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Stage Fright and Seven Guest Musicians to Recreate The Band’s 1976 Farewell Concert
At 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 25 in the Coolidge Theatre at the Deane Center for the Performing Arts at 104 Main Street in Wellsboro, Stage Fright and seven guest musicians will recreate The Last Waltz, the famous farewell concert given on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25, 1976 by the Canadian-American roots rock group The Band.
The Last Waltz, presented at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco, California, the same venue where The Band first debuted in 1968, would go down as one of the most spectacular events in rock history.
The 1976 concert began with “Up On Cripple Creek” and continued with other hits by The Band such as “The Shape I’m In”, “It Makes No Difference”, “Life is A Carnival”, “Weight” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.” It ended with The Band performing “Don’t Do It (Baby, Don’t You Do It).”
The Band first performed live as the backing musicians for Bob Dylan and then as headliners. After creating some of the most influential music of the late 1960s and early 1970s, members had reached a crossroads in 1976. Their Thanksgiving Day concert was not only a celebration but also the last time this revered rock group would ever perform live again, 46 years ago to the day this year.
Invited to perform with them for The Last Waltz were the musical collaborators and significant influences from every stage of the group’s career, such as Bob Dylan, Muddy Waters, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Van Morrison, Eric Clapton, Dr. John, Neil Diamond, Ronnie Hawkins, Bobby Charles, and Paul Butterfield. Taking part in two spontaneous jam sessions were Ringo Starr, Stephen Stills and Ron Wood.
Stage Fright includes: Joe Callahan of Wellsboro on guitar; Sean Monroe of Horseheads, N.Y. on upright bass; Mike Watkins of Addison, N.Y. on keyboards, organ, accordion, mandolin and fiddle; and from Corning, N.Y., Mike Nickerson on drums and Joe Narde on percussion.
Guest artists are: singer Karin Knaus of Westfield; saxophonist and harmonica player Kenn Wenner of Jerry Duty, the Tribute Band to Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead based in Northern Pennsylvania; singer, guitarist and banjoist, Josh Sperrick of Corning, N.Y. a member of the band Hilltop Revelry; and singers and guitarists, Houston Baker of Mansfield and Molly Cary, Brandon Lusk and Scott Turner, all of Wellsboro. They will play and sing some of the music by the famous artists that entertained during the Last Waltz concert.
The concert is BYOB with audience members encouraged to reserve a table, bring their own favorite beverages and snacks and sit with family and friends to enjoy the music.
Admission is $25. Children 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult; however seats must be reserved to accommodate them. For tickets and to reserve a table, call (570) 724-6220 or visit www.deanecenter.com.
Writing: Diane Eaton