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Canterbury Choral Society welcomes Tony Award nominee for its season opener
In September 2011, Raines was cast as Benjamin Stone in a star-studded revival of Stephen Sondheim's “Follies.” Playing a successful but self-absorbed businessman who wonders if he made the right choices in life, Raines was part of a cast that included Bernadette Peters, Jan Maxwell, Elaine Paige and Danny Burstein. Following a five-month run on Broadway, “Follies” moved to Los Angeles where it ended its limited run in June.
“With its heavy singing and heavy acting, ‘Follies' almost killed me,” Raines said with a laugh. “It was exhausting physically and emotionally but it turned out to be some of the most artistically satisfying work I've ever done.
“Just a week ago, I went into ‘Newsies' as (newspaper publisher) Joseph Pulitzer. I'm subbing for John Dossett till Dec. 16. It's fun playing a bad guy, which makes you root for the young paperboys even more.”
Raines became a founding member of OCU's Bass School of Music advisory board in 2004. He also sponsors a scholarship that is given to a graduate who is interested in pursuing a theatrical career in New York.
“I tell students to take every opportunity to perform because that's how you learn to be successful in this business,” Raines said. “I don't care if you're pushing a cart on stage; it's the experience that counts.”
Canterbury's 2012-13 season also includes “A Baroque Christmas,” a holiday program featuring Bach's “Magnificat” and Handel's “Messiah” on Dec. 2, and Leonard Bernstein's “Mass,” subtitled “A Theatre Piece for Singers, Players, and Dancers,” on April 13.