The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

October 4, 2013

Doo-wop sounds: The Duprees to perform at Arcadia Theater

Ruth Rice

JOHNSTOWN — Vocal harmonies and showmanship will be the order of the day when this classic group performs.

The Duprees will perform with a mixture of romance, energy and fun at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26 at Arcadia Theater, 1418 Graham Ave., Windber.

The Duprees have always been known for their romantic interpretations of love songs and have made a career out of giving new life to old hits by mixing doo-wop vocals with big band arrangements.

“Ticket sales are great, and like with The Tokens last month, they’re selling fast,” said Amy Moore, director of public relations at the Arcadia. “I wouldn’t recommend waiting until the night of the show.”

She said when the audience comes to see The Duprees, they will be able to view the new mural in the lobby.

Moore plans to get videos of The Duprees and other upcoming performers posted on the theater’s Facebook page.

The group was founded in the early 1960s in Jersey City, N.J., by William L. Dickinson High School students Michael Arnone, Joe Santollo, John Salvato, Tom Bialoglow and lead singer Joey Canzano, who would later be known as Joey Vann.

George Paxton, a former big band leader, was impressed by the group’s style and signed them to his Coed Records label.

The Duprees’ version of  Jo Stafford’s 1952 hit “You Belong to Me” was given a big band backing by Paxton and was the group’s first million seller.

The group’s unmistakable sound was born, and more hits followed throughout the 1960s, with “You Belong To Me” and “My Own True Love” in 1962; “Gone With The Wind,” “Take Me As I Am,” “Why Don't You Believe Me,” “Have You Heard,” “Love Eyes,” “It's No Sin” and “The Sand And The Sea” in 1963; “It Isn’t Fair” in 1964; and “Let Them Talk” and “Exodus” in 1966.

Current group members are leader and emcee Tony Testa and Tommy Petillo, Jimmy Spinelli and Phil Granito.

Three original group members have passed away, Santollo in 1981, Vann in 1984 and Arnone in 2005.

In 2006, the original members of The Duprees were inducted in to the Vocal Group Hall of Fame.

If you go

What: The Duprees

When: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26.

Where: Arcadia Theater, 1418 Graham Ave., Windber.

Tickets:  $39, $36 and $34.

Information: 467-9070 or

Ruth Rice covers Features for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow her on Twitter at