The rain-cancelled All-American Payne’s Prairie Home Companion show has been rescheduled at the Historic Thomas Center Thursday, Sept. 26 from 8-10 p.m. Admission is $5, with proceeds going to the show’s musicians. The performance was originally scheduled at the Bo Diddley Community Plaza as part of the “Free Fridays” Concert Series on Friday, July 5. It was slated to be this year’s version of the “All-American Song Fest,” held annually at “Free Fridays” since 2008 on the Friday closest to Independence Day.
This year, the songfest that traditionally celebrates American music, has a different focus. According to area musician Ron Thomas, who organizes the songfest, “While previous years have highlighted songs about America and American places, historical and cultural themes, American songwriters and the various genres of American music, this year the theme is a spoof on the popular radio show ‘A Prairie Home Companion.’”
“A Prairie Home Companion” is the National Public Radio show hosted by Garrison Keillor. The local version will offer music, comedy, mock commercials for Gainesville institutions that no longer exist, and the “News from Lake Wauberg,” which parodies the popular “News from Lake Woebegone” sketch on the NPR show.
Musical acts will be Quartermoon with John and Raven Smith, and the New Prairie Dogs, an eclectic group of some of Gainesville’s finest musicians that includes Mike Boulware, Cathy DeWitt, Mick Marino, Rob Rothschild and Ron Thomas. Local actor and Santa Fe College theatre professor Gregg Jones will offer his inimitable vocalizations and serve as a comic foil, and as Ron Thomas says, “He will be the affable, self-deprecating host. A rollicking, informative and hygienic time is guaranteed for all.”
The Historic Thomas Center is located at 302 NE Sixth Ave. in Gainesville. The concert is presented by the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department. The Cultural Affairs Division is the designated local arts agency for Gainesville and Alachua County.
For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact David Ballard at 352-393-8746.