For David Morrison, acting President of the new Eureka Arts Council, the arts have always been a part of his life.
“Music is the one thing that I have been able to do consistently from my childhood to the present,” Morrison said.
From the time he was a child to becoming active in the Gospel Ministry in 1975, music has been one thing that Morrison’s always used.
The Eureka Arts Council may not have its final charter yet. But the group is already looking to make a big splash to help bring the arts back to the forefront in the community and help share the arts, no matter what facet of the arts it is, with the community.
Sept. 27, Nov. 22 and Dec. 27, the Opera House sees the beginning of the monthly Jam Night. The doors will open at the Opera House at 5 p.m. for registration with performances from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The Jam sessions are open to all interested parties and acts can range from music to standup comedy, poetry, oral interpretation, drama and more. Sign ups for the Jam Nights are open to both local and out of town acts. Admission to the Jam Nights is free.
“Jam Night at the Opera House has the potential to become a very fun activity,” Morrison said. “I’ve been told by most people that the activity should be a lot of fun. The challenge is to encourage people to respond and have a good time.”
The genesis for Jam Night came over the course of the last couple years, Morrison said. After seeing numerous events that showcased a variety of talent from participants both young and old, the Arts Council decided it was time to give those people a venue to showcase their work.
“There is an abundance of known and undiscovered talent that is here in our community,” Morrison said. “We have children, teenagers and young adults in our school systems that possess remarkable talent in the performing arts. We also have long time residents who have performed in the past and are not doing much at the present time.”
But it’s not just people playing instruments. Morrison said there are several groups who practice in ensembles or choral groups and credits music teacher Ralph Cuda for helping to teach students the importance of the arts.
And while people’s schedules make it difficult for them to find time to attend events, but the Art Council hopes that the Jam Nights can provide an outlet for the community to come together, even if its just once a month.
“It takes a lot of effort to draw people away from their livelihood and encourage them to come in town for a few hours and enjoy a little entertainment,” Morrison said.
For the performers, the Art Council hopes the Jam Nights provide a safe, encouraging venue for performers to showcase their talent, no matter what their skill level.
“I would like to see a forgiving atmosphere where performers of all skill levels can come on stage and do their best, where a performer does not have to worry about doing everything to perfection or being as polished as someone else,” Morrison said. “I want to see an atmosphere where everyone is encouraged to develop their individual talents, where each individual is able to receive the help, training and encouragement necessary to grow in their abilities and where we, as a community, are able to see individual performers flourish in their talents and develop over time.”
Any act can sign up from blue grass to punk rock in music and poetry readings to miming and everything in between. While the three dates are the only ones planned for now for the Jam Nights, Morrison said they hope it becomes a regular event going forward.
“The Jam Night at the Opera House is our first opportunity to create a regular activity for the community to enjoy,” Morrison said. “The rental of the Opera House Grand Hall is being paid for by individuals who are willing to sacrifice some money to help us get the project off the ground, those who have given belief it is for a good cause since it benefits both the Opera House and the community.”
For more information, or to sign up, please call Morrison at 775-237-5592 or email at EurekaArtsCouncil@gmail.com.