I think Gloria Gaynor (You know, the voice behind disco anthem “I Will Survive”) said it best when she said, “There’s nothing to compare to live music; there just isn’t anything.”
It seems to me that music is just so much more powerful when performed live. A relationship is formed between audience members and musicians and they can feed off of each other. There is nothing like it.
If you are a fan of live music, like me, the Dietrich has a few upcoming concerts for us to enjoy this month. We will start things off at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13 with our annual Gathering Singers and Songwriters. Organized by Lorne Clarke, local folk musician and concert organizer of the Old Lynn Concerts, this will be our 14th year for the Gathering Concert.
I can hardly believe it.
Each year Lorne gathers together a few of the finest folk musicians this region has to offer, and they always put on a phenomenal show. This year the featured musicians include Tom Flannery, Bret Alexander, Shannon Marsyada and Lorne Clarke. Not only do you experience great music during the show, but the musicians share stories about how they wrote their songs and there is always witty banter between the musicians throughout the concert because they are on stage together for the duration.
My favorite part, however, has to be when they all perform a number together at the end of the show. It’s an amazing musical experience.
Admission is free and donations will be accepted. All you have to do is show up.
Then on Friday, Aug. 28, the Dietrich will bring back Tunkhannock musician Alan Thatcher to Open Mic Night. Thatcher covers songs from a variety of genres including traditional, folk, country, rock, blues and pop. His range is remarkable.
Before he takes the stage as our featured performer, we invite you to come out and share your talents. Poets, musicians, storytellers, comedians and performers of all types are welcome. Each performer will get a five-minute spot, or if you are like me, sit down, relax and enjoy the evening as an audience member. Doors open for seating and sign-ups at 6:30 p.m. and Open Mic begins at 7 p.m. We hope to see you there. It’s free thanks to the generosity of the Dietrich Fundraising Committee.
Rounding out the month, bluegrass group The Hickory Project will perform at the Dietrich at 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 30. The band features hard-driving traditional and original acoustic music deeply rooted in bluegrass. Hickory Project is a powerhouse of musical prowess with the expert licks of National Mandolin Champion Anthony Hannigan, Jillian Hannigan, Ed Lick, Steve Belcher, and Josh Sudigala.
According to Bluegrass Unlimited, “Hickory Project offers dazzling new acoustic music flavored with a twist of sassy bluegrass.”
If you have never seen Hickory Project in concert, I urge you to come out to their show at the Dietrich, and if you have seen them before, you know this is a concert not to be missed. Admission is free and donations are accepted.
This concert is a pre-event to the Cornstock Folk Festival, which will be held from Sept. 4 through 6 at Lazybrook Park in Tunkhannock. Band members will also offer a Strings Workshop on Friday, Sept. 4 at the theater. During this workshop, musicians of all levels of experience will improve their musical knowledge and skills. Instruction on the mandolin, fiddle, banjo and guitar will be featured.
For more information about the Strings Workshop or Cornstock Folk Festival, visit cornstockfestival.com.
If you are interested in local history, come out to a free presentation at 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16 about the Nicholson Bridge. Expert Marion Sweet will share with us various stories about why the bridge was built, who visited the bridge and more. The presentation will be followed by a light reception. You can reserve your free tickets by calling the theater at 570-996-1500, and they will be available at the door while they last.
As you can see, the Dietrich is so much more than the movies!