Singer, songwriter, and multi instrumentalist Mary Gatchell call folkie Joni Mitchell and music icon Stevie Wonder as her musical influences, but her love and passion for music comes from a much closer to home…her parents.
The youngest of three, Mary’s mother had her only daughter appearing in her productions from the time Mary was only five years old where she was a face in the crowd in “The Music Man”.
Mama Gatchell is the founder, director, and production manager for the Leddy Center for the Performing Arts in Epping, New Hampshire. While Mary has portrayed the starring role in “Annie”, played Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz”, and was a witch in “Into the Woods”: Mary says that she much prefers to play the smaller roles.
Once Mary started music classes, it was her own father who taught her how to play – first it was the piano and later the oboe.
Mary herself has branched out from just creating and making music. She is the co-founder of the Scenia Summer Music program in Italy where youngsters learn to perform chamber music. She also works with special needs orphans in Bulgaria.
Mary has just released her seventh album – “Camino Real”. Containing all original material, the album features a variety of musical styles but are all connected by a connecting theme.
Mary has performed on Broadway in the musical production “Bombshell: The Musical” and when The Rolling Stones celebrated 50 years of music with a tour, Mary was a part of the choir in one of the shows.
While she never got to meet Sir Mick or any of the band members, Mary said that she was still in awe at the whole experience and could not believe the amount of energy and stamina put forth by Mick Jagger. Calling the whole experience the most thrilling thing, Mary said that you could feel the rush of the crowd when the Stones performed “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”.
Noting that every band member held nothing back in their performance, Mary said that she appreciated the band even more now that she has seen them at work.
Mary has come a long way from her New Hampshire beginnings but through it all there has always been the music..and family.
Photos courtesy of HYPR Media