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Simply the best

Bringing Tina Turner's spirit to the War Memorial Theatre stage

Roman candle fireworks, flapping bin liners, fake distress calls – none had any real effect on frightening gulls and crows away from Gloucester Airport's runway.

Then along came Tina Turner.

Well, recordings of her hits, at least.

Airport staff blasted the singer's belters from a van motored around the grounds and drove the birds outside Staverton city limits. Renowned for her bird-scarer hits, rock/soul sound, raspy vocals and high energy performances, Turner retired in 2009 but this month South African Tina tribute artist Caroline Borole brings the Turner spirit to the War Memorial Theatre stage.

Backed by a live band, brass section, vocalists and dancers, Borole's performance will include rock, soul and RnB hits such as Simply the Best, What's Love Got to Do With It?, Proud Mary, Nutbush City Limits, We Don't Need Another Hero, What You Get is What You See, Private Dancer and Borole's favourite, River Deep — Mountain High.

Having previously landed roles in TV shows and musical productions, including a starring role as Effie White in the South African national production of the musical Dream Girls, Borole used her skills and knowledge of various music genres to take on the Queen of Rock ‘n' Roll's growls, grunts, raspy vocals and dance moves.

“She is inspiring, she's a veteran and she is someone that can still tell me if I'm doing OK or not,” Borole told South Africa's Sunday World.

“You need to get everything down to a T. The voice, the high energy, the dance moves and the general attitude. It's been a fun process, but you have to put in the work.

“People should watch this show because it's a reminder of where we come from. The nostalgia from good lyrics.”

The tribute artist's father introduced his daughter who was 10-years old at the time to the 1961 album, The Soul of Ike & Tina Turner. The record ignited a love of jazz and blues genres, and of Turner's confidence and high energy. When Borole's career path led to Showtime Australia, the singer toured as a backup singer for the company's largest productions, The Greatest Love of All: Whitney Houston Show and the Michael Jackson History Show.

Then Showtime Australia director, Johnny Van Grinsven hand-picked her for the lead role of Turner in Tina: Simply the Best.

Born in Nutbush, Tennessee, Turner began life as Anne Mae Bullock but Ike Turner changed her name to Tina when in 1957 she joined his band, Kings of Rhythm.

Then she married him — and endured physical and emotional abuse for the next 20 years. After leaving him in 1976, and revealing her ex's violence in her autobiography, I, Tina: My Life Story, Turner made a major comeback in the 1980s as a solo artist.

Turner has won 12 Grammy awards and a Grammy life achievement award.

Rolling Stone ranked her 63rd on its list of the 100 greatest artists of all time and 17th on its list of the 100 greatest singers of all time.

BIG WHEEL KEEP ON TURNING: Tribute artist Caroline Borole is Tina Turner in an upcoming show with live band, brass section, vocalists and dancers at the War memorial Theatre. Picture supplied

  1. Kris says:

    Will this concert at War Memorial Theatre still be going ahead, with all the local cancellations? Wouldn’t it be safer to postpone?