Around the Burlington/Oakville region of Southern Ontario, Dan Cooper and his Dan Cooper Group, Royal Lepage real estate team are easily recognizable figures. His `We Are Dan Cooper’ motif adorns real estate signs, the side of his fleet of automobiles and even television commercials.
But it was Dan Cooper, Entertainment Philanthropist, who took the spotlight September 22nd at Oakville’s Centre For Performing Arts as he presented his annual Back To The 80’s charity concert featuring Montreal’s The Box, Vancouver’s Images In Vogue and Burlington headliners The Spoons who sold out the 460 seat venue, raising funds for the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation.“It was a no-brainer, it was extremely well received,” raved Cooper, the 2019 Royal Lepage Hall Of Fame recipient. “The Oakville Theatre is the perfect venue. It’s got great acoustics, it’s an intimate venue, great sightlines and having support from Ed Sousa and (former MuchMusic veejay) Mike Williams who hosted the concert, was the icing on the cake.”
The Royal Lepage Shelter Foundation is a national charity, sponsored by Royal Lepage to raise funds for homeless women and children and reflects on-going charity efforts by Cooper who has also been involved in raising funds for Sick Kids and the Big Brothers and Big Sisters organization. His Dan Cooper concert series has been in operation for the past five years as an annual event at the Oakville Centre For Performing Arts.
With an audience definitely in the mood for classic 80’s music, Vancouver’s Images In Vogue launched the show, “Drowning Child” acting as an intro for the band’s biggest hit; “Lust For Love”. Frontman Dale Martindale fronting bandmates; Joe Vizvary (keyboards), Derrick Gyles (drums), Ed Shaw (guitar), Glen Nelson (keyboards) and Tim Welch (bass) running through 10 songs during their 45-minute set which also featured IIV classics such as “Strangers”, “Holiday”, “Save It” and “Call It Love”.
The Box By Andrew M Clowater
The Box followed with an energetic set featuring all their classic hits; “Closer Together”, “Ordinary People”, “Carry On”, “Must I Always Remember”, their latest track “Hey Little Rock Star” with lead vocalist Jean-Marc Pisapia and cohorts Dan Volj (bass), Guillaume Jodoin (keyboards), Francois Bruneau (guitar), Martin Lapierre (drums) and Isabelle Lemay (vocals), getting the collective crowd on their feet and dancing to their cover of Men Without Hats’ “Safety Dance”.
And then came local favourites The Spoons with Gord Deppe (guitar/vocals), taking time off from his global jaunts as guest guitarist for A Flock Of Seagulls, to rejoin Sandy Horne (bass), Scott McDonald (keyboards) and Chris Neill (drums) to present a set that was comprised half of classics (“Arias & Symphonies, “Nova Heart”, “Romantic Traffic”, “Bridges Over Borders” “Tell No Lies”) with tracks off their new release; “New Day New World” including “Beautiful Trap”, “Landing Lights”, “For The First & Last Time” and “Repeatable”. The Spoons were then joined on stage by members of The Box and Images In Vogue for an encore reprise of “Nova Heart”
“I was very happy to be a part of such a class show,” commented Cooper as he posed for photos with the band as they met their fans for a meet and greet in the theatre’s foyer. “It was a pleasure to be associated with such a classy bunch of artists. I look forward to doing it again next year.”
All photos by Andrew M. Clowater Photography
By Keith Sharp