The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
It’s a concatenation, that’s what it is – or will be. Never mind the definition, for it really comes down to three local organizations – the City of Akron, through the Lock 3 program, Akron Civic Theatre and the Akron Symphony Orchestra, all Knight arts grantees – lining up to present a music-filled, eventful Fourth of July celebration.
Downtown will be filled with ribs cookers and other vendors vying for prizes for the best of food categories. That alone can draw lots of people through the holiday period.
But the three groups have other things in mind.
The evening before, July 3rd, the Akron Civic Theatre, a Knights Arts grantee, will host the national touring group Bruce in the USA at 8:30 p.m. at Lock 3. The tribute band is led by Matt Ryan, the lead singer who has nailed down both the look and the character of The Boss himself. This “high-end, powerhouse band” has taken the genre of tribute bands to the next level, with the result that it is, as they say, the No. 1 tribute band to the E Street Band’s legacy.
The group is presumably filled with world-class musicians taken from other performance organizations like Queen, David Cassidy, The Temptations and Joe Cocker, to name a few. Begun in 2002 in Las Vegas, where it played to great success, the band found itself launched on a nationwide tour. Luckily, it’s coming here for this larger-than-life celebration.
On Independence Day itself, the musical festivities begin with veteran performer Alex Bevan, appearing at 4 p.m. at Lock 3. Bevan is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, poet, radio personality and music producer who comes from the northeast Ohio area.
As a single act, he opened for big name groups “in the day” as they say, like Hall and Oates, The Doobie Brothers, Michael Stanley Band, and Seal and Crofts.
Later in the evening, at 8 p.m., the Akron Symphony Orchestra, a Knight Arts grantee, will be there for its annual downtown concert filled with classic American tunes at Lock 3, a Knight Arts grantee, until time for the gala fireworks display at 9:45 p.m.
The City of Akron’s 4th of July musical celebration will be held at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 3 and at 4-10 p.m. on Thursday, July 4 in the Lock 3 pavilion, 200 S. Main St.; Akron; 330-375-2877; www.lock3live.com. Admission is free for all musical events.