With Sabater as lead vocalist, emcee and drummer, the group led by Jose Mangual Jr. brought the packed audience to it dancing feet with irresistible invitations and the strong Latin beat. One spirited agile senior, Oscar Valencia, and equally graceful partner, Lydia Velazquez, were the first to take the floor and never missed a dance thereafter.
The musicians - Rhadames R. Roylas playing Coro Quizo (a tropical instrument), J. R. on keyboard, Walter Reyes on congas, Bert Castro on bass and Mike Freeman on vibes - all contributed to the spirited music. It was impossible to keep the audience in their seats and age was no deterrent to the urge to gyrate.
Sabater, who was born and raised in Harlem, has been winning audiences with his musical talent and enthusiasm for some 50 years. He has worked with other greats in the Latin music world including the late Tito Puente, to whom the group played a musical tribute, "Puerto Rico Blues." From the opening number, "Volare," to "I'll Never Go Back to Georgia," the music was dance-compelling and irresistible.
The band and audience joined in singing a happy birthday refrain as Sabater was presented with a cake with one candle in celebration of his natal day.
Producer of the show, Clyde Bullard, a talented musician himself, has the ability to attract fine musicians to Flushing Town Hall. Prior to the shows and during intermissions, food and beverages are catered by Durso of Flushing.
The next scheduled event will be Friday, May 14, featuring The Bucky Pizzarelli Trio in a concert in memory of the late Larry Leaf. For information call 718-463-7700, Ext 222.
©2004 Community News Group
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