At the Arts RX concert at North Country Coffee in North Branch, Minnesota, the Spirit River Scandiband performed tunes from the Nordic Countries and Ireland to honor the two saints. Listeners discovered that St. Urho was somewhat of an imposter — it is rumored that he was created by a couple Finnish-Americans from northern Minnesota because they felt it would be nice to have their own special day just like the Irish.
A story line about a powerful Finn who drove the grasshoppers out of Finland was the basis of this sainthood. Apparently the insects were destroying the grape crop and inhibiting wine production. For this concert, the Scandiband dressed in green for grasshoppers and purple for grapes and included some Irish tunes in their repertoire.
Part of the evening involved the creation of a paper quilt. Each person selected a color to reflect their mood before the music started, then later they chose a second color to depict how they felt after listening to the music. During intermission each person added a shamrock from one color and added it to their other color, then pieced it together with all the others, creating a strong visual image that showed robust enjoyment and music appreciation. Guests were invited to share how they felt about the music in a group discussion.
We R Able offers accessible community education programs in east central Minnesota, and welcomes everyone. For more information visit its Facebook page or call (320) 358-1211.