Free concert series at Peery’s Egyptian Theater begins with Latin American acts
Excellence in the Community presents a powerful night of dance and music with Mariachi Sol de Jalisco and Ballet Folklorico de las Americas next week, kicking off the 2021-22 season of free community concerts at Peery’s Egyptian Theater.
Jeff Whiteley founded Excellence in the Community in 2005, which grew out of his experiences as a street musician in Paris. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit is based on the premise that “Utah’s best musicians and dancers represent a powerful resource for bringing people together and enhancing communities.”
The event on Thursday, Sept. 16, is the first in a series of free shows that will be presented this year by Excellence in the Community in collaboration with Peery’s, featuring Utah artists at the historic Ogden theater.
“It is a glittering jewel box, right in the heart of downtown Ogden,” Whiteley said of Peery’s Egyptian Theater. He described it as “an architectural treasure” with great stage and lighting.
The Excellence in the Community free concert series is a collaboration between the nonprofit and the theater, with tickets provided by sponsors.
“We are honored to be working with the Weber County Commission, Kassi Bybee, her staff and all involved with Peery’s Egyptian Theater,” Whiteley said.
Since 2005, Excellence in the Community has presented over 980 concerts in towns throughout Utah, with the purpose of bringing more visibility to Utah musicians. They produce over 100 events per year, always with Utah artists across genres.
Through sponsorship from the Bank of Utah, Peery’s and Excellence in the Community first worked together in 2007, and the collaboration was renewed in 2017.
Excellence in the Community stated that when the pandemic hit, seeing the crucial need for Utah artists to continue performing and for the public to have access to the “healing aspects of music,” the organization pivoted to a livestream-only model. From March 25, 2020, to June 31 of this year, they produced 140 livestream concerts: “As of this week, those live streams have reached over 11.5 million views. And those viewers, many in other countries, have spent over 10 years cumulatively watching performances of Utah musicians.”
The lineup for Excellence in the Community concerts at Peery’s Egyptian Theater will be:
- Sept. 16: Mariachi Sol de Jalisco with Ballet Folklorico de las Americas.
- Oct.: Crosstown Big Band, a salute to Frank Sinatra (and jazz vocalists of the swing era).
- Nov. 1: Kendrick Zane, songs of the piano men — Elton John, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder and more.
- Dec. 6: Lark & Spur, traditional and modern carols.
- Jan. 10, 2022: David Park Tango Project.
- Feb. 7: Changing Lanes, Motown hits.
- March 14: Tablado Flamenco Dance Troupe.
- April 11: Charley Jenkins Band, country.
- May 9: Dee-Dee Darby-Duffin Quintet, The Great American Songbook.
Dates and artists are subject to change. Stay updated at excellenceconcerts.org.
Come out to see Mariachi Sol de Jalisco with Ballet Folklorico de las Americas on Thursday, Sept. 16, from 7:30-9 p.m. at Peery’s Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., free of charge.
Find more information at ogdenpet.com/events.