Steve Findley, the curator of The Coffeehouse at All Saints Concert Series, knew the bubble was eventually going to burst.
Findley found live streaming shows via Facebook to be just fine during the pandemic, but he also missed the intimacy that a live show can bring. And, not to mention, the music sounds just a little bit better live.
The popular community concert series returned with its first in-person show for 2021 in May. During the pandemic, The Coffeehouse at All Saints only held in-person events in July, August, and September 2020. All others were streamed online.
Now, the series is back again with a show on June 11. Performers include: Billy Joe Hunt, Vijay Jagdale, Amy Pendell with Anne-Marie Rachman, Robert Nelson, Jim Jersey, Cheryl Caesar, Dan Wilson with Ron McKeever, Mary Fox, and Johnny Zawacki.
While the live show was certainly missed, Findley was happy to stream Coffeehouse shows virtually during the colder months of the pandemic. However, it was a bit of a strange experience, according to Findley.
“It felt like the performers and I were in a bubble as we could see each other all the time, but we only broadcast the current performer to the Facebook Live,” Findley said. “The camaraderie was quite wonderful. We were very appreciative of those who took the time to enter comments as we performed. One advantage of doing online shows is they are up there for virtually forever so anyone can go to The Coffeehouse Facebook page and see a previous show.”
The pastor at All Saints suggested returning to in-person shows, and Findley said all the necessary precautions to keep everyone safe are in place.
“We have such an excellent relationship with our host church it was actually suggested by the pastor,” Findley said.
“Since we are outside in the parking lot, folks have self-distanced appropriately,” Findley said. “We currently aren’t sharing the bounty of food and drink [that] the kind audience of The Coffeehouse bring, and we would encourage them to keep it to their bubble. Performers have access to sanitizer and wipes on the stage.”
The concert series is now in its fifteenth year, and Findley looks forward to all the talent at each show.
“We have a wide variety of performers this month,” Findley said. “I am excited to see the brother-in-law duo of Dan Wilson and Ron McKeever. “Dan is quite amusing and Ron is an excellent instrumentalist. The Coffeehouse also is a great place for folks to perform for the first time to great audiences. Amy will be performing with Anne-Marie Rachman for the first time.”
With Covid-19 restrictions loosening, Findley encourages all to attend the concert outside under the summer sun and in a safe environment.
“I am very grateful to All Saints Episcopal Church, the many Coffeehouse performers, and the East Lansing community for the opportunity to present live music and spoken word for no charge,” Findley said. “The atmosphere at The Coffeehouse is one of community.”
Showtime is at The All Saints Church, located at 800 Abbot Road. The show will run from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. The show will also stream live. Audience members are encouraged to bring a chair or snack for themselves.
For more information, visit The Coffeehouse at All Saints’ page on Facebook.