Something is happening in Coeur d'Alene: The performing arts scene is bursting at the seams. For David Demand, director of the Coeur d'Alene Symphony, the community's increasing interest and investment in the arts means the symphony's 26th season may just be its best yet.
"Our attendance has almost doubled, and our budget has doubled and the amount of performing has doubled," Demand says. In other words, Demand is in demand. Over Labor Day weekend, the group held its first annual fundraiser picnic and watched more than 1,000 people show up. There's no doubt North Idaho is showing how much it values its local symphony.
"Coeur d'Alene is going to be at the forefront in the arts," Demand says. "The opera is picking up, the symphony has doubled in size, the summer theater is quite popular -- a lot of good things are happening in Coeur d'Alene, and I'm just happy to be a part of it."
You can be a part of it, too, by checking out some of the Coeur d'Alene Symphony's 2004-05 season performances.
"It's the year of the violin," says Demand. Case in point: On Oct. 16, the Coeur d'Alene Symphony will perform its Fall Fantasy, featuring violin soloist Kelly Farris of the Spokane Symphony in Bruch's Scottish Fantasy. In December, the symphony will hold two special holiday performances as a Christmas Showcase on Dec. 4-5, presenting Cecylia Arzewski from the Atlanta Symphony in Beethoven's Violin Concerto.
"We're also doing a Christmas gala program featuring Kay Damiano, a soprano, and Horace Alexander Young, a baritone and saxophonist, and featuring the Red Hot Mamas," Demand adds.
The Coeur d'Alene Symphony has three more performances in 2005, too. Its 26th season features a lineup that promises, as Demand puts it, to bring "music to match our lakes and mountains."