What’s summer without music that makes you get up and move, sing along and not feel the slightest bit embarrassed if your version is off key.
Ste. Genevieve’s been the home of that “feel good” music for the past six years with its Summer Music Festival. This season is no different, with seven shows at the Orris (265 Merchant St.), featuring everything from R&B, gospel, jazz, and blues to country, rock and oldies.
Ticket prices range from $12 to $20. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. All shows begin at 8 p.m. with local talent beginning at 7 p.m.
There’s still time to take in the rest of the Summer Music Festival schedule, but Ste. Genevieve Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dena Kreitler says those who wait until the last minute to buy tickets at the door may be disappointed.
Two concerts-Bob Kuban and the In-Men (June 27) and the July 25 ‘Memories of Elvis’ tribute show are close to a sellout. Tickets are also available for Spanky’s Dueling Pianos (July 11), Kim Massie (July 18), and the July 26 ‘Memories of Elvis’ show.
“I would ask folks who want to come to the shows to call (573) 883-3686 first and check on ticket availability before they drive in for a show that might be sold out,” Kreitler said. “Every day tickets are being sold online or people are stopping by our office to purchase them in person, so tickets at the door are not always guaranteed.”
Kreitler said this year’s Summer Music Festival lineup is one of the best, thanks to research and audience feedback.
“When we started the summer series it was trial and error. We knew the kind of audience we were trying to attract, so we did our research with other communities and venues to see how to create an outstanding line up. Our first season opened our eyes to a lot of ideas, and from there we just started building our event,” she said.
Help to develop and grow the Summer Music Festival in its first years also came from St. Louis’ Sheldon Concert Hall, but Kreitler says the chamber now books the acts and prepares contracts.
“We still solicit the advice of outside groups when needed. But the great thing about this series is that people have caught onto our summer music series and they are now contacting us to be a part of it. Once we get a group, we take the necessary steps to ensure they are suitable for our lineup,” she said.
Location is another key to the Summer Music Festival's success. Kreitler said the Orris, a former movie theater which was then converted into a nightclub and restaurant (Sirros), is popular with performers and audiences.
“It is perfect for some of the groups performing. The acoustics in that place are amazing. Each and every performer has said it’s such a great venue and it actually compliments their sound,” Kreitler said. “It is small and intimate but that’s part of the atmosphere we want. We want people to enjoy its charm and charisma.”