The Doo Wop Project
The Doo Wop Project starts at the beginning of the unique sound, when five guys sang tight harmonies on street corners, and takes the audience on a music journey through the Crests and Belmonts to Smokey Robinson and the Temptations to the Four Seasons and modern doo-wopified songs from Maroon 5, Michael Jackson and Jason Mraz. They have the authentic sound, the vocal chops and the creativity to recreate or re-imagine some of the biggest hits in pop and rock history and they return to The Lyric Theatre to take the audience along for the ride.
Two of the founders of the Doo Wop Project are named Dominic, which is confusing, especially as they are both such nice guys. Dominic Scaglione played Frankie Valli in Jersey Boys and Dominic Nolfi played Tommy DeVito. The two agree that the Doo Wop Project first saw the light of day on the third floor of the August Wilson Theatre during their run in Jersey Boys. Dominic Nolfi confirmed this in an interview this year. “It really was Dominic (Scaglione’s) idea,” he said. “He felt there was a lack of guys our age singing traditional doo wop. We could fill that void.”
Fill that void they have, and more. Nolfi has just finished a run as Crazy Mario in the Broadway production of A Bronx Tale to devote full time to the Doo Wop Project. He is mega-talented, but he and the “other Dom” are only part of an ensemble of mega-talented guys. Charl Brown originated the role of Smokey Robinson in Motown: The Musical, and received a 2013 Tony Award nomination for it. Russell Fischer, who has the falsetto, won the role of Joe Pesci in the Broadway company of Jersey Boys on his 22nd birthday. Dwayne Cooper has been compared to “a modern day Sammy Davis Jr. meets Barry White,” and Sonny Paladino is the music supervisor for Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812, as well as for the upcoming revival of Smokey Joe’s Café.
Nolfi is leaving Broadway because the Doo Wop Project means that much to him. “It’s my priority,” he said, “We’re just maximizing its potential and we’re on a mission to keep the music alive. We have ideas to bring it to first, second and third graders and get them interested in harmony singing. We did our first show at my daughter’s school. She’s seven and they had a blast. I want to be an old man, listening to kids singing this music and understanding where it came from, with its African-American roots and how every group, Italians, Jews and Irish had a stake in it.”