roberts Music Bursary, and the Richard Newell Memorial Scholarship.

Shelley Marshall Presents: “Hold Mommy’s Cigarette”: April 18 & 19

HELD OVER! Shelley Marshall Presents: The Award Winning Production “Hold Mommy’s Cigarette”: April 18 & 19. All ShelleyMarshallApr18_19.jpgOne Woman’s story of an unfiltered life, written and performed by Shelley Marshall, directed by Linda Kash. It seems appropriate that world renowned Comedienne, Marshall would open her autobiographical One Woman Show in the city where the story and star were born. It took 10 years for Marshall to create this Play and it is the rewarding result of resilience, recovery, and reflection while exploring many genres of performance including elements of clown, stand up, improv, buffoon, and play. Shelley Marshall takes her audience many places; “I take them on an adventure, both emotionally and visually. There is no denying that my story is tragic, but it’s my story and time and writing without shame has been my comedic relief. ‘Hold Mommy’s Cigarette’ is not an exploitation of what has happened in my life, but rather, an acceptance of where it may lead. It is a dark comedy, a vulnerable piece about life, mental illness and survival.” Marshall reveals with a smile. She invites you to come to her show with an open mind and promises you’ll leave with a full heart. *Mature Content* Tickets available at or 524-0606. Facebook Event:


Fringe: Death & the Maiden / RiderGirl: July 18-28


Death and the Maiden: Written by Laurence Olivier Prize Winning playwright Ariel Dorfman. This is the fourth production that Death_Maiden.jpgNortesur has developed for the stage; chosen because it speaks passionately about current international events, it asks tough questions about forgiveness and the role of victims and perpetrators in transitory societies, and it is a local opportunity to see a truly amazing piece of theatre written by one of Latin America’s best contemporary playwrights.  It is raw, provocative, and driven by a cast of characters that are all-too-human. Performed, and designed by emerging professional artists from across the golden horseshoe and the GTA, it is an entertaining, insightful, and extraordinarily powerful piece that delivers an evening of truly engaging theatre.  Thurs.July 18@ 8:00pm, Fri.19@8:00pm, Sat.20@7:00pm, Tues.23@8:00pm, Wed.24@7:00pm, Thurs.25@8:00pm,  Fri.26@7:00pm, Sat.27@8:00pm


RiderGirl: Written and performed by Ottawa based actor and Saskatchewan native Colleen Sutton. Professional sports and
ridergirl_poster_hamilton_2013_final_3_small_1.jpgindependent theatre meet head on in Tiger Town! This is the story of a young woman whose prairie roots and home team inspire her to get off the sidelines and get in the game of her life.  With the end zone in sight, she fights for every down, but fumbles when she tries to go it alone.  Her team is about to make it – can she do the same?  Come in your colours, GAME TIME is here!  Two?time Rideau award nominee Colleen Sutton will energize your inner fan!  “ **** ½ “The only reason I’ve withheld that last half?star is because I cannot in good conscience give 5 stars to a Rider fan. Other than that, the show was superb.” CBC Manitoba.   Note: Fri. 19 – 2 for 1.  Friday, July 19, 6:30; Saturday,  20, 9:00; Sunday,  21, 2:00; Tuesday,  6:30; Wednesday, 24, 9:00; Thursday,  25, 6:30; Friday,  26, 9:00; Saturday, 27, 2:00

Times, dates, and tickets are  on the Fringe website – 

Art Bus: Friday, July 5

The Art Bus is Sponsored by Judy Marsales Real Estate Brokerage:

Last Art Bus for the Summer! Check out Hamilton’s unique and constantly evolving art scene! Call Barbara JMarsalesArtBusLarge.jpg(905.524.0606) or email ( to reserve your seat. Next dates: Sept 6 & 20. Cost: $15/$10 students/artists. Group rates available.  Start: 6:30 from The Pearl.

  • July 5: (L’Arche Gallery, Workers Arts & Heritage, Nathaniel Hughson, Book Club Gallery, Manta Gallery) This will be another varied and interesting trip with specially-opened galleries, and tours of places you have never been before!

