Wiyos to play in Sayre
Those planning to see The Wiyos perform in Sayre Thursday are in for a treat.
The trio's performance, slated for 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the Guthrie Performing Arts Center at the Sayre Theatre, promises to be "very energized and a lot of fun," founding member Michael Farkas said.
The Wiyos are no strangers to Pennsylvania - "it's a fun state," Farkas said - but this year's Bradford County Regional Arts Council Nightlife on the Susquehanna Series brings the band to the Sayre Theatre for the first time.
While the group traditionally plays in the style of early swing jazz, rural folk, old-time blues and Appalachian blues, their style is hard to pin down - something Farkas hopes will be clear at Thursday's show.
In addition to the traditional material, Farkas said the band will play songs from its 2012 album "Twist," a collection of music loosely based on Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz and Farkas' favorite work of the band's to date.
The idea for "Twist" developed after the band played a show in Kansas based on the story. Farkas thought the characters, symbolism and other parts of the story would be fun to explore. "We just kind of ran with it," he said. "It's a bit of a departure for us."
The Wiyos - including bassist Sauerkraut Seth Travins and guitarist Teddy Weber - will also perform new material. The band is slowly working on a seventh album that is rooted in its traditional style, but still "colors outside the lines," Farkas said. "There will always be an element of mischief in our music," he added.
The Wiyos formed in 2002 in Manhattan and began in the streets of Manhattan as a jug band, Farkas said. Once they became more seasoned, they developed a reputation and started receiving bookings for shows. Eventually, the men were able to tour consistently, performing over 200 shows a year for several years, Farkas said.
Six albums later, the members of the Wiyos have slowed down and each have their own side projects. Travins owns a sauerkraut business, Weber is a ski instructor and Farkas works with a children's band. The band continues to perform, with shows scheduled throughout the country in 2013 as well as a tour of the United Kingdom.
"It's always a bit of a juggling act, but we're slowly finding our balance," Farkas said.
After departing Sayre, the band will also hit venues in Johnstown and Kennett Square, Pa.
"We're excited to get on the road this week," Farkas said. "There's nothing like a live show."
Tickets for the performance are $17 for adults and $15 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased at the Sayre Theatre, by calling the BCRAC at (570) 268-2787 or online at www.bcrac.org.
Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.