For the first time in nine years, Robby Takac's annual Music is Art Festival won't be depending on the kindness of Mother Nature for its success. Music is Art will make its debut at the Buffalo RiverWorks Entertainment Complex on Sept. 9, the Goo Goo Dolls bassist announced at a news conference held at the venue Saturday afternoon.
"We've had an amazing run in Delaware Park behind the Albright Knox over the past nine years," Takac said. "But we were always at the mercy of the weather, and often, the weather was not kind to us."
As patrons of past festivals know, MiA's batting average, weather-wise, was not too impressive. More often than not, heavy rains permeated the grounds from morning until midnight, when the festival wrapped. While the weather never shut down the proceedings, organizers believe that attendance would increase greatly in a controlled environment.
"The change of venue gives us an opportunity to reimagine our approach," Takac said. "We'll still have more than 15 stages, 100 bands, artists, DJs, live art – all the things we're known for. But this year, most of the stages will be protected from the elements."
Mayor Byron Brown was in attendance at Saturday's news conference, and made some impromptu remarks when beckoned by Takac.
"The Music is Art Festival is one of the premier cultural events in Buffalo each year," Brown said. "We have a vibrant arts and culture scene here. And art equals economic development. I'm thankful to Robby and Music is Art for having their festival in the city of Buffalo."
As has been the case for the past 15 years, the MiA Festival is free and open to all ages. This year's event will run from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Submissions from musicians and artists are now being accepted through musicisart.org/festival.