Rory Allen says Moosomin show is ‘like coming home’
September 21, 2022, 8:41 am
Sierra D'Souza Butts, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Professional entertainer Rory Allen will be returning to the area of his hometown for solo-show in tribute to Elvis.
The show will be held at Moosomin Community Theatre at 2 p.m. on Sunday Oct. 23 and all proceeds will go to STARS air ambulance.
“I’m excited, it’s nice to be back to be able to do shows again,” Allen said.
“It feels like being a bird with your wings clipped not being able to perform these last two years.
“Of course performing is a big part of my life for the last 25 years, and having it cut off for almost two and a half years has been pretty tough.
“This is a great cause too, because the proceeds are going to the STARS air ambulance which is a key thing to have, especially in the rural areas.”
Allen grew up in Rocanville, Saskatchewan and has lived in Regina for most of his career.
“I lived in Rocanville for a couple years with my family and moved to Regina and have been here ever since, but my brother-in-law still lives in Rocanville and a lot of friends and family who I’ve known for years still live in that area,” he said.
“I’ve done shows in both Rocanville and Moosomin over the past 20 years, it’s like coming home for me. I’m looking forward to seeing some familiar faces and hugging people again.”
Allen said performing in rural Saskatchewan is special to him.
“I really love rural Saskatchewan because a lot of my shows over my career have been in rural areas,” he said.
“I would say hundreds of my shows have been performed in rural Saskatchewan, like ladies nights and fundraisers. I’m excited to get on stage, I feel most comfortable in front of people, I love people so I’m looking forward to it.
“For me, rural folks are a little more laid back and I think they laugh at my jokes a little more,” he smiled.
“I feel that you’re very accepted especially if you’re a local entertainer. I’m a Saskatchewan boy. I’ve been here all my life We’ve been able to travel through the province well over the last 20 years.
“We’ve been to a lot of communities and helped raised a lot of money for people, it’s just like a big family here. If you tell a joke about a combine they know what you’re talking about.”
He said he’s happy to be part of an event that is contributing to a great cause.
“A big part of our show over the years is to raise money for different organizations, especially for STARS. Right now, with things that have been going on in the world, it’s very important.”
His Tribute to the King show is filled with solid gold Elvis hits, drawing from a vast repertoire of rock and roll classics, ballads, and heartfelt gospel songs.
For his show in Moosomin, Allen will be playing 30 songs.
“I’m able to be myself on stage. Of course I have Elvis’s costumes and all that, but I’m Rory the whole night, I don’t come off like I’m Elvis because you can’t replace him,” he said.
“Performing is like you’re in a big living room, for me. There’s 2,000 people there or 200 people, it’s like a big living room party for me. I like to come out in the audience and walk around, shake some hands while I’m singing. It’s just a lot of fun.”
Beyond his 25 years of performing, Allen mentioned some of his wildest experiences from his career.
“There was a particular place we sang in, it was a small town in Saskatchewan,” he said.
“My dressing room was upstairs which was in a old hotel and I was bit by a ferret in my room. I had to go get a tetanus shot and then the next day I had to go back and do a second show.
“A couple times I’ve wrecked my leather pants, it’s been fun. It’s nice to be in business again, I think it might be a beacon in other communities that Rory Allen’s back and so many other entertainers are back now too, who have been itching to get on stage because it’s not fun if that’s what you do for a living and it’s sort of out of our control to be able to perform.”
Allen got back to performing in July of this year. He said noticed more younger people coming out to watch him and his team perform. He thinks that it is because of the recent Elvis film.
“The Elvis movie has really got the young people to see Elvis shows too,” he said.
“I know we’re going to be at Club Regent in Winnipeg which is about 1,200 seats, we’re doing that in December, but the average age went way down for that show. We have a lot of people bringing their kids, even little kids, to that show.
“It used to be just the older folks who came because they grew up with Elvis, but now with the movie that came out and just the great music that Elvis put out.”
Moosomin community excited for Rory’s performance
Allen said he is happy to be doing the show in Moosomin.
“We’re really grateful and thankful for Mary McGonigal in Moosomin,” he said.
“She’s a big fan and a big help, she was the head for the last show we performed in town. Then she came and saw us again in Regina and told us she was going to get us in Moosomin again, which I thought was great.”
Mary McGonigal of Moosomin contacted Allen asking if he would be interested in coming to Moosomin for a show.
“With the last couple of years artists haven’t been able to perform, I just think that we have to help Saskatchewan artists keep going,” McGonigal said.
“I think Rory is very popular. When I organized the show in 2019, we filled the theater and I think tickets were only on sale for a month. I’m expecting a sell out this time.”
She said ticket sales are going well and people from Elkhorn, Virden, Wawota, and other communities have already bought their seats.
“Everyone is looking to get out of the house to go have some fun, harvest should be over and snow shouldn’t be falling by then,” she said.
“I think by doing it on Sunday afternoon too, people can come from an hour or so away.”
Advance tickets are being sold for $20 at Pharmasave and the World-Spectator in Moosomin, as well as Manetain Hair Lounge and Gift Shoppe in Rocanville.
“Get your tickets early because we don’t want you to be disappointed when it sells out,” McGonigal said.