Verch is among the most in-demand performers in roots music today. The band consists of Verch at the helm and world-class musicians Hayes Griffin on guitar and Cody Walters on upright-electric bass and banjo. The band has toured across Canada, the United States, the U.K., Europe, Australia and China. Together they have established a reputation as consummate performers with boundless energy on stage that inevitably brings audiences to their feet.
Dirk Powell described Verch as "a living legend...on fiddle and banjo music, who's worked with the likes of Riverdance, Joan Baez and Jack White.....April has an amazing ability to touch people's hearts, get them having fun, and sharing the whole range of human emotions. She's a grand master fiddler and a very expressive singer, but what sets her apart is the openness, humor and social fun she got growing up in the music. It's not always easy for professionals to keep that social joy in their music. Even though April is playing at a very high level, she brings that explosive joy with her."
Verch was born to traditional music in Canada's hard-working, hard-dancing Ottawa Valley, surrounded by its foot-stomping, open-minded fusion of Irish, Scottish, French, German, and Polish influences and sprinkled with tangy spices of American country music. She was a local star at the age of 4, step dancing with her sister and winning contests. Later she became the first woman in history to win both of Canada's most prestigious fiddle championships, the Grand Masters and Canadian Open; and when Canada hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics, she was asked to represent her country's music at the opening ceremonies.
A "Bluegrass Unlimited" review ( Feb. 2012) described the contributions of band member Cody Walters and his accomplished and lively style: "Walters has a fine touch on the banjo and is a masterful bassist."
The newest member of the band, Hayes Griffin, has long been immersed in the world of bluegrass and acoustic music. He won the Dan Emmett Flatpicking Competition two years in a row as a teenager and brings his interest in bluegrass, improvisation and jazz to the AV Band.
On the band's 2011 tour of China, someone in the audience marveled that "April's voice is just like a bird flying in the sky freely, without any burdens, sounds like you can fly with her 'til the end of sky. . .." At the same time, the twang of the banjo and the driving Franco-Celtic pulse of the fiddle are said to be as ingrained in April as snowbound winters and Saturday dances.
"Take a look and listen at http://aprilverch.com/ if this crack three-piece band is new to you," a spokesperson for the Music Hall suggested. "Then, whether you want to settle in for a cozy, snowbound Oswego winter weekend or be transported by April Verch's flying, freewheeling voice, come to enjoy the master fiddler and her band at the all-volunteer, family-friendly Music Hall--- also known as the Ontario Center for Performing Arts. The venue is the McCrobie Civic Center, 41 Lake Street, Oswego."
Doors open at 7:15 p.m. Show starts at 8 p.m.
The atmosphere at the Music Hall is intimate with candle-lit tables surrounding a small stage. Homemade desserts, popcorn and beverages will be available for purchase. Tickets can be purchased on-line at http://oswegomusichall.org/ or at the river's end bookstore, 19 W. Bridge St., in Oswego. Holders of tickets purchased before 1 p.m. on the day of the concert will have preferred seating. After 1 p.m., seating will be general admission. Ticket prices are $14 if purchased in advance and $16 at the door. Children 12 and younger are half-price; younger than 5 is free. For the best deal – lowest ticket prices and prime seating – Season Passes and All-Season Passes are available and may be purchased at any show. For information, contact membership secretary, Carol Forrest, at 315-343-2988.
The Music Hall's next performance this season will be Cliff Eberhardt's, opened by Louise Mosrie, Feb. 2, 2013. Music Hall concerts are made possible in part with funding by the NYS Council on the Arts.
For more information call 315-342-1733 or access the Music Hall website at http://oswegomusichall.org/.