For the first time, folk music legend Valdy and Canadian Country Music Hall of Famer Gary Fjellgaard will perform together at the Knox United Church in Parksville.
Valdy and Fjellgaard have played together during their storied careeres, but this will be their time side-by-side on stage in Parksville.
“We’ve worked quite a bit together, we’ve done tours together. And yeah, it’s been very exciting working with him. He’s a wonderful man and a great teacher,” said Fjellgaard.
The two legends are very excited about being able to perform in front of live audiences again.
Fjellgaard regards the past 18 months as a long dry spell, adjusting and living through the COVID-19 pandemic. He said it’s somehow felt exhausting and tiresome not being able to play in his chosen field.
Valdy also said he’s excited to play for real people instead of a camera lens, since for much of the pandemic he’s performed livestreamed shows, which comes with its own pros and cons.
“But actually seeing someone up there doing it seems to be a unique thing,” he said. “Just getting up and playing for people is kind of needed by those of us that have relied on it for a living.”
For their upcoming performance, Valdy anticipates it being a slightly different atmosphere than his previous performance at Knox in October 2020.
He recalled the plexiglass on stage created a real separation from the performers and their audience but ultimately he doesn’t mind so long as he gets to play in front of real people again.
For the upcoming show, Valdy said they plan to open the show together, and then one of them will leave and the other will stay and perform some songs on their own.
Then the other will return and they’ll finish the set. The same will happen with the second act. At the time, Valdy was unsure who would stay on by themselves in the first and second act, but appreciated the format because it offers flexibility to the show.
Fjellgaard said to expect surprises because “we can go from the sublime to the ridiculous in the space of a few seconds.”
“A lot of it is off the cuff, which makes it exciting. Makes us realize we do what we do just to get the adrenaline going, and that’s something that I miss dearly,” he said.
“Knox United Church is a wonderful sounding room. But to play in a church, in a sanctuary, is as good as it gets. Because it’s built for someone’s voice to carry. It’s wonderful when we get into a pristine environment like that,” said Valdy.
The two will take the Knox United Church stage on Saturday, Aug. 7, at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $35 and can be purchased from www.eventbrite.ca.