For the past year, musician Joe Hite has recreated the music of Barry Manilow with his eight piece band in a tribute to the famed singer/songwriter in a show titled “Daybreak:The Music and Passion of Barry Manilow” to be performed on Sunday, March 3 in two shows at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Boca Black Box Center for the Arts in Boca Raton.

“I never thought initially that I would be singing the songs of Barry Manilow. However, my good friend Bruce Petersen (of Copa Entertainment) felt that I sounded a lot life Barry and knew instinctively that the show would work. The band sounds good and I have been studying and watching Barry Manilow performing in concert often enough to feel that the audiences will capture the excitement of a Barry Manilow concert,” said Hite.

Hite has performed the show before, at the same Boca Black Box Center for the Arts in 2023 and recently in South Florida on Valentine’s Day at the Delaire Country Club in Delray Beach. What Hite does impressively is transform himself as Barry Manilow, wearing a wig resembling Manilow’s long hairstyle from the 1970s in creating the Barry Manilow image. 

Offstage, Hite is visually different from Manilow, being bald and wearing glasses.

Dan Kazinski Photography

“This is all about entertaining audiences and delivering the best performance possible. However, I am not an impersonator and do not call myself Barry Manilow on stage. What we do impressively on stage is recreate the heyday of Barry in the 1970s, performing his most memorable hit songs in a 90 minute show that feels like watching Barry in concert.”

The show features visual choreography, as Hite performs as Manilow both on the piano and standing in the spotlight in choreographed songs, such as “Copacabana”.

Hite will perform close to 20 Manilow hit songs. Along with “Copacabana”, Hite is also expected to perform “Can’t Smile Without You”, “Daybreak”, “Even Now”, “I Write The Songs”, “This One’s For You” and “Weekend In New England”, among other Manilow songs. 

Hite and Manilow both share similar musical skills. Like Manilow, Hite only started to perform as a lead singer late in life. Manilow started to sing on stage at age 30 and Hite first became a lead singer in the “Daybreak” show in 2023.

Hite and Manilow both honed their skills on piano, both learned the art of arranging songs and have long careers in music.

Hite was born in Milwaukee and has anchored his career in music there for over 30 years. Along with playing the piano in many bars and other venues in Milwaukee, Hite has worked in many genres of music, including creating the nine piece Joe Hite Orchestra dance band for corporate events, social occasions and weddings in Milwaukee and elsewhere.

Showing his versatility, Hite has also performed as a duo with lead singer Tony Goff in an alternative rock duo called “Slightly Gigantic”, creating many music videos seen on the YouTube channel. 

Dan Kazinski Photography

Hite has also demonstrated the art of songwriting both in creating musical variations in different genres, including creating a music video titled “How To Use Swear Words in Creating Your Songs”.

Hite changed his base from Milwaukee to Tampa two years ago and is proud of all he has accomplished thus far in music.

“I am very happy about using my knowledge and skills in a field (music) which I love. However, performing as the lead singer in a Barry Manilow tribute show was something I would never have done on my own and I am grateful to Bruce (Petersen) and the audiences around the country that love the shows.”

Pianist/Singer Joe Hite and his eight piece band and backup singers star in “Daybreak: The Music and Passion of Barry Manilow” on Sunday, March 3 in two shows at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at Boca Black Box Center for the Arts,8221 Glades Road in Boca Raton. Tickets range from $48-63 and can be purchased at or by calling 561-483-9036.

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