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More than 50 performing artists will be coming together for a seven-show summer concert series dedicated to a single goal — raising funds for improvements to the sound system in the historic Edna Boykin Cultural Center.
The Boykin Center is a favorite venue for performers who entertain both local and regional audiences throughout the year.
The venue is so busy that it’s sometimes challenging to find an open slot to add additional events to the calendar, but this year Arts Council staff members have managed to put together seven new events for the Wilson community with Summer Sounds. Performers are volunteering their time and talents for the worthy cause.
There have been many technological improvements in sound equipment since the Boykin Center premiered its basic sound system back in the mid-1990s.
A few pieces have been updated, but the foundation is now beyond 20 years of service and in need of work.
All seven Summer Sounds events will be held at the Boykin Center at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 per show and will be available at the door; they may also be purchased in advance through the ACW box office at the Boykin Center, 108 Nash St. NE, during regular business hour, Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call 252-291-4329 for more information.
Details on the concerts follow:
Three Tenors and Mo’
Saturday, June 23, at 8 p.m.
The first concert of the series will feature Wilson’s own Caleb Skinner, joined by friends Tim Messina and Clay Raines. Skinner recently completed his master’s degree in music from the University of Kentucky. Raines and Messina are both East Carolina University-trained tenors.
Saturday, June 30 at 8 p.m.
The second concert of the series will feature more than a dozen of your favorite local performers from past musical productions at the Boykin Center, singing all of their favorite Broadway tunes and more. There will be something for everyone in this family-friendly extravaganza.
The Breeze Band
Saturday, July 28 at 8 p.m.
Have you ever wanted to sing with a band that plays beach music? How about bringing your snazziest dance moves to the stage? You can do just that as the Breeze Band takes the stage and opens its microphones to a host of soloists and dancing couples. Find five people (or businesses) willing to sponsor you at $20 each, and you can either select a song to sing with the band, or select the song you wish to dance to. Each sponsor will receive one ticket to the event for every $20 pledged (feel free to find more than five sponsors or collect more than $20 from each one).
Saturday, Aug. 18 at 8 p.m.
The Moonlight Swing Band will also be opening its microphones to soloists, as well as dancers schooled in the swing band-style and musicians who dream of playing with a big band. It will take five sponsors at $20 (or more) each for you to sing, dance or play with Wilson’s favorite community band, and all of your sponsors will receive one ticket to the event for each $20 pledged.
Dale Bryce Collective
Thursdays on Aug. 9, Aug. 16 and Aug. 23 at 8 p.m.
The remaining three concerts will be performed by the Dale Bryce Collective, featuring selections from Herbie Hancock’s “Headhunters” and “Thrust” albums, along with some of Bryce’s other favorites.
For more information about sponsorships or performing, contact Rita Bennett at RitaForBoykinSound@gmail.com. She will be in charge of providing song lists, getting music to performers and setting up rehearsal dates.