Singer-songwriter Flintface and his band will headline the inaugural #TAKEBACKYOURVOICE anti-bullying fundraiser concert, Oct. 17 at the State Theatre in Easton, organizers announced Tuesday during a news conference at the theater.
Local high school students, ages 14-19, will have the opportunity to open for Flintface, whose real name is Joe Scorsone. Interested area performers and bands must upload a performance video to YouTube with the hashtag #TAKEBACKYOURVOICE and fill out an application at statetheatre.org/events/takebackyourvoice. Deadline for submissions is Sept. 14.
Ten acts will then be invited to audition Sept. 24 at the State Theatre. A panel of judges will choose the winning performers to open the #TAKEBACKYOURVOICE concert. All genres of music are welcome, Scorsone said. The judges have not been revealed.
Tickets for the October show cost $21, $11 for students. Tickets are available through the theater's website, by phone at 800-252-3132 and at the box office, 453 Northampton St. Proceeds from the event will benefit the annual Freddy Awards program, which recognizes excellence in high school theater. Show time is 7 p.m.
Scorsone, who was a presenter at the 2015 Freddy Awards and is a longtime anti-bullying advocate, was elated to be bringing the #TAKEBACKYOURVOICE campaign to the State Theatre stage. (Flintface was originally scheduled to perform in October 2014 at the State Theatre, but the show was postponed.) "It's an honor to be able to be a part but also to contribute to that because that is a living, breathing example of people finding their voice, kids exercising their voice and being confident in who they are," Scorsone said. "I'm not recreating or creating anything new, I'm being a part of something that already exists in our area and I'm proud to be a part of it."
Scorsone said its the people, not money or fame, that has kept him creating music for more than a decade. "To me, this is the pinnacle of that. Look around you, this is insane. And to be able to do it here and be a partner with them in this, I already knew what they (the State Theatre) were about, because of the Freddys, that they care about people and kids, but to be a part of it myself, not just be a presenter or a viewer, it's just a dream. I'm just happy every day I'm a part of this."
Shelly Brown, State Theatre President and CEO, echoed Scorsone's excitement. "One of the great traditions of high school is bands," Brown said. "I've never seen a program, anywhere, that invited high school bands, no matter what kind it is, no matter how you express music or your feelings, to participate on this level, at a theater, to perform with a national act. I think it's really, really exciting."
Brown added, "This is what we live for here, to be able share this stage with the kids, because they're the people who are going to be running the place, the Lehigh Valley, in the years to come."
Tuesday also marked the public on-sale date for tickets for the State Theatre's 2015-16 season.
Flintface's latest studio release is Hope, which features the single "Army of Rejects." Watch the video for the single below.