What is "The Awakening Tour"?
It is odd & strange how life takes you down so many paths, you follow that path with one particular thing in mind then later as you look back in retrospect you see that the direction and plan was something entirely different than your initial reasons for following, yet somehow it all works out.
Back in 2004, with limited repertoire and shaky legs, I set out on my quest of a musical career. There were many fears but my greatest was being in front of people. A friend suggested that I try my local nursing homes. At first I really didn't think I had anything to offer, but soon I was to find out that I couldn't have been further from the truth.
As my monthly performances progressed I made new friends and the excitement grew. Family members began to attend each performance. On one of my visits I began singing to a resident who had been silent and unresponsive for some time. As I sang she suddenly sat up, touched my hand and with a boisterous voice began to sing along (I believe the song was "Crazy"); it didn't take me long to realize that this was not a common occurrence. As everyone (staff, residents & loved ones) responded in obvious shock and amazement; she completed the song with me and then gently patted my hand again and drifted back into her prior state of calm, never to happen again. I found out later that she had been a professional singer and that the song Crazy was one of her favorites. It was this chance encounter, (referred to as 'The Awakening') that sent chills up my spine and an unstoppable desire into my heart and in that moment new life and meaning was infused into what I was doing. It was at this point that I truly understood what everyone meant about receiving more than I was giving.
That is how "The Awakening Tour" came to be. I was driven to bring this kind of feeling to others. As the years go by it's hard to determine who really gets more out of it; them or me!
The Awakening Tour happens every summer as I go on the road for my regular tour dates! I seek out the nursing care and rehab locations in rural, off the beaten path, small towns as well as the larger city environments that fall in our path along the way. I'm often asked "how did you find us?" and I reply "I was looking for you".
I bring lively memorable music that everyone can sing along with as well as the old favorites from their era. I always encourage everyone who attends to participate and/or actually become part of the show (the caregivers as well). Every stop gets the same energy, look and feel as any other show I perform. My only regret is the inevitable goodbye over and over again from it's humble beginnings it continues to grow. The awakening tour has appeared in Kansas, Oklahoma, Minnesota, North Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho & Washington, leaving smiles, laughter and fond memories in its wake.