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A Busy Weekend at Penn State Altoona

April 24, 2009 - Jim Price

Penn State Altoona is the place to be this weekend for a wide variety of live musical activity; much of it free of charge.

On Friday, April 24, the campus’ Eco Action group celebrates Earth Day with a variety of activities, including an all-day open mic for musicians and other performance artists to display their talents.  Also as part of the Earth Day festivities, A Drum Circle with Jonathan Murray of FunDrum Rhythm Circles will begin at 2 p.m. under the Laurel Pavilion.  In the event of rain, Earth Day events will be moved inside to the Slep Student Center TV Lounge.  Admission to all Earth Day events is free.

Taking place both on Friday and Saturday, April 24 and 25, will be the latest installment of the SoFar Festival.  Sponsored by the Penn State Altoona Outing Club, SoFar will showcase a wide and eclectic variety of live music.  Kicking off with the aforementioned Drum Circle event, Friday’s slate of SoFar performances will lean toward the acoustic side of the spectrum, and take place under the Laurel Pavilion.  Scheduled performers through the rest of the day will include Jimmy Mowery (singer/songwriter), Eric D (roots/folk), The Zach Experiment, Curt Wright (singer/songwriter), Roger Burgan (experimental acoustic), the Steam City Riders (experimental roots/funk), Mysterytrain (worldbeat/jam), Kevin Gallopin (instrumental fingerstyle acoustic), Harold Taddy (experimental singer/songwriter), Phobos Anomaly (progressive rock from State College), Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band (experimental rock/folk/funk), Major Malfunction (improvisational rock/funk from State College) and Man with a Moustache.

Saturday’s leg of SoFar starts at 1 p.m., and will lean toward the electric side of the rock spectrum.  Performers this day will include Lethal Dose, Seas We Fear to Sail (punk/metal), Assault Method (heavy metal), FedUP (punk/metal), Dick Shack Posse (old-school punk), Ezra Joyce (from New Jersey), Nancy Drew (indie punk from Pittsburgh), Figures Falling Between to Forgotten Twigs (from Rochester, New York), Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band, Samara (experimental metal/hardcore), Drain The Sorrow (hardcore) and This Calling (modern metal). 

All SoFar events will be held under the Laurel Pavilion; in the event of rain, the events will be moved inside either the Slep Student Center or the Misciagna Family Center for the Performing Arts.  Admission is free for both days of the SoFar Festival.

The weekend will then close with a concert on Sunday evening, April 26, featuring national recording group O.A.R., presented by the Student Government Association, Student Activity Fee and Office of Student Life.  The concert will take place in the Adler Athletic Complex starting at 6:30 p.m., with doors opening at 6.  Opening the show will be Parachute.  Tickets are $25 for Penn State Altoona students with Penn State identification, and $35 for the general public.  Tickets will be available at the door.

And if your musical tastes run more toward the choral side, Penn State Altoona’s choral group Ivyside Pride! will take to the stage this weekend in the Paul R. and Margery Wolf Kuhn Theatre in the Misciagna Family Center for the Performing Arts.  The group’s sixteen singers will perform “Songs of My Land, Songs of My Heart,” including a selection of folk music from Canada, Scotland, Africa and more.  Performances are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets are $5 for Penn State Students, and $7 regular admission. Children under 12 are free.


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Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band, performing inside the Slep Center during last November's SoFar Festival.


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