Valhalla Tahoe – Art, Music and Theatre
A summer evening in Lake Tahoe, picnicking on a green lawn, glasses of wine in hand, a prelude to a night of music carried on sweet summer breezes blowing off of Tahoe’s cool waters. From guitarists to jazz, and great American songwriters, the Valhalla Festival is throwing open the boathouse doors every Wednesday in August for a celebration of music.
The 2018 Valhalla Festival “Meet Your Muse,” runs through November offering art, music, and theatre all in the singular unique setting of the Valhalla Grand Hall, the Boathouse Theatre, and the Grand Lawn, on the Tallac Historic Site.
“There is nothing like it anywhere else in Tahoe,” said Evangeline Elston, director of the festival. “Tahoe can be crowded in the summer, but as you walk into the site it takes you back to a different time, a more relaxed time, it reflects Tahoe’s heritage as a summer retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city.”
The Wednesday evening concerts in August start at 7:30 p.m. in the Boathouse Theatre. The theater’s stage is located on the lakeside of the historic building and for the concerts, the back doors are thrown open highlighting the musicians in relief against the soft light of the setting sun.
“Going to a concert with the doors open is a magical experience, and one that people rave about,” Elston added.
The festival attracts visitors from all over Northern California and Nevada, as well as locals who have long enjoyed the eclectic mix of offerings.
“Repeat festival goers know that the quality of entertainment will be high and they will be exposed to something new,” Elston said. “They are grateful for the cultural venue the festival offers and that it’s affordable.”
The August concerts include the Charlie Hunter Trio Aug. 8. Widely considered the authority on the seven and eight-string guitar, Hunter stuns audiences with his ability to simultaneously bust out tasty bass parts, melodic leads and swinging rhythms.
On a special Friday night performance, Aug. 10 the festival travels back to a different era with a Gatsby Celebration Concert featuring the Northern California-based jazz group Lolo Gervais. Followed by a Gatsby Tea & Fashion Show on Sunday, Aug. 12, on the Grand Hall lawn. The festival is partnering with the Tahoe Heritage Foundation for this event.
Celebrating great modern songwriters on Aug. 15, the Boathouse will fill with the music of Chuck Hawthorne, Amber Cross, and Rod Picott. When you hear Cross you might think you are listening to an archival Smithsonian recording. Her old-time voice is clear and captivating, like a strong muscle, fringed in lace. Hawthorne is a combat soldier with the heart of a poet. He developed his voice as a songwriter riding the Texas plains. Picott, a construction worker turned acoustic guitarist weaves songs around the lives of working people.
The festival turns up the funk Aug. 22 welcoming Grammy nominated Frobeck to the stage. A high-octane funk, soul and rock band with horns, organ, and groove, Frobeck has been entertaining California audiences since 2005.
Women are center stage Aug. 29 with singers Rita Hosking and former Broadway vocalist Susie Glaze. Rita partners with multi-instrumentalist Sean Feder to deliver what Acoustic Magazine calls “timeless, unhurried elegance.” Susie teams with mandolinist Steve Rankin to perform a lush new folk Americana fusion that combines mountain folk and Celtic-inspired originals.
Tickets to all of the festival events are available for purchase online at www.valhallatahoe.com. Ticket prices for the concert series range from $20 to $40.