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Downtown businesses welcome Musicade

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Downtown Brooksville will resonate with the rhythms and cadence of live music, of all genres and varieties, performed at area businesses on March 10 from 5-9 pm. This is Musicade at Friday Night Live. And while this marks Musicade’s second year, the 2023 event will mark the first time that guests can enjoy musical performances free of charge!

“Brooksville Main Street and the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs invite you to enjoy the local musical talent of our community,” read an event announcement.

Executive Director of Brooksville Main Street, Natalie Kahler, says this year’s Musicade is free and open to the public. “Guests can stroll and hear the music free of charge,” said Kahler. “VIP tickets will be available for just $30! VIP tickets include access to our VIP lounge with drinks and hors d’oeuvres, a commemorative cup, and a special gift.”

All proceeds benefit the Brooksville Main Street Program and the mission to revitalize historic Downtown Brooksville. Learn more at www.welovebvl.org. This event is made possible due to support and a grant given by Florida Division of Arts and Culture.

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Musicade marks the continuation of a Hernando County arts tradition. “In the 1960s, the Chamber of Commerce hosted a similar music performance event,” said Kahler. “We now compare the event to our Art Stroll. This time, music is the artform.”

Although Musicade musical styles vary greatly, their impressive performing arts careers speak or sing for themselves. Nahir Diaz, 16, comes from a long line of musicians and recording artists, including gospel singers. She performs pop, Latin and contemporary, and classic music, and with Stir Up The Gift. Last year’s first-place winner in the Hernando’s Got Talent competition, she claimed third place in this year’s competition.

“I’m going to be bringing all of my music to perform at Musicade,” said Diaz. “I love to spread my talent wherever possible, and perform for people.” Tenor saxophonist Dell O. Barnes Sr. has performed with church choirs, groups, bands and solo projects throughout the Northeast, Caribbean and Florida, as well as with local groups, Hernando County schools, The Bistro, Stir Up The Gift, and more.

“I love the feeling of walking and dining in the city of Brooksville. This small quaint area in Hernando County makes you feel like you are on a Hallmark movie set. The people are loving, and the food is mouthwatering and delightful. I know no other city that can assemble a kaleidoscope of talent with different styles and sounds of music,” said Barnes. “This melodious trail of music will be non-stop. The Brooksville Musicade is top-notch, and I am honored to be one of the entertainers during this magnificent event. I am ready to release smooth and soulful sounds from my tenor saxophone as attendees sip and stroll up and down Main Street. I encourage you to get your ticket today if you have not already done so! It’s going to be a festive event!”

Chris Korbus is a Brooksville native and Hernando High School graduate. He has played guitar since age 12, and live shows since age 17. One-half of the duo, Broad Street Barons, with Drummer Joe Solomon, he performs at many local venues and covers songs acoustically. He performs everything from 60s classics to modern songs and even his own music.

“I am always happy to support Brooksville Main Street and this unique event. Being that it is a part of the Friday Night Live series, it is a great opportunity for the community to see smaller local acts that don’t normally get this type of exposure,” said Korbus. “As a solo and duo artist, sometimes we become background noise at a bar or restaurant gig and this allows us to be front and center. Couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity.”

Joe Solomon and Bill Creel are former Hernando High School teachers. They host open mic nights and other shows throughout Brooksville And Spring Hill. They play a wide variety of music from classic rock from the 70s, 80s and 90s.”We always support things that involve downtown Brooksville,” said Creel.

Conner Dirksen is a Hernando High School student and classically trained guitarist, drummer, and vocalist who plays everything from classical to blues to jazz, pop to country.

Kaiden Rossiter, also appearing at Musicade, is a vocalist who specializes in stage musicals, gospel quartets, and classical crooning. He performs frequently at Cornerstone Baptist Church and the Live Theatre Company.

Bethany Carr played the piano for more than 20 years and classical violin for 13. She performs in the Hernando Symphony Orchestra. She taught violin at the Sandpoint Music Conservatory. She has performed in many concerts, as well as being a violin soloist. She teaches and performs at the Live Oak Theatre and Conservatory.

“My name is Bethany Carr and I am a local musician in the Wesley Chapel area,” said Carr. “I am so honored to be a part of the Brooksville Musicade for the second time, and to have the privilege of sharing my love of music with the public. I will be playing a repertoire of classical, sacred, love songs and some Disney favorites. The Musicade is a wonderful opportunity to not only see the beautiful sights, but to experience music in the air.”

Brooksville’s Adam Weeks formed the Suede band, playing original music and in the Lightning pregame show. His band Dangerous Ground played Alt Rock covers at local festivals and clubs in Citrus County, Clearwater, Tampa, Orlando and Honors fest at the Daytona bandshell. The band won two radio station battle of the band competitions.

“For Musicade, you’ll catch a lighter side to his music as he brings his acoustic guitar to life strumming some original instrumental pieces as well as some old favorites,” read a performer bio.

The Haferhouse Jazz Duo was formed by Paul Hafer, who was born to a musical family. The duo has played on Music of Your Life cruises, played with Les Brown and His Band of Renown, Tommy Dorsey Orchestra and Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, and he is a house bass player for Hernando Jazz Society.

Arianna Grzyb recently participated in the first round of the America’s Got Talent competition. She has experience in chorus, musical theatre, and karaoke. She performed The Star Spangled Banner at Tropicana Field, and is represented by Melinda Crandle of Stir Up the Gift.
Dell O Barnes Sr. will be playing his saxophone from the balcony at Lowman Law Firm, Bethany Carr will be playing violin at the Brooksville Woman’s Club. Other Musicade locations include:
Panbanged Knits
Mulligan Law
Lowman Law Firm
Woman’s Club
Browning Insurance
Hogan Law Firm
Weeks Building
Brooksville Art Gallery at 201 (formerly the Uptown Art Gallery)

Several downtown businesses will offer meet-and-greet opportunities, while also providing an opportunity to highlight a collection of local artists and artisans.

“This event will provide many people with the opportunity to visit Brooksville Businesses that they may never have stepped into before,” said Kahler. “And for the musicians, Musicade provides a great chance to showcase their art.”

Get tickets for Musicade here: https://musicade2023.eventbrite.com

Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey is a features journalist and author who is the winner of Florida Press Association honors and a certificate of appreciation from LINCS (Family Support Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force) and Sunrise Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center for her newspaper coverage of these issues. She graduated cum laude from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., with a journalism major and English/sociology minor, and previously wrote for publications that include the Pasco editions of The Tampa Tribune and Tampa Bay Times. A native of Indiana, she lives in Florida.
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