On Stage With 2013 season wraps up with April performance

The 2013 On Stage With series continues when musician and songwriter, Kelley McRae, makes a stop on the Hardy Center stage at 7:30 p.m. on April 20.

Kelly McRae  (Photo by DuckDuck Collective)
Kelly McRae
(Photo by DuckDuck Collective)

McRae’s performance will showcases songs from her CD catalog, including music from her new release, “Brighter Than The Blues.”

McRae performs heartfelt music in the vein of Patty Griffin and Lucinda Williams. Referencing McRae, Nashville Scene is quoted, “She breaks past the usual sensitive singer-songwriter limitations with a booming, R&B-influenced voice.”

In addition to her music, McRae’s story is interesting. In 2011 she let go of her Brooklyn apartment and spent the year touring America. She traveled coast to coast with her husband and guitarist, Matt Castelein, playing over 200 shows and putting 50,000 miles on their VW camper van. Along the way, she encountered the people and places that inspired “Brighter Than The Blues,” the album which details a life on the road.

The On Stage With series offers the audience an opportunity to sit on the Hardy Center stage — creating a more intimate atmosphere for the performances.

One attendee at the March 2013 Two Tap Trio performance wrote, “The stage setting made it seem intimate and the performers were very engaging, besides being talented.”

“This is just what we were hoping for when we were putting together the On Stage With series,” said Dave Maurer, Cambridge-Isanti Community Education Director. “We want the audience to get a chance to see these great performers up-close and personal. We’ve had great feedback from the performers as well, getting to interact with the audience let’s them give an entirely fresh performance.”

The Hardy Center received a grant from the East Central Regional Arts Council to offset the costs of a new performance series.

“We were lucky to receive grant funding to cover two years of On Stage With performances,” Maurer said. “One of the goals of the series is to offer an array of ethnic and cultural performances. The Hardy Center committee has already secured Clearwater Hot Club (Jazz Music) and Ogimabenez (Traditional Native American Music) to perform during the 2014 On Stage With season. The committee is working on securing two additional acts to round out the 2014 On stage With series. We are hoping to have a country music act and an Appalachian act.”

Tickets for all Community Education sponsored Hardy Center shows and events are available until noon on April 19. They are available online at www.HardyCenter.com, at the District 911 Community Education Office or by calling 763-689-6189.

Parking at the Hardy Center is free and there is never a ticket handling charge for a Community Education sponsored show.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the East Central Regional Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.