Country fans came out in droves to see Brett Kissel play the Evraz Place parking lot on Saturday in what was Regina’s first major concert since the start of COVID-19 restrictions.
Kissel performed for a full, but spaced out parking lot during three sold-out shows for “Saskatchewan’s Night Out”. One of the shows was also livestreamed for viewers at home.
Onstage pandemic precautions were present, including members of the band besides Kissel staying within plexiglass shields.
“It certainly affects the chemistry, not all of us being able to interact. It’s a big part of our show,” Kissel said prior to Saturday’s concerts. “It’s definitely tricky, but it just goes to show the professionalism my guys have and how much fun we still have. We’re able to interact the best way we can, and still have a lot of our energy come through plexiglass.”
“It doesn’t bug us that much. We wish it wasn’t there, but we know we’ve got to have it there to keep everybody safe.”
The event was run in support of the Regina Food Bank, who said after the first show “four barrels worth of food” was donated by concert-goers with more coming from the other two performances.
A final total for all three had yet to be announced as of Sunday morning.
The 4 pm Saskatchewan’s Night Out show was amazing! @BrettKissel crushed it and the crowd dropped off 4 barrels worth of food at @evrazplacelive. That’s enough food to feed 375 families in the #YQR. The challenge is on 7 pm show, can you top it?
— Regina Food Bank (@ReginaFoodBank) June 21, 2020
“You know the saying ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ is the most true saying for a time like this,” Kissel said. “We’ve been cooped up for so long. To get an opportunity to be on the stage, travel, come out here to a city that loves country music as much as Regina does, it’s hard to put into words it’s so exciting.”
“It feels kind of like we are getting back to the part of the business we just enjoy, which is bringing people together,” said Regina Exhibition Association Limited President and CEO Tim Reid. “Giving them memories and moments that are going to last a lifetime. Today is a little bit different but it’s a moment that I think all of us will remember for the rest of our lives, I mean first drive-in concert here in Saskatchewan.”
Kissel will be holding a similar set of concerts at the SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon on June 27 in support of the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre.