Live music might still be hard to come by in 2021, but one local group is bringing a country-wide concert to the laptops of Haliburton County music lovers.

The Haliburton County Folk Society is hosting Songs from Coast to Coast, a concert featuring three musicians from across Canada.

Coco Love Alcorn, Ian Sherwood and JUNO award-winner Helen Austin will all tune in via Zoom to share songs and stories on June 5 at 7 p.m.

Concert organizer Don Gage said, “This show is one that we would not likely see live and in person in Haliburton due to costs, scheduling and logistics of bringing three musicians from across Canada together.”

All three are accomplished musicians: Austin is a JUNO-award winner, Sherwood received the Canadian Folk Music Award for Contemporary Singer, and Love Alcorn has gained a large fanbase opening for the likes of Chantal Kreviazuk, Ani DiFranco and Burton Cummings.

The concert will provide each musician a chance to share original songs, chat about song-writing and interact with the other performers – all via their Zoom broadcasts.

Folk Society president Walt Tose said in a press release, “We are very pleased to be able to bring music to this community in these difficult times thanks to a group of dedicated volunteers, community partners, and a faithful and growing audience.”

The Folk Society has hosted six virtual open stages, two live concerts and seven live-streamed concerts with 11 different local artists during the COVID-19 pandemic, with volunteers experimenting with new event styles along the way.

The upcoming cross-Canada Zoom performance is the “big leagues,” said Haliburton County Folk Society marketing manager Barrie Martin. While internet speeds and technology posed challenges for volunteers coordinating the shows, the society has gradually gained expertise in handling online productions.

“We did a bit of a field test, and that prepared us to bring in these folks from across Canada. We’re looking forward to making something similar happen on June 5.”

While COVID-19 has meant major shifts in how the Folk Society shares live music around the County, Martin said, “We’re hopeful that we’ll be continuing to offer live performances one way or the other – hopefully in person.”

The June 5 concert is only available on Zoom with members of the Haliburton Folk Society receiving free access. Single-event tickets to the online show are available at the society’s website at haliburtonfolk.com

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