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“Strange Magic – The ELO Experience” Booked to Headline Summer Concert & Fireworks

“Strange Magic – The ELO Experience” Booked to Headline Summer Concert & Fireworks

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The calendar may say March but it’s not too early to start dreaming of summer as Orange Town News publisher Rocky Salperto announces this year’s entertainment for the 2017 Orange Independence Day Concert and Fireworks Spectacular.  It’s the celebration that tops all Independence Day festivities in New Haven County and one that residents eagerly anticipate.  The event will be held from 6:30-10 p.m. at the Orange Fairgrounds, 525 Orange Center Road, on Sunday July 2nd with a rain date of Monday, July 3rd.

This year’s event will feature a popular Canadian tribute band making its Connecticut debut—“Strange Magic – the Electric Light Orchestra Experience”.  The nine-member band, which features cellos and intricate vocal arrangements, hails from Toronto and features internationally renowned lead vocalist Phil xaNaro.  The band will perform for two full hours before the traditional fireworks display.

Strange Magic performs note-perfect renditions of ELO classics including, “Living Thing,” “Evil Woman,” “Don’t Bring Me Down,” “Ma Ma Belle”, “Strange Magic”, “Telephone Line”, “Can’t Get it Out of My Head” “Sweet Talkin’ Woman”, “Turn to Stone, and “Shine a Little Love.”

The annual July 4th celebration has indeed become more spectacular with the addition of the pre-fireworks music show.  Bringing big-time talent to a small town has been particularly fun for event producer Salperto.  In the past five years, Salperto has brought crowd pleasing tribute bands that that have played the hits of Chicago, Supertramp, Queen, The Eagles, The Beatles and The British Invasion. “I believe people relate to songs and groups they recognize that bring back memories, particularly from the 70s and 80s,” Salperto said.  “I’m excited to produce this show for the sixth consecutive year and hope everyone continues to enjoy this great community event.  Many thanks go out to our sponsors, our first selectman and town officials for their continued hard work support to put this all together.”

Salperto isn’t the only one that looks forward to the festivities.  The event has become an annual tradition for neighbors on Longmeadow Road.  Monica Csejka and Jennifer Hayes help organize the family outing each year, putting out a spread of snacks and beverages for the adults and children to enjoy throughout the show.  “We’ve gone every year of the 14 years we’ve lived in Orange and they’ve definitely amped it up with the tribute bands,” Hayes said.  “They do a really nice job.  Not to sound corny, but it’s a great hometown community event.  Our three kids meet up with their friends and everyone is walking around, saying hello and getting in the Fourth of July spirit.”

Residents can get a preview of this year’s band, “Strange Magic” on national TV when they appear at 10 p.m. Wednesday, April 5 on AXS TV on the show, “The World’s Greatest Tribute Bands”.  They will also be appearing live in concert from the legendary “Whiskey a Go Go” in Hollywood, California just two days before ELO is inducted into the Rock N ‘Roll Hall of Fame.

The July 4th Spectacular is made possible through area sponsors including major sponsors:  Cohen & Wolf, P.C.; Yale University, Regent Wealth Management Group, The Orange Foundation’s Olga Fund, the Orange Town News & the Town of Orange.  Additional Gold, Silver & Bronze Sponsorship opportunities are available. Application forms are available on the Orange Town News website, back page of this issue and at Orange Town Hall.  For more information, call 203-298-4399, online at or email

Food vendors and novelty items will be available for purchase at the fairgrounds beginning at 6:00 pm.  WPLR Radio will also be broadcasting live on location with a celebrity guest.  Come early and get a good seat.  Admission is free.  There will be a suggested parking donation of $5 that will benefit the Orange Little League.

By Laura Fantarella – Orange Town News Correspondent

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