During the holidays many companies, organizations, and individuals host a variety of holiday events featuring a wide variety of entertainment.
For this fall-winter issue of EventPro, we sent veteran entertainer and writer Laurie Mattson out to showcase Northland entertainers!
It’s show time! A familiar phrase for those of us in the entertainment game, and for this local variety band it is a very suitable name.
The Showtime Band has been performing together for three years, and consists of Ed Gallagher on drums, Todd Gault on bass/vocals, Brad Nelson on lead guitar/vocals, and Leyla Atketin (formerly Lindsey Johnson) as lead vocalist/percussion.
Atketin has been active in the music industry from a very young age. She is currently lead vocalist and percussionist with The Showtime Band. She has performed at the Duluth Playhouse, and is a past member of the Duluth-Superior Symphony Chorus. She was the lead vocalist of the Jukebox Band for eight years, and recorded the DTA jingle, “Ride the Bus” which has aired for the past 23 years! Atketin writes and records original music, with the song “Frozen in Love” being performed by her and The Showtime Band.
Ed Gallagher has been on the music scene for quite some time. The Main Event at Charlie’s Club in West Duluth, and the Loading Zone at Frankenstein’s in Superior are two of the many groups he has played with. He is a self described “experienced, simple,
solid dance drummer.” This former teacher at Superior High School has been banging on the drums since his
sister bought him a drum set as a boy. Gallagher
remembers Showtime’s first gig at VIP Pizza in
Superior, on Sunday nights, and how things took off after playing there for a while. They have been booked solid ever since.
Karen Gallagher, married to Ed, is the band’s booking agent/manager, and met Ed when he was in the house band, Main Event, at Charlie’s Club. She wears many hats to keep this well-oiled music machine going. Putting in a good 15-20 hours a week, she books gigs and keeps their followers updated.
They have a facebook page, “It’s Showtime”, and informational emails are sent out titled, “Showtime Shorts” that inform folks of each date they play, and any band news. Speaking of hats, this band offers a visual treat by wearing unique hats and get-ups that
coincide with each song they are performing.
Todd Gault has 35 years under his musical belt in the industry. He was trained and educated in Florida on all stringed Bass instruments and vocals. Being with the Fort Lauderdale Symphony Orchestra for five years, as well as several shows, jazz and top 40 groups around the U.S., has made him a well seasoned veteran of performing and
entertaining. Gault and Gallagher previously performed in a band together before forming The Showtime Band.
Brad Nelson – a decent vocalist, experienced entertainer, and solid guitarist. (HE describes himself as such.) Nelson has been in well-known 50’s bands such as The White Sidewalls for 16 years, and popular local group, Sh-Boom. He has also played with several Twin Cities bands. However, being active in a church band on Sundays and teaching guitar to young people is what’s important to him.
The Showtime Band performs at many different venues including Black Bear Lounge, the Head of the Lakes Fair, private parties, weddings and reunions, country bars and street dances. They have also played at Barker’s Island “Bayside Sounds,” a summer outdoor venue in Superior, for the DSTA (Duluth-Superior Transit Authority) picnic, and for CASDA (Center Against Sexual and Domestic Abuse) events.
Showtime runs the gamut of musical genres. From 50’s music to today’s hits, the groups’ music selection has them in high demand. From ZZ Top and Journey to Adele, Patsy Cline and Etta James with some country, rock and bluesy tunes added, it is non-stop dancing entertainment.
The main focus for all of the group members is to have fun, see people smile, and help to make memories for them through the songs they play. Yesterday and today’s music combined with fun, dedicated and
experienced musicians. Timeless tunes with a good beat. That’s “Showtime!
Magician, Kelvin Saline
Who doesn’t love magic? Local magician, ventriloquist, and escape artist Kelvin Saline has been amusing and delighting crowds for 44 years. As an 8-year-old Cub Scout, Kelvin was introduced to magic when his mother, the “Den Leader,” made a coin disappear using Kelvin as her “secret accomplice”. He said that the reaction from the other kids was so unforgettable that from that day on he was hooked! He researched magic in library books and catalogues, and became a self taught magic man.
He began by making coins disappear, then larger and larger objects. Since adding the family comedy, ventriloquism, and incorporating escapes, Saline’s show has been in high demand. His “Magic Village” stage show is a 30 – 45 minute performance. Fairs and festivals welcome him to entertain and amaze their crowds. Fundraising performances are also available for organizations, such as PTA’s, elementary schools, school bands, etc. Saline provides all that is needed for the fundraiser, and the group provides the venue.
He is a lifelong Duluthian married to Sherilyn, with children Brittney, 27, and Zach, 10. As he humorously states, he has two children between 10 and 27. While serving in the Air Force, he brought his special brand of diversion to the folks at an air base in Maryland. Later, he was also stationed in Southern Italy, and did magic shows for the Italian orphans there, through an interpreter. A highlight for him was the opening ceremony at the Special Olympics in Fort Meade, MD.
Saline believes that helping and motivating others through his gift of magic is important. He has been very involved in anti-bullying campaigns throughout Minnesota schools, mainly on the Iron Range and Twin Cities. This is done through visual interpretation and his ventriloquism, gaining more of a captive audience. He is hoping to become a bigger part of the Duluth Schools anti-bullying awareness
movement in the future. Saline also has a motivational presentation for businesses that stresses goal setting and success-driven strategies using magic. Though well received, it hasn’t been a main focus for Saline. As the anti-bullying program gains more traction and clout, he will plan to develop and market the motivational aspect more.
A few of the outstanding events that Saline has been part of include being a Magic Consultant for the smash hit musical Pippin, “Day out with Thomas” yearly train ride and family fun, the Pumpkin Patch train rides in the fall, and the Lester River Rendezvous.
The testimonials from audience members are very positive. Saline uses clean humor and audience participation to make it an enjoyable time for all. He has a proven track record, and will continue to draw smiles and laughter through his professionalism and talent. Maybe for 44 more years!
For contact information on The Showtime Band, Kelvin Saline
and many other great entertainers check out the directory in this publication and online at: eventpromag.com