by Terry Duffy
Concerts, concerts and more concerts.
Adding to an already fantastic entertainment lineup in northern Niagara, the Lewiston Council on the Arts announced this week its 16th-year summer schedule of "free, great music." Returning are such favorites as "Blue Monday," the Lewiston Jazz Project, and "International Fridays." The concerts take place at the Hennepin Park Gazebo, corner of Fourth and Center streets in the Village of Lewiston. All are open to the public; and best of all, all are free.
"The concerts at the gazebo are such nice events," says LCA Artistic Director Eva Nicklas. "The community really enjoys coming out to hear the different bands we present each week, and we tried to choose music that would appeal to everyone.
"So pack the cooler and a lawn chair, bring grandma and the kids, and we'll see you there!"
She reports The Lewiston Jazz Project opened the LCA's summer schedule Thursday evening with the New Upstate Express at the gazebo. "It was a very nice turnout," Nicklas said of the event, which competed that night with such happenings as the Furthur Tour at Artpark, the Water Street Quartet in Youngstown and the Ransomville Street Dance.
Directed by Ron Corsaro, New Upstate Express performs each week through Aug. 26. Featured will be original as well as classic jazz repertoire, swing and modern jazz accompanied by guest artists. All concerts begin at 7 p.m.
Nicklas points out LCA's entertainment slate, as is typical, has appeal to all ages and tastes. This summer's fare:
Grammy Award winner Gary Baker is making a special appearance. The show gets under way at 6 p.m. at the gazebo.
"This eagerly awaited series started out as a single Monday concert 15 years ago," says Nicklas. "Now, a series of six concerts featuring the very best regional blues, the event attracts a faithful following of blues lovers from all over WNY and Canada."
The schedule: July 12, Harmonica Dean & the Blue Lights; July 19, the Sonny Mayo Band; July 26, Soul Committee; Aug. 2, Old School B-Boys; Aug. 9, Jelly Jar; Aug. 16, Double Take Blues Band; and Aug. 23, Steve Burnside and the Original Marquis. All shows begin at 7 p.m.
"Join us for a harmonious celebration of cultural diversity in WNY," says Nicklas.
The schedule: July 23, Stone Row (Celtic); July 30, Bergholz German Band; Aug. 6, the Singh Brothers (Indian); Aug. 13, Tonemah (Native American).For further information, go to www.artcouncil.org or visit www.crossborderblues.com for more on the binational blues concerts in the Niagara region.