It started as an experiment.
Get musicians and sponsors together to donate their time and talents to raise money for local nonprofits. Back in April, STG kicked off its Little Big Show series with help from radio station KEXP and Starbucks. Since then, the partners have stuck around, musicians have become increasingly involved and the concert series has taken off.
"As part of our mission, STG has a commitment to providing diverse performing arts and education to our community, and The Little Big Show series has been a great success to doing that," said STG Public Relations Manager Antonio Hicks. "Being able to leverage our resources with our partners, Starbucks and KEXP, to support local arts organizations is wonderful, and it makes you feel good about the work you do."
The Little Big Show was created to benefit local arts organizations. Since April, the shows have raised almost $40,000 for local arts charities including Arts Corps, Coyote Central, and NFFTY. For each show, organizers pair local music groups to open for the larger acts. To date, the shows featured performances by Fly Moon Royalty, Pickwick, Poor Moon, Real Estate, Dum Dum Girls and Craft Spells.
The Little Big Show provides an opportunity for people to come together, experience and share music from their new favorite artists, and help people learn about the work local nonprofits are doing in the community.
"This is the little show with a big effect," said Kevin Cole, KEXP's Senior Director of Programming. "We're incredibly proud to showcase the Seattle music scene by connecting emerging musicians with audiences at the iconic Neptune, and to amplify the good work of local nonprofit organizations."
The most recent show - hosted this month - raised money and awareness for local writing organization 826 Seattle, with performances by the band First Aid Kit and supporting act Laura Gibson.
GIbson was excited to lend her talent because she's been a fan of the work of 826 in Portland for a long time.
"I was excited to hear they started a branch in Seattle, and when asked to do this show, I said yes immediately and enthusiastically," she said.
During the show, members from the 826 songwriters club had the chance to attend Gibson's sound check and participate in a Q&A session with the artist; and members from the journalism club attended First Aid Kit's live recording session at KEXP and wrote stories about their experience.
With a sold out show, organizers were able to raise more than $13,000 for 826 Seattle, which provides a month of free after-school tutoring to more than 150 local youth.
"The recent collaboration between Little Big Show and 826 Seattle not only offers our hometown access to top musicians from around the world but it reflects our desire to work with organizations that provide youth skills training" said Clarice Turner, senior vice president, US Business, North Division for Starbucks. "Supporting programs where young people can leverage their talents and are given opportunities that inspire creativity, help them to be catalysts for change in their communities."