The Once: October 17

theonce2011poster_small.jpgThe Once: Monday, October 17: 8:00pm. $20 door. Named for a unique Newfoundland phrase that means ‘imminently’, now is indeed the time for The Once. As a trio, the band has kept it uncomplicated, depending on the power of their voices and acoustic instruments. Lead singer Geraldine Hollett, has an instrument of rare power which can still a noisy room, Accompanied by Phil Churchill and Andrew Dale on guitar, mandolin, fiddle and bouzouki, they create a perfect blend of voice and melody. Their music comes from a quieter and more thoughtful place. Hope and tragedy are intertwined in their music, whether they are singing an old lament from World War I, original songs that speak of love defeated, or tasteful songs from the artists whose music inspires them. Sometimes melancholy, sometimes funny, always poignant,The Once sound like nothing else that has ever come from Newfoundland. Their debut album has built a gradual but fervent following, and their live show is unique in its combination of intimacy and power. They have won several East Coast Music and Canadian Folk Music awards, and the country is slowly waking up to just what an amazing band they are. Since they signed to Borealis Records in 2010, they have toured through out the country and Europe, drawing huge crowds.

“The first time I heard it (the album), I was floored, the second time elevated, and everytime since entralled!” SignalBlog

Bonnie Ste Croix: October 16

Bonnie_Ste_Croix_Poster_Hamilton.jpgBonnie Ste Croix: Sunday, October 16: 8:00pm. $15, $10. Students/all forms of artists. This award-winning Roots artist has recorded one song in every Province and Territory of Canada, resulting in a high-quality celebration of the folk-and-roots community of the country.  Guest artists include Stephen Fearing, Natalie MacMaster, Catherine MacLellan, Shari Ulrich, The Once (Coming to The Pearl the next night!) and more. “…her voice will stop you cold in your tracks. It’s one reason she’s attracted such devoted local fans who faithfully attend her gigs… She’s often been compared to Jann Arden for her witty humour, interactive and friendly stage presence…Ste-Croix definitely isn’t afraid to simultaneously show her intense and comic sides on stage. And the audience falls in love.  In person and on stage, Ste-Croix is vibrant, captivating and outgoing.” Vancouver Courier

Rita Chiarelli:October 14 & 15

RitaPhoto.jpgRita Chiarelli in Concert: She’s back in town! Friday & Saturday, October 14 & 15. $25 at the door. Starting at 8:00. Canada’s Goddess of The Blues rocks the Pearl Company!  Rita’s latest huge adventure has taken her on a rare and exclusive musical journey, a pilgrimage to the birthplace of the blues, Louisiana State Maximum Security Penitentiary a.k.a Angola Prison. She never imagined that her love of the blues would lead her down legendary Highway 61 to a historic jailhouse performance with inmates serving life sentences. With acclaimed director Bruce McDonald, they have created a riveting and award winning documentary and a powerful soundtrack, Music From The Big House!
“These past few years, I took long and lonely journeys to Mississippi and Louisiana… the songs you will hear are the bluesy swampy rootsy experiences I had… they are real and they are from the heart” Rita Chiarelli.
“Music from the Big House is about exploring the redemptive power of music.” – Peter Howell, Toronto Star
” Music from the Big House is very much a documentary about jail house blues, one that gets the soul singing and the foot tapping.” – Marina Antunes, Quiet Earth.

The ƒ Holes: October 13

fHoles3.jpgThe ƒ Holes: Thursday, October 13. 8:00. $15 door/ $10 students/all artists: This impeccably authentic, raucously entertaining blend of gypsy jazz, zippy Dixieland, viper blues and roots from this Winnipeg creative hybrid is back again and we are delighted! They have essentially rewritten the definition of roots music…. Over-the-top vocals meet pedal steel, blistering horns, banjo and fiddle to create this campy, slightly twisted take on country, blues, Dixieland, klezmer and anything that piques their interest, apparently. With music that would be at home on an off-Broadway stage, this musical conglomerate swirls around the hell-fired vocals of Patrick Alexandre Leclerc and a group of talented musicians who throw caution to the wind in their bid to make a distinctive mark. (The “f” refers to the holes in acoustic guitars and standup basses in case you were wondering…)

