Local producer/artist/musician extraordinaire Curtis Labelle hits the Lacombe Performing Arts Centre stage on June 10.
Showtime is 7:30 p.m.
It’s also a ‘good-bye’ kind of show as Labelle is preparing to move to Ontario in just a few weeks.
“Over this past year, there have been ups and downs in my music journey,” explained Labelle during a recent chat.
Navigating COVID of course proved a major issue for musicians too, but now that things are getting back to normal, Labelle has a fresh sense of optimism about the future – and that includes a decision to re-locate after calling Red Deer home for many years.
So it’s mainly with the goal of broadening his professional horizons that he and his husband are moving.
Labelle, who is a consummate entertainer, is excited about the spectrum of opportunities that lie ahead of him. “It’s also about being a completely small fish in a big pond,” he added with a laugh, referring to the move.
But Labelle is up to any challenge, and as folks here in Central Alberta know. his unstoppable energy and charisma will take him far. It could include landing a gig on the cruise ship circuits – something he is particularly excited about. “That is the plan,” he said. “It’s in the works.
“We have both agreed that no matter what, we’ve just opened up our journey to whatever happens will happen. I’m 40, so it’s time to live life, travel, and do my music wherever the music takes me!
“So I’ll be stepping out and branching out, and seeing where the world is going to take us.”
Until then, Labelle has planned several local shows as a kind of farewell to audiences across the region who have been following his artistic adventures for years.
“I’m doing a show currently pretty much every weekend across the province.”
Some shows have included Labelle hitting the stage with a full band, and others feature just him on his piano for a more intimate, scaled-down rendition of his collection of tunes.
“The Lacombe performance will definitely be an intimate evening – my purple grand piano will be there with me,” he explained. “There will be laughter, stories, a bit of back and forth – some cover songs, and of course my own music,” he said.
“It will be a comfortable atmosphere, and will give an experience of what my journey has been like, and how I’ve been given so much from the community,” he added. “I’ll also be playing some stuff that I have never played before.
“I love entertaining. I love looking at every single person in the audience and making those connections with them.”
His final goodbye show here in Central Alberta runs in Red Deer on June 23 at the Scott Block Theatre.
As pointed out in his bio, “Labelle’s music comes with a driving backbeat, an infectious chorus, groovy piano, and blazing guitar solos. Harnessing that brand of collaborative energy into a killer song is what you get out of Curtis Labelle’s music. The impact and energy you experience from a show by Labelle leaves you wanting to see more.
“A composer for film, radio, and stage, Labelle has made a presence in the Canadian music industry as an award-winner and currently holds the 2021/2022 award for Central Alberta’s Best Band.”
Meanwhile, tickets for the Lacombe show are available at the Mary C. Moore Public Library or online at lacombeperformingartscentre.com.
“I’m going to be taking a lot of Central Alberta with me no matter where I am in the world,” he said. “I’m very grateful for the knowledge and experience that I have gotten from this part of the world. So it’s bittersweet.
“I’m excited to move on and try new things and meet new people, but at the same time, I know that I’ll always be excited to come back and visit,” he said.
“It’s always going to kind of be ‘home’.”