“Hamilton” Co-Star’s Davenport Concert Moved Outside to LeClaire Park
The special concert (of Broadway, pop, and soul favorites) was originally scheduled for Davenport’s Adler Theatre and was first announced in early February 2020. QCSO executive director Brian Baxter said Friday they decided in December to move the show outdoors, due to Covid concerns, rather than cancel or postpone.
“We’ve considered everything. I would say every option was weighed,” he said, noting it wouldn’t have worked for this special event to be shown online from an empty theater – as the QCSO Masterworks concerts have been done since November.
“We don’t expect by May to able to have full audiences inside,” Baxter said. “Outside is factually much, much better and the risk is very low, so, we just in order for this show to be successful, we really needed to be able to sell the full hall.”
Due to licensing rights issues, it also wouldn’t have been possible to stream the concert, he said. Before tickets for the LeClaire Park seating went on sale early this month, the QCSO sold 354 Adler seats for May 15, Baxter said.
Every individual who had a ticket was contacted and they were given a choice in how they wanted to deal with it, he said, noting they could transfer to any area of the park, and either pay the difference or get the difference back. Few if any ticket buyers sought a full refund, Baxter said.
The price range for the Adler tickets was comparable to how they are for LeClaire Park, where seating will be the same as it was for the Sept. 12 Riverfront Pops. That Fleetwood Mac tribute concert attracted an audience of about 2,000.
The May 15 ticket costs are:
- Bandshell Premier – $93 per person
- Bandshell – $88 per person
- Park Premiere (closer to bandshell) – $78 per person
- Zone 1 – $68 per person
- Zone 2 – $48 per person
- Zone 3– $26 per person
Working off Riverfront Pops “pod” model
Tickets will not be sold on site. Ticket buyers will purchase a specific plot of land in LeClaire Park as they would a seat at a concert venue. A
limited number of distanced seat pairs will be available in the permanent seats near the bandshell.
These plots will be clearly designated, spaced at least 6 feet apart, sized for groups of up to 10, 6, or 2 people, and are available in four price zones. The plot sizes are as follows:
- 18 x 18 – up to 10 people
- 12 x 12 – up to 6 people
- 6 x 12 – up to 2 people
Ticket plot prices are determined by park location and area size. Permanent Bandshell seats are available in single tickets or pairs. Children 2 and under do not count towards the group size. All others must be included in your group count.
Guests should bring lawn chairs or blankets to enjoy the grassy lawn. Please ensure that both the people in your group and items you bring can comfortably fit within the designated plot area. Aisles and space provided for required social distancing must be kept clear.
Attendees should be asymptomatic for at least 14 days prior to attending the event in person. Anyone feeling unwell or experiencing symptoms such as but not limited to fever, cough, or shortness of breath should stay home. Anyone who has been in contact with someone who has been experiencing these symptoms in the last two weeks should also stay home.
Facial masks or coverings will be required for entry, while waiting for entry, exit, and to move about the common areas. Facial masks or coverings are strongly recommended but not required when attendees are in their seating plots. Disposable masks will be available for those who arrive without one. Exceptions cannot be made to this rule.
Groups should arrive together and not mingle with other groups attending. The ground will be marked to keep groups socially distanced for entry. Attendees will not be admitted to the park until everyone in their group has arrived. There is no re-entry if you choose to leave the
park. Guests will exit as a group, and departure will be controlled to disperse group movement across the park and maintain social distancing.
No food vendors will be on site, but guests are encouraged to bring in their own food and beverages. Those who choose to enjoy alcoholic beverages must drink responsibly.
“It’s been a real year of adaptability, willing to consider change, that would have been hard to imagine a year ago,” Baxter said, noting Riverfront Pops worked well in this setup.
“I will never again take for granted the opportunity to go to a concert, and I work in the business obviously,” he said. “It was something I did take for granted. It’s hard to say what it’s gonna look like. I feel like this particular event is going to sell really well.
“A lot of people I’ve talked to are itching to have something to do in the community,” Baxter said. “We did Riverfront Pops really safely in September without any incident. We’ll be enforcing masking, distancing. I’m grateful we did this in the fall. We have the model. It may not be the full-size orchestra as we originally planned, to distance the orchestra.”
“We’re doing everything we can,” he said. “I’m feeling a lot more optimistic in 2021 — we’ll have more vaccinations in, and hopefully we will have a more normal season.”
As there were threats of rain for September’s Riverfront Pops, and the Q-C saw record-breaking flooding in spring 2019, the weather may be an issue this spring.
“I don’t have a lot of influence over the weather,” Baxter said. “Yes, there’s a chance of rain, but I’m not any more worried about it than I am with Riverfront Pops. The deeper worry is flooding. Right now, the National Weather Service in the Quad-Cities just released their first flood
outlook. I don’t know historically how accurate that is, but at the moment, it looks potentially promising.”
According to the NWS, the threat for flooding on the Mississippi River is near normal, with slightly above normal probabilities for minor flooding in reaches downstream of the Q-C. Local rivers range in threat levels, with most having a near to slightly above normal chance for flooding this spring based on the snowpack currently being observed.
Goldsberry best known as Angelica
Under QCSO music director and conductor Mark Russell Smith, the May 2021 program will feature selections from “Hamilton,” “Rent,” and “The Lion King,” plus songs by Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, Bob Dylan, and more.
Goldsberry received the Tony, Grammy Award, Drama Desk Award and Lucille Lortel Award for her performance off and on Broadway in the hip-hop sensation, “Hamilton,” Lin-Manuel Miranda’s retelling of the life of Alexander Hamilton.
Since winning the Tony, she has appeared in Baz Luhrmann’s “The Get Down” for Netflix and played the title role for HBO’s “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” (2017) opposite Oprah Winfrey. Goldsberry starred in the Netflix series “Altered Carbon.”
Prior to “Hamilton,” her stage appearances include an Outer Critics Circle Award-nominated performance opposite Frances McDormand in the play “Good People,” as well as originating the role of Nettie in the Broadway stage version of “The Color Purple” (2005-06).
Goldsberry made her Broadway debut in “The Lion King” in 1997 and was the last Mimi in “Rent” in 1996. Her off-Broadway appearances have included several Shakespeare productions for the Public Theater’s New York Shakespeare Festival, where “Hamilton” originated in January 2015.
For QCSO tickets, visit https://qcso.org/event/an-evening-with-renee-elise-goldsberry/ or call 563-322-7276.