Nearly a year after pandemic shut down live music, O.P. Rockwell invites touring musicians to its downstairs stage
Live concerts started out small
Booking award-winning singer-songwriter Shane Hall for a two-night stand in the lower level of O.P. Rockwell on March 12 and 13 is the culmination of what general manager Xania V. Woodman has worked for all winter.
“At the very outset of the season back in December, the big question was whether or not there would be a winter season,” Woodman said. “We weren’t sure at that point who we could get to the concert level of production that O.P. Rockwell is most known for.”
So, she and the crew started small by dipping their toes into the snow with a little bit of live jazz music at the Rockwell Listening room located on the street level of The Rock building.
These small concerts blossomed into a couple of wine and painting events with artist Malia Denali and Friday night Fox School of Wine Recess at The Rock tastings, according to Woodman.
“Once we had done these, we knew we could safely pull off relatively small, spaced-out events there,” she said. “And being ambitious, I pointed out that I believed we could safely begin to move some events downstairs after we installed a new air-treatment, ionizing system.”
The live jazz music by house bands Gold Standard and ArtSound Collective began playing for small gatherings downstairs in January, and Woodman added a Dolly Parton tribute show with Jason CoZmo from Viva la Diva.
Audience members sit at tables that are set up with at least six feet between the nearest chair, Woodman said.
“I felt if we could have two house bands and a tribute show downstairs, we could invite touring acts again,” she said. “So with a couple of weeks of successful crowds and 10,000 iterations of table arrangements later, we are able to welcome Shane Hall, our first touring act. And he was recommended by one of our bartenders who knows him personally.”
Since Hall’s booking, Woodman has been able to schedule other live shows for the basement venue.
Those acts include The Medicine Company from Salt Lake at the end of March and Colorado’s The Runaway Grooms in April.
Concert attendees will also have opportunities to purchase food provided by Park City Desserts and Coffee, and an array of beverages at the shows, Woodman said.
“We’ve opened the upper bar downstairs,” She said. “That allows us to control traffic a little better, and keep the staff smaller. And that allows us to do this in the safest way possible.”
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