The documentary Celebrate Shuswap 2020 will showcase the Shuswap’s vibrant music scene. (File photo)

Documentary to celebrate the Shuswap’s music scene

Local initiative to feature several of the region’s artists

Salmon Arm’s newest concert venue will set the stage for a series of musical performances designed to celebrate the Shuswap.

Several local musicians will be taking part in the initiative Celebrate Shuswap 2020, intended to showcase the Shuswap’s bevy of talent and the region they call home. They include Jordan Dyck, Emilie Bradford, Darrin Hertig, Clea Roddick, Megan Abel, Tara Willard, Jasmine Frederickson, Ari Lantela, Alton Gowen and James Clark.

During October and November, each of these artists will have an opportunity to perform at the site of the former Living Waters Church on Lakeshore Drive, which has been converted into a concert and event hall/recording studio. They will be recorded and video excerpts from their performances will become part of a documentary highlighting the Shuswap’s music industry that will be streamed publicly.

The initiative is being organized by Salmon Arm’s Acoustic Avenue Music with partners Lakeshore Village Ltd, Collide Entertainment, and 55 Creative Group.

Acoustic Avenue Music’s Ted Crouch said the idea for Celebrate Shuswap started with conversations with the venue’s owner, Craig Newnes, and Collide Entertainment owner and former Shuswap resident Mike Southworth.

“We talked about it and said we could do this,” said Crouch, noting concerts that were planned for earlier in the year were cancelled due to COVID-19. So an application was submitted to Music BC for a grant through SoundON, “a province-wide campaign and resilience fund to help bring B.C.’s music community back together, and provide support to artists, presenters, production staff and venues. Crouch said the application was successful, green-lighting the Celebrate Shuswap documentary.

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“We’ll do the editing locally as well and feature not only the artists but interviews with the artists,” said Crouch, comparing the endeavour to what was done with this year’s Roots and Blues festival. “We’ll show off some of what we, as residents, know is wonderful about being here, but under the Celebrate Shuswap umbrella. We’ll be able to come up with a really nice documentary with talks about the music industry in the region.”

Crouch said $5,000 was received through SoundON and he’s hoping to raise additional funding through sponsorships to assist with the video’s production and all the associated costs. Under normal conditions, audiences might have supported the initiative via ticket sales.

“It’s a little awkward under COVID because we’re not selling tickets,” said Crouch, explaining that because of the pandemic and related restrictions, audiences will not be able to attend the live performances.

“At the very least, the community at large will be able to view the documentary and hear some of the music from the artists that are part of it,” said Crouch.

“If we do this one successfully and come up with a nice documentary, which I’m pretty confident we will, then we’ll sit back and seriously say, OK, when can we comfortably start working towards booking artists locally and touring artists to bring another concert series back?”

The completed documentary will be made available for a streamed presentation by SoundON.

For further information about Celebrate Shuswap 2020, visit acousticavenuemusic.com, or contact Ted Crouch at 250-833-8556, or by email at tcrouch@shaw.ca.

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