Downtown@Dusk: The Wanda Hunt Band

Downtown@Dusk continues this Thursday, July 25 from 6:30-8:30 pm with a performance from the oldschool R&B group Wanda Hunt Band. Concert attendees can also enjoy a discussion from musician Jacob Trombetta and food from Old Carolina BBQ while kids can participate in hands-on art activities during ArtCamp@Dusk.

Concert goers will be fully entertained by the big band instrumentation and outstanding musicianship of the Wanda Hunt Band.

For twenty years, the Wanda Hunt Band has been delighting audience across Northeast Ohio with an impressive rhythm section, fiery horn section and the powerful vocals of Wanda Hunt. Playing its own unique and original arrangements of classic songs, the band’s music gives new life to Old School R&B and regularly surprises the listener. The Wanda Hunt Band plays a repertoire that includes timeless pieces by Stevie Wonder, Tina Turner and Aretha Franklin in addition to several songs composed by band members.

Local musician Jacob Trombetta will be leading a discussion titled “Surrealism and Music” for the ArtTalks@Dusk on July 25 from 7:30-8 pm. Featuring more than 60 paintings, drawings, prints and photographs dating from 1930 to 1955 drawn from the collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Real/Surreal  examines how American artists used strikingly naturalistic details to imaginative images inspired by dreams and how they introduced disconcerting undertones into compositions that featured seemingly ordinary scenes. The exhibition features works by both well-known artists, such as Charles Burchfield, Edward Hopper, Charles Sheeler and Grant Wood alongside engaging images by lesser-known talents, among them Francis Criss, Louis Gugliemi and Katherine Schmidt.

THIS WEEK’S AARTCAMP@DUSK CLASS IS SOLD OUT! Sign up  for the final three classes at http://akronartmuseum.ticketleap.com/artcampdusk2013/ .

The Museum Store will be open during Downtown@Dusk until 9 pm (admission is not required to shop in the store). The museum collections and galleries will be open until 9 pm with paid admission except on August 15 when the museum premieres Third Thursday.

Exhibitions currently on view in the museum galleries include Real/Surreal, Draw Me a Story and Line Color Illusion: 40 Years of Julian Stanczak. For detailed information on these exhibitions and other events, please visit the museum’s exhibitions  and calendar of events.

Want to know more about the Wanda Hunt Band? They were kind enough to answer a few questions!

The band performs a variety of original songs and covers. Do you choose the lineup of songs in any particular order? Why?

I am Wanda’s musical director and I write all of the shows. Each show is different depending on the venue, audience and time allotment. I also mix up the songs within each show because there are many fans who come to every public show and I want them to hear something different each night. I tailor our shows with dance music for dance clubs, concert music for concert venues and an appropriate mixture for weddings, fundraisers, private parties and corporate affairs.

How did the band form?

The Wanda Hunt Band formed in 1994 when Wanda and select musicians left The Business Band over creative differences.

The group performs for many different types of events (clubs, bars, weddings, etc). What is your favorite event to perform at? Why?

There are no real “favorite events” per se. We really do enjoy all of the events we play. As musicians, we like to stretch out in concert settings as we can take more time for improvisation and musical exploration. But, there is also a lot of joy in playing dance music when people are really getting into it.

What keeps you coming back to perform at Downtown@Dusk?

Downtown@Dusk is one of our favorite gigs of the year! I think we have played every single one. There is something about the crowd and the atmosphere, a free concert right downtown, outside in the sunlight. For us, one of the best parts is this is one of the few events where kids can hear the band and that’s always fun. We always have a good time and so does the audience!

What is your favorite memory of playing at Downtown@Dusk?

As you know, the stage is at the bottom of a slight hill on the parking lot and the audience is uphill from us. Inevitably, everyone gets up and starts dancing, knocking over their drinks. This liquid slowly, but surely, creeps down the hill toward us. We know we’re doing well when the entire dance area is wet!

Downtown@Dusk 2013 is made possible by The City of Akron. It is presented in cooperation with 89.7 WKSU.

ArtCamp@Dusk 2013 is made possible by a gift from The Howland Memorial Fun and the House of LaRose.

ArtTalks@Dusk 2013 is made possible by a gift from the Sam & Kathy Salem Philanthropic Fund of the Jewish Community Board of Akron.

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