Muskoka To-DAILY

Bifocals Concert Band kicks off Music on Barge season June 18 with tribute to Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album 50th anniversary

GRAVENHURST — Celebrate the 50th anniversary of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band when Music on the Barge returns for another season Sunday night at 7:30 p.m.

Barge program 2017 cover (Medium)The Gravenhurst Bifocals Band kicks off the popular summer season at Gull Lake Rotary Park in Gravenhurst.

Under the direction this year of Kim Barlow, a “huge fan of the Beatles,” the community concert band that traditionally opens the season, the 40-piece brass and woodwind band pays tribute to the Fab Four and many more great composers, including Cole Porter among more than a dozen music writers and arrangers.

They continue the tradition of Sunday night concerts in the picturesque waterfront setting of Gull Lake Rotary Park.

Fred Schulz, director of the series, says this year’s Music on the Barge concert series promises to deliver a mix of favourite performers from past seasons and introduce some new and exciting entertainers for the very first time to the lineup.

He says audiences will enjoy a wide range of musical styles from big band, ’50s-’60s rock ’n’ roll, to country. Some of the finest tribute artists in the country will also be performing during the upcoming summer season.

A full schedule of acts can be found at

Some of the acts performing this season include: 

— Roy Orbison Tribute – July 2

— Tribute to Johnny Cash & Tammy Wynette – July 16

— The Liverpool 4 – North America’s Tribute to the Beatles- July 23

— The Good Brothers – August 13

Barge program 2017 2“It’s always great to see the support from our seasonal and permanent residents at the Sunday night concerts. Music on the Barge concerts are an important part of summer in Gravenhurst and Muskoka. We are very grateful to our season sponsors who help to financially off-set the costs incurred by the Town of Gravenhurst,” said Schulz, director of the music series.
The 2017 Music on the Barge season at Gull Lake Rotary Park will begin on Sunday, June 18thand concerts will run until Sunday, August 13th inclusive.

Music on the Barge concerts start at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise stated.

Admission is by a free will offering. In the event of inclement weather – such as rain or lightning – concerts will be cancelled for the safety of the audience and performers.


Background of The Barge

The Barge was designed by Gravenhurst architect Stanley White Jr., and was financed through the combined efforts of the Lions Club, the Rotary Club, the Board of Trade, The Town of Gravenhurst and generous donations from citizens. At a cost of approximately $14,000, the current Barge was completed by July 4th, 1959. The first official performance on the perma­nent present Barge structure was held on that day on the occasion of the visit of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. For a number of years prior, it was a floating stage of docks tied together.

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