Surrey Civic Plaza may be seeing the most dancing and singing it’s seen in a year this August as Music on the Plaza returns for its third year, bringing local and Canadian musical talent to the square.
The mini concert series hosted by the City of Surrey is taking place from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm every Tuesday this month until Aug. 24 at Surrey Civic Plaza, with free admission. The event started in 2018 and returned in 2019, with 2020 being the only year no events took place.
The concert series typically began on July 10 and featured a wide variety of music from genres such as jazz, Cuban, country, and swing. While this summer’s festivities are taking place within a shorter time frame than previous years, the lineup of musicians shows a similar level of variety in genres.
This year’s series has already seen performances from acoustic duo Dan Hare, local folk group the Cat Murphy Band, electronic cover artist Playlist, and will be seeing future performances from Canadian country star Taylor Rae and feel-good acoustic artist Pat Chessell.
“Music on the Plaza aims to connect and to bring the community together,” says Rida Fatima, who works with Parks and Recreation in Surrey. “It allows members of the community to come together and enjoy music from a local artist, but in a safe outdoor space.”
According to Fatima, all the artists chosen have local connections to some degree.
“Some of them started in Surrey but have moved elsewhere,” she says. “And then we do have some artists that have worked with [the City of Surrey] previously, some that we got to know just through our database of looking out for artists in Surrey and making sure that we’re providing opportunities for them to share their talent.”
Fatima says the concert series has gotten an incredible response from the community.
“We’ve had a lot of different people from all walks of life come by and enjoy music,” she says. “Because it is an outdoor safe space, it allows people to connect with their community and each other. So even staying in their own bubble and their own families, they’re still around other people, enjoying the same music.”
Fatima also says that having the concerts free and open to everyone has allowed a wider variety of people to enjoy the music.
“We’ve had people from all different backgrounds and all different ages. People that come alone, people that come with friends or family. It’s engaging because it’s open to everyone, it’s free and it’s safe.”
She adds that the City of Surrey hopes to continue hosting events like this in the future.
“We do have a lot of really cool programs with outdoor music and outdoor engagement that run throughout the city in the summer, so hopefully we’ll have it back next summer as well.”