Granite State artists to shine in ‘Christmas with Rocking Horse Studio’ showcase in ConcordBy JULIA ANN WEEKES
NH Weekend Editor December 13. 2017 12:49PM
If you go...WHAT: Christmas with Rocking Horse Studio
WHEN: 7 p.m. Saturday
WHERE: Capitol Center for the Arts, 44 So. Main St., Concord
INFO: ccanh.com; 225-1111
CONCORD — Rocking Horse Studio returns with a holiday showcase of New Hampshire musicians at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Capitol Center for the Arts.
“This year’s lineup showcases a number of well-known Granite State performers as well as quite a few newcomers to the scene,” said Brian Coombes, who lives and operates his studio in Pittsfield. “Many people will recognize Dusty Gray, Bradley Parker, Pat & the Hats, and Brooks Young, as they have secured almost legendary status in the Concord area, while Sensitive Men, Catherine White, Sofia Lee Davis, Andriana Gnap and Ryan Williamson are all New Hampshire artists that people will be talking about in 2018.”
In addition, Coombes and Justin Cohn will be performing a song that Coombes wrote with Pat Gochez from Pat & the Hats called “Everywhere is Home.”
“It’s not a Christmas song, but a gospel-inspired tribute to our individual ideas of ‘home,’” Coombes said.
The annual holiday show got an auspicious start four years ago in the Emmy-nominated “A New Hampshire Chronicle Christmas at Rocking Horse Studio” and has had subsequent shows in the Capitol Center’s Spotlight Café.
“We were pleasantly surprised by the public’s reaction to the television show, and the public has supported our concerts at the Capitol Center with equal enthusiasm,” Coombes said. “Moving to the main stage this year opens up lots of possibilities for stage craft, decorations, and the number of musicians who can perform together at once.”
Though there will be some dancing and a bit of acting, Coombes said, ‘We’ve worked hard to maintain the intimacy of the show, which I believe is important to the audiences who have attended our shows in the Spotlight Café in the past.”
A portion of the proceeds from the show will go to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) New Hampshire.
“There were so many worthy charities too choose from this year, but my wife and I thought that NAMI NH was a worthy recipient. We’ve all been affected by mental illness in some way, either directly or through loved ones,” he said. “I’ve read that musicians tend to suffer from mental illnesses more than the general population, and those of us at the studio have seen first-hand the damage that it can cause.
“Mental illness is dark and dangerous, and it’s something that is rarely discussed in our society, yet it’s an illness like any other,” Coombes added. “It should be discussed freely in public and treated like any other human affliction.”