Vashon LIVE presents young artists
Marina-Rae Gill, Reporter
Vashon Island is an arts community. Brimming with creative minds and endless talent, Vashon has developed an incredible variety of art displays of all kinds, including island wide art and garden tours, local band performances, musicals, and operas. But unfortunately, COVID-19 has put an abrupt stop to these exceptional artistic exhibits, so appreciated by Vashon’s residents. Thankfully, the island’s community is not lacking in resourcefulness, and has begun broadcasting live performances through Facebook, which will soon appear on Youtube as well. This development is a product of the local broadcasting business Vashon LIVE.
Over the past five years Vashon LIVE has been hired to film at festivals, concerts, and other kinds of performances, to broadcast events. Recently, the Vashon LIVE crew, with the help of local businesses, has been working to keep performing arts alive in the community.
“We’ve had a very warm welcome from Vashon businesses and the community,” said Sarah Howard, the show’s line producer. “The Lodges have offered their space, Vashon Events is helping with promotion, and Camp Colvos has come on as a sponsor.”
Snapdragon owners Adam Cone and Megan Hasting have also donated their performance space the Black Cat Cabaret. Here, many small concerts are recorded and broadcasted to the general public. One participant in these shows is Maire Kennan, a young singer-songwriter and freshmen at Vashon Island High School.
“I’ve been writing songs since I was eight or nine years old,” said Kennan “I like trying to use my music as a way to show people what I think is beautiful, or terrible, [or] what I think is important.”
Kennan is not only a songwriter, but also created her own brand of clothing with original printed designs, and paints custom designs on jeans. She was eager to share her work, and so was Vashon LIVE.
“My guitar teacher told me about the Black Cat Cabaret, and sent an email to them saying I was interested.” said Kennan, who later received an invite to play a set.
Vashon LIVE is very interested in new ideas from local artists, and has expanded past performing arts broadcasts.
“ … we are looking for ways to collaborate and create new experiences …” said Howard. “We have just begun a weekly cooking show on Tuesdays at 1 p.m. with Megan Hastings from Snapdragon … We recently teamed up with local veterans groups for the Vashon Memorial Day ceremony and will be teaming up in June with the Heritage Museum for their Pride celebration.”
Howard also emphasized these performances as an opportunity for young artists such as Kennan to showcase their skills.
“ … we are currently interested in hearing from young artists, spoken word, musicians, [and] poets for possible future spots on the show.” she said.