Ann Vriend: October 12

AnnVriend2.jpgAnn Vriend: With Band! Wednesday, October 12. 8 pm. $15, $10 for students/artists (includes musicians) Soulful, inspiring, brave and bluesy.  With a vocal range from vulnerable delicacy to blasts of soulful power, she’s an enchanting cross between Dolly Parton and a young Aretha Franklin.  So say the critics!  Here’s more: “Ann Vriend’s newest album defies narrow genres. Each of the 12 tracks manages the rare feat of sounding at once comfortably familiar and intriguingly original…. veering effortlessly between straight-ahead, quiet country, to soul-wrenching blues, to folk-inspired storytelling…. Don’t miss her.” –3.5 of 4 Stars, Toronto Star. Impossible to categorize, Vriend’s unique style brings together elements of soul, pop, country, jazz, blues and gospel and sounds both familiar and strange at the same time. “Vriend (pronounced Vreend) is fantastic in concert – a very, very, funny woman that tends to belt out her songs in between her truly entertaining comedic intervals” (4 of 5 Stars, A n E Vibe Magazine). Her latest album is also described as “a retro look at old pop records of the ‘60s, with Vriend playing the country diva, the Amy Winehouse of the prairies. Wow.

Hard Ryde: October 8

HardRyde.JPGHard Ryde: Saturday, October 8: $15 door / $10 Students/Artists (includes musicians!) 8:00pm. Hard Ryde is an award-winning combination of musical synergy, adored by their fans and respected by their peers on both sides of the border. Hailing from musical backgrounds encompassing bluegrass, country, old-time and jazz, the sum of these individual parts equals one dynamic powerhouse of talent taking the Canadian bluegrass stage.  Their music is fresh, exciting and new, while at the same time respecting and capturing the essence and passion of traditional bluegrass.  Hard Ryde’s strong vocals, stellar musicianship and winning songwriting abilities have won this band a top spot in the hearts of bluegrass fans in Canada and beyond.  Inducted into the Central Canadian Bluegrass hall of fame, Hard Ryde music speaks for itself, straightforward and  soulful with the uncommon ability to capture the essence and passion of Bluegrass music.
Canada’s Hard Ryde has developed into one of the top bluegrass bands in any country. Great harmonies, superb instrumental work and strong songwriting make “Stages” a must have!!! This is not only the top Canadian bluegrass album of the year but one could make a strong case that it is the best one ever!!! These guys are SMOKIN’ !!!  Jim Marino, Freewheeling Folk Show & Smokin’ Bluegrass Show.

Kaleidescope Brown: feat. BROWNMAN AKOUSTIC TRIO: October 7

BrownmanBET.jpgKaleidescope Brown: feat. BROWNMAN AKOUSTIC TRIO (NYC style modern swing) Friday, October 7. $15 door. $10 artists/students.  With: Brownman Ali – trumpet: Soren Nissen – acoustic bass: Eric West – drums. Rarely in Toronto amidst a frenetic international tour schedule, for October’s installment of KALEIDOSCOPE BROWN the Toronto based Trinidadian-born multi-award winning jazz trumpeter brings the BROWNMAN AKOUSTIC TRIO to Pearl Company for a Friday night of 50’s & 60’s jazz ala Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Joe Henderson, Duke Ellington, Cole Porter and more from the American jazz songbook.  He comes to us flanked by two of the most called upon young bassists and drummers in the Toronto jazz scene right now – both under 25 year old!  Be ready for fresh-faced and exciting new takes on the classic jazz lineage.
“Award winning Trinidadian born, New York schooled jazz trumpet player Brownman Ali leads this modern jazz quartet through inspired arrangements of standards and choice originals.  The new generation of jazz.”  – reviewer
“Performing organic jazz in the classic trio or quartet setting, this unit strives to embody the jazz improvising spirit of the 60’s – communication.  Playing selections of standards linked together in one organic mish-mash of sonic goodness, this unit brings classic jazz themes and powerful Brownman compositions into the new millennium” – Jazz Journey, CHRY radio

