The Cat's Pajamas set to perform at Ontonagon Theater


Submitted photo

THE CAT'S Pajamas vocal band will be performing at the Ontonagon Theater on March 1. From left are members Brian Skinner, Michael Samsky, Donovan Germain, Peter Yang and Dale Powell.

EWEN - The Ewen-Trout Creek School music program has enlisted the vocal band, The Cat's Pajamas, to perform at the Ontonagon Theater to raise money for the program.

Music director Brad Besonen said fellow teacher Patti Witt told him the group had posted on Facebook about helping high schools.

"(Witt) brought to my attention that The Cat's Pajamas had posted an ad on Facebook asking for schools in the Midwest to contact them to bring them in to have a concert in the local areas," Besonen said. "They are doing a performance tour for school music programs and to help raise money for the school music programs, as well."

The a capella group, based out of Branson, Mo., has been traveling around the Midwest for the 2015 Music in Schools Tour.

Besonen said he emailed the group and vocal percussionist Brian Skinner contacted him to set up a date.

According to the release, "The goal is to inspire students, generate increased excitement and passion for music and encourage all youth and teens to get involved in the arts."

During the day, the group mentors the students, focusing on singing techniques. They also share "personal journeys and testimonies about how they have turned their love for music into a professional career."

The group was nationally recognized on NBC's singing show, The Sing-Off, in its third season.

"This interactive group appeals to all ages and keeps the crowd laughing, dancing and singing along for the entire show," the release said.

The Cat's Pajamas performs pop classics from the the 50s, 60s and 70s, including The Beatles, Wilson Pickett and Grand Funk Railroad. They also perform some contemporary artists such as Jason Mraz, Michael Buble and One Direction.

Besonen said, "I took a van full of students to a concert of theirs last year that the Ironwood vocal music program hosted at the Ironwood Theatre and the kids loved them."

"It will be awesome to have them performing in the Ontonagon Theater which is a great local performing venue," he said.

A large portion of the profits will be donated to the E-TC music program.

"All funds raised will be used to purchase instruments and music for the band and choir programs at E-TC," Besonen said.

Besonen also said those who want to help support the music program but are unable to attendcan donate their tickets to E-TC students.

The concert is on March 1 at 7 p.m. EST at the Ontonagon Theater on North Steel Street in Ontonagon.

For ticket purchases, call the E-TC school office at 906-813-0620, call Besonen at 906-231-0668 or purchase from any junior or senior high school band or choir student.

For more information about The Cat's Pajamas, visit or


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