Egyptian Theatre hosts weekly Facebook concert ‘815 Live’ to spotlight local artists

Egyptian+Theatre

Patrick Murphy

Egyptian Theatre

Jacob Baker, Reporter

DeKALB The Egyptian Theatre has been hosting a live Facebook concert called 815 Live at 6 p.m. every Thursday since mid-August that spotlights local artists of all genres with the goal of keeping stages alive during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Each week, the Egyptain Theatre, 135 N. Second St., introduces a different artist and genre. Sept. 24 will be the last performance of this edition of the 815 Live series because of the construction the Egyptain is currently undergoing, but they’re hopeful that the series picks back up in October. 

On Sept. 10, the theater hosted DeKalb’s Brass Quintet, and on Thursday the theater will host the Stage Coach Players. 

Originally formed in 1947 in DeKalb county, the Stage Coach Players are a live theatre group that performs a mix of musicals, comedies and dramas, according to the Stage Coach Players Facebook page. 

The Stage Coach Players will have an assortment of cast members ranging from ages 13 to 60 and will be performing classical and new Broadway pieces through solos and duets, Stage Coach Player’s coordinator Cortney Newby said. 

“I personally feel like we have some of the best vocal talent around,” Newby said. “This is a chance to see them perform in a more acoustic setting. We’ll be playing “Hamilton” and other pieces like “Mean Girls.”

While the 815 Live series is something new for the Egyptain, a somewhat similar variation has been going on in the past but has been put on hold because of COVID-19 guidelines, Holcomb said.

“We had always done a month of live music series at the farmer’s market where artists would perform weekly from June to August,” Jeanine Holcomb, Egyptian Theatre marketing and communications director,  said. “This year we couldn’t do that because of social distancing guidelines, but we wanted to find a way to highlight local artists.” 

With the inspiration of what the Egyptain did at the farmer’s market, and the fact that the Egyptain had a stage to promote local artists, the theater saw an opportunity in the world of COVID-19 to keep live music going through their social media page in form of the 815 Live series, Holcomb said.

Featured artists that have already been spotlighted on the 815 Live series are also the artists who have collaborated with the Egyptain in the past, whether it was live events or live performances. The theater has a very hopeful future with the 815 Live series because of the sheer amount of artists reaching out to perform in the future, , Holcomb said. 

At the heart of the 815 Live series is the important notion of keeping stages and artists afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic, Holcomb said. Whether it has been movies, music or podcasts, being home during social distancing has built a stronger connection between art forms and people during these unpredictable times and that’s the goal behind 815 Live.

“I think what we’ve tried to communicate for the last six months is that art is getting people through this,” Holcomb said. “It’s all these things that bring people a little bit of joy and makes them feel hopeful, art and music especially because it speaks to the emotions.”

People can tune into the 815 Live series at 6 p.m. every Thursday. on the Egyptain Theatre Facebook page. If any local artists are interested in performing on 815 Live they can direct message the theater through Facebook or email the theater at info@egyptaintheatre.org