The concert, set for 8:30 p.m. on June 24 at the church on leafy Church Street, will seat 800 people. (That’s nearly twice the capacity for a seated show at The Orange Peel’s well-known venue on Biltmore Avenue in downtown.) The show will be a fundraiser for the environmental nonprofit Wild South.
Last July, The Orange Peel and its booking partner, AC Entertainment, produced its first off-site show at Highland Brewing’s meadow, a 2,000-person venue. The show featured indy pop stars Sylvan Esso, a North Carolina-based band. The show was a hit with music fans.
Stretching beyond its Biltmore Avenue boundaries allows The Orange Peel to extend its brand, explore bigger venues and establish new community partnerships, says Liz Whalen Tallent, manager of The Orange Peel. (Central United Methodist Church has amazing acoustics, Tallent notes.) Look for similar announcements later this year, says Tallent.
There’s more on the Kruger Brothers on The Orange Peel website.
UPDATE: Here’s more detail from Liz Whalen, who kindly responded to a list of written questions I sent her:
1) The concert is being presented by Orange Peel Events and Wild South, in partnership with the Sanctuary (basically, the venue that is CUMC) and NewSong. Yes, we hope to have more of these! We are working on others, as well as other Orange Peel Events shows in this venue and more. None to announce at this time, but we are working on others 🙂
3) Orange Peel Events was formed to create a new venture that can bring some of the expertise and connections we’ve made in the live concert world and expand outside the physical venue and business of the Orange Peel Social Aid & Pleasure Club. You might see OPE putting on outdoor shows, intimate concerts in smaller clubs and rooms, larger seated theater performances, and so forth. When Central Methodist approached us about helping with a series of benefit concerts, we were blown away by the architectural beauty of their space and the acoustics are just beyond compare, plus it’s an air-conditioned comfortable room, fully seated on two levels, with a great seat, sound and view from almost anywhere, so we just thought it would be really special to have certain kinds of artists – bluegrass, folk, soul, americana – in their space. We were inspired by the use of Central Presbyterian Church in Austin as one of SXSW’s premier venues every year. Since 2006, audiences have experienced unique and transcendent concert experiences there with shows from Natalie Maines (Dixie Chicks) to Fiona Apple to M Ward, and we were thrilled CUMC in Asheville had the idea to open their wonderful space up to our community to enjoy special sonic experiences with some of our favorite bands that might benefit from a more hushed atmosphere.
Starting out with this act, the Kruger Brothers, is a great way to get our feet wet. The Krugers Brothers are bluegrass and modern American folk music and they’re phenomenally talented technical musicians, experimenting with both jazz and classical music within their songwriting. They are originally from Germany, but now based in Wilkesboro.
In 2013, the Kruger Brothers appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, performing their instrumental piece “Jack of the Wood” (named after Asheville’s very own Jack of the Woods!) accompanied by Steve Martin, who played clawhammer banjo. Jens Kruger, the band’s banjo player, has been described as, “one of the world’s most musically sophisticated and technically accomplished five-string banjo players.” In 2013 he won the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass Music.
4) This show is a partnership with Wild South, a wonderful regional non-profit that works to promote and protect wild lands with beer proceeds and ticket profits going to support the organization. They are working on having beer available outside in an outdoor area on Church Street – the permits for this are underway, I’m told! No food or drink is allowed inside the Sanctuary to preserve its historic nature, so we are working on a food truck, seating, and a nice outside street party vibe for a few hours before the doors open so ticket holders can come enjoy.