It was a special homecoming for Kootenay-raised Canadian recording artist Shawn Hook at the Bailey Theatre in Trail on Saturday and a night a group of Selkirk College students will never forget.
In his first return to a hometown venue since pre-pandemic, Hook played to more than 700 adoring fans at the sold-out show. Joining him on stage to open the second set was the Steps to Opportunities, Academics & Readiness (SOAR) Program’s Signing Glee Club. The 15-member glee club performed lyrics using sign language under the spotlight for Hook’s hit song “Take Me Home.”
SOAR Program students first connected with Hook back in March 2021 on a Zoom call while the artist was in California during the height of the pandemic. The bond has continued and when he returned for the special one-night show, Hook invited the Signing Glee Club to join for one song that received warm appreciation from the packed house.
Now based out of Vancouver, Hook grew up the Slocan Valley region where he started playing piano at the age of four. A graduate of Mount Sentinel Secondary School, Hook began his post-secondary at Selkirk College after high school where he was enrolled in the School of University Arts & Sciences and headed towards a career in engineering. As he told the audience on Saturday night, music won out when he started taking voice lessons at night from former Selkirk College Contemporary Music & Technology Program instructor Jude Davison, who also helped him produce his first album.
At the Saturday night show at the Charles Bailey, the singer/songwriter/producer performed intimate scaled-down versions of his songs where he showed his amazing piano chops.