Folkstage is an uninterrupted, one-hour concert featuring some
of the best traditional and singer-songwriter talent in folk music. The live
concerts can be heard Saturday's at 8 PM on WFMT, immediately preceding
The Midnight Special.
About 26 concerts per year are broadcast live from our studio
in front of an audience. The remainder of the concerts are from our archives that
stretch back 55 years, recent recordings made in the Chicago area, live broadcasts
from the Old Town School of Folk Music, or recorded portions of our live studio
concerts that were not previously broadcast.
The series is totally listener funded, and made possible in part
by Nancy Clark, Andy & Becky Anderson, Freddi Greenberg & Dan Pinkert, an Anonymous
Family Foundation and the members of the WFMT Fine Arts Circle.
NEXT LIVE FOLKSTAGE:
Saturday, December 14
Singer-Songwriter Hope Dunbar is a pioneer of the new American prairie style - the incarnation of Americana and
Country-Folk sound staking claim under a big sky, shouting at the north wind, digging in and refusing to leave.
It's early morning in Utica, Nebraska, population 800. The three kids are off at school, her minister husband has
begun his day at the church, so Hope Dunbar settles down at her kitchen table to write songs. Behind where she
sits, a window opens on what most would consider an empty vista: a dirt road disappearing through fields toward
a flat horizon. Hope sees art in the simple and spins tales of limitless possibility, conjures stories of people
near and far, living lives inside similar walls, internal and external. Where you'd least expect to find the
mystical is where Hope Dunbar's songs live. And after her morning writing, Dunbar heads out to to begin her shift
at a cafe in town. "I write like a sailor knowing the ship is going down. / This is my flare in the night, hoping
that one day I might be found." Dunbar's newest release, Three Black Crows, heralds a strong new voice in
the singer-songwriter genre. An unexpected voice of simplicity and authority, honesty and hope. A voice that could
not come from anywhere other than the expansive land of her home. She was born in Southern California, but traveled
as a young girl. Her parents eventually settled California. At university, she met and married her husband and moved
with him to a small town in Iowa, where he had been appointed to minister at a Lutheran church. To help her adjust to
these surroundings, she started singing folk songs with a new friend, at public libraries, farmer's markets and fairs.
They eventually settled in Utica, Nebraska, an unlikely place for a restless artist, falling in love with the craft of
writing, but Hope is a writer with an ability to find truth in overlooked spaces "I really enjoy the empty space," she
says. "There's no noise where I live in Utica that can get in the way of what my brain wants to write about." Dunbar's
songs live on two planes simultaneously. One describes the everyday routines to which we all eventually surrender. The
other zooms in on the people who move through their habitual rituals. Her target is the sorrow from which they've learned
to hide but can never escape, reconciling the two with resignation. Three Black Crows is a masterful overlay of
gentle acoustic textures, emotional turbulence and philosophical insight. Produced by Emily White, with a guest appearance
by Darrell Scott, a long-time mentor to Hope, “These songs are based on the people I see every day. In a small town, you
get real close to your neighbors. You hear about moms and dads who lost a son you didn't even know they had because you
weren't there when they died. Their loss will never go away but they're living with it. They keep going because they have to.
If anybody needs a song, it’s these people."
Visit the web site.
Fresh roasted coffee for Folkstage members provided by Alchemy Coffee, 416 Linden Ave.,
Wilmette (one-block west of CTA Purple Line terminus). (847) 251-4334
HOW TO GET TICKETS TO LIVE FOLKSTAGE CONCERTS
To attend WFMT's live broadcast Folkstage
concerts in our studio, you must join the
WFMT Fine Arts Circle for one year. The first year requires an initiation fee of $25 plus $250
per person as the yearly membership and request Folkstage
as your thank-you gift. After
the first year, Folkstage
membership costs $250 per person per year. Memberships are
non-transferrable. We ask that you join during one of our fundraising Fine Arts Circle fundraisers
in April or November, during the time Folkstage
or The Midnight Special
broadcast. (We will accept memberships at other times during the fundraiser by prior arrangement.)
We present approximately 26 live studio concerts per year, although we make no guarantee of the
total number. Under no circumstances
do we sell admissions to individual concerts.
You must subscribe for the year to attend. Donations to the WFMT Fine Arts Circle are tax deductible
to the extent provided by law. All Folkstage
memberships come with free parking for the concerts
within yards of the door. If you have questions, please use our
Join the WFMT Fine Arts Circle