It seems several years ago, but it was only a week ago that Kaia held our CD Release/Rent Party for Get Down, Rise Up!. We were at the Waldron Auditorium, one of our favorite spaces.
We’d decided, after the grueling and (literally) almost killing pace of last year’s show, that this year we’d do something different. And so we did!
To start with, it was an acoustic show, so there was no big hairy deal, messing with mics and monitors. The flipside is that we had a tendency to over-sing a bit and to push tempo.
We sang two short sets of music, liberally sprinkled the show with small ensembles and audience sing-alongs, and spent the rest of the time talking and having fun.
The best part for everyone was probably the community art project we did with Joe LaMantia. Everyone had 5′-long ribbons to write a message of hope on. We then tied the ribbons to strings hanging down from a structure suspended over the stage. It was heartwarming to see everyone take it so seriously, and the finished piece was practically glowing with magical energy. The process truly helped bring us all together.
The audience was smaller than I wanted, but as usual I set the seating to make it look as much as possible like a full house. We had about 80 people. It didn’t help that it was ArtsWeek and there were five million other things going on, or that we didn’t have the benefit of BAAC promotions this year, or that everyone in town seemed to be ill!
But for all that, people had a great time. The goodwill was overflowing and the smiles were glowing. It was similar to the effect we achieved with the céilidhs, but not to their degree. It was deeply satisfying to create an event that people enjoyed so deeply and felt so moved by. Plus we raised nearly $500 for Rhino’s, our landlords!