Red Sky Stage in Bay Harbor is a performing arts venue featuring live music, poetry, comedy, drama, painting and more. We chatted with Owner Marty Scott about how Red Sky Stage came to be.
What’s the vibe of the venue?
It is inspired by the places I used to go to listen to concerts when I was in college. Red Sky Stage is an informal, coffeehouse-style performance venue. The focus is on the music. We do not serve drinks or have waitresses or yelling crowds. People come here to listen to the music. The atmosphere is comfortable and friendly and the sound is great.
Where did the name come from?
The name Red Sky Stage is meant to be suggestive of the local saying “million dollar sunsets” and pays homage to the nautical character of the area. “Red sky at night, sailors delight.”
What types of shows do you host?
The majority of our entertainment is music, primarily folk and blues but also a wide variety from hip-hop to jazz to bluegrass to big band swing and beyond. Our schedule also regularly includes dance, comedy, drag shows, square dancing and other forms of entertainment. We host meetings, classes and events for a variety of community and interest groups and private parties.
How did you get into show biz?
I have always enjoyed music and attending concerts but before starting Red Sky Stage I had never hosted or produced events or run a performance venue. I felt that Petoskey and the rest of Northern Michigan had a very active music scene and a number of venues that hosted music, like auditoriums and bars, but no real listening rooms or coffehouses like the places where I listened to music when I was younger. I thought we needed venues of that type and my five years with Red Sky Stage has demonstrated the importance of a place like this.
How long has the venue been around?
Red Sky Stage was open for about five and a half years in Petoskey. That location is now closed and we have been on Front Street in Bay Harbor for a little more than a month.
Is there food available?
We do have a selection of soft drinks and simple snacks. Bay Harbor Village has several fine bars and restaurants where people may enjoy a meal or drink before or after Red Sky Stage events. Our event ticket stubs now include a coupon for $1 off a cocktail at Knot Just a Bar. Other similar offers will be available soon.
What would you like to highlight?
Red Sky Stage always worked hard to be an active and supportive member of the community in downtown Petoskey. We intend to contribute in every way possible to our new immediate community in Bay Harbor and to provide a wide variety of entertainment options to serve all aspects of our town and region. We will continue to bring you high quality entertainment by local performers, entertainers from major metropolitan areas downstate and in neighboring regions and traveling national and international acts touring through our part of the country. If there is a particular type of music or other type of entertainment that you enjoy but do not see on our schedule, or if you know of a performer who should be on our stage, please let me know. Marty@redskystage.com
Upcoming Shows at Red Sky Stage
JOE SHIELDS AND AARON SMITH | SEPTEMBER 14
Joe Shields, aka Cousin Joe Twoshacks, aka Joe Cartoon, aka the Joeman , is your average 58-year-old fly fisherman/award-winning cartoonist/animator who bought a guitar 10 years ago and became an award-winning singer songwriter. Joe’s songs are heartfelt with a touch of humor.
Aaron Smith is a man on a mission, but he’s no preacher. His songs never tell the listener what to think or feel, but rather hold a mirror to the mystery of human experience, searching for the meaning of home, love, family, aging, kindness, doubt, faith and grace. Aaron has been a finalist twice in the nationally renowned New Folk songwriting competition at the Kerrville Folk Festival in Texas, the Ozark Folk Festival and Rock House Festival.
DON RIVERS AND FRIENDS | SEPTEMBER 20
Don Rivers has been singing and playing music for 40 years. He and his band play country music—old country, new country and rock and roll. He lives in the Vanderbilt area. The band, Don Rivers and Friends is made up of Adolph Cwick (Charlevoix), bass and vocals, Frank Haddis (Gaylord), drums, and Johnny Neiswander (Petoskey), rhythm and lead guitar and vocals.
RUSTIC HEART | SEPTEMBER 21
Kelly Shively and Norm Hausler are a pair of seasoned musicians who have played with many Northern Michigan musicians and also performed on their own as solo singer/instrumentalists. Kelly brings her original songs of family and home, along with her interpretations of traditional mountain music. Norm’s deep baritone voice lends itself to country classics and his own original songs. These two Northern Michiganders have combined their talents to form the duet, Rustic Heart. The harmonies of voice, instrument and spirit have surprised even the musicians of this group…but the feeling is one of “home” when they play together, and we know you’ll feel it too.
BLAIR MILLER | SEPTEMBER 26
Blair Miller’s voyage through the blues started by listening to covers by the British and American bands of the ’60s. Then he heard John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Lightin’ Hopkins and Howlin’ Wolf. Searching for the roots of the blues, he discovered Robert Johnson, Son House, Charlie Patton and many more great bluesmen and women of the ’20s and ’30s. Miller picked up a steel resonator guitar and a slide and started working on playing the blues of the Mississippi Delta. He also plays a parlor guitar and a cigar box guitar.
Get tickets for all upcoming events at Red Sky Stage at MyNorthTickets.com, or call MyNorthTickets at 1-800-836-0717.