Van Wezel Performing Arts Hal offers a tribute to Whitney Houston

Belinda Davids stars in a tribute to Whitney Houston that is coming to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall Jan. 21.

Staff Report

Showtime Australia’s acclaimed tribute concert “The Greatest Love of All: A Tribute to Whitney Houston,” is making its Sarasota debut at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall on Jan. 21.

Singer Belinda Davids, who went viral after performing a stunning rendition of “I Will Always Love of You” on Fox’s “Showtime at the Apollo” in 2017, is again the main attraction.

She will be backed up by a hand-picked cast of international musicians, vocalists and dancers who perform live on stage.

Many venues that hosted the show in 2018 have secured return performances in response to the overwhelming demand from those lucky enough to catch the show first time around.

“Actually the overwhelming reaction we got from people was ‘surprise,’” said Johnny Van Grinsven, the show’s producer and director. “So many people said they weren’t expecting that level of show, and people who haven’t seen Belinda before are always shocked to hear her voice in real life because it really is unique; she really is a very special talent.”

The show is described as a full-scale concert production, boasting state-of-the-art sound, custom-designed lighting, LED walls, theatrical effects and a feast of exquisite hand-crafted gowns and costumes.

All of Houston’s most memorable songs are lined up for Davids’ treatment, including “I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” “How Will I Know” and “I’m Every Woman” and her iconic ballads including “Didn’t We Almost Have it All,” “One Moment in Time” and “I Will Always Love You.”

“U.S. audiences are amazing, they truly appreciate Whitney’s legacy and her music is very personal to them and you can feel that from the stage,” Davids said. “To look out and see people feeling every note and nuance and emotion that you sing is so intimate. That’s what it’s all about. I can’t wait to go back.”

“The show brings light and happiness into the whole audience in a truly uplifting and joyous experience,” said Eddie Tansley in Upper Circle.

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