Arts center adds bonus concert


The 2020 Friday Night Live concert series at Southern Indiana Center for the Arts officially ends tonight with singer-songwriter John Whitcomb.

He will perform at 7 p.m. on the stage outside the center at 2001 N. Ewing St. in Seymour.

The SICA board, however, has announced plans for a special bonus concert event at 7 p.m. Aug. 14 featuring Dr. David Hartung, his daughter Elise Hartung and soprano Donata Cucinotta.

According to the arts center’s newsletter, they will present a "musical melting pot of parodies, folk, jazz, pop, musical theater, rock and opera."

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Since April, Cucinotta and the Hartungs have been entertaining and lifting the spirits of their Seymour neighborhood with cul-de-sac concerts.

David and his wife, Monica, have three children, and all of them are musically talented. Elise plays several instruments, including saxophone, Colin plays trumpet and Julia plays piano and recorder.

David has been a family physician in Seymour for 15 years and a guitarist and drummer for 30 years. He has been a part of the local music scene as a member of the band Bad Medicine for the past decade.

Playing folk, rock, country and a list of his own parodies about life in Jackson County, he claimed the title of Mr. Jackson County during the inaugural pageant at The Pines Evergreen Room in 2016, an event held through SICA.

Hartung said it has been an amazing thing to able to record some videos of his songs on YouTube to share with the community.

"I’ve performed them at various charity events for a few years, and to be able to spread some joy to the rest of Jackson County has been so much fun," he said. "I have heard of people sending the videos to their relatives who used to live in Seymour."

Hartung said the cul-de-sac concerts have been another fantastic outlet for him to bring his love of music to a small corner of the world.

"Those Sundays turned into a whole family show, as my wife and kids each have contributed," he said. "I am so happy to once again be able to expand the audience for my town."

The doctor/entertainer is still a member of Bad Medicine as a jack of all trades. He still occasionally drums, but he also plays the banjo and harmonica and sings a bit.

Hartung can’t always make the shows and is sorry he had to miss the recent one at SICA, but the band continues to support him in being a part of the group.

As for the upcoming show with Cucinotta next week, Hartung said the audience should expect the unexpected.

"We have had a hugely eclectic mix of songs for all of our cul-de-sac concerts, and this will be no exception," Hartung said. "We usually play for 30 minutes, so Donota and I have cooked up an entire two-hour show."

Hartung said he will sing his Jackson County parodies for sure, and he believes the ever-shifting nature of the set list will keep all ages entertained.

Cucinotta was set to sing the role of Donna Elvira in the Indianapolis Opera performance of Mozart’s Don Giovanni in March when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

She said all of her in-person singing jobs, including Don Giovanni, have been canceled until 2021, so she is having to adjust.

Now, she has the opportunity to sing on the SICA stage, where she has never performed before. She thinks it’s safe to say that audiences can expect the unexpected.

"Describing the genre of this concert was one of the most difficult assignments," Cucinotta said. "We cover such a wide breadth of styles — a mix of opera, show tunes, folk, rock, country and other assorted bits."

She said it’s truly a genre-busting concert of music that they love playing and hope people will enjoy.

"Dave is on guitar and vocals. Elise is on saxophone, piano and ukulele," Cucinotta said. "I’ll be singing as well as playing piano, banjo and ukulele, all at a healthy social distance."

Cucinotta has been recognized for her performances across opera, musical and concert stages. This season, she was a featured artist for the 34th annual yuletide concerts with Jack Everly and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.

Last season, she performed with the Columbus Philharmonic and Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra, sang Musetta in La Bohème with the Indianapolis Opera and can be seen on "Encore! Pippin" on Disney Plus.

Just a few of Cucinotta’s other career highlights include Louisville Orchestra under the baton of Michael Tilson Thomas, Queens Symphony Orchestra at Lincoln Center and singing First Lady in "The Magic Flute" with Opera Tampa.

She maintains a voice studio in Seymour, where she lives with her family.

There is no charge for admission to the SICA bonus concert, and coolers are welcome. Those attending are asked to comply with state and local social distancing requirements.

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”If you go” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

What: From our Cul-De-Sac to SICA concert

When: 7 p.m. Aug. 14

Where: Southern Indiana Center for the Arts, 2001 N. Ewing St., Seymour

Who: Dr. David Hartung, Elise Hartung and soprano Donata Cucinotta

Cost: Free

Details: Coolers are welcome; those attending are asked to comply with state and local social distancing requirements

[sc:pullout-text-end][sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”If you go” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

What: Friday Night Live concert series

When: 7 p.m. today

Where: Southern Indiana Center for the Arts, 2001 N. Ewing St., Seymour

Who: Singer-songwriter John Whitcomb

Cost: Free

Details: Coolers are welcome; those attending are asked to comply with state and local social distancing requirements


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