Centenary Stage Hosts Ray Charles FOREVER RAY Tribute and Fundraiser Tonight

The Centenary Stage Company will host a tribute to one of the most exciting musical artists of our time, Ray Charles, with "Forever Ray", a stellar 13-piece lineup of powerhouse musicians. Members of the band have toured or recorded with Ray Charles, Alicia Keys, Rod Stewart, Levon Helm, Christina Aguilera, Stevie Wonder, Kelly Clarkson, Patti LaBelle and Frank Sinatra to name a few.

Forever Ray will be performing at the Lackland Center on the campus of Centenary College in Hackettstown tonight, June 15 at 8 PM. The concert will benefit the Father John's Animal House in Sparta, NJ.

"Forever Ray" has been performing to sold-out audiences throughout the New York Metropolitan area. They perform the exciting and uplifting music of Ray Charles, which includes a wonderful blend of musical styles ranging from Jazz and Blues to Country and R&B. The bands line-up of outstanding musicians enjoy credits which include performances with such luminaries as Ben E. King, Michael McDonald, Stevie Wonder, Patti LaBelle, George Clinton, Prince, Liza Minnelli, Jimmy Vivino, Rod Stewart, Celia Cruz, Aretha Franklin, Tito Puente, The O'Jays, Donna Summers, Temptations, Four Tops, Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, Frank Sinatra, Lionel Hampton. Vocalist Angela Workman was a Raelette in Ray Charles' band.

From country to blues to jazz to R&B and even funk, Ray Charles set the aesthetic standard for more than five decades, earning plaudits across the globe and setting standards that his legion of fans, in and out of the entertainment industry, aspire to. Bringing the spirit of Ray Charles to life on the stage will be Shulton Whitley on lead vocals, Angela Workman, Chyna Grant and Samantha Whitley on background vocals; Bobby Deitch on Drums, Joe Macaro on Bass , Eddy Bishai on Piano, Russ DeFilippis on Guitar, Baron Raymonde on Alto Sax, John Farnsworth on Tenor Sax, Mitch Endick on Baritone Sax ,and Fred Maxwell on Trumpet.

The evening will benefit Father John's Animal House (formerly Sussex County Fellowship for Animals) in Sparta, a non-profit organization supported entirely by donations, grants, and various fundraising events. Father John's primary mission is to provide love, companionship, shelter, food, socialization, and medical care for the many unwanted animals that come to them until permanent, loving homes can be found. FJAH President Peggy Post says, "With our newly renovated shelter we now have the capability to take in more dogs and cats that need to be placed in new homes. Although we all get attached to the animals that are housed at the shelter, we are always happy when they are adopted by a family that will give them the love and care they deserve." For more information about Father John's Animal house, visit online at www.fatherjohnsanimalhouse.org.

Tickets for the "Forever Ray" concert are $25, and can be purchased through the Centenary Stage Company box office at 908 979 0900, and online at www.centenarystageco.org.

Pictured: "Forever Ray" Band

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