BRANTFORD – Family, friends, fans and supporters filled the Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts on Saturday, February 24, to support three of the artists that went through CTV’s The Launch.
Fourteen-year-old Vivian Hicks and the chosen artist of Episode Four POESY opened the show before ‘Lucky Ones’ Artist Logan Staats stole the night to offer an entire evening full of soul and melody.
While Hicks began singing at two years old and has gained a large social media following for her covers, POESY, or Sarah Botelho, wrote her first song when she was nine and went on stage to perform several of her own songs including her ‘launched’ song Soldier of Love.
Armed with her piano and powerful voice, in regards to performing in the show she said that she felt “super great.”
“I’ve never played in a show this big before where you get a dressing room and there’s a place where people get to pick up the tickets to come see you,” said POESY. “That was just so cool.”
Her stage name “poesy” is a nod to the original and archaic term for a writer of poetry as she is an English buff, and the name also serves as a reminder of her time as an English and Creative Writing major at Western University. She expressed her appreciation for being able to perform with her ‘launch’ colleagues after the performance.
“I feel like because we’ve all been able to be a part of The Launch so many people have been able to be touched by our music,” she said. “To get to meet some of those people in real life tonight was just amazing and I’m so grateful that we all got to meet each other and play with each other too.”
Her strong performance opened for the haunting and soulful voice of Staats, who came equipped with a selection of older and newer songs that were each enveloped in portraying his passion and tireless commitment.
Between a meet and greet with fans, performing and then following up with media Staats had his hands full for the evening, but it was a welcome experience.
“The performance felt so great,” said Staats. “It’s honestly a bit of a blur because there was so much happening, so much going on and so much that I was trying to do.”
Staats said that it was the first time everything was “kind of crazy” since he appeared on The Launch, but that the amount of support at the show was “really awesome.” He noted that he seen old relatives and grade-school teachers that he hadn’t seen in years.
“I was getting emotional over it because it was really and amazingly overwhelming,” he said. “Every single person that I knew was at the show and I was really nervous, kinda shaky, and I think I drank like 50 coffees that day,” he said with a laugh. “But it was great.”
Staats said that after being on The Launch, he contacted the Sanderson Centre to take advantage of the opportunity to reach a large crowd with the music that friends, family and fans fell in love with. After the budget was put together, he said that he reached out to Hicks and POESY to see if they would like to perform together, and they did.
But a treat for the audience also came when Staats invited his sisters to sing on stage with him.
“I made the decision to bring my sisters up because I’ve been singing with them all of my life,” he said. “There’s not really a musician that you can connect with on that brother-sister level and I think it’s something that’s really special so I just wanted to capture a little bit of that.”
Many have seen the trio perform together on Facebook live, but Staats also noted that he performed ‘Lucky Ones’ outside of The Launch for the first time that evening.
With his ability to cross sadness and joy in his performances and his seamless transition from bar venues to sharing the stage with acts such as Mumford and Sons and Buffy Sainte-Marie – only greater things are expected to come.