By: Christy Blystone | Category: Recreation/Leisure | Issue: October 2010
Riders in the Sky are a classic cowboy quartet known for their legendary wacky humor and Western wit.
The Broken Arrow Arts and Humanities Council recently kicked off their 2010-2011 Encore Series season with a performance by the Harry James Orchestra, and the season continues Friday, October 8 with the rip-roarin’ lonesome cowboy sounds of Riders In The Sky.
For 30 years, Riders In The Sky have been keepers of the flame passed on by the Sons of the Pioneers, Gene Autry and Roy Rogers, reviving and revitalizing the genre. While remaining true to the integrity of Western music, they have become modern-day icons by branding the genre with their own legendary wacky humor and way-out Western wit, while all along encouraging buckaroos and buckarettes to live life “The Cowboy Way!”
As a classic cowboy quartet, the trail has led them to heights in all 50 states and 10 countries, appearing in venues everywhere from the Nashville National Guard Armory to Carnegie Hall, and from county fairs to the Hollywood Bowl. In 1982, Riders In The Sky became the first, and to date only, exclusively Western music artist to join the Grand Ol’ Opry. Many people link Riders In The Sky to the loveable cowboy Woody, as the quartet performed “Woody’s Round Up” in “Toy Story 2,” with the album of the same name garnering Riders their first Grammy Award in 2001 for “Best Musical Album for Children.” Two years later, Riders roped their second Grammy in the same category, for “Monsters Inc. – Scream Factory Favorites.”
On Saturday, December 4, the Encore Series presents the second annual free holiday performance for the community. This year’s event will be a Branson-style show called “A Time for Christmas,” led by Mark Frie, BAPAC executive director, and will also serve as a time to collect toys and non-perishable food items for those in need. The performance will feature singers and musicians from the region and promises to be an entertaining show for the entire family. Frie has performed all over the world in musicals, operas and concerts. He made his solo debut at Carnegie Hall in 2006 and also performed in such shows as “Shrek” and “Oklahoma.”
The Vienna Boys Choir closes the Encore Series season with their amazing singing talent.
The season closes on Thursday, February 24 with a performance by the world-famous Vienna Boys Choir. In 1498, Emperor Maximilian I moved his court and his court musicians from Innsbruck to Vienna. He gave specific instructions that there were to be six boys among his musicians. For want of a foundation charter, historians have settled on 1498 as the official foundation date of the Vienna Hofmusikkapelle and – in consequence – the Vienna Boys Choir.
Until 1918, the choir sang exclusively for the imperial court, at mass, at private concerts and functions, and on state occasions. Today there are around 100 choristers between the ages of 10 and 14, divided into four touring choirs. The choirs give around 300 concerts each year in front of almost half a million people. Each group spends 9 to 11 weeks of the school year on tour. They visit virtually every European country, and are frequent guests in Asia, Australia and the Americas.
Encore Series tickets are $25 per show and are on sale now. To purchase tickets for Encore Series performances, please go to www.thepacba.com, call (918) 259-5778 or visit the BAPAC at 701 S. Main St. The ticket office is open from noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Broken Arrow Arts and Humanities Council is grateful to sponsors who help make these performances possible. Encore Series Presenting Sponsors are NSU-BA and Magnum Construction. Public Service Company of Oklahoma is the Riders In The Sky show sponsor, and Hampton Inn and Clarion Hotel in Broken Arrow serve as the show sponsor for A Time for Christmas. Additional sponsors are the Broken Arrow Convention and Visitors Bureau, AVB, Windstream Communications, Oklahoma Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.
For more information about the Broken Arrow Arts and Humanities Council, visit www.artsba.org.