"Writing about music is like dancing about architecture." Elvis Costello
Live at the Holly
No, that’s no longer wishful thinking, but an advertisement you will no doubt be seeing by next year. Interior renovation begins in earnest next month to bring the former Medford movie palace back to its original glory, and provide a unique venue for the performing arts in Southern Oregon.
Almost everyone who is a long-time valley resident has a story connected to the Holly. The last movie I remember going there to see was “A Passage to India” with my fiancé. Was that really over thirty years ago? At any rate, having taken one of the final public tours last week before construction begins, I can say that the Holly’s revitalization will be a definite boon for Rogue Valley music lovers, for two main reasons.
The 1000 seat theater will be by far the largest venue of its kind in the region, meaning that artists who in the past might have bypassed our area when traveling north or south will now be more likely to stop because of being able to play to a larger audience. The Cascade, a sister theater in Redding, is playing host this year to artists such as Sturgill Simpson, Ani DiFranco, The Dave Rawlings Machine and Brandi Carlile, to name a few. Also, the Holly was designed and built specifically for talkies, with acousticians being brought in from New York City to consult during the original construction. The result is that the acoustics are amazing; there isn’t a bad seat in the house, as the saying goes.
Now all it needs is our continuing support to make it happen, and you may be able to actually see locally some of those artists whose CDs you check out from the library. Find more information at hollytheatre.org.