When attendees of SOMC’s National Cancer Survivors Day celebration June 8 hear the event’s musical entertainment, they will find it memorable but may not be able to put a name to it.
“We’re the No Name Band,” lead singer Vincent Scarpinato, MD, says. “We have no name. We’re a collection of diverse musical interests and we have no repertoire in common.”
A surgeon, an oncologist, an optometrist and a recent high school graduate will entertain the cancer survivor event guests. The group of four musicians range in age from 17 to 48, and are mixing up their love of contemporary, classic rock, hard rock and Broadway standards for the audience.
Each year the SOMC Cancer Center welcomes current and former cancer patients and their loved ones for an afternoon of fun, refreshments and fellowship in conjunction with National Cancer Survivors Day. The local event’s theme this year is “A Day Picnic In Central Park,” and the No Name Band will present a collection of songs centered around New York and Central Park.
“It’s fun, it’s unusual and it’s for a good cause,” Scarpinato, a local surgeon on staff at Southern Ohio Medical Center, says. In addition to general surgery, he specializes in breast surgery and has cared for many cancer patients.
“We will have New York artists, songs about New York and a few surprises,” he says.
Joining Scarpinato will be the Cancer Center’s very own Amory Novoselac, MD, on guitar. Having played since he was a boy, the medical oncologist favors hard rock but is enjoying the chance to try songs he’s never heard.
“It’s exciting to learn new songs, like (Harry Chapin’s) ‘Mr. Tanner,’” he says. “It will be a new experience because we are performing quite a few I’ve never played until now.”
Dr. Novoselac has treated many area cancer patients in the past three years and looks forward to providing them a gift of music.
Lending bass and backup vocals is local optometrist Mike Raies, who has been loving and playing music since he was learning the violin at 6 years of age. No stranger to concert performances, Raies has been playing about eight performances a year for more than 20 years with a band of optometrists, “Bad Habits,” who have been together since winning a talent show while still students in optometry school.
“With ‘Bad Habits’ we’ve known each other so long and played together so much it’s like telepathy,” he says. “With this band and this performance the challenge will be working with different styles of music.”
For recent Portsmouth West graduate Scott Ewing, the performance will be a chance to practice in a different environment than his lead singing in another local band. He is bound for Ohio University this fall, with a duel major in voice and piano. The other members are quick to point out that Ewing’s talent is moving toward a professional level, while they are simply enthusiasts.
Scarpinato, who has been singing since grade school in church choirs and has performed extensively in community theater musicals, the concert will be a fun diversion. He will appear as “The Count” in Southern Ohio Light Opera’s upcoming performance, “A Little Night Music,” by Stephen Sondheim at the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts.
The Cancer Survivors Day annual celebration will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, June 8 at the Friends Community Center, 1202 18th St. Survivors will have the chance to win special treats and door prizes. All cancer survivors and family members are welcome.