If you are looking for something fun to do on a Thursday evening, The Listening Room at the Davis – the second Thursday of each month, through April – just might fit the bill. The inaugural performances Sept. 10 featured musicians, poets, painters, songwriters, actors and singers giving their all for the audience in the Davis Theatre.
Each artist showed his or her talents in a format similar to an open mic night offered at local bars, with a twist. Artists must submit a video, via the Cabarrus Arts Council’s website, to be selected to perform for each evening.
Anyone can apply, but only family-friendly, G-rated material will be allowed. David Domingo, lead singer with the Fuzzbucket Music Company, acts as the host, selects the artists to perform, with the help of the Arts Council, arranges the order of the acts and keeps the show moving.
Noelle Rhodes Scott, president and CEO of the Arts Council, said they organized the event this way “So that anybody can bring their children and feel comfortable doing that. We’ve been looking for a way to get local talent onto our stage which would be a different configuration from what we do with our On Stage at the Davis.
“The idea is to get local talent on the stage and let people come in for $5 to see a great show,” Scott said “It’s very, very casual. Walk in in your blue jeans, we’re leaving the doors open and the house lights a little up.”
Concessions will be sold throughout the performances; guests are encouraged to mingle and speak softly.
Each performer is allowed to do three pieces, with a 10-minute time limit. Some in the audience followed Domingo’s cue to use snapping fingers to show approval as the artists read their original poetry, sang songs or did a dramatic reading.
Poets Shane Manier and Luvleeh Poetiklocks (also known as Leandrea Hill), engaged in speed painting as others performed on stage.
When Charlotte resident Arsena Schroeder played and sang her original song, “Elephant in the Room,” Manier quickly did a profile of Schroeder on the canvass before her. By night’s end Manier’s painting had several of the artists’ profiles incorporated into it.
Schroeder, 24, said she has only been playing music fulltime for three years and really enjoyed performing at the Davis Theatre. “This is such a beautiful venue. It’s large and small at the same time. Very cozy and it has a warm feeling. It didn’t really feel like an open-mic night. It seemed like a show that was planned out. ... I really enjoyed that aspect too.”
Marty Price is a freelance writer: firstname.lastname@example.org
Want to go?
The Listening Room at the Davis is 7:30-9 p.m. the second Thursday of each month, through April. The Davis Theatre is inside the Historic Cabarrus County Courthouse, upstairs at 65 Union St. S., Concord.
Admission is $5; doors open at 7 p.m.
Information on The Listening Room and how to apply to perform: http://cabarrusartscouncil.org/davis-theatre/the-listening-room.