Dance Party brings '50s music, performers back to life

Photo provided Ray Anthony as Ritchie Valens

Photo provided Ray Anthony as Ritchie Valens

The Rockin' Rev. Ken Haskins decided several months ago that it was time to bring some good entertainment to Carson City.

He figured the way to kick off this idea was to turn back the clock and give younger generations a chance to witness on stage something they haven't seen before.

Friday night, performers will turn back the clock to Feb. 3, 1959, and allow Ritchie Valens, Buddy Holly and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson to again take the stage.

"It's a fast-paced lively fun concert. They re-enact that last concert so well that it's eerie. It gives you goose bumps," Haskins said.

This year marked the 47th anniversary of the single-engine plane crash in Iowa that took the lives of the three musicians.

The Winter Dance Party features Ray Anthony as Ritchie Valens, John Mueller as Buddy Holly and J.P. Richardson Jr. as his father, "The Big Bopper."

The concert is at the Carson City Community Center at 7 p.m. Friday and will feature the hits from all three of the artists.

"Everything about the performance is accurate, down to the last detail. John Mueller, who plays Buddy Holly, even uses the same strings on his guitar," Haskins said.

Mueller starred in the Broadway show about the life of Buddy Holly and Anthony performs in the "Legends of Rock and Roll" show at the Imperial Palace in Las Vegas.

The performance will also host several special guests, including Donna Fox, the inspiration for Valens's hit single "Donna," as well as the Latino singer's sister Connie Lemos.

The two-hour show will include an intermission and a chance for the audience to meet the performers.

"We expect it to be a sold-out show. It should be a lot of fun because we will be having several special events in addition to the concert," Haskins said.

Haskins and partner Dennis Butler said they plan to continue bringing concerts and performances to Carson City.

• Contact reporter Jarid Shipley at or 881-1217.

If you go

What: Winter Dance Party

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Bob Boldrick Theater, Carson City Community Center, 851 E. William St.

Tickets: General Admission tickets are $20 and can be purchased in advance by calling Rev. Ken Haskins. Tickets will also be sold at Cathy's Kuts, 907 S. Carson St., or at the door on the day of the show.

Call: 544-0395


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