The Rapidian

Wealthy Theatre to host The Crane Wives for 6th annual New Year's Eve concert

Local favorite The Crane Wives returns to Grand Rapids, headlining at the Wealthy Theatre for the annual New Year's Eve concert.
Underwriting support from:
The Crane Wives performing at Wealthy Theatre

The Crane Wives performing at Wealthy Theatre /Courtesy of Wealthy Theatre and GRTV

/Courtesy of Wealthy Theatre and GRTV

Wealthy Theatre is hosting its sixth annual New Year's Eve concert on December 31. Locally started indie-rock/folk band The Crane Wives will return to Grand Rapids for the event, and Chicago band The Way Down Wanderers will make their Grand Rapids debut.

“It’s officially a tradition now, six years in, so The Crane Wives seemed perfect. They had a lot of options because their New Year’s Eve shows are a tradition as well, and it’s really nice that Wealthy Theatre rose to the top,” says Erin Wilson, Director of Wealthy Theatre.

The Crane Wives, who have performed at the Wealthy Theatre for Trip the Light and this past summer as part of their tour, are excited to return to continue the New Year's Eve tradition.

"It's such a beautiful place to perform. There is so much history within its walls. We feel honored to be a part of this year's New Year's Eve celebration, knowing that the honor is being passed down to us from some of the musicians we admire most," says Kate Pillsbury of The Crane Wives. "Starlight Six has created quite a tradition performing at Wealthy Theatre on New Year's Eve. It's intimidating knowing we are following in such big footsteps. Seth Bernard and May Erlewine [of Starlight Six] are good friends of ours. We consider them mentors in our musical journey. They're some of the most talented people we know, and some of the kindest souls... We feel humbled to have received the chance to perform in their place."

The band has just released their third studio album "Coyote Stories" in August, and are planning to release another full length album in March.

“When we were brainstorming openers with The Crane Wives, their dream scenario was to have The Way Down Wanderers open for them," says Wilson. "They’re a hot Chicago band and bands get booked quickly for New Year’s Eve, so we’re all really excited it worked out. The Crane Wives have played with them in Chicago and they have a strong younger following.”

"At the beginning of [2015] I had dubbed it my 'Year of Being Brave,' hence the quitting of my day job, the traveling of the world. But after Alex [Atkin]'s accident, it's become entirely more clear to me how capable and strong and resilient the human heart is. Alex's accident has come as quite a wake up call to all of his loved ones. I think we find ourselves analyzing our priorities a little more lately, and personally, what I have found is that being in this band, surrounded by the people I love and following my passion, is exactly where I'm meant to be," says Pillsbury. "I can say confidently that I believe the other band members feel the same way, more now than ever before. So there's no better place for us to ring in the new year than in our hometown."

There are other elements patrons can look forward to as a part of the New Year’s show.

“Places that you go on New Year’s Eve know that you’re probably there for the evening so you get charged more for things that are usually affordable, [such as] drink prices go up twice as much as they normally are. For us it was important to keep all of our prices what they normally are so that you can have a really good pour of a Founder’s beer for the same price as if you were at a Meanwhile movie. We’re pulling out all the stops for this concert but it’s still a really affordable New Year’s Eve,” says Wilson. "We’re continuing to stay true to our community roots."

Wilson notes that Wealthy Theatre will have a bar in the standing standing area near the stage as in years past. In another tradition, local on-air programmer Matt Jarrells will be bartending right next to the stage.

“Over time, we’ve curated a number of Michigan made beers in a great responsive relationship with people who come here, so we have a mix of Founders, Bell’s, Brewery Vivant and a number of other beers,” notes Wilson.

Wilson encourages people to get their tickets right away.

“We’re in as good a shape as we’ve ever been with advance sales. Sometimes I tell people they can probably buy a ticket at the door, but for this one, I keep telling people to buy them right away" he says. "The response has been incredible, we’re already at half capacity- which is exceptional in West Michigan.

Doors open at 9 p.m. and the concert starts at 9:45 p.m. Tickets are $12.50 presale and $15 at the door. Tickets can be purchased online here. Cash bar with $5 Michigan beers will be available all night for members and non-members alike. The Wealthy Theatre is located at 1130 Wealthy St SE Grand Rapids, MI 49506.

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