World Music Fusion Project: October 1

World Music Fusion Project: Saturday, October 1: 8:00 pm.  $15 at door. The remarkable musicians, Gary Santucci on guitar, and Sudan’s premiere oud player Bashir Abbas are planning another powerful concert.  The ‘other’ musician details are still being put together but I know the possibilities and the evening will be spectacular! Gary Santucci, just in case you need to be told, is “the real thing” (as he was called not to long ago), a guitarist/composer who plays flamenco, classical, and world music. Bashir Abbas is just plain incredible.  He is Sudan’s top instrumental musician  and for this concert he will play the oud, which is a pear-shaped, lute-related stringed instrument commonly used in North African and Middle Eastern music. We are delighted to be able to have a musician of this caliber here!

Oh My Darling: September 30

OhMyDarling.jpgOh My Darling: Friday, September 30. $15 door, $10 Students/Artists (Includes all arts and music!) 8:00pm. With a sweet name and even sweeter sound, Oh My Darling conjures up the right mix of emotion and elation with their unique brand of country. Their prairie roots mixed with bluegrass, Appalachian old time, southern twang, and Franco-folk, makes their style a melting pot of musical languages. Infused with dynamic vocals, brilliant claw-hammer banjo, inspired fiddling, and grooving bass, their music will get your hips swinging, toes tapping, and put your heart right into their hands. Each time Oh My Darling takes the stage, they prove time and again why they’re captivating audiences and attracting an abundance of fans, because boy, can these girls can play! Individually, they are known as some of the hottest players on the Canadian roots scene, but there is strength in numbers, and combined, the foursome is strong as steel.
The songs of Sweet Nostalgia, their second full length release, are strikingly original, while evoking the lexicon of their diverse musical influences. The band has toured ceaselessly, headlining sold out shows across Europe and Canada, becoming crowd favourites at country and folk festivals, and winning the hearts of all who come to experience their energetic live show. It’s this love for live performance that Oh My Darling strove to capture while recording Sweet Nostalgia. with the Juno Award winning producer Steve Dawson. The result is a raw and honest sound that has the exuberance of a live show, and shines a spotlight on each of these girls’ extraordinary talents as musicians and songwriters.”

The Jazz Connection Big Band: Thursday, September 29

The Jazz Connection Big Band: Thursday, September 29. Doors at 7:30, jazz at 8:00 $15 at the door: They’re back and are gaining bigger audiences every time they play here! Made up of talented musicians from all over southwestern Ontario, the Jazz Connection Big Band is a 20-piece band dedicated to playing great, straight-ahead big band jazz.  They will carry us once again into the cool space of surround sound big band music! This time they are bringing  renowned jazz pianist Paul Hoffert! Paul has the soul of an artist and the mind of a scientist. By the time he was twenty-six, Mr. Hoffert was an established jazz recording artist, television performer, off-Broadway musical author, film composer, and had studied mathematics and physics at the University of Toronto. He co-founded Lighthouse, a rock band with horns and strings that sold millions of records, and toured the world. He was inducted into the Canadian Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995. Hoffert has parallel achievements in science and technology; he writes best-selling books: he has received the Order of Canada, Canada’s highest honour and he is a Fine Arts Professor at York University.   “Paul Hoffert is the ideal visionary for the Digital Age”

Kayla Luky: Wednesday, September 21

Kayla Luky: Wednesday, September 21: 8:00. $15 door. $10 artists/students This singer-songwriter from KaylaLuky.jpgGrandview, Manitoba tells small town stories, chock-full of well-crafted down-home tunes.  If you’re hankering for some home cooking, Kayla Luky’s “The Time it Takes” will satisfy your hometown appetite.  Luky has surpassed the spare, straightforward sound of her previous folk-pop projects and created a bona fide alt-country album. The players inject an audible intensity into already strong songs. Take the title track, which starts with Luky’s heavyhearted harmonica, enough to put you into a melancholy mood, but when the banjo enters the mix, you get a good hard yank at the heartstrings. The bluesy electric guitar is the perfect companion to Luky’s localized lyrics, which concern such community issues as pogey, puck bunnies and coffeeshop complainers.

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