I live in Houston and have worked as a nurse. I have a lifelong passion for traveling, nature, and photography (preferably all together!).
What to Do in Branson, Missouri
While in Branson, Missouri, my mother and I had to choose from a beautiful assortment of performers and theater choices. We would have enjoyed many more of the offerings had we scheduled more time, but we took advantage of our short stay to cram in as much of the musical entertainment as we could.
Bobby Vinton's Blue Velvet Theater beckoned to us because of the lovely and memorable songs we remembered being sung and made famous by Bobby Vinton.
My suggestion to anyone traveling to this entertainment capital in the midwest would be to allow several days, a week, or even more. There is so much to see and do! But if you only have a day in Branton, a trip to the Blue Velvet is a must.
Bobby Vinton: The Polish Prince
Bobby was the son of a bandleader in Pittsburgh and followed in his father's footsteps. Bobby's real name is Stanley Robert Vintula Jr. He had his own band at a young age. Graduating from Duquesne University with a musical composition degree, Bobby learned how to play multiple instruments including the piano, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, drums, and oboe.
As many performers have done, Bobby Vinton and others have had their own theaters built in the scenic Branson, Missouri, area and thus have to do far less traveling. The public now comes to see and hear them in that locale instead of the heavy travel schedules most of the performers used to have to maintain. Quality of life for their families has definitely improved.
The Glenn Miller Orchestra
The Glenn Miller Orchestra was also a lure. While the original musicians may have changed in that orchestra (some of the older members being replaced with younger ones), they still play those great old tunes that I grew up hearing in our home. They accompany Bobby on stage in his Blue Velvet Theater.
A Musical Family
Bobby Vinton's entire family is musically inclined and performs with him on stage. His son composes music and sings with him. His beautiful daughters are in many of the musical acts with Bobby, and his mother not only accompanies his singing but can belt out powerful solos of her own.
The action on stage was nonstop. Costume changes were frequent. Acts and skits were continually presented to the enraptured audience. Bobby played a number of the many musical instruments with which he is proficient.
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Some of what we saw that afternoon included a ballroom dancing act; a Phantom of the Opera piece; a cute "Chattanooga Choo-Choo" act with a sizeable colorful train prop on stage; a Mrs. Noah and the Ark act with loads of people wearing costumes that looked like stuffed animals; and many other action-packed scenarios.
It was nonstop singing, dancing, and entertainment. The songs, of course, were beautiful.
Towards the end of the performance, Bobby Vinton walked down the aisle into the audience and shook hands with people as he was still singing. I was one who got to shake hands with him. It was a fun couple of hours!
We started that particular day at Yakov Smirnoff's Grand Palace and laughed until our sides literally hurt. It was a particularly fun way to kick off the start of that day.
We left Bobby Vinton's Blue Velvet Theater with his songs swirling around in our heads. Many of the people in the audience as they were going were heard to be humming some of these songs. Hard not to do!
It was fun gathering the photos and memories together for this post. I'm humming "Blue Velvet" in my head right now.
If you like good old-fashioned songs and get a chance to visit Bobby Vinton's Blue Velvet Theater in Branson, by all means, do so! These photos and videos are just a small sample of what you might hear and get to see and enjoy.
Bobby Vinton sold his Blue Velvet Theater some years ago. He started traveling again to present his music to fans. His lifetime accomplishments include a television series, plus his acting in a couple of movies, in addition to his singing career. Bobby has several streets named after him in the place of his birth, Canonsburg, Pennsylvania.
Location of Branson, Missouri
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Questions & Answers
Question: When we visited the Blue Velvet Theatre (not sure of the year or date) Bobby Vinton would have his mother on stage with him. You didn’t mention that so I think she must have passed?
Answer: When we attended the Bobby Vinton show at the Blue Velvet Theater, his mother was still singing with him as well as his daughters. That also was a number of years ago.
© 2009 Peggy Woods