JM de Quincy’s Productions Bring Music, Theater and Line Dance to the City

By R. Scott Reedy

QUINCY – John F. McDonald, Jr., a native of Quincy and resident, hadn’t missed a year of performing live in his hometown and on the South Shore since the founding of JM Productions in 1980. It was was, of course, until the pandemic forced him to drop the curtain on last season.

It also forced McDonald’s to carefully consider its options for the future.

“We’ve been dark for 20 months,” McDonald said recently over the phone from his home. “During that time, I wondered whether I should continue or throw in the towel to be a part of the entertainment and event planning industry and do something completely different.”

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Ultimately, the president and production manager of JM Productions – whose shows have been presented to thousands of South Shore audiences over the years – decided that the allure of the limelight was simply too strong to resist.

“I couldn’t turn my back on the entertainment business because it defines me. This is who I am and everything I really know. My friends and colleagues have said, “You can’t give up on something you’ve done so long, so well, and love. It’s your life.’ I knew I had to keep going, ”says McDonald.

With this, he began planning for JM Productions’ 40th anniversary season by looking for a new location to present his cabaret shows, concerts, jazz brunches and line dances.

“My business has never had its own physical location,” explains McDonald. “I have always presented in other people’s theaters. Every time I move I look for a clean new start.

The Kidwell Sisters will be performing at Quincy.

This time, that goal drew McDonald’s – a former personal assistant to Oscar-winning actresses Faye Dunaway and Marisa Tomei, five-time Tony Award winner Julie Harris, movie legend Lauren Bacall and others – to the Marriott Boston. Quincy.

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“At the Marriott, I will be able to use multiple spaces within the resort, which will allow me to present many different types of performances,” says McDonald. “I’ll be announcing a comedy festival this fall and bigger concerts early next year.”

Regardless of the schedule, McDonald, who has been the Events Coordinator for the Town of Quincy since 2018, says he will be in the venue where it takes place, both eager to welcome his longtime loyal audience once again and to introduce themselves to newcomers.

“Over the years, I have been master of ceremonies for my shows and sometimes also director, producer and sometimes even performer,” he laughs. “I don’t expect to be on stage this year, but I know that whatever I do, I’ll be in the company of friends.”

Brandon Grimes and Adrienne Paquin will perform in October at Quincy.

Cool cabaret on tap

The new McDonald’s season kicks off later this month with all shows at the Marriott Boston Quincy, 1000 Marriott Drive, Quincy. The schedule includes:

September 9-10, “Happy Days Are Here Again: Celebrating Tomorrow with the Music of Yesterday”, featuring New York-based sisters Kidwell, Hannah and Lauren.

October 7-8, “Fall-ing in Love,” featuring nationally renowned artists Brandon Grimes and Adrienne Paquin, returning from New York to their native Boston to perform musical selections made famous by everyone from Frank Sinatra to the Beatles.

November 18-19, “The American Soldier,” a solo show starring actor Douglas Taurel, who was commissioned by the Library of Congress to write the play using true stories and letters written by veterans and their families of the American revolution to the present day. After performing the piece at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, Taurel now takes it on the road.

Douglas Taurel in "The American soldier."

December 16-17, “What Christmas Means to Me”, a music review – inspired by classic holiday TV shows hosted by everyone from Bob Hope and Bing Crosby to Perry Como and Andy Williams – that has been a tradition of JM Productions for 40 years.

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March 31-April 1, 2022, “The Steve & Eydie Show”, with Jim Rice and Valerie Sneade-Roy, celebrates the music of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, whose songs – including “This could be the start of Something Big”, “A Lot of Livin ‘ to Do ”,“ What did I have that I didn’t ”and“ If it came into my life ”- led them to be the headliners of nightclubs and clubs. showrooms for over 50 years.

April 21-22, singer Mel “Martie” Martin shares the stage with pianist Tom LaMark for “Ella, Peggy, Doris, and Me”, featuring music from Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, Doris Day and other great ladies of the jazz, pop and musical theater.

May 5-6, In “Just the Two of Us”, father and daughter Jim Porcella and Renee Legendre perform a wide variety of music, including songs originally recorded by Rosemary Clooney, Frank Sinatra, Natalie Cole and Michael Bublé, among others. .

June 2-3, “Dream Along with Me,” starring comedian, actor and singer Warren Schein, accompanied by Tom LaMark on keyboards, will pay homage to Perry Como, the beloved recording artist and television star known to millions. people simply under the name of MC

Valerie Sneade Roy will perform at Quincy.

All the good initiatives

Don your best cowboy hat and shine your dance boots for three nights of country dancing online – August 26, September 16, and October 14. Expect stomping, twirling and banging in unison as DJ Steve Cavanaugh spins country music’s biggest hit. The cost is $ 10

Jazzed up for brunch

Have some sax and bass with your eggs and bacon. The Jazz Brunch Series is the perfect mix of great music, great food and a great location. Jazz Brunch dates include September 10, October 10, and November 14.

If you are going to

The 2021-2022 Cabaret series programming includes a morning lunch on Thursday and Friday with a dinner show on Friday evening. Doors open at 11:30 am for lunch and 6:30 pm for dinner. For tickets, visit ticketstothecity.com/jm.

For more information on the Cabaret Series and other JM productions at Marriott Boston Quincy, 1000 Marriott Drive, Quincy, call 857-333-4199 or go online at jmproductionspresents.com.

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