Charles Vanderwilt in hospital after being struck while out walking. (Submitted by Sue Doman)

Greater Victoria choir singer performing for first time after brain surgery

After being hit by a car, Charles Vanderwilt is back on stage with the Starlight Pops Feb. 1, 3

The Starlight Pops Choir will be performing at the Dave Dunnet Theatre Feb. 1 and 3, and Charles Vanderwilt will be singing with them for the first time since being hit by a car.

Vanderwilt woke up in the ICU after being struck while walking in late September. He suffered a severe skull fracture which required emergency brain surgery.

Doctors thought he would remain hospitalized for weeks and require months of therapy, but Vanderwilt was soon able to walk out under the care of his wife Liz Mackay. He made it back to choir practice in November.

RELATED: Canada’s largest male voice sings with Victoria’s Starlight Pops in Oak Bay

“We were horrified when we heard what happened to him, and thought he would be away from choir for a long time,” said choir director Sue Doman. “But his voice is strong and he’s up to speed with all the memorization, which is unbelievable considering what he’s been through. We’re thrilled to have him back with us.”

“Our choir sings challenging arrangements of popular songs, and all music has to be memorized when we perform,” Vanderwilt said. “So that was another obstacle I had to overcome.”

Vanderwilt had music memorization included as part of his Cognitive Therapist sessions, which helped drive his desire to get back on the stage.

“Starlight Pops is a huge part of my life, they’re like a second family to me,” Vanderwilt said.

Doors open at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 1, and 2:30 p.m. for the Feb. 3 performance. Limited tickets will be available for $25.



jesse.laufer@oakbaynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Victoria’s Oktoberfest brings out the Bavarian in all of us

Stein and Dine at Victoria Public Market celebrates German food, beverages, culture on Oct. 19

Restaurant Review: Authentic Mexican molé hits the spot

Restaurante la Tortilla Mexicana’s hearty, spicy sauce works well over enchiladas, writes Allan Reid

REVIEW: Mullins’ Weaksauce hits the mark, like a good hockey pass

UVic Fine Arts alumni and frequent CBC writer’s biographical storytelling show here through Oct. 19

Two local authors walk away with Victoria Book Prize

Kathy Page and Aidan Cassie each walked away with a literary award

Inspirational evening celebrating the power of the arts

The Victoria Guitar Society hosts Syrian Encounter – An Evening with Orontes Quartet, Oct. 18

Fashion Fridays: How to pose in photos

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra launches new season

First up: Celebrating the Concerto on Oct. 27

Trudeau to appear on Jessi Cruickshank’s Facebook Watch show ‘New Mom, Who Dis?’

Federal Liberal leader to do sit-down interview with Canadian media personality on Wednesday

‘Joker’ laughs its way to October box office record

Warner Bros. said “Joker” grossed an estimated $93.5 million in ticket sales from 4,374 screens in North America

Ginger Baker, Cream’s volatile drummer, dies at 80

Baker wielded blues power and jazz technique to help break open popular music in the 1960s

‘Interesting mixture of emotions’: Scott Moir reflects on final tour with Tessa Virtue

Multiple Olympic ice dance gold medallists skating through B.C. during the Rock the Rink tour

It’s onward and upward for Victoria gelato artisan

After winning Gelato Festival gold, Stefano Mosi will compete at North American finals in 2020

Most Read