[April 25, 2019] Home Routes/Chemin Chez Nous, the Winnipeg-based house concert network, is bringing its winning house concert formula to Newfoundland and Labrador and is seeking hosts for the Fall 2019 season. If you love music and community, Home Routes may be for you.
After many years setting up house concert tours in Ontario and points west, Home Routes was inspired to offer its program on the east coast while attending Nova Scotia Music Week in 2017. After the conference, Home Routes put out a call for hosts in order to create a community of house concerts in the region. The call was met enthusiastically by Maritimers, and the “Maritime Trail” was born. During the 2018/2019 season Home Routes presented six Canadian and international artists in NS, NB and PEI.
Now, Home Routes is expanding to Newfoundland and Labrador, and is seeking hosts there for the upcoming season. Interested parties are encouraged to contact Home Routes to learn more.
Maritime Routes hosts have this to share about their experience.
“We are really enjoying being part of Home Routes! Thank you for taking a chance on us.” Volunteer host Julia C. - Three Fathom Harbour, NS
“Red Moon Road was here last night and they were amazing! Great show and we're really happy with the turnout. I think the best part (there are many best parts) is that a lot of friends didn't really *get* what we were doing or what Home Routes is all about. Having such fabulous performers do such a professional show to start us off will really help spread the word for upcoming shows. The other best part was having the band play guitar with my 14-year-old, who only started lessons in April, until 1 a.m. Oh, and having both Daniels play my old piano for my mother after the show. She was thrilled!” Volunteer host Alison F. – Moncton, NB
Home Routes has been pairing artists with rural hosts throughout Western Canada over the past decade, presenting more than 7000 performances at nearly 1500 locations in front of 207,000 fans to date, generating more than four million dollars in artist revenue and royalties since its beginnings in 2007.
Home Routes’ programming emphasizes artistic excellence, diverse and entertaining performances that leave audiences breathless and wanting more. “As an organization we are born from Folk Music, and we are very excited to expand our tours of acoustic music to the East Coast,” Says Podolak, “in the hopes of adding our unique house concerts to the perennial mosaic of culture which flourishes in Eastern Canada.”
Expanding the environment for private concerts: Historically, Home Routes sought out presenters in smaller communities, who simply loved music and could host 25 people or more in their home (or other non-traditional space). Today, the series has grown to include presenters from private homeowners to larger venue owners. For the live music fan, attending a house concert offers a more intimate experience than a commercial venue as attendees get a chance to meet and talk one-on-one with the performers, and to meet other people who share their interest in music. Home Routes accomplishes this while creating new opportunities both for the musicians and for audiences by increasing access and quantity of professional performances available in often under-served areas.
Artists, especially emerging performers, appreciate the opportunities developed by Home Routes as well, as it gives them a chance to hone their stagecraft and banter -- and you never know who you will catch before their career takes off. William Prince, winner of the 2017 JUNO for Contemporary Roots Album of the Year, has this to say about the Home Routes advantages for artists:
“Home Routes was my introduction to touring. The first times packing my car and venturing out to places where me and my music were unknown, I was always somewhat wary because so many of my friends came back from the road with stories of rough bars and not the best living conditions - sometimes no living conditions at all! The beauty of Home Routes is the audience is so appreciative and supportive. Playing two full sets for a house of people is incredible. You can feel the response without amplification and you’re not fighting anyone in the room for your place. The hospitality is the real treat. Time spent with music lovers who cook real meals and open their homes as a haven of rest. It’s a beautiful journey. Home Routes is a treasure and tremendous support in keeping live music thriving and artists driving!”
Fellow Home Routes PEI alumna Meaghan Blanchard adds: “I cannot say enough about the amazing Home Routes experiences that I have been so lucky to have over the years. The Home Routes team out of Winnipeg works so hard to put the artists and the music first, and that is such an incredible thing. Artists feel this love, and so do the audiences. These tours allow artists like myself to cultivate new fans and friends across the country during the typical ‘off season’, while visiting towns and areas we might not get to on a typical theatre tour. I have loved meeting the host families, and have kept in touch with a number of them over the years! It’s a beautiful way to experience music.”
House concerts have a triple function: they support artists’ ability to make a living, they make music accessible on a grassroots level to all corners of Canada, and they connect people -- a social engine that builds community.
Home Routes/ Chemin Chez Nous thanks our funders and partners for their support. This project is made possible in part by The Canada Council for the Arts, Manitoba Sport, Culture and Heritage, FACTOR, Manitoba Arts Council and SOCAN Foundation.
LISTEN to Home Routes Radio: https://www.homeroutes.ca/home-routes-radio/
ABOUT HOME ROUTES/CHEMIN CHEZ NOUS:
Home Routes/Chemin Chez Nous was incorporated as a not-for-profit arts organization in February of 2007 to create new performance opportunities for French and English speaking musicians and audiences in rural, remote and urban, communities across Canada, hosted by volunteers in their homes and other community venues. Follow Home Routes on twitter @homeroutes or “like” on facebook.