Report on Riders in the Sky Concert  by Susan Mumma

On Wednesday, September 26, 2012 Riders in the Sky, “America’s Favorite Cowboy Band”  performed in Seldovia to an audience of over 100 people which included about half the town of Seldovia, infants to seniors.  Little children danced on the sidelines, the music was uplifting, and the “boys” even invited children from the audience up on stage for a song or two.

Earlier in the day, an outreach talk and sample of music styles was given to the students in the high school and junior high band class.  Samples of Western Swing and demonstrations of each instrument, accordion, stand—up bass, rhythm guitar and fiddle were included. Questions and answers were provided. The students were captivated and, especially so, after the band played their Emmy winning song from Disney’s Toy Story 2, Woody’s Round-Up, which made the connection between the four artists standing in front of them, and one of their favorite characters, Woody.   In real life, the band explained that Woody Paul, the Rider that is the model for Woody, has just been inducted into the National Fiddler’s Hall of Fame.  The band has been included in many films and each member is accomplished in their own right in other arenas of the music world.  What an honor to be mentored by such a group.

The organization of this event was done by Susan Mumma.  A very delicious and successful co-event, a Harvest Pot-luck just prior to the show, was orchestrated by Valisa Higman at the Seldovia Village Tribe Prevention Program.

Major help on this event was given by Dede Higman, Susan B. English School, Sadi Synn (sound engineering).  Susan Mumma, Valisa Higman, Dede Higman and Arial Anahonak  the backdrop over several evenings.  The high school band set up the stage and Sadi Synn created the beautiful sounds.  Suzie Stranik provided greenroom treats. Laurel Hilts helped on publicity and driving. Rose Mc Inness took the gate.   The entire council, as well as other community members were part of the breakdown. Special thanks also to Andy Criscolo, Jenny Chissus at the Seldovia Gazette, Mike Hayes, for lending a hand with publicity sound and set up.

The band was housed at the Seldovia Fishing Adventures, Central Suites, and The Seldovia Rowing Club. Transportation was provided by Susan Mumma, SVT (van loan) and MAKO Water Taxi.

The Riders in the Sky were chosen as artists particularly appropriate for Seldovia because of their prior history in Seldovia, their incredible artistic merit, their genre, and their ability to work with people of all ages.  So many of the young adults in the community fondly remembered the group from a performance 27 years prior and brought their own children to revisit the fun.  The Riders attended the pot luck,  enjoyed the people of Seldovia and put on a highly professional show for a record  number in the audience.  This was a highly successful event. Everyone went away with a smile on their face.

The one thing that I would do differently were I to do it again, would be to have the pot-luck start time closer to the start time of the show. The time period between the beginning of the pot-luck 5:00 and the 7:30 show time was a long time for folk to wait.  Perhaps, when a pot-luck is included, it could start at 6:00.    Publicity by Seldovia Gazette

Publicity by Seldovia Arts Council

A big THANK YOU to all who participated!

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