Mark Critch, Sean McCann ... and a bit of Zeppelin

Stars to go ‘Under the Covers’ for Warm Hearts show

Published on February 15, 2014

Have you ever had a secret longing to get under the covers with Sean McCann? Or Mark Critch? Or Lynda Boyd of “Republic of Doyle?”

Now’s your chance, and it’s a win-win situation for everyone.

The Telegram is presenting “Under the Covers,” a show at Holy Heart Theatre Feb. 22, in support of our Warm Hearts project for the women and children staying at Iris Kirby House.

The show, our third annual gala event for the campaign, will feature McCann — in his first appearance since leaving Great Big Sea and releasing his solo album “Help Your Self” — Critch, Boyd, Chris Andrews of Shanneyganock, Chris Kirby, Mary Barry and Ian Foster in an intimate and comical setting.

Sitting in a circle — with guitars and a Steinway grand piano — the musicians will perform a mix of cover tunes and original material and share the quirky stories behind the music, between chats with Critch, who will, basically, give them the gears, along with providing some comic relief of his own.

From Led Zeppelin to show tunes, the event will be as varied as the performers in it.

“I’m very excited to be asked to take part in this night. I’m a fan of all the acts so I’m delighted to just get a front row seat for some great music,” Critch said.

“I’ll be close enough to smell Sean McCann, and his hair looks like he would smell wonderful.”

“Under the Covers” will also see performances by comedian Sarah Walsh, who received rave reviews on her performance at last year’s Exit Realty on the Rock Comedy Festival and opened for comedian Sabrina Jalees in St. John’s, as well as bellydance troupe The Neighbourhood Strays.

The Telegram’s Warm Hearts project began in 2012, inspired by a series of stories written by arts and life reporter Tara Bradbury who wrote about domestic violence, called “Violence at Home.”

Throughout February — traditionally Iris Kirby House’s busiest month — The Telegram is collecting monetary donations and donations of pyjamas, hats, mittens, scarves, socks and underwear (new clothing only, please) in a range of women’s and children’s sizes, as well as personal hygiene items, which will be provided to the residents of Iris Kirby House to give them some warmth and comfort during and undoubtedly unsettling time in their lives.

This time around, we’re also focusing on donations of blankets and are asking you to get out your knitting needles.

We’re collecting knitted and crocheted squares, which we will sew together into blankets and donate to Iris Kirby House. Make your squares 8 x 8 inches (20 x 20 cm), in any pattern and any weight yarn you choose, and darn the ends in, but leave a 20-inch “tail” to allow us to sew them together.

There will be a donation area set up at the show, or you can drop your donations off to our offices in the Village Mall.

You can also drop your knitted items off at Cast On! Cast Off!, a new yarn shop at 685 Water St. in St. John’s (across from Victoria Park), which has come onboard as a sponsor of this year’s Warm Hearts campaign.

Mention you’re knitting for Warm Hearts and you’ll receive 10 per cent off your purchases there.

Anyone who drops a donation off before the show will be entered to win a variety of prizes, including show tickets.

The money raised from the show and campaign will go towards programming at the shelter, as well as renovations. Iris Kirby House is in the midst of an expansion, which will see the addition of 10 emergency beds and four self-contained units adjoined to the property.

Iris Kirby House executive director Gail Tobin said calls to the shelter’s crisis line increase during the Warm Hearts campaign, as a result of the awareness raised.

“We believe that no woman deserves to be abused and no child should have to grow up in a home where abuse is present,” she said.

“This campaign allows domestic violence to be talked about in an open forum; one that is nurturing and caring in nature and that validates for women who are being victimized that they have a choice, and there are people in society who do sincerely care and support them in moving forward to a life free of abuse.”

Tickets for “Under the Covers” are $25, all taxes and service charge included, and go on sale at noon today at the Holy Heart Theatre box office, by calling 579-4424 or online at

“I am a husband and a father. There is no excuse for for domestic violence — ever,” said McCann.

“Iris Kirby House helps mothers and children in crisis when they have nowhere else to go. I think we should all try to help them do that.”

“I can’t think of a better cause than Iris Kirby house,” Critch said.

“The cause alone is worth coming out for. I don’t get much of a chance to perform at home these days so I’m looking forward to bouncing around and have some fun.”