Photo by Amy Dickerson.
Grammy-winning artist Suzy Bogguss coming to Library Theatre
Artist Suzy Bogguss will perform at the Hoover Public Library in May.
Friday, May 2, 8 p.m. • Saturday, May 3, 8 p.m.
The Library Theatre
With prior Library Theatre seasons including artists like Kathy Mattea and Lorrie Morgan, Hoover Public Library’s Fine Arts Coordinator Matina Johnson faces the same challenge year in, year out – how to top the last show of the season talent she recruited the year before.
Children of the 1980s received a special treat in January when Molly Ringwald, favorite film heroine of the late John Hughes, performed an evening of infectious jazz. This in a season already replete with bluegrass, pianists and a cappella performances.
On May 2 and 3, Grammy Award winning country artist Suzy Bogguss will perform. Among other awards, she won the Country Music Association’s Album of the Year in 1994 and a Grammy in 2005 for Best Traditional Folk Album, Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs of Stephen Foster. She has also appeared on PBS in a command performance at the White House, Austin City Limits and is a frequent guest on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor.
Don’t have tickets? Not to worry.
“Often the artists will have their own ticket releases leading up to the show,” said Johnson, adding that members occasionally donate their unused tickets back to the Library at the last minute due to change of plans. “The best bet is to walk up to the box office. Usually we are able to accommodate a fair number of walk ups.”
While Johnson admits it’s no small feat to keep topping their prior events, she’s cultivated industry relationships that put the Library at a distinct advantage.
“Given our space and the prices we charge for these tickets, we bring events here that normally a theater of our size simply could not do,” she said. “But I’ve been doing this for 20 years in June, and I’ve gotten to know the people at these talent agencies. When something new comes up, I know about it, I know who represents it and I tend to get a heads up pretty quickly, so that helps.”
She added that she makes a lot of connections at the Performing Arts Exchange, one of many industry trade shows where agents and managers from all over the U.S. come and bring their talent rosters.
Two decades of booking talent has also taught Johnson a thing or two about what plays well with the Library’s patrons.
“The Mattea, Morgan, Bogguss genre of music is very popular with our season ticket holders,” she said. “But these artists also have a huge fan base in their own right. Our single tickets are snapped up fast as well.”
Loyal fans will be pleased to know the evening usually includes reception time with the artist.
“Usually I don’t know if this is a possibility until they arrive,” said Johnson. “But if they are comfortable with our venue, they often will come out to meet with fans and do signings.”
For more about Bogguss, visit suzybogguss.com