Saturday, 15 May 2021

Levitt Pavilion returns with 2021 free summer concert series — The Know

Levitt Pavilion Denver on Monday announced its comeback season following a year of empty lawns and unplugged microphones at its Ruby Hill Park stage.

The series of free shows, which begins May 14, will include performances from some of the area’s most notable names, including DeVotchKa, Flobots, Neoma, Central City Opera, Denver stand-up Adam Cayton-Holland and others.

Online RSVPs and VIP tickets for the free shows open at 10 a.m. Friday, April 23, at levittdenver.org.

The nonprofit, purpose-built Levitt Pavilion Denver began producing shows in summer 2017 and had already presented three seasons of free, diverse concerts and a smaller series of paid shows. But after the COVID-19 pandemic shut it down last spring, Levitt Denver has lost about $2 million in revenue, forcing leaders to get creative with fundraising and programming, said executive director Chris Zacher.

“This past year has been challenging for the music industry and for many in our community,” wrote Zacher, who’s also Colorado chairman of the National Independent Venue Association, in a press statement. “We understand the healing power of music especially when it’s combined with community building. We are looking forward to having everyone back on our lawn singing and dancing together this summer.”

In addition to announcing its free schedule (see below), Levitt on Monday also launched the 2021 Comeback Fund. The campaign takes cues from other membership-based, nonprofit organizations with annual subscriptions (perks include VIP seating and free drinks), tax-deductible donations and educational appeals.

Levitt’s Comeback Fund hopes to raise $25,000 or more for the 2021 season. Its budget also funds free music lessons for Ruby Hill elementary students and promises artists 40% more than what they can expect to earn from other venues. Past concert seasons have been valued at “the equivalent of over $36 million in concert tickets,” officials wrote.

Perhaps most encouraging, Zacher said the venue would open with a 3,800-person capacity — more than that of Red Rocks Amphitheatre, which can currently host 2,500 people. Levitt’s full capacity is 7,500 vs. Red Rocks’ 9,500 (the latter on benches, and packed together).

Venue staff will follow all updated cleaning and safety measures from the state and city regarding COVID-19, officials added. Patrons should expect “venue protocols will adapt throughout the summer according to prescribed guidelines.”

Here’s the current lineup:

May 14 – Pimps of Joytime with Kellindo*
May 15 – Rock de Mayo (Latin rock band festival)**
May 21 – Devotchka with Nina de Freitas and Adam Cayton-Holland*
May 23 – Central City Opera 2021 Festival Kickoff
May 28 – Dustbowl Revival
May 29 – Joe Hertler and the Rainbow Seekers
May 30 – Mike Love with Cas Haley
June 4 – Neoma**
June 5 – Flobots with Brothers of Brass
Sep. 18 – Cool Vibes Reggae Fest

* Live Nation & Levitt Pavilion Denver co-presents
** Band performs in Spanish and English / La banda actúa en español e inglés

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