Broadway dinner theater Friday to benefit Port Townsend charities

PORT TOWNSEND — An evening given over to gourmet food, wine and Broadway music — starring singer Carol Swarbrick Dries and pianist Linda Dowdell — will benefit a pair of local charities this Friday at the Northwest Maritime Center, 431 Water St.

The Belmont is catering dinner, to include wines paired with each course, at 5:30 p.m. and tickets are $100, with proceeds to support the Kiwanis Club’s children’s programs and the Edensaw Community Cancer Foundation.

“Carol and I developed this collection of songs and stories from our — mainly Carol’s — lengthy and star-studded careers,” said Dowdell, who lived and worked in New York City for many years before relocating to the Sequim area.

She’s now well-known for directing musicals at Port Townsend High School, establishing a glee club there, and for co-creating “Tin Pan Lady,” a popular revue at the Key City Playhouse this summer.

Dowdell’s tours with Mikhail Baryshnikov, as well as Dries’ work with singers and composers including Harry Belafonte, Stephen Sondheim and Marvin Hamlisch, are remembered in the stories the women will tell.

“I’ll be singing songs like ‘Try to Remember’ from ‘The Fantasticks,’ [and] we will do ‘Them There Eyes’ from the Tin Pan Alley days.

“I get to do ‘If He Walked into My Life,’ by Jerry Herman,” said Dries.

“Songs from decades of shows, from ‘Mame’ to ‘West Side Story,’ are included, but not always the most obvious choices,” Dowdell added.

For this three-set dinner show, “Carol is the Hostess with the Mostest, delivering song and story with her unique mix of warmth and finesse.”

Friday also presents an opportunity to hear Dries before she goes to Seattle to appear in the 5th Avenue Theatre’s production of “Oliver!,” to run Nov. 29 to Dec. 31.

For reservations at Friday’s benefit phone the Belmont at 360-385-3007 or Edensaw Woods at 800-745-3336. Information also can be found at www.KeyCityPublicTheatre.org.

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Